Column: Come Early, Be Loud, Wear Gold
Published: Wednesday, February 15, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 19:01
I couldn't sleep Monday night. I got back from the TD Garden around 1 a.m., and by 4 a.m. I was still ecstatic. Part of it was Bill Arnold and his end-of-overtime goal that gave Boston College its third straight Beanpot title over BU. That definitely had something to do with it. But the real reason I couldn't sleep was you guys.
It was your voice erupting from the balcony after that incredible shot went past a stifling goalie and into the net. It was your tweets that made Arnold trend nationally. It was all of your Facebook statuses and BC Memes that I couldn't read enough of. It was the celebratory songs and high fives that lasted all night. It was you, coming together because of our team. I definitely do not know every Superfan, but on Monday night we felt like a family. I've been an Eagle since September, but Monday night, when Arnold's shot flew past Kieran Millan, was the first time BC felt like a real, cohesive community to me.
I came up here five months ago from Austin, Texas, where I had cheered on the University of Texas Longhorns almost my whole life. Burnt-orange pride stretches far beyond the city limits in Austin, and it's been a major adjustment for me to accept that not everyone on this campus, much less the city of Boston, lives and dies by the Eagles' success. When the football team lost in the fall, I was told that the football team just sucks and I should accept it. When basketball started to lose in the winter, I was told that no one cares about basketball here. When the hockey team hit a rough patch in January, I wasn't told anything, because most people in Chestnut Hill stopped caring about BC sports by then.
The few students at the men's basketball game against Florida State last Wednesday made me start to rethink all of this, as they greeted the BC players with a swarming sea of congratulations after they knocked off the No. 15 Seminoles. All of you at the Garden or on Twitter Monday night completely shut down what I had been hearing. I know that you want to care about the Eagles, and in the Beanpot finals Johnny Gaudreau, Jerry York, and the rest of the men's hockey team gave you a reason to care. Don't lose that. All of the Eagles need this support to stay strong.
The city of Boston will likely never accept the Boston College Eagles as its team since pro sports dominate this city so strongly. That's why they need to be our team. Just like you beautifully backed the hockey team against BU, come and be crazy for the basketball team on Sunday against Duke. Please sell your ticket or sit far away from the court if you plan on coming just to see Austin Rivers or those despicable Plumlee brothers. (As hard as I try, I can't hate on Seth Curry, though. He reminds me too much of his lovable big brother). Come out to see Jordan Daniels cross-up Rivers. Come out to see Lonnie Jackson drain a 3-pointer in Andre Dawkins' eye. Come out to see Matt Humphrey steal a pass and slam it home right in front of the student section. Come out to see Ryan Anderson and Dennis Clifford shut down those awful Plumlee brothers in the paint (sorry, I can't stand them). Head coach Steve Donahue will have his team ready to go, and these players won't disappoint.
If you haven't seen them play yet, especially in the past two weeks, then you really have been missing out. What was once a clunky and awkward offense is becoming a high-powered, thrilling array of slashing drives and 3-pointers falling from all directions. While the Eagles are nowhere close to perfect, they have more than enough to compete on Sunday. Basketball is a game of runs, and having a fanatically supportive crowd boosts those runs even further. Don't show up to see the Blue Devils, because there really isn't that much to see. I better not see any of that hideous Duke blue anywhere in the stands.