A week into Patriot League play, the Boston University Terriers have split their conference record (1-1) and sit just above .500 (8-7). Few of their losses felt winnable, but at the end of the day, it’s a roster that relies on six freshmen as part of its regular rotation. That means two things: (1) Challenges, while fixable, are to be expected, and (2) there’s significant upside if the team—the freshmen, the upperclassmen and the coaches—can figure things out.
So what’s been working, and where can they improve?
.281: Max Mahoney’s WS/40
If it wasn’t obvious enough, junior forward Max Mahoney has been an absolute monster this season. That number—win shares per 40 minutes—indicates the estimate of the number of wins contributed by a player per 40 minutes. For reference, the average is about .100, and junior forward Tyler Scanlon and sophomore guard combine for .263. Mahoney alone contributes to more wins than the next best two. Mahoney is really, really good, but the Terriers need more hands on deck.
.889: BU’s free throw success
I know I talk a lot about the Terriers’ free throwing shooting, but on Saturday, they hit 16-of-18—including 10-of-10 in the last 1:32—from the line instead of their 66.2 percent season average. BU better hope this isn’t a fluke because while effort and energy (and junior forward Max Mahoney) were without question the winning formula over Bucknell, it wouldn’t have happened without these other pieces working too.
5 (or the lack thereof): Walter Whyte out for the season
In a devastating news for the Terriers, Jones announced sophomore guard Walter Whyte will be out for the season. As an all-conference rookie last season, Whyte averaged 9.3 points and 5.0 rebounds in 24.6 minutes per game and was selected to the Patriot League All-Rookie Team. The 6-foot-6, 210-pound guard was expected to be a key starter for the team, but will now look to redshirt this season.
16: Javante McCoy’s resurgence
I noted this on Saturday’s notebook, but sophomore guard Javante McCoy is looking much improved. He had an atrocious December (8.2 PPG, 30.4 FG%), but in league play, he’s nearly doubled that, averaging 16 points per game. Jones has made it clear time and time again, but the Terriers need a third scorer. In terms of pure shot creating ability in the half court, he may be the second best option behind junior forward Max Mahoney. He has a lot of room to grow, but his resurgence couldn’t come at a better time.