A few weeks ago, SuperFans everywhere heard the six words they had been praying they wouldn't heard until next spring.
Olivier Hanlan will enter the draft.
The first reaction to this? Sadness. Then came resentment over Olivier deserting Chestnut Hill, followed by a fear of what will come next for Eagles after their loss of an unquestionable leader. However, now slightly removed from the shock of the situation, the only thing SuperFans should feel toward the Canadian superstar is gratitude.
Hanlan’s sensational individual career was often overlooked because of the teams struggles, but here at The Gavel, we wanted to appreciate the spectacular moments Hanlan gave BC and place his legacy in with the greats of BC basketball.
It is tough to talk about Olivier without turning to his career accolades. In his first year alone Olivier could have filled a trophy case: ACC Freshman of the Year, BC’s first unanimous first team All-ACC freshman selection, and four-time ACC freshman of the week.
Sophomore year, Hanlan led the Eagles in nearly every offensive category on his way to an All-ACC Third Team Selection and became the third BC player and only the 29th in the history of the ACC to score 1000 points in his sophomore season.
Hanlan’s best work, though, was undoubtedly in his final season this past winter. Hanlan helped the Eagles improve their record by 5 wins, captured the ACC scoring title, had the ACC single-game scoring high for the season with 39 against a tough Pitt team, was named as an honorable mention All-American, and was named to the All-ACC First Team. Keep in mind all of this was done in arguably the toughest country in all of college basketball.
Hanlan was clearly dominant during his time with the Eagles, but how does he stack up with BC’s all-time best ballers? Pretty dang well. Hanlan had the misfortune of playing for the Boston College basketball team at a time when the program was not at its peak, yet he still managed to excel. Despite playing only three years at Boston College, Hanlan still finished 12th in career scoring and 9th in three-pointers made. If I had to place Hanlan in the ranks of BC greats he would absolutely be in the top 10. In fact, I have him ranked 8th.
First has to be Troy Bell, followed, in order, by Jared Dudley, Craig Smith, John Bagley, John Austin, Terry Driscoll, and then Gerry Ward. All of these players made an All-American Team. Hanlan, though, is BC’s best player ever not to do so, and his consistency is what sets him apart. Olivier Hanlan did not miss a game his entire Boston College career, and only did not start one of those contests. That speaks endlessly to his consistency, durability, and commitment to the game.
Night in and night out, Hanlan was on the floor, leading the Eagles from the tip to the final buzzer. Hanlan rarely took to the bench. The minutes he played each night were incredible, leading the ACC in regular season minutes played. This is what sets Hanlan apart from the likes of Reggie Jackson and others, who didn’t assume responsibilities like Hanlan until their second year on the team.
What Hanlan did during his career at Boston College was something that SuperFans should remember and cherish for as long as they can, as he was one of the best Chestnut Hill has ever seen.
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