Al Skinner: Thanks For Everything, but Business is Business

JB McCandlesCorrespondent IJanuary 16, 2010

GREENSBORO, NC - MARCH 12:  Official Jamie Luckie restrains coach Al Skinner of the Boston College Eagles after an incident in front of the Duke Blue Devils bench during the finals of the Atlantic Coast Conference Men's Basketball Tournament on March 12, 2006 at the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

About a month or so ago, BC missed out on local recruit Evan Smotrycz (6'9" power forward). The local kid from Reading, Mass. has instead signed with Michigan. 

Evan grew up a BC fan and there is no excuse for him to not wear gold and maroon next year at BC. BC stopped recruiting him because he didn't fit their style of play.

Is that a joke?

First of all, there is not a single player who can't play BC's slow half-court basketball. Smotrycz went to the same school as BC signee Brady Heslip and played very well with him. 

Al Skinner, if you have a top 100 recruit in your backyard, you go after him, regardless. He was being pursued by the likes of Pittsburgh, Syracuse, and Notre Dame as well as Michigan. BC never even made an offer.

Boston College assistant Pat Duquette was recruiting the talented forward and he was really excited about him. It seems that Duquette was really looking forward to signing him, but typical Al Skinner was stubborn and turned the kid and his assistant down.

I'd been a Skinner fan for awhile, but as of now, I've had it up to my eyeballs with him. I am now totally convinced that Skinner will never bring BC to premier ACC status, especially when he continues to let local recruits get away. 

There are very few coaches who envy Al Skinner, yet there are very few that don't respect him. Skinner simply isn't a guy who is going to hit the road and reel in recruits. Skinner prefers to let his assistants live out of their suitcases, while he plays pick-up basketball. 

Teams like Kentucky and Memphis don't get the cream of the crop because they are who they are, but because they have coaches who love basketball and want to be around it 24/7. And as a result they are the best teams.

If you think back to when BC had Jim O'Brien they were bringing in solid basketball players because he was a relentless recruiter. So if Skinner wants to remain BC's coach in the fans' minds, maybe he should start recruiting more. A start: UCLA transfer Drew Gordon.

I understand Gordon has had some disciplinary issues, but at this point it's worth the shot. Chances are they kid will be in the NBA, so if BC feels the need to let him go, he will be fine...similar to Sean Williams, arguably the biggest loss in BC's history.

It doesn't stop at Smotrycz. BC also missed out on Carson Desrosiers. Desrosiers, a talented 6'10" center from Central Catholic HS in Massachusetts somehow missed out on BC and Wake Forest was able to sign him.

Do you mind explaining this one, Skinner? It drives me crazy that he can't recruit a good local talent, from a Catholic School, when he does fine in California, Colorado, and Texas. 

Yet another local talent that Skinner failed to bring in or was just too lazy to try to last year was Kyle Casey, who signed with Harvard. And BC fans are left wondering why Harvard has surpassed them. I hope the five minute drive wasn't too much to ask for from coach Skinner. 

We can blame it on Skinner, but BC lost a top assistant a few years back. That man was Bill Cohen. Cohen was responsible for bringing in Smith, Dudley, Marshall, and Williams. 

Skinner is just no longer a good fit for this program, so he can decide who can't play in his system, but his coaching system doesn't work at BC anymore. So let's talk upgrades.

One option is Bruce Pearl from Tennessee. I know, it sounds highly unlikely, but Pearl is a BC alum.

But can BC afford to outbid Tennessee? Probably not and I doubt Pearl would have any interest, but it's worth the try considering BC is his alma mater. With Pearl being an unlikely option lets take a look at some more options.

Keno Davis, Providence: His father was a former BC coach and BC could certainly outbid PC. He'd most likely turn down the offer considering the two programs are in similar binds.

Bobby Gonzales, Seton Hall: I am very big on this guy. He enjoyed success at Manhattan and has truly brought Seton Hall back, which is very impressive. He is a high energy guy. Having this guy would be a nice change of pace for BC.

Dana Altman, Creighton: Creighton has been a top MVC team year in year out. They are a Jesuit school with academic standards similar to BC. I can only imagine what he could do at BC with the talent they seem to already have.

Sean Sutton: This seems odd to say the least, but Sutton is looking to coach a lesser prestige team after leaving Oklahoma State. BC may be a good fit.

He won't have the pressure of his father's success and BC is a good place to start your coaching career considering some of the pieces seem to be in place. Sutton isn't a shabby recruiter either. But would Sutton be interested? Doubt it. 

BC has got to start shopping now based on how BC has performed this year to date. They have struggled at home and have been beat down in ACC play so far. A few weeks ago, I would say give Skinner one more year, but he really has nothing to build upon for next year based on this year's abysmal performance.

Al Skinner,

Thanks for all you have done at BC. You brought BC from a lower tier power team, to an elite national team, but from there you have gone nowhere but backwards. Al, it's time to pack your is business and BC owes you zero loyalty at this point.