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Boston College 37, USC 31: Eagles Shock USC

After a slow start, the BC offense rolled on the ground for 3 TDs in the first half and 5 total en route to their first victory over a top ten team at home in 20 years.

Winslow Townson


Tackling, tackling, tackling.  Whether you were at the game and witnessed it with your eyes or if you were watching the broadcast all you saw and heard was how much better the BC tackling was in the first half compared to last week against Pittsburgh.  The defense was solid and gave up all their points on drives that USC started with fantastic field position.  USC started 3 consecutive drives in the first half in BC territory from two short punts and one long kickoff return.

The lowlight of the first half was a missed extra point after the first BC TD.  The highlight was Sherman Alston taking an end around 54 yards to the house to give BC their first lead of the game of 20-17.  The play had been set up by running the option a few times successfully earlier in the half.  On the play, Murphy started in an option right look and then Alston took a toss back left where he just had to outrun a linebacker to take it all the way.

Tackling, tackling, tackling.

Then at the end of the half there was a very suspect decision. Winning 20-17, Addazio elected to attempt a long field goal on 3rd and 2 instead of trying to get closer or taking a shot at the endzone.  Howell missed a warm-up kick when USC called a timeout right before the snap.  Then the one that counted also missed wide and barely had enough leg on it.  With a little different play calling, maybe the Eagles could have entered halftime up 6 or 10.

BC entered the 4th quarter with the ball and a 27-17 lead.  The BC TD came early in the 3rd quarter on their second possession of the half.  Tyler Murphy had a nice 21 yard run to get the five play drive started which was capped with a 1 yard TD run by Jon Hilliman, his 2nd TD of the night. In the 4th quarter with 12:31 left, BC had the first penalty called against them of the night which only resulted in USC punting again and a minimal change to field position.

Tyler Murphy had two consecutive first down runs to start a drive that ended with a Joey Launceford 25 yard field goal.  Murphy had plenty of green grass in front of him on both plays and then later in the drive used a QB dive to convert a 3rd and 1.  This drive gave BC a 30-17 lead with 7:42 left in the game.

Watch out Mary Ann's! Watch out Cleveland Circle! Watch out Mods!

USC drove down for a touchdown on their next possession but BC was able to slow them down enough to take more than 3 minutes off the clock on the drive. Then BC answered with a two play touchdown drive.  On 2nd and 4, Tyler Murphy ran the option left for a 64 yard touchdown run.  BC went for 2 to stretch it to a 14 point lead but a penalty on the play caused the Eagles to settle for just an extra point which made the game 37-24.  USC scored on their next possession but failed to convert the on-side kick with 1:16 left in the game.  One first down later, victory was sealed for the Eagles.

Tyler Murphy finished the game with 191 yards rushing and only 54 yards passing.  BC finished with 451 total rushing yards.

Despite everything Tyler Murphy did tonight, game ball has to go to the BC defense which only allowed 20 rushing yards all night after getting gashed by Pitt a week ago.  All of USC's 4 TDs came through the air.

Watch out Mary Ann's! Watch out Cleveland Circle! Watch out Mods! Please be responsible in your celebrations tonight, but please celebrate! It was 20 years ago the last time BC knocked off a top 10 opponent at home.

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