Thursday, September 20, 2007

BC-Army Preview

Let me remind fellow fans -- take nothing for granted. Many dream seasons have been ruined by one misstep. The players and coaches are saying the right things. Let’s hope they are ready for Army. Also for fellow displaced fans, this might be the last time you see the team for a few weeks as there is still no announcement on the coverage of the UMass and Bowling Green games.

Theme that won’t be discussed on television. This is probably the most important game of Chris Crane’s career. The general assumption is that Crane will inherit the starting QB role next fall. I am a little more skeptical. I think Jags and Logan will enter the spring with an open mind. Crane can get a huge step up on the two freshmen (Davis and Johnson) and any potential recruits by showing his command of the offense against Army.

Three simple keys
1. Stop the run. Sounds easy, right? BC has one of the best run defenses in the country. This week the challenge will be a little different. First, Army is a fairly productive rushing attach. Second, Army has three weeks of game film to breakdown and find weaknesses in our defense. Expect Army to come out hard and with a few new wrinkles.
2. Continued improved special teams. The kickoffs were much better against Georgia Tech, as was our punting. But the kick returns and punt returns were a little shaky. I would like to see Tribble actually return something instead of just waiving for a fair catch.
3. Stay focused. The last time BC played Army, the Black Knights drove down the field for a TD on their first drive. BC recovered and went to win handily. But you cannot always come out flat and expect to recover.

Gambling Notes
-- The last first year BC coach to start 4-0 was Amerino "Moody" Sarno during the abbreviated 1943 season
-- BC hasn’t started 4-0 since 1999
-- BC covered a 27-point spread in their last game against Army
The current line is BC-27.5

What would be a pleasant surprise? Coming out of this game injury free. This team is starting to look like the walking wounded. Let’s hope they stay healthy through this non-conference stretch.

What would be a letdown? A close game. BC is riding a wave of good publicity right now. If we squeak by Army, the talking heads will start questioning our ranking.

What would be a shocker? Losing. Even when I was forecasting worst-case scenarios for the season, I never envisioned actually losing this game.

Bottom Line
The team is playing so well I honestly wish we were playing another conference game this Saturday. I think Army will make it interesting for the first quarter, but eventually BC will pull away
Final Score: BC 40, Army 16


America said...

Here is the Matt Ryan Chat. Its long but I thought you all would enjoy.

Matt Ryan: Hey everyone! Let's go!

Tom E. (NY, NY) BC '03: How does it feel to be an early candidate for the Heisman trophy?

Matt Ryan: It is nice to be mentioned in that light. Obviously there are a lot of really good players out there, so to be mentioned with them is flattering. But I hope we continue to play well as a team and keep winning.

Matty, Chicago: Matt, how much leeway does Coach Logan give you to audible?

Matt Ryan: There is a good amount of leeway. If we get a certain look there is some freedom to get out of whatever play is called. He is a pretty free-thinking coach, and allows for a lot of responsibility on the QB.

Pat M (South Boston, MA): How have you improved your game in the off-season? How much of this is a credit to Steve Logan?

Matt Ryan: I think as a QB the more experience you have the better you can prepare. So I watched a lot of tape from last year, to improve on my mechanics and decision making. A lot of it is personal, but Coach Logan has helped a lot, and given us a great offensive system that we really enjoy playing in.

Bobby (DC): Matt - You have inched out Clemson every year now, but they appear to have their best team yet, and may be your hardest game left this season. Any concern?

Matt Ryan: Well honestly, that is down the road a bit. That has always been a tough game for us. So that is something we will concern ourselves with when we get there. Right now we are worried about Army, and doing our best to stay in the moment.

John (Chapel Hill): What defense you have faced, or are going to face, scares you the most?

Matt Ryan: I don't know that's a tough one. Week in and week out we play some very good teams in the ACC and out of conference. So it is tough to narrow it down to one team.

Rahul (Livingston, NJ) BC '06: Is a BCS bowl a realistic goal?

Matt Ryan: I think it is a realistic goal. Our goal at the start of the year was an ACC title, and if we can do that, that puts us in a BCS bowl, and we think we have the talent, the coaches, and the chemistry to accomplish that.

KC, St. Louis, MO: Matt, is all this media attention distracting or even time consuming?

Matt Ryan: I think with the media attention you cannot let it influence you; you have to stay focused. We need to prepare the best we can. It may be distracting but you just have to take care of your own business.

Ed (Marylnad): What's you favorite part of playing at Boston College?

Matt Ryan: The best part of playing at Boston College is being part of a great team. Our locker room is filled with charcaters and so many awesome people; it is really nice to be a part of that group, and spending time with those guys and going through this whole experience with them is the most rewarding part of being a BC player.

Pat (Boston, MA) BC 04: Matt - Pino's or Presto's? Be honest.

Matt Ryan: Presto's without a question!

Jake (MD): Hey Matt, what other schools were you considering before you chose BC.. and what put BC over the top?

Matt Ryan: There were a bunch of Big Ten and ACC schools. It came down to Iowa and BC, and I loved both schools. I just felt a little more comfortable at BC, and it was a little more close to home, and my family could come to games. It worked out and was a good fit, and I am very happy I came to BC.

Pat M (South Boston, MA): Matty - what pro quarterbacks do you model your game after?

Matt Ryan: That's a tough one. I just try to do my own thing, but the two quarterbacks I love to follow are Brett Favre, I like his toughness, and he is awesome to watch. And then being in Boston it is hard not to love watching Tom Brady play. If you can play like him and win like he does, I don't think there is anything much better than that.

Matt (New Berlin, WI): Matty, can you talk about the play of your offensive line especially the work of true freshman tackle Anthony Castonzo?

Matt Ryan: They have played great this year. They have stepped up against some really good defenses that bring a lot pf pressure. I have been very impressed with them. Canstonzo has done a great job as a true fresman; I have been really impressed with his ability to pickup the offense so quickly. He is a smart kid, who will continue to improve, and I think the sky is the limit for him.

Seth (Atlanta): Matt, where is the loudest visiting stadium that you have ever played?

Matt Ryan: It is a tie, because I think at some point you just can't hear anymore. But Clemson and Virginia Tech are the loudest. They have a great atmoshphere for college football.

Anwar (Lynn, Mass.): Matty... how difficult is it going to be to not look ahead towards heading to South Bend at 6-0?

Matt Ryan: As a football player you cannot let yourself do that. You have to stay in the moment and focus at the task at hand, and that task right now is Army. We need to be sure we are prepared for the game on Saturday and if we can continue to do that , that gives us our best chance for success.

Michael (BC '86) (Portland, ME): Which teammate on the defense make you glad he plays with you?

Matt Ryan: Oh man, there are a bunch. But I think the number one guy is Dunbar. He plays with a lot of passion and flies around. He is a great MLB and a leader of defense. He is someone I would not want to play against.

Craig (Cleveland): Iceman, If there is an NFL team you could choose to play for, which one would it be?

Matt Ryan: I'd be happy to play for any, but I grew up an Eagles fan. But really, to be honest, I would be happy to play for any team.

Dave (Boston): Hey Matt. Are you or the coaching staff worried about fatigue? You've thrown 130 passes in only 3 games!

Matt Ryan: No, not worried about it at all. You just have to go out and do what it takes to win, and if that requires thorwing the ball so be it.

Andy (Boston): how do you like your nickname "iceman"?

Matt Ryan: Well, it is a good nickname. People have been calling me that I think my freshman of sophmore year of high school. It has stuck around and that is a sign of a good nickname. So I enjoy it.

Matt Ryan: Thank you for your time and your questions. I appreciate you guys hanging out with me today!

Brian said...

I'm interested in seeing how long we play Ryan in this game if its a blowout. We certainly would be happy to get Chris Crane in to see some action, but at the same time we are getting plenty of good pub and the Heisman call has never been louder.

Eagle in Brighton said...

I would expect Matty Ice to play at least for the first 3 quarters (assuming the game gets out of hand).

Crane will have more than his fair share of PT parents weekend v. UMass.

BCMike said...

Another fun gambling stat:

BC is one of four (?) Top 25 teams that has covered/beaten the spread every week for the first three weeks.

While traditionally thinking BC would never cover such a large spread, this is a new regime and I honestly think things will be different. Look for a blowout vs. Army..