We are so close. So, so close to qualifying for a bowl game. Everything is lined up. We are playing with a lot of confidence. It is Senior Day. NC State is falling apart. Now we have to have the killer instinct. The team has to show it can put a shaken team away. Last week was a test that BC passed. This is just another. Good teams win as favorites at home. Go do it.
What's on my mind (not totally related to this game)We need more November home games. I know home games are tough Thanksgiving weekend because so many students are off campus. I also know that the game day experience is more comfortable in September. Yet I feel like we give up a huge built in home advantage by not playing more games at Alumni in the late fall. Even now as the conference fills up with northern teams, there are still plenty of potential opponents who would hate to play us in a game with temperatures in the 20s.
Three Simple Keys
1. Bring the pressure on Brandon Mitchell. I know I often write some variant on bringing a blitz each week, but this game things are bit different. Mitchell is back as the starter and lone QB. He missed a big chunk of the season with a broken foot. He's split snaps since he's been back. Now that he is their starter again, I say confuse him, fluster him, do everything you can.
2. Keep passing. Overlooked in Andre Williams' huge day was that our passing game was improved. I know that was partially because we were playing a poor defense, but Rettig had time and found other people besides Amidon. Keep it up.
3. Don't let the punts keep rolling. We are giving up a lot of field position by letting so many punts roll. I know Dudeck muffed his first chance last week, but I still want him fielding the punt returns.
-- NC State has lost five straight games
-- NC State is 4-5 against the spread
-- NC State is 1-5 all time in Boston
The current line is BC-7.5
There are some quirky parallels in Addazio and Doeren's resumes. Both are in their first year with ACC programs. This is the second head coaching job for both. Both got their starts two years ago at MAC programs.
UNC-Pitt is probably the most relevant game. While we fight to become bowl eligible it would be nice for the Tar Heels to get another loss.
I hope to see...
The crowd show up for Senior Day ceremonies. These guys have seen the slide of BC football and were there for the rock bottom. It wasn't the four years they were expecting when they signed on to perennial winner Boston College. Yet they've played hard this year and bought into what Addazio was selling. The seniors and their families deserve our thanks and support on Saturday.
BC is in trouble if...
We allow non-offensive touchdowns (pick 6, punt return, etc.). NC State has yet to score more than 20 in an ACC game this year. We cannot give them points. If we do, they might steal the game.
After last week's frustrating effort, I expect the defense to buckle down. I think we force some turnovers and control most of the game. I expect a decent balance of run and pass in a comfortable if slightly boring victory. The Seniors become bowl eligible and get to leave Alumni as winners.
Final Score: BC 24, NC State 17