Things don't get easier this week. Prior to the season, no one expected BC to pull off this upset. Any stragglers on the BC bandwagon probably got off after last week's loss. Because of the brand of our opponent and their ranking, the game remains important, but it is not the measuring stick that the Pitt game was. That is why I hope BC comes out trying everything. They have nothing to lose and that is often the best time to win.
What's on my mind (not totally related to this game) I already covered the fund raising reminder in BC Magazine, but didn't mention the feature article on Addazio. Because it is coming from BC's official arm, I always find these sorts of articles intriguing for what they do and don't write. It surprised me a bit to read Addazio talk about getting fired at Notre Dame despite graduating 100% of their players. It was one of those typical college coach lines about priorities and the realities of the job. I didn't think it was whiny but it was the first time I recall Addazio complaining about the decision. Addazio has been very good about embracing BC for what it is and not complaining via backchannels about what it isn't. He's only human, but I hope he keeps the attitude and positivity and doesn't start whining about how college football isn't fair. At BC you have to graduate players and win. That's not too much to ask.
Three Simple Keys
1. Someone other than Murphy needs to have a great game. Even if he had played better last week, Murphy cannot carry the team by himself. He needs another playmaker to have explosive plays and score touchdowns.
2. Better tackling. Last week was some of the worse tackling I've seen from a BC team in about ten years. That cannot happen again.
3. Disrupt Kessler. He was nearly perfect against us last year. We've got to give him different looks this year. Some pressure would be nice too.
-- Sarkisian is 3-6 vs non-conference BCS teams
-- USC is 4-0 all time against BC
-- Addazio is 0-4 vs ranked teams
The current line is BC+17
USC and Stanford are the only Pac 12 schools to play at Alumni.
I will be paying attention to East Carolina vs Virginia Tech. The Hokies impressed me by winning at Ohio State. But Beamer's teams have a habit of losing focus against teams they should beat. If they come out and thrash ECU, it might be a sign that this Hokie team is different.
I hope to see...
Passes to the Running Backs. We hardly did it with Andre Williams, but it was a staple of the various offenses we are borrowing from (Oregon, Florida). In theory they are high percentage and it will be a good way to get Murphy's confidence up and will give some of our playmakers -- like Willis -- some space to make plays.
BC is in trouble if...
We continue to drop passes. Murphy took most of the heat for the Pitt loss, but those drops were as bad, if not worse. I know Addazio will have a quick hook on the older guys who make mistakes. I have no problem with that. Let the young guys play, especially if they can catch.
This is preview is probably more heart than head, but I believe we can win. I think USC will take us lightly and will get more fight than they ever expected. I think even 3/4ths full, Alumni can be a tough place to play. I think we work out some of the kinks on offense and put up enough points to hold off a USC team that gets more field goals than touchdowns.
Final Score: BC 28, USC 20