Clemson completes BC's losing ACC regular season, 66-50
BOSTON (AP) Clemson coach Brad Brownell walked over to Boston College coach Jim Christian and gave him a long embrace, offering some encouragement at the end of the Eagles' long regular season.
''He's a good friend and he's a guy I know that it's harder on him than people realize,'' Brownell said after the Tigers finished off the Eagles' winless regular season in Atlantic Coast Conference play with a 66-50 victory on Saturday.
''As a fellow coach you agonize with a guy because you know he's not playing with everything he has, but he's done it with class and I just let him know that,'' Brownell said.
The Eagles (7-24, 0-18) became the first ACC team to go winless in its conference regular-season games since Maryland went 0-14 in 1986-87. It's the sixth time in league history. They do have another shot this week in the conference tourney.
Worse, BC's football team went 0-8 in league play, making the school the first in ACC history to go winless in both sports in the same academic year.
Not since former Southwest Conference member TCU went a combined 0-24 during the 1976-77 season has a school from a major Division I conference done it. The last member of one of the current Power 5 leagues to achieve the dubious double was Georgia in 1943-44.
''I try not to get too down,'' said Christian, in his second season with BC. ''I lean on a lot of people that I know, one of them is their coach. We're really good friends. People that coach, they know. People who are in basketball, they know. They know how fine of line it is in this league.''
Jaron Blossomgame scored 16 points, Donte Grantham added 13 points and eight rebounds, and Avry Holmes had 11 points for Clemson (17-13, 10-8). The Tigers halted a three-game losing skid and improved to just 3-8 on the road.
Jerome Robinson led the Eagles with 18 points. Dennis Clifford had 14 points and 11 rebounds.
Clemson led 38-21 at halftime and was never threatened in the second half. BC didn't close the gap below double digits in the final 20 minutes, completing its regular season of futility. All but three of its losses were by double digits, seven by 22 points or more.
BC was held scoreless for nearly eight minutes in the second half.
The Eagles lost at the buzzer at North Carolina State on Wednesday.
The Tigers went 8 of 14 on their 3-point attempts in the first half.
Blossomgame hit three shots from beyond the arc in a 1:13 span late in the half. Grantham had a driving dunk just before the buzzer.
The Eagles kept it close until the Tigers went on a 14-3 run, opening a 25-15 lead midway into the half.
Blossomgame connected on three 3-pointers in turning a 27-17 lead into 36-19.
''We just hit a spurt where Blossomgame hits three 3s in a row,'' Brownell said. ''We're fortunate to have a guy like that.''
His teammates fed off the run.
''Obviously, that gave us momentum,'' Grantham said.
Clemson: Blossomgame was coming off a 31-point performance in a loss at home against No. 4 Virginia on Tuesday. It was his third 30-point game of the season.
Boston College: G Sammy Barnes-Thompkins was out with a concussion. ... Senior 7-footer Clifford, walk-on Steve Perpiglia and graduate transfer G Eli Carter played their last game in Conte Forum. Perpiglia, given a scholarship by Christian just before Christmas, started his first collegiate game.
Clemson: Plays a second-round ACC tourney game on Wednesday.
Boston College: Plays an ACC first-round tourney game on Tuesday.