CHESTNUT HILL MA - SEPTEMBER 25: Dave Shinskie #15 of the Boston College Eagles calls out the play late in the second quarter against the Virginia Tech Hokies on September 25 2010 at Alumni Stadium in Chestnut Hill Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Brian: The Eagles offense played well enough in their first two drives on Saturday. Montel Harris was gaining chunks of yardage on the ground while Shinskie was going through his progressions and finding his receivers. On the Eagles second possession, however, Shinskie missed a wide open Chris Pantale in the end zone by badly overthrowing his tight end. Three plays later, Shinskie had a wide open Alex Amidon but he tripped over his own two feet in what should have been an easy touchdown. Then on the next play, Shinskie forced a pass into double coverage that should have never been thrown and he was intercepted by Virginia Tech's Jayron Holsey in the end zone for a touchback.
Shinskie started the game 3-for-5 passing for 35 yards before throwing that first pick, where he never seemed to recover from. His confidence appeared shot for the rest of the game, as he finished just 8-of-20 for 130 yards and 2 interceptions, not to mention a fumble that led to one of Virginia Tech's four field goals. Shinskie's three turnovers led to 13 Hokies points, and with the miscues in the end zone and at the end of the first half, left 6-14 Eagles points on the field.
Despite his struggles, Shinskie believes he should still be the starter on Saturday.
"I think I should be the starting quarterback," Shinskie said afterward. "There’s a lot of stuff that goes into being a starting quarterback and I think I have that. That’s all I have to say."
Spaz has decided to go with either Marscovetra or Chase Rettig for Saturday's game against Notre Dame. So is this it for BC's journeyman sophomore quarterback? Have we seen the last of Shinskie as the Eagles starting QB? Your thoughts?
Jeff: First, let me say that I think that BC played pretty well in the first half. Shinskie nearly got in to the endzone at the end of the half, we missed a field goal and if Amidon had not fallen down due to nothing other than his own two feet, he would have had a touchdown grab before the interception. Shinskie didn't light it up, but he did play decent against the same team he went 1-12 against last season. You said that Pantale was wide open in the endzone. I completely disagree with that. It think it would've taken close to a perfect throw over two defenders when Pantale had no seperation. There was also a play in the fourth dirve, after moving the offense off their own 1 yard line where Shinskie led hit Clyde Lee down the sideline. If his throw had been a couple yards further in bounds, we might have had a touchdown there as well. Since I am trying to look at the glass half full, we came really close to scoring 17, if not 24 points in the first half of a game where we scored zero for not only that first half, but the entire game.
If Shinskie does not play, why not play Rettig? Marscovetra has not been given a start yet, but he has seen plenty of snaps both this season and last and he has done nothing spectacular, nothing even eyebrow raising. To be a great QB, you have to have a certain "it" factor that Shinskie clearly lacks. Marscovetra also lacks it. Every other quarterback we have had at BC have managed to show some of their ability during some of their drives when they were playing as the backup. Marscovetra has shown nothing, especially on Saturday when the team managed -8 yards on his first three drives after the team had only punted twice the entire time Shinskie was in. Benching Shinskie for Marscovetra is stupid and unwarranted because Shinskie did play a decent first half against one of the better teams we will face this season. But at the same time, Shinskie has had his opportunities so I wouldn't mind him being benched for Rettig.
Brian: There is a big difference between starting a football game as QB and getting thrown to the fire for a few series in the third and fourth quarters. Marscovetra hasn't looked great but he at least deserves a shot to start to see what we've really got with him. Just like Shinskie, the offensive line has given Marscovetra little time to work. But in his limited snaps, he's still managed to complete a higher percentage of passes and have better passing stats than Shinskie.
He may not have done anything eyebrow raising to date, but when have we gotten a prolonged chance to see him work? The only game where we've seen Marscovetra play for an extended period of time was last year's Virginia Tech game in garbage time, where with BC already down 34-0, he completed 10-of-16 passes for 114 yards and 2 TDs. In every other game of his career, he's been asked to step in and clean up Shinskie's mess (North Carolina, Virginia Tech, Kent State) or play so few snaps that we really have no idea what he's capable of.
Marscovetra might not be much better than Shinskie but I don't think you can judge his performance to date based solely on a few drives smack in the middle of games. I'd like to see Marscovetra get the start on Saturday. To say that he doesn't have an "it" factor I think is a bit of a premature assessment. Give him a chance to start -- which he hasn't been afforded -- and if he's equally awful, then turn the keys to the offense over to Rettig and be done with it.
Spaz and Tranquill haven't put Marscovetra in a position to succeed, and it seems silly at this point to skip over him and give the start to Rettig who has no game experience. There must have been a reason, other than fear of burning a redshirt, that Marscovetra earned the backup role over Rettig. Give him a chance to prove it.
The coaching staff has completely mismanaged the BC QB situation during the first three games of the season and basically has one -- unfortunately, high profile -- game to fix it before ACC play starts back up. Otherwise, it's going to be a long, long season in Chestnut Hill.