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BC's Skinner has his fans in the NBA News New Jersey Nets

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News » BC's Skinner has his fans in the NBA

BC's Skinner has his fans in the NBA

BC's Skinner has his fans in the NBA Boston College is very pleased to have Al Skinner running its Basketball program -- and it should be. Considering the programs he's recruiting against, Skinner has done an incredible job getting good players and coaching them up.

But as long as he's on the Eagles bench, the NBA is missing out on a guy who should be in that league.

Beyond his hoop knowledge, Skinner has proven himself to be a player's coach. Because of that, he's been able to draw more than expected out of young kids. The fact he is not a flashy self-promoter has foolishly led him to be underrated by some. But his style works at The Heights, and it would work in the NBA .

``I would say so,'' said Nets president Rod Thorn, who coached Skinner in the ABA. ``He's played in the NBA , so I think he understands things. And Al was always very mature from the time he came in as a rookie. He always understood who he was and what he needed to do to have success. I guess what I'm getting at is that's a very grounded person.

``I think a lot of him. He's a quality guy with very good values, and he's an excellent coach.''

But before you go putting two and two together and coming out with Nets, understand that the situation in New Jersey is very much in flux. Kiki Vandeweghe has taken over for the fired Lawrence Frank on an interim basis, but that label could describe just about everything with that franchise.

A new owner is expected, and it remains to be seen how much he'll get involved with the decision making. There are no guarantees that people like Thorn will be making the decisions on coaches and player personnel, so his obvious affection for Skinner could be moot.

But the original point remains. While there are many college coaches whose styles aren't suited to the NBA , more restrained types like Skinner and Houston's Tom Penders are a fit.

A few years ago, a couple of NBA scouts at a college game pondered that mystery.

``Why don't people talk more about Al Skinner for NBA jobs?'' asked one.

``He's smart, he coaches up his talent and he's relaxed out there,'' said another. ``That sounds to me like what you'd want in an NBA coach.''

Skinner obviously has a job to do now -- and from the way BC played against Michigan, he and his players are doing it very well. All he's said in the past is that the NBA has crossed his mind. Those in the Eagles athletic department would be happy if it goes no further.

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Author: Fox Sports
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Added: December 7, 2009


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