CHESTNUT HILL, MA - SEPTEMBER 03: Chase Rettig #11 of the Boston College Eagles rolls out in the first quarter against the Northwestern Wildcats on September 3, 2011 at Alumni Stadium in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
No one needs to say it, but I will anyway: the first half of this football season has been far worse than even the biggest skeptics could have predicted. Looking back at the first six games and it's difficult to find bright spots on this roster. Boston College has had everything that could go wrong, go wrong -- injuries, coaching incompetence, player dismissals, coordinator changes, AD incompetence and lack of execution.
But let's break down each aspect of the Boston College Eagles and give them an arbitrary letter grade on the first half of their season.
I had so much optimism about the Eagles' offense heading into this season. New offensive coordinator Kevin Rogers brought a pedigree that I figured would turn around a stagnant offensive attack. But that wasn't the case. Montel Harris wasn't able to stay healthy and Andre Williams -- minus a few big runs -- hasn't been able to fill the void. The offensive line has been a complete mess. The injury to Nathan Richman and the constant tinkering of Sean Devine and Spaz hasn't helped. Every defense that comes in has had no problem getting pressure on Chase Rettig and getting big hits and sacks (see: Wildcats, Northwestern).
The passing game has been better, but only marginally. Rettig definitely has shown improvement in his game, but still lacks the pocket presence to be an effective ACC quarterback. He misses wide open targets, over throws and underthrows receivers and has no internal clock at all when it comes to blitzes and pressure. The loss of Ifeanyi Momah has proven to be one of the biggest losses for the Eagles, as Colin Larmond Jr. has yet to show that he capable of being a #1 receiver. If the Eagles want to score more they need to find more ways of getting Bobby Swigert involved, as he has proven to be the most reliable weapon for Chase Rettig.
Total 2011 Offense: 321.8 yards per game (102nd in NCAA)
Total 2010 Offense: 299.0 yards per game (109th in NCAA)
Easily the biggest disappointment of the season. Nothing has gone right this season for the defense. They rank near dead last in basically every defensive category. They started off the season by immediately losing both their safeties -- Dominick LeGrande and Okechukwu Okoroha -- and injuries to Donnie Fletcher and C.J. Jones have left the secondary thin and exposed. Opposing quarterbacks have tee'd off on them, throwing for 261.8 yards per game.
Luke Kuechly hasn't been able to mask the gaping holes we have seen all over the field. The defensive line hasn't done much of anything and Kevin Pierre Louis has been solid. Other than that the entire front line has been a huge disappointment. They have been pushed around by far weaker offensive lines (see the Wake game) and have gone from allowing 82 yards a game in 2010, to a staggering 157 a game. Yikes.
Much of this team's inability to stop opposing offense's has to do with their complete inability to get to the quarterback. They rank 108th in the country in sacks, with 5. Yes, through 6 games the BC Eagles have 5 sacks. Let that one fester for a while. BC has shown the propensity to blitz, but it just hasn't worked to this point. Will anyone on this defense be able to buck this trend? Max Holloway has his moments, but it is up to the coaching staff to mix it up more, and send more pressure at the quarterback.
To explain the Boston College coaching staff grades, I have invited Dean Wormer from Animal House:
"Mr. McGovern: two C's, two D's and an F. That's a 1.2 grade average. Congratulations, McGovern. You're at the top of the BC coaching class.
Mr. Brock? Zero point two ... draws, dinks and dunks is no way to go through a football game son.
Mr. DeFilippo, director of Boston College Athletics? One point six; four C's and an F. A fine example you set!
Kevin Rogers ... HAS no grade point average. All courses incomplete.
Mr. Spaz - MR. SPAZIANI ... ZERO POINT ZERO."
Overall Grade: Mind Numbing Fail
I hate being tough on these kids, because it's clear they are trying the best they can out there. But this has been the toughest season in recent memory for the Boston College Eagles. Jeff wrote earlier that he thinks BC has a chance to win more than two games remaining on their schedule. I just don't see it. True, the rest of the team's scheduled have huge flaws, but at this point I don't see any that have flaws as big as our BC Eagles.