Nobody would confuse the 2013 and 2014 Boston College football teams with offensive juggernauts. But they did have something BC hasn’t had really before or since in recent years: a competent and effective offense that could move the ball and score.
In 2013, BC took a running back that had modest success and turned him in to the most productive back in BC history. In 2014, the Eagles took a QB who never really gained his footing at Florida and put him at the helm of a spread-option offense that showed a number of different looks and allowed BC to have an effective offense despite the fact that their top wide receiver was converted quarterback Josh Bordner. Say what you want about those two teams, but they had a plan, and they carried out that plan. For the last two years, the offense has looked disheveled.
The process of identifying the team's strengths on offense and designing the playbook around them were traits that many attributed to Steve Addazio. But BC's inability to do anything on offense since Ryan Day left leads one to wonder if Day was the reason why BC was able to put together enough offense to win 7 games (and probably should have won more in 2014, if not for kicking and choking away close games).
Don't take our word for it, though - look at the numbers. Not since Matt Ryan departed the Heights has BC had an offense that was higher-scoring or moved the ball more effectively per play than the 2013 and 2014 offense. In fact, those two teams out-produced even Steve Logan's offense in 2008.
It's hard not to worry about the potential for a parallel to this on defense: the unit going from productive to not-so-much with the departure of Don Brown.
Addazio's reputation has always been strongest as a recruiter and a motivator. Few think of him as much of a game manager. Without strong coordinators, he's not likely to succeed. It's too early to close the book on Scot Loeffler, but Ryan Day was a much better coordinator than he got credit for at BC - and it's easy to show the falloff from when he departed.