Boston College plays its final tune-up before ACC play starts back up later this month when they host Richmond on Saturday. The Eagles, who lost by 13 points to the Spiders in the Barclays Center Classic last season, are currently the only ACC team with a win in conference action after their stunning upset of then-No. 1 Duke earlier this month, which is part of a four-game winning streak.
The run includes an 84-65 triumph over Central Connecticut on Sunday, as Ky Bowman paced a balanced effort with 14 points and seven rebounds and his squad finished strong after a lackluster first half. “It was defense. What led to that was stops. In the first half, we let them shoot 50-plus percent,” Boston College coach Jim Christian told reporters. “I didn’t think we challenged shooters, I didn’t think we guarded the ball very well. It was good to see our team respond. I‘m always worried about the response.” Bowman has scored in double figures in all 12 games and the 6-1 sophomore has at least six rebounds in eight consecutive contests. He and his teammates will take aim at a Spiders squad that gives up an average of 77.1 points and allowed 50 in the second half in an 86-78 loss to Bucknell on Tuesday.
TV: 1 p.m. ET, ACC Network Extra
ABOUT RICHMOND (2-9): Sophomore guard De‘Monte Buckingham scored 22 in the loss to Bucknell as all five starters finished in double figures for the Spiders. “We just have to keep pushing ourselves and know there’s a lot of games ahead of us,” Buckingham told the team website after the seventh loss in eight games. “It starts in practice, we have to keep pushing each other every time we step on the court.” Richmond entered Thursday ranked tied for 317th nationally in 3-point shooting (30.3 percent) after making 4-of-17 versus the Bison and freshman forward Grant Golden - who leads the team in scoring (14.9) - is also 4-of-17 from long range over a five-game stretch.
ABOUT BOSTON COLLEGE (9-3): The Eagles have not missed a beat since losing leading rebounder Deontae Hawkins for the season with a knee injury prior to the four-game winning streak and freshman Steffon Mitchell is a big reason why. The Minnesota native notched his first career double-double with 13 points and a personal-best 14 rebounds his last time out and averages 8.6 boards over his last five outings. Junior Jordan Chatman has given Boston College a third reliable scoring option behind Jerome Robinson (16.8) and Bowman (16.6) and the 6-5 guard is averaging 17.8 points over the last four games.
1. Robinson scored 27 points on 10-of-20 shooting in last season’s 67-54 loss to Richmond, while nine of his teammates combined for 27 points on 10-of-36 from the field.
2. Chatman is 12-for-23 from 3-point range over a three-game span.
3. Buckingham leads Richmond in rebounding (6.5) and assists (3.3).
PREDICTION: Boston College 84, Richmond 73