Boston College had its final exhibition before classes end with the Jay McGillis Spring Game. Like always the scoring system was its usual convoluted self with sacks meaning something, catches meaning something else, and first downs meaning something completely different. Add that onto video problems for those of you watching at home, and all sorts of clock issues during the game.
But even with the confusing scoring system, there were some interesting things to note.
There were a lot of starters that were sitting on the sidelines during the game including: Harrison Jackson, Bobby Swigert, Sean Sylvia, Dominique Williams, Steven Daniels and Mehdi Abdesmad. The most noticeable lack of depth was on wide receiver, where backup kicker Jake Wilhelm and Josh Bordner got snaps, along with a few players that weren't even listed on the depth chart.
With Steve Addazio standing five-ten yards behind the quarterback barking at both sides of the ball, Don Brown ended up defeating Ryan Day's offense, with a furious rally in the fourth.
Myles Willis was one of the most impressive players during the game. He returned the opening kickoff 99 yards without being touched, and ran off another huge run in the second half for a touchdown. He looked noticeably more muscular than he did last year, with much more muscle in his legs. He had this to say after the game:
Tyler Rouse also had a huge run of 45 yards for a touchdown, and was difficult to tackle on many of his runs. Steve Addazio only had two running backs out there and admitted that he had to "We only had two backs for spring practice. Today, I was careful with how many snaps they were taking. I just don't want to get anybody hurt today, that's all. We have two running backs. We have three coming in, but we only had two."
Tyler Murphy was far and away the best quarterback on the field. He moved the pocket well, and scrambled with excellent speed. He's a little shorter than I expected, but made solid reads on his throws, and ran the read option pretty effectively. He is clearly going to be the starter going into 2014, and will be an exciting player to watch in Ryan Day's offense. . Darius Wade looked green. He struggled with the defense, over throwing many receivers, getting sacked numerous times, and almost was picked off at least a handful of times. He is going to need seasoning before he is ready to play for the Eagles. James Walsh also struggled. He was slow on the read option, and struggled to hit his receivers. Don't read too much into this because the Eagles were starting a rag tag group of receivers. In terms of the receivers, Charlie Callinan played the best game, highlighted by a one handed grab in the second half.
On defense, it was good to see Malachi Moore back on the field, after missing 2013. He looked like he was in great shape and should immediately fill on the defensive line. The secondary played well, especially Manny Asprilla and cornerback John Johnson who finished the game with five tackles. Kevin Kavalec played well on the defensive line, finishing the game with five tackles.
The offensive line played well, but they only had eight guys in uniform so they wore down at the end of the game according to Steve Addazio.
Alex Howell both kicked and punted, and had a mixed day. He started the game off slow, but had a booming punt at one point and hit a 42 yard line. It's still early but expect a drop off from Nate Freese to this year's special team crew.
Even with the noted poor advertising, attendance wasn't awful. Just a rough estimate that there were roughly 3,000 people sitting on one side of the stadium. Mark Herzlich was in attendance, along with a handful of the Recruiting class of 2014, and a bunch of other recruits. There were a ton of families at the game, probably because that's how the school advertised it. However the number of young alumni without kids and students were noticeably small. Brad Bates and company might want to try to figure out ways to address this moving forward.
Also congratulations to senior CB Dominique Williams who won the Jay McGillis Memorial Scholarship during halftime.