Brian: Predictions, predictions, predictions. Heather Dinich is actually going with the Eagles this weekend. You surprised? Is this some sort of reverse psychology afoot? I mean, HD has been picking against the Eagles all year.
Jeff: Shocked!! The Tigers have lost their three conference games by a combined 11 points. Are you worried about tomorrow?
Brian: I am actually feeling fairly confident about tomorrow's game. I like our matchups on the lines, both the Eagles offensive line vs. the Tigers defensive line, and the Eagles defensive line with Raji and Brace blowing up the Tigers paper-thin offensive line.
I give the edge to the offensive skill position players of Clemson over Boston College, but my hope is that the Eagles are able to establish the run early. And by establish the run, I mean improve on our 40 total yards rushing on 21 carriers from a week ago. Establishing the run will help deflect pressure on Crane's arm. As reader JB describes it, over the last two weeks, Crane has been staring down his receivers like they owe him money.
For the Tigers, running back C.J. Spiller has been listed as probable for Saturday's game after suffering a partially torn hamstring. What do you expect his impact to be on this game?
Jeff: With Bennett out, Spiller being back makes a huge difference. The Tigers are going to have great field position every time we squib the kickoff.
Brian: On to our predictions for the big football game this weekend. Jeff, here's what you wrote back in August:
The toughest game to predict all season. This will be the best Clemson team that BC has faced since coming to the ACC but BC has the home field advantage and seems to have Clemson's number. At this point of the season BC should be 6-1 and probably ranked #19 or so. Clemson will be 6-1 or 7-0 and this game will be the biggest hurdle for their ACC and national championship hopes.Tommy Bowden will probably live up to his reputation and lose this game, but at the same time, a win would give the Superfans a reason to storm the field and carry goal posts into the mods which has not been done since the '90s.
Since things couldn't have gone differently for Clemson this season, here's your chance to rewrite the story. And because you wimped out on predicting this game, man up and make a prediction. Who wins? And what is the score?
Jeff: I still agree that this game is tough to predict. With a new coach and attitude among Clemson players, who knows. You give us a score prediction.
Brian: Boston College gets back on track with a 20-10 victory.
Brian: An even better Rice? From Bill Hass's weekly ACC column:
Boston College senior Tyrese Rice was a unanimous pick for All-ACC on the 40 ballots. How much better can he get than averaging 21 points and five assists per game?
"I just want to be more efficient and more solid on the defensive end," Rice said. "I figure I can pretty much score and get my teammates involved, but I would rather bring my percentages up, my assist numbers up, my turnovers down and just be more solid in what I do on the offensive end and defensive end."
What does better efficiency mean to Rice?
"Maybe instead of shooting 47 percent, you shoot like 53 or 54," he said. "Maybe instead of shooting 35 from the three, shoot 40. Instead of the (assists to turnover) ratio being 1.8-to-1, it’s 2-to-1. "I will do whatever it takes for us to win games, but I would love for my average to come down and my assists to go up and see somebody else take the spotlight. I have more fun watching other people go to work and carrying games than me doing it myself."
Can Rice really get his assists/game average up to 8 a game as Raj predicts? Or is Raj being overly optimstic?
Jeff: Raj is being overly optimistic. Rice will have that type of average before ACC play begins. Then his average will drop.
Jeff: Aggressive Crane or game-manager Crane, who do we see more of tomorrow?
Brian: I believe Crane can get back on track and manage this game. The team has had the week to work on fundamentals and I think we'll see more of a commitment to the running game. Not only counters, pitches and draws but more of the option-type plays that we saw in the Kent State game.
Brian: Of the 58 former ACC players on opening day NBA rosters, three played for the Eagles. Who has the best year out of the Eagle trio: Sean Williams, Jared Dudley or Craig Smith?
Jeff: Craig Smith.
Jeff: The hockey team knocked off Merrimack 4-1 last night behind 2 goals from frosh Jimmy Hayes. Do the Eagles pull off the weekend sweep tonight in North Andover?
Brian: Yes, the Eagles pull off the sweep and win 2-0 for John Muse's first shutout of the year.
Brian: Last one, is the ACC truly mediocre this year, or simply misunderstood?
Jeff: As proven by Duke's win over Vanderbilt last week, the ACC has depth. I'll put our #7, #8 and #9 teams up against any in the country including the SEC and the Big 12.
Brian: Jeff's on the road so he picked first this week. I pulled within 5 games of Jeff with a 4-1 performance last week (damn Eagles!).
- Duke +7.5 at Wake Forest
- Florida vs. Georgia +5.5
- Texas -3.5 @ Texas Tech
- TCU @ UNLV +14
- Florida State @ Georgia Tech -2.5
- Clemson @ Boston College -4.5
- Iowa State @ Oklahoma State -31
- Air Force -8.5 @ Army
- Northwestern @ Minnesota -7
- Michigan @ Purdue -2
Brian: I'm not really in love with any of these picks. Although I would like to go on the record and say that I think Florida is going to slap around the Bulldogs in Jacksonville tomorrow and Texas Tech will upset Texas.
Happy Halloween! Go Eagles!