A look at BC's new coach, and some reasonable expectations for the upcoming year.
Now that the dust has basically settled on the hiring of the Eagles new head coach, BC fans have mostly settled down, and new assistants have been named, it is time to look ahead. Steve Addazio has a lot of work ahead of him, but honestly I think with some good coaching BC could easily turn things around next year. But what should we expect from BC in 2013? Let's look at some things the Dazzler will have to do in 2013 to have a "successful year".
Get the offense and defense back in the Top 50. This is a bit of a reach, but I believe with some solid coaching and some changes up front BC can do this. First let's look at the offense. Last year the rushing game was all over the place, succeeding whenever Frank Spaziani/Doug Martin remembered that Rolandan Finch exists. If Addazio, a run heavy coach, can rely more on his backs, and less on Rettig, it will open the passing game and with the steps forward Chase Rettig took, I think that will help tremendously. Now the defense is changing drastically from last year, Don Brown will be bringing a blitz heavy defense, that should cause more turnovers/sacks, but if the right personnel isn't there next year, they may get burned more than Spaz's cushion D. But the reason I think BC's defense will improve is the change in offense. If BC can run longer drives, and not just Rettig's three passes and a punt, the D won't be asked to do as much. Control the game clock, or manage it better, and both facets of the game will improve.
Beat another ACC team for a recruit. One of the biggest selling points to the Addazio hire is his tenacity in recruiting, something BC has lacked sorely over the past four years. Spaziani lost out countless recruits to peer schools, and settled on MAC level talent. If the Dazzler wants to sell himself to the BC fanbase, get a few bigger names and beat out Maryland/NC State/Wake Forest for a recruit. Show Eagles' fans that we aren't a second fiddle school for ACC recruits.
Grab a Top 3 Massachusetts recruit for 2014. Addazio will have a lot of work to do here, as Spaziani has left BC as a joke for top recruits in the area. In 2013 Spaz wiffed on a slew of talented recruits in the area including John Montelus and Maurice Hurst. Addazio needs to go out and find the next big recruit from the state such as James Hendren, Connor Strachan, or Jon Baker. BC needs to make a bigger impact on local recruits, and it starts with the coaches, Addazio needs to sell the school, and I believe he can do that.
Reduce Chase Rettig's Sacks to 20. One of the most difficult parts of watching the past two years, has been watching Rettig get absolutely pasted by opposing defenses. No matter the opponent, Rettig got clobbered week after week, each hit leaving fans holding their breath wondering if he would get back up. Sacks happen, especially against strong d's like Florida State and Clemson but against putrid defenses like Army and Maine, this was completely unacceptable. Offensive line coach Charlie Frye and Addazio have to fix the line up front, and give Rettig a senior season he deserves, not one he spends on his back.
Make Fans Want To Go To The Spring Game Last year there couldn't have been more than 200 people at the Spring Game. Part of it was the weather, part of it was apathy, but most had to do with poor fan experience associated with the game. This may be more of a Brad Bates thing, but they should open BC up to season ticket holders and donors, and allow them an extra tailgate. In terms of the team, Addazio needs to change the set up of the game, so it's not the haphazard scoring system that no one can follow. Make it a "Maroon and Gold" game, split the starters in half, and play a real game.
Stay Competitive With A Top 25 Team I'm not asking Addazio for a miracle here, just stay competitive next year with a Top 25 team. Last season we watched BC get blasted out of the building by Florida State, and were never really in the game against Notre Dame. True they stuck with Northwestern. But next year BC has at least three Top 25 teams, including USC, FSU at home, and Clemson. It's a tough gamut, but Addazio needs to show that BC can stay on the field with a top school.
Do an interview with BCI Come on Addazio, we will be fair, but the fans want to know you better than the fluff pieces the Globe/Herald have churned out lately. We have a huge readership, come and chat with us!
Go 6-6 And Make A Bowl Game Yes I know that BC only won two games last year, but how many games ended with you thinking to yourself "If we had a better coach we should have won that game". At least three that I can think of Army, Northwestern, and Virginia Tech. Heck possibly even Miami and N.C. State if you want to stretch it. Just think of it this way, BC has an even easier schedule next year. Addazio should easily beat Army, Stony Brook, and New Mexico State, and throw in an NC State at home, Maryland, and one other game (Wake?) and BC makes a bowl. I know it's a stretch, but honestly with some coaching, and changes, BC can do it again.