First year Boston College football head coach Steve Addazio hopped on his first in-season ACC Coaches Teleconference this morning to talk about his team and the matchup with Villanova.
The first thing that strikes you is that Addazio knows Villanova. He's done his homework. Then again you'd figure coach is more than a little familiar with Villanova, having opened against the Wildcats in each of the last four seasons in the Mayor's Cup -- the first two meetings as the Owls' OC and the last two as HC.
Most of the talking points you've heard by now, but Addazio and Day are looking for "complete balance" on offense. On the other side of the ball, Addazio gets one more jab in at the Spaziani "bend but don't break" defensive system and says BC is going to employ the exact opposite of that.
He was complimentary of Rettig, Williams, Amidon and Evans, but most importantly, the offensive line which has experienced a "tremendous amount of progress." On defense, Edebali, Divitto, KPL and Ramsey get shout outs, and Addazio speaks to where Ramsey is in his recovery.
Other than the person who asked the first question as to whether BC held their spring game or not (do your homework, buddy), the interview is worth the read. I'd say Addazio acquitted himself well in his first interview.
Also, is it weird that without having heard the audio, I read this entire transcript in Addazio's booming voice in my head?
THE MODERATOR: We now welcome Boston College Head Coach Steve Addazio, who makes his debut as head coach of the Eagles this Saturday in Alumni Stadium when BC hosts Villanova. The game will have a noon kickoff and will be available nationally on ESPN3.
With that, we'll bring on Coach, ask for a brief opening statement, and then go to questions. Coach?
COACH ADDAZIO: Great to be here, guys. Obviously, excited to get started here, kickoff this season. It's just great to feel the energy and the intensity in the air right now as we approach the start of football season.
We had a good camp, got a lot of work done, stayed relatively healthy, and felt like we had a lot of productivity.
Obviously, you're going into opening day, and opening day sometimes can be a little crazy, but the focus of our team is to play as hard as you can, 4 to 6 seconds of relentless effort, and find a way to sing the fight song in the locker room, and that's the mindset.
So we're excited about it. Looking forward to it. Villanova is a great team. I've played Villanova the last two years. They've got seven returning. First off, their head coach, I think, is just a tremendous person, great football coach. He's got a lot of experience winning championships.
They've got seven returning starters on defense. Joe Sarnese, their strong safety, I think he's a fantastic player. He led the team in interceptions. He led the team in tackles and pass breakups. He's a heck of a player. Antoine Lewis, their nose tackle, I think is really a heck of a player, as well as Rakim Cox, defensive end senior.
So I think they've got some really good players on defense. They run to the ball well. They play hard. You can tell they're really well coached and going to be an excellent football team, a veteran football team.
On offense, it starts with their quarterback John Robertson. He's got‑‑ he's had some great stats. He's been a guy that's had 14 touchdowns. He's passed for almost 2,000 yards, rushed for over 1,000 yards. He's a preseason All‑Conference pick.
Number two, Kevin Monangai running back. He's rushed for 1,200 yards, 11 rushing TDs, preseason All‑Conference.
And of course, their wide receiver Joel Bryce, 30 receptions, over 600 yards receiving, 3 touchdowns.
So they're an explosive team. They're a veteran team. They've had this kind of talent and experience. They've had outstanding seasons. They're coming off an outstanding season. This will be a tremendous challenge for us and tremendous day of football here in Chestnut Hill Saturday at noon.
Q. Coach, you mentioned just a moment ago the first game is crazy. Am I right? It's been kind of crazy since you've been there. Did you ever get to play your spring game?
COACH ADDAZIO: No, we didn't. You know, considering everything that had gone on in that weekend, that really wasn't of significance.
Boston had gone through such a difficult time. We got a lot done in spring ball. Obviously, the kids would have liked to have played it. We all would have. We maximized the day and really felt the strength in rallying behind our city.
Q. I wanted to ask you, though, with the new staff coming in, but you've got a very good core of returning players, how reluctant are you to change a lot of things or not change, based on the fact you've got a veteran core?
COACH ADDAZIO: Well, I think we've got some guys that have played a lot of snaps here, but there's a lot of changes here right now. I think any time you're coming off a disappointing season, things change, philosophies change.
Our offensive philosophy is going to be one of complete balance. We needed to be able to bring our run game in here.
On defense, we're not a bend don't break. We're more of a get after it, aggressive defense. We have a different philosophy there as well as on special teams.
So there's a lot of philosophical changes. However, we're certainly going to utilize the talents of the players we have. To think we're not going to utilize Chase Rettig's ability to throw the football, of course we are. He's a proven thrower. We're absolutely going to do that.
On defense, we're going to utilize our personnel to increase our pass rush to be able to get after the quarterback. Those are the things we need to do. That's the personality we want to have.
I think you come into game one, most important, we set the tempo for who we want to be. It's as important as anything. Just kind of putting down the foundation for where we want the program to hit.
Q. You mentioned Chase Rettig and what he brings to the table. Can you talk about other people that fit into what you're trying to do?
COACH ADDAZIO: Well, we have‑‑ we've got an offensive line that we really feel like we've had great development with right now. We're confident in our offensive line, a big, strong, physical offensive line, running back.
We feel great about Andre Williams. He's a big, fast guy. You talk about a 235‑pound guy that runs sub‑4.5. He's a powerful guy. We're going to utilize that.
We're going to utilize Alex Amidon, who's a proven receiver in the ACC. We're going to utilize Spiffy Evans, not only as a receiver but in our return game. What we're going to try to do is bring more balance to the offense, this attack.
On defense, we've got veteran players here. Steele Divitto in the middle on the defense as a linebacker. You've got Kevin Pierre‑Louis, who's a very explosive player. Kasim Edebali can come off the edge. These are guys who played‑‑ we were young on defense last year. We had some struggles, but we were young. That's what happens when you're young. Now we're a year older. Yes, we have some change.
I think in game one what you're concerned most about is how well will you execute with new schemes? But we've got to set forth that platform, and we've got to do that. First games sometimes aren't real clean. They're not executed at a real high level sometimes. But you know what, better play real hard, and you've got to find a way to win.
Q. Can I ask about one other guy specifically? Kaleb Ramsey was a pretty good player in 2010. Hasn't been able to play much in the last two years. How is he coming along physically?
COACH ADDAZIO: He's doing great. He's had a great spring, and he had a great camp. I think he's going to have an exceptional year.
He's a powerful guy. Whether he's inside or on the edge, he can control the line of scrimmage. So we're excited about him.
Q. Steve, I wanted to ask you a follow‑up on the offensive line. Just wondering how much progress you've seen out of this group since the spring.
COACH ADDAZIO: Tremendous amount of progress, Andrea. I mean, they're‑‑ it's a group that's really taken on the challenge of becoming a more physical front, and I'm really excited to watch them play. It's a big group. It's an athletic group. I think they're taking on‑‑ you know, sometimes when you're a little bit more of a throwing team, you don't have that run demeanor.
So it's important for us to be able to be balanced but also have that demeanor that we can rock off the ball and have a little bit more of a move the front, punishing mentality. These guys have taken to that.
We're not a finished product. Every week, I think we get a little bit better. So I'm anxious to see where we are at this point.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports