CHESTNUT HILL MA - SEPTEMBER 04: Montel Harris #2 of the Boston College Eagles carries the ball in the first quarter against the Weber State Wildcats on September 4 2010 at Alumni Stadium in Chestnut Hill Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Brian: The Eagles travel to Winston-Salem to take on the 2-6 Wake Forest Demon Deacons tomorrow. The Deacons are owners of the 117th best defense in the country. In the last two weeks, the Wake Forest defense has given up over 1,050 yards of offense to Virginia Tech and Maryland, both on the road. They've been pretty terrible on defense this season. Sounds like a perfect opportunity to get Montel Harris and the Eagles running game going.
However, the BC offensive line will again get reshuffled this week, with Rich Lapham out and Thomas Claiborne listed as doubtful. Replacing them will be Ian White and Emmett Cleary. Despite yet another shuffle of the BC offensive line this week, do you expect Montel and the Eagles to have a big day in the ground game? What are you expectations for tomorrow's game, particularly in the matchup between BC's anemic offense and Wake's anemic defense?
Jeff: Noon games on the road always scare me a little with the Eagles even though they did fare reasonably well earlier this season in Tallahassee. Fortunately though, tomorrow is not a noon game and the Eagles should be able to get off to a good start on the ground and play from ahead most of the game. I saw the Deacons in person earlier this season when Navy had no problem moving the ball against them and expect the Eagles to move the ball easily with Montel tomorrow. If it does come down to some important third or fourth and shorts for the Eagles, I expect little trouble for the Eagles to pick up a yard or two inside the tackles against Wake Forest.
Wake is clearly the worst team we have played this season since Weber State. And if not since then, then since the Kent State game. BC should have a good day tomorrow and get a winning streak going heading into the Duke game.
Brian: Is there anything that worries you about tomorrow's game? Is there an aspect of the game where you think BC can get tripped up?
Jeff: Absolutely. I'm worried about the Jim Grobe misdirection playbook. Against Wake since Grobe has been there, they have usually managed to defeat BC through some misdirection plays that seem to catch us completely off guard. I'm sure the guys have watched a lot of film and been coached up about this so far this week, but if Wake doesn't call many of these plays and gets our guys to start overpursuing, then we're only one play away from a sweep or reverse or some sort of direct snap long touchdown run by the Deacons. If BC struggles to get the ball in the red zone as they probably will and Wake gets a TD on one or two of these type plays, then it is going to suddenly be a fourth quarter deficit or nail biter for the Eagles.
Brian: With Virginia Tech's dramatic 28-21 victory over Georgia Tech, they remain the ACC's lone undefeated team in conference play. Is the ACC once against Virginia Tech's to lose, or do you think the Atlantic champ has a shot at knocking off the Hokies?
Jeff: Absolutely. North Carolina and Miami still have their chances but one of them would have to win out and both would have to beat the Hokies over the next two weeks.
Jeff: During the 2008-09 academic year, BC was the second biggest spender on football in the ACC ($19.4 million), trailing just Miami ($20.9 million). Good ROI, or simply a product of higher travel expenses?
Brian: Travel expenses are part of this, but not everything. How's the saying go? "You have to spend money to ... win football games?"
Brian: Montel Harris needs just 80 yards to become the ACC's all-time leading junior rusher. Will he reach this milestone by halftime? Maybe by the end of the third quarter?
Jeff: There is a very legitimate chance that we'll be talking about this milestone sometime in the first half.
Jeff: With the resurgence of Syracuse this season, is it imperative that we win the next three in order to make a bowl game?
Brian: No. Syracuse has played very well defensively this season but they have struggled offensively, just like BC. Syracuse has an impressive 6-2 record so far this season, but remember half of those wins came against two I-AA opponents and a winless MAC team.
Brian: On Wednesday, the Big East unanimously voted to expand by 2 football-playing schools. Who ya got as the two editions to the conference?
Jeff: I have no idea but how about Marshall and UCF.
Jeff: The ACC Atlantic Division race really heats up starting this weekend with Florida State and Maryland playing losable inter-division games and N.C. State traveling to Clemson. Who do you have winning the Atlantic as of today and will BC be mathematically eliminated with an Florida State win this weekend or not?
Brian: Florida State wins the Atlantic and BC is mathematically eliminated this weekend.
Jeff: I know HD's prediction is wrong because it includes no field goals. I'll go 23-7 Eagles.
Last week I went 3-2 while Jeff went 2-3. On the year, Jeff is 20-25 while I'm two games back at 18-27. Since I finally got off the schneid and won one of these weeks, I'm picking first and (hopefully) going with the FREE money pick of BC -3.
Temple -3 at Kent State
Wake Forest at Boston College -3
Alabama -6.5 at LSU
Washington at Oregon -35
TCU -5 at Utah
North Carolina +10.5 at Florida State
Maryland at Miami -7.5
Florida -14 at Vanderbilt
Air Force at Army +6.5
Marshall +10.5 at UAB