Boston College: It Ain’t Hard to Tell With Troy Bell
Shortly after listening to Troy Bell share details of his extraordinary journey in the world of basketball. It ain’t hard to tell why the ceremony taken place this weekend in Chestnut Hill, MA, will cement Bell’s legacy as Boston College basketball royalty.
This Saturday during halftime of the Boston College Eagles vs. Virginia Tech Hokies basketball game, BC’s illustrious number #2 jersey will be retired and raised to heights no other BC basketball player in the school’s history was able to accomplish.
I asked BC’s incomparable point guard, Troy Bell, his thoughts on having his jersey raised to the rafters. “My biggest thoughts are I wish my dad could be here to come with me. But he passed away a year and a half ago. Gonna be a good day! My mom, family, and some friends will be there. I’m just appreciative! Especially when you tried to put the work in and leave it all on the floor”.
Troy Bell is gushingly and genuinely appreciative of all of his coaches, teammates, and fans!!
When Bell’s final collegiate dribble bounced, he scored the most points in Boston College history(2,632). Additionally, during the years 2001-2003, Bell finished his electrifying collegiate career as a 3-time All-Big East selection, 2-time Big East Player of the Year, and a 2-time Consensus 2nd Team All-American.
Without question, it is challenging attempting to capture Bell’s dominance and brilliance he displayed on the basketball court.
As a fellow Boston College athlete myself(football & track), during Bell’s tenure. I distinctly recall the year before his arrival in 1998, students standing in front of BC’s library passing out unheard-of heavily discounted tickets to the basketball games for people to attend. Fast forward just one year later, Bell’s high scoring efficiency demanded a packed house every home game at Conte Forum.
Home for Bell is Minneapolis, MN. His father Fred Bell and his mother Maggie Bell raised a competitive and humble young man. Fred expressed to his son, well actually according to Troy his father insisted he attended the Academy of Holy Angels located just 8.2 miles from their home.
Fred’s judgment proved to be a superb one. His son averaged a mind-boggling 39.5 points per game and became the school’s all-time leading scorer(2,491). Bell’s heroics on the court garnered attention from Division-1 coaches nationwide. Troy’s top 3 schools at the time were Tennessee, Xavier, and Boston College.
According to Bell, then Assistant Coach, Tim O’Shea led the recruitment process surrounding him. However, Bell said it was then Head Coach, Al Skinner, who delivered the most convincing and honest statement. Skinner told Troy during a house visit “Troy we are going to be good with or without you”. Troy said that resonated the loudest because, during the recruitment process, coaches will say anything to land you.
Bell and Skinner went on to make BC history. For Skinner to be able to pick Bell as his catalyst to spearhead his charge in conquering not just the Big East Conference but all of the NCAA, along with Craig Smith, Jared Dudley, Ryan Sidney, Jermaine Watson, Kenny Walls, Reggie Jackson? Til this very day, Skinner has proven to be the only coach to produce such outstanding players year after year.
Frankly, as far as Bell is concerned, winning was the most meaningful experience during his time at Boston College. “Winning the Big East Conference tournament because the year before we broke a record for the most losses. So to turn that around was huge”.
George Mumford teaching Bell how to play the mental game was an enormous game-changer. “I would listen to instrumentals before games because it allowed me to focus on my mediation. As opposed to listening to music with words. Because I would focus on the words instead of my own thoughts”.
Bell on fatherhood “I am glad I had my kids later in life. Because you are able to just live for them without the selfishness. When you have been living in stages and you acknowledge you are at the parent stage. You can do so unapologetically and don’t feel like you are missing out on anything. Being a parent makes me much more appreciative of my own parents”.
At this stage and age, the main people to light Bell’s eyes up are his daughter, Gianna Bell and his son, Lil Troy “Bear” Bell. Marriage is in Bell’s future as well. He will marry his fiancé Janna Snoddy this summer. Troy, I speak comfortably when I say your pops is smiling proudly while watching over you and your family. Along with “I love you”, he also would say the other three words to you “Job well done”.
How does Boston College retiring Troy Bell’s jersey make you feel? Leave a comment below.
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