Louisville is a very good team with a great coach and a great QB. We have neither, so that put us at a handicap to start the game. But we only made things worse with dumb mistakes, dumb penalties and dumb game planning. Watching it back only reinforced that this game should have been closer. Not that BC should have won, but we are not six touchdowns worse than they are.
Towles wasn't good, but he wasn't as bad as he's been. Other than the INT, his throws were decent. He was still to slow to get rid of the ball or feel where the pressure is really coming from. Wade's one completion was nice. I wish he had received more playing time. I don't think we have anything to lose.
Rouse's TD run was nice. Even as he was getting popped and twisted around, Jones still looks good in the passing game. Hilliman's still lacking the physical skills or instinct to find the soft spots.
Callinan made some nice catches. I was glad to see Thadd and Jeff get the ball on running plays. Sweeney didn't get targeted enough.
This might be the worst OLine performance I've seen in four years under Addazio. It might be one of the worst I've every seen any BC OLine play. They looked slow, lost and then ever got called for some dumb penalties. Lowry as terrible. Lindstrom also had all sorts of problems, whether it be assignments or even just getting push around. The only guy who didn't have a rough day was Baker. He is probably our best Lineman. Montiero had some bad misses and a costly penalty.
The Wildcat and return of the Jones throw and the end arounds and reverses. all scream of desperation. The stuff that worked last week, didn't work this week. My problem is that our base stuff was totally ineffective. But when the blocking is that bad, there is not much you can do.
You know the team was overthinking when Landry got near Jackson and then slowed down to sort of wait on him. He shouldn't even be thinking that way, especially when he is steps away from a sack. Kavalec had some nice plays. Ray had a really dumb penalty. Allen struggled. Gutapfel was fine. Smith was fine.
Considering what a running threat we knew he would be, the LBs struggled. They were out of position or missed tackles on some of Jackson's best runs. Strachan played pretty well and was active. Schwab missed Jackson a few times. Milano also seemed to miss him when he had the chance on big plays.
Moore had his best game in a long time and made some good tackles. Harris had an INT, but also made some big mental/coverage mistakes. Yiadom didn't look good, but then made one pass deflection in the second half that showed glimpses of what he did last year. Johnson was active. McClary missed some tackles.
Jackson makes everyone look bad, but I don't think we adjusted well nor executed well. We needed more pressure and to give him more different looks. Reid was back but there was never any indication of who was performing what task or calling the D. I don't know who to blame, but I am going to have a bigger piece this week about the DBs.
Special Teams: B
The best play on the day for Special Teams was picking up the fumbled punt. At least the guys were ready and hustling.
They put Walker back on Kick Returns. He had good success last year, but hasn't been featured there much this year. He was good. So was Willis. Maybe because there were so many kick returns, they hoped a change up might spark something.
The punts were fine.
I touched a bit on this in each unit, but I find Addazio's game planning very disconcerting. For example, it felt like he decided to run the ball and keep Jackson off the field. The problem is we are not a great run blocking team. Especially when teams either load the box or have a great DLine (like Louisville). What we can do relatively well is quick short passes. That worked against NC State and put less pressure on the OLine and on Towles. If done well, short passing can still have a ball control feel. Yet we didn't take that approach, therefore we couldn't move the ball and couldn't slow down the Cardinals.
The only positive I picked up on is that the Defense played hard even as they were being crushed. I know there are no points for "heart" but I am hypersensitive to teams checking out on losing coaches. I don't see it here.
The timing couldn't be worse for Florida State, but that is why Addazio makes the big bucks! Hopefully we can figure out a way to hang with an elite team and win a big game.