This game is a test. Not only are we playing a true road game, but we are seeing how the team and staff responded to the tough Colorado State loss. Can they recover? Will they be ready for their first hostile crowd? From a bowl eligibility standpoint, this is a must win. From an evaluation of Addazio as a program builder and team manager this is even more critical. Does he have the skills to get everyone back on the same page and win a very winnable game?
What's on my mind (not totally related to this game)
I rarely go to games, so it shouldn't really matter to me, but I don't like when BC frontloads its schedule with September home games. I understand why they do it. It helps the team build confidence and win totals early in the season. Also, September is traditionally a good month weather wise, making for a better home experience. My problem with the concept is that BC pays for it on the other end with tough away stretches. I also think it hurts demand and attendance when there are multiple home games in September. A lot of our fan base cannot go every week. If the games were more spread out, we might be able to improve attendance.
Three Simple Keys
1. Protection for Murphy. NC State is not great at getting to the QB. If we give Murphy time, he might be able to make some big plays from the pocket.
2. Stop them on 3rd down. CSU was 8-14 on 3rd Down. That can't happen again.
3. Force turnovers from Brissett. He's been very careful with the ball this year and has only thrown one pick.
-- Addazio is 3-4 in away games while coaching BC
-- The visitor is 1-8 in this series
-- Doeren is 1-8 coming off a loss while at NC State
The current line is BC+3.5
Did you know that Jacoby Brissett and Tyler Murphy were teammates at Florida? You will only hear this about 3,000 more times between now and the end of the game.
Until either team breaks through and becomes a consistent winner again, I think Syracuse is our closest peer program. Their coach took over around the same time as Daz and they are still backfilling talent gaps. It will be interesting to see how they hang with Florida State. The 'Noles could crush them to the point where their season starts to fall apart. Or Syracuse could put up a good fight and raise expectations for the rest of the season.
I hope to see...
A big day from the defensive line. Their ranks are getting thinner, but they really set the tempo on D. Against USC, they changed the game. Against CSU, they couldn't close on the QB.
BC is in trouble if...
Knoll cannot convert FGs either. Even outside of the lost of points, not having a competent kicker changes all the possessions. Suddenly you're going for it when you might have kicked. When this happened with the Matt Ryan teams, I didn't worry. With Murphy I worry about making the most of four down territory.
I don't feel great about this game. The CSU loss exposed some issues and I don't know Addazio well enough to know if he can fix them. However, I still think we are a better team than NC State and can run on them. I think it is another close game, but BC holds on and gets a true road win.
Final Score: BC 31, NC State 24