It was always going to be a season of firsts for Boston University men's basketball. In their first season in the Patriot League, the Terriers were in uncharted waters from the start.
Picked to finish first in their inaugural season, the Terriers have been up and down to date in nonconference play. They’ve beaten crosstown rival Northeastern and rallied to force overtime in a loss to Harvard. They’ve also lost to Eastern Washington and Norfolk State.
But after a road win over Maryland -- the Terriers’ first win over an ACC team since beating Boston College in 2011 -- two more firsts came BU’s way.
Irving, a senior tri-captain, played his fewest minutes (22) since his freshman year in the win over the Terps because of foul trouble, but still managed a game-high 25 points on 7-for-11 shooting, including 4-for-5 from 3-point land. The 6-foot, 165-pound guard is averaging 12.9 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game this season.
Hankerson, a freshman from Miami, Fla., came off the bench to score 14 points (on 4-for-8 shooting, including 2-for-5 on 3s) and grab seven rebounds. The 14 points are a career high for the 6-foot-5 guard, and came after a six-game stretch during which Hankerson totaled just 16 points.
The freshman is now averaging 4.9 points and 2.2 rebounds a game.
BU hadn’t swept its conference’s weekly awards since 2002, when Chaz Carr was named America East player and rookie of the week after scoring 36 points in a win over Northeastern.
The 83-77 win over Maryland improved the Terriers’ record to 7-5, ensuring a winning nonconference record for the first time since 2004-05. Coach Joe Jones & Co. will wrap up the nonconference slate with a game at Saint Joseph’s on Sunday before enjoying yet another first.
BU begins Patriot League play against Holy Cross at Agganis Arena on Jan. 2.
Jack McCluskey is an editor for ESPN.com and a frequent contributor to ESPNBoston.com. Follow him on Twitter @jack_mccluskey.