Thursday, November 25, 2021

BC-Wake Forest preview

The mood on the message boards and BC twitter last week was one of disappointment. And there was a surprising amount of criticism for Hafley and staff. Some felt BC didn't adjust to FSU's gameplan fast enough and also were frustrated by some of the game management and clock decisions. Maybe I am still in the Honeymoon phase or still a Hafley apologist, but I took last week's loss in stride. Was it a bummer? Sure. I wanted the 8-4 finish for bowl reasons and momentum reasons. But what I appreciated is that the team was down big and clawed back to make it a game. I've seen way too many BC regimes that were incapable -- both strategically and philosophically -- of mounting a comeback of more than 20 points. Last week I felt we still had a chance. How much of that is Jurk vs Hafley? We won't know until Hafley is using another QB. But for now, I am still happy. I will be a lot happier if Hafley proves that he can get the team focused on beating the best Wake team in a decade. 

What's on my mind (not totally related to this game)
Our fellow New England FBS teams both made recent new hires. UConn made the leftfield hire of Jim Mora Jr. UMass went with familiar face Don Brown. I wouldn't have gone with either but both jobs are very tough and I don't know if any person or prototype would guarantee anything. It is an uphill climb at both and they are going to need good scheduling, great player development and some luck. Although I have no love for UConn and I am indifferent to UMass, it would be good for both to be somewhat competent and competitive. The demographics on the future of youth football in New England is terrible. Having good college programs will help keep the sport relevant to the next generation. 

Three Simple Keys
1. We need interceptions.
Wake is explosive. They will score in bunches. We are going to need to get stops but turnovers would be ideal. Not only does it stop a drive, but they might start to alter their gameplan if they are getting picked off.
2. Get Zay the ball early. I sort of got into this on twitter postgame when I said FSU did a good job containing Zay. I know he still had a big game, but they held him a lot, kept Jurk off balance and we up 23 before Zay even touched the ball. I think we need to get him the ball early, even if it is a jet sweep, just to establish momentum.
3. Fewer protection breakdowns. You can debate whether is was scheme, coaching or the players, but last week FSU got the better of our OLine. Wake is not as talented up front, but Oline needs to be better.

Gambling Notes
-- BC is 2-4 against the spread the last six weeks
-- BC leads the series 14-11-2
-- Clawson is 3-3 against BC
The current line is BC+4.5

Wake hasn't won two in a row in the series since 2011-12.

Scoreboard Watching
The ACC is an afterthought at this point this year. I will be paying attention to Michigan-Ohio State. Ryan Day will always be a BC guy.

I hope to see...
Some sacks. We've generated so little pressure this year. Wake still does a lot of those rubs and delays in the backfield. It would be nice to make them pay for it.

BC is in trouble if...
We settle for field goals instead of TDs. Wake will score. We need to keep up.

Bottom Line
Last week was just a set back. I think this week BC rises to the occasion and Hafley gets the biggest win of his tenure.
Final Score: BC 38, Wake 31

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