BU Today


The Magical Year

An open letter, and thanks, from Athletic Director Mike Lynch


Photo by Edward A. Brown

Dear Terrier Nation,

It is my privilege to say thank you for all of your dedication and support as we conclude the 2008-09 season.

It was a magical year for the Terriers, certainly one of the best we ever had. We won 8 conference championships, with 6 teams and 10 athletes qualifying for NCAA postseason competition. We added new coaches: Patrick Chambers from men’s basketball Final Four participant Villanova and former men’s crew Olympian Tom Bohrer. We hosted the 2009 Women’s Frozen Four at Agganis Arena, the second NCAA championship in three years held on campus. Most memorably, we hoisted our fifth national championship trophy in men’s ice hockey when Coach Jack Parker rallied his team to one of the most dramatic comebacks in the annals of college athletics. For the fourth consecutive year and the seventh time in the last eight, we captured the America East Stuart P. Haskell, Jr., Commissioner’s Cup as the top athletic program in the conference.

In the classroom, our student-athletes raised the department’s overall GPA to a 3.0, and 10 teams earned perfect Graduation Success Rate scores and 2 had perfect Academic Progress Rate scores. In the community, our commitment intensified. In addition to our annual charitable activities and donations, we forged a partnership with the nonprofit group College for Every Student, which allowed dozens of student-athletes to become mentors to students at nearby Jackson-Mann Middle School. Our coaches and student-athletes volunteered nearly 4,000 hours for the good of Boston’s youth and underprivileged.

I am proud that our staff always has demonstrated fiscal responsibility, especially critical when the economic recession occurred last fall.

Some other Points of Terrier Pride from this past year:

Matt Gilroy (MET’09) won the Hobey Baker Memorial Award.

Jack Parker (SMG’68, Hon.’97) won the Spencer Penrose Award as National Coach of the Year.

Kieran Millan (CAS’12) was named HCA National Rookie of the Year.

Colin Wilson (CAS’11) was named USA Hockey’s College Player of the Year.

Three teams — women’s soccer, women’s basketball and women’s lacrosse — were undefeated during America East Conference regular-season play. Three teams — men’s soccer, men’s ice hockey and women’s softball — won NCAA tournament games in the same year for the second time ever and the first time in 15 years.

Seven NCAA wins are the most ever in one year for BU.

Five head coaches joined our staff: Patrick Chambers and Tom Bohrer, Stacey Rippetoe of women’s rowing, Bruce Chalas of women’s golf, and Rick Edelmann of men’s tennis.

BU had 11 conference Players of the Year (or the equivalent): midfielder Michael Bustamante (CGS’09) in men’s soccer, midfielder Marisha Schumacher-Hodge (CAS’09) and defender Casey Brown (COM’10) in women’s soccer, Andrea Walkonen (SED’09) in women’s cross country and indoor track and field, Tess Waresmith (SMG’09) in women’s diving, Matt Rickett (CGS’09) in men’s swimming, Andre Watson (CAS’09) in men’s diving, Jesyka Burks-Wiley (CAS’09) in women’s basketball, Stephanie Nunic (CGS’10) in women’s tennis, and Sarah Dalton (CGS’07, CAS’09) in women’’s lacrosse.

We had six conference Coaching Staffs of the Year: men’s soccer, led by Neil Roberts, women’s soccer, led by Nancy Feldman, women’s basketball, led by Kelly Greenberg, men’s swimming and diving, led by Bill Smyth, women’s indoor track and field, led by Robyne Johnson and women’s lacrosse, led by Liz Robertshaw.

We hope you enjoy reliving many of the season’s great memories this month on GoTerriers.com. Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, we will unveil the second annual Terrier Twelve, a countdown of the past year’s top achievements by teams and student-athletes, determined by our staff.

As excited as I am to look back, I am just as eager to look ahead. In September, we unveiled our strategic vision, which articulates the objectives of Terrier Athletics.

We will achieve these ambitious goals only with your support. We are thankful that so many of you have continued contributing to Terrier Pride, supporting our 500-plus student-athletes. They take pride in these pursuits, and all of us take pride in helping make their dreams become realities.

Any way you choose to show your Terrier Pride — by donating, buying tickets or merchandise, purchasing an all-access subscription, bidding in our online auctions, or even just following us on Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook — allows us to become a better athletic department, and, in turn, a better BU.

Again, we say thank you. Have a wonderful summer.

Mike Lynch

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