Thursday, September 01, 2011

BC-Northwestern preview

Every season has a “fork in the road” game. It's usually not the opener. Like every season, we have questions to be answered. Yet unlike other seasons it seems like all our questions are on one side of the ball. Can Rettig be great? Will Rogers turn things around? How healthy is Montel? It’s all about the offense. BC will never win anything significant with the worst offense among BCS schools. If we are going to have hope, if we are going to challenge for the ACC title, and if we want our Saturdays to be fun again we need to be competent on offense. After playing Northwestern we will know a lot more about this team.

Overlooked storyline for the game: BC’s defensive ends
With the issues in defensive back and the shuffling of the offensive line, no one is really discussing our depth at defensive end. The DEs will be critical this game as they will need to contain whoever is playing QB for Northwestern. True freshman Connor Wujciak is listed on depth chart and there aren’t many bodies BC can turn to if the Des struggle or get hurt.

Three Simple Keys
1. The offensive line play.
No one really questioned Spaz on this, but with days before the game, he announced he would play his “best five guys.” This philosophy (as opposed to playing the guys who are best at their respective positions) cost us last year. Let’s hope it clicks this year.
2. Converting in the redzone.
I know this might be asking too much since we just want some successful drives, but BC cannot settle for field goals against a team that scores as quickly as Northwestern.
3. Establishing the run.
Even though Northwestern has made stopping the run important, I don’t think they will be that improved. If BC cannot run on them, winning the game will be a struggle.

Gambling Notes
-- Spaz is 10-4 at home
-- Spaz is 1-3 vs non-ACC BCS teams
-- Pat Fitzgerald is 3-5 against non-Big Ten BCS teams
Due to Persa’s status, the game was taken off the Las Vegas books. Prior to that the line was BC-3.

BC and Northwestern have played three times. The games have all been in September and had unusual scoring. The three games have been decided by 49 points, 45 points and 1 point respectively.

Scoreboard Watching
I will be paying attention to Miami vs Maryland. Both are on BC's schedule and both have new coaches. If the games were played today I think we’d be an underdog against both.

I hope to see...
Rettig have a solid day. My expectations are high for him, but for this game I would settle for him completing most of his passes and avoiding any INTs.

BC is in trouble if…
Northwestern gets to 30 points. Spaz’s teams have only scored more than 30 once against a BCS team. I know there will be improvements on offense, but I don’t think we are ready for a shootout yet.

Bottom Line
Even if Persa plays, he’s not going to be 100%. That leaves Northwestern one dimensional on offense, which plays right into our style. I think BC will frustrate them most of the day and keep the QBs in the pocket. I also think this will be a decent, mistake free game on offense. I think BC controls the tempo and the scoreboard en route to our first win of the season.
Final Score: BC 27, Northwestern 17


Ben Hinchey said...

Eagles on the warpath!

Erik said...

Look at this way, a few years ago we didn't have the option to settle for field goals. Getting 3 points now and then can lead to some wins this season.

Galvin said...

I agree Erik, that was always fun, watching 20 yard field goals with my hands covering (most) of my face. Or my favorite, please please please make the extra point! My liver has really taken a beating these past couple years.

Erik said...


Benjamin said...

Anyone know of a game watch in San Francisco?

Big Jack Krack said...

The game watch in Columbia, SC is in my family room! :-) All alums living in or within driving distance of Columbia are welcome.

My daughter will be sitting in my seats on Saturday - just as crazy as I am!

Erik said...

If anyone wants to scout our future opponent UMass, they're on TV tonight. First ever night game at Holy Cross is tonight against the Minutement. 8 PM on CBS College Sports Network.

BCDoubleEagle said...

Yes, there are SF game watches all season. The info (along with info for all the other regional alumni chapter game watches) is at:

dixieagle said...

I am so ready for BC football; I am cautiously optimistic that our offense will be "competent" and that Kuechly and friends will be on top of their game.

So glad that we don't have to suffer through another painful year of Tranquill's impotent offense.

Go Eagles!

Rob said...

I am nervous about us changing up half of our oline a week before the season starts. Herald reports today that Richman is probable. If he can go, Spaz "hasn't decided if Richman or Wetzel" will start at LT if Richman is healthy?!?!?! I know the depth chart had Richman at LT, I don't know what I thought that meant, but wouldn't the logical place for Richman be LG, you know, the position that he's been playing for a couple years? And then Spinney slides back to Center, again the position he's been playing for several years and the position where he looked competent.

Why are we changing this now? How, after evaluating Wetzel for three years, are we not aware that he can't play LT? Why would move Richman to an uncomfortable new position when he's not 100%?

I'd like to be an optimist, but what the hell are we doing jerking around the oline at the last minute like this?