Steve Addazio met with the media at BC’s annual Football Media Day for almost 45 minutes on Thursday afternoon. The conversation was a mix of coach speak and the usual stuff you hear at a media day sprinkled in with a couple of interesting tidbits about the team. Here were some of the highlights:
-Addazio confirmed that there won’t be a rotating quarterback situation like last year. Once either Patrick Towles or Darius Wade is named the starter that player will take all of the snaps in the game unless "he can’t perform". Addazio says that he hopes the decision is tough because it means that he has two capable quarterbacks on the roster.
"They are really developing as passers. They are fun to watch. It isn’t the amateur deal right now. (Patrick) is 6’5" and 250 pounds running sub 4.6 with a rocket arm. Darius can spin it. He can play," said Addazio. "We feel like we have two guys. One has great experience and has won at a high level. One has experience through some hard knocks."
The coach said that he has neither an internal or external timetable on naming the starter though.
"I have to decide if there’s any advantage to keeping it down until the game. It won’t be a mystery to us though," said Addazio.
Based on what we’ve heard about Towles’ leadership and players naturally reacting to him as a leader I have a hard time believing he won’t be the starter against Georgia Tech. Stranger things have happened though.
Not surprisingly, Addazio was asked a lot about the defense and trying to match what last year’s defense did. He seemed to want to distance this year’s crew from putting too much pressure on themselves to repeat last year’s performance.
"If you’re measuring it off of statistics I don’t do that. Stats have a lot to do with who you play and are influenced by a lot of factors of where you are in the game," explained Addazio. "We were really good on defense last year but we aren’t trying to beat our stats.
Addazio went on to explain why he thought this year’s defense could be strong as well though.
"I think Connor Strahan replaces Steven Daniels. I think Connor Strahan is a phenomenal football player. He is a guy that runs unbelievable. Steven was a thumper and he did a great job for us. Connor is a thumper but he can play man coverage and isn’t going to be a matchup problem because he runs 4.5. Will Harris has as high a ceiling as any guy we’ve had here. Up front we lost Connor Wujciak. Ray Smith played a lot of football last year and we feel strong about him. He is a real strong athletic guy. Truman Gutapfel looks elite to me right now," said Addazio.
Later Addazio called Matt Milano "the best player on the defense."
"I feel great about our defensive personnel. The only thing I’ll tell you is we have a little less depth. We aren’t giving away talent this year but we have a little depth," said Addazio.
Addazio went on a tangent to talk about recruiting a little bit. He said that he doesn’t judge recruiting on how many five stars he brings in but on how they players develop and perform once they get to BC. He then took the time to talk about how much more athletic the team is now.
"We have guys that will flat run. Jeff Smith is an elite skilled athlete. He was 170 pounds last year, he is 194 now and he is a sub 4.4 guy. He needs to mature as a receiver and there’s a maturation process there. You can’t be excited about that guy? You need to be. Last year when he got hit he kind of crumbled to the ground. There were several occasions where if he got this much more we’d get more points or maybe would’ve won another game or two," said Addazio.
Later Addazio added, "Our DB’s can run with anyone in the conference. That’s a pretty big statement right?"
-Addazio spent the first few minutes repeating much of what he did last year about how he inherited a roster of unbalanced classes and the need for him to rebuild it, especially on the offensive line. Obviously some BC fans will be irritated by this as this is what Addazio kept repeating all of last year during the losing streak. Addazio vowed that the offensive line will be better this year but "not where it should be yet." Call my a cynical New Englander but it scared me that he was pulling the reigns in a little bit with that comment especially after calling Chris Lindstrom a "future 1st rounder" a few weeks ago.
-The coach confirmed that four wide receivers are dinged up and missed practice today. The good news though is that none of the injuries are serious. None the less Addazio admitted that "it’s frustrating".
-Addazio was asked what record or benchmark that he needed to get to to prove to people that he has the program headed in the right direction. "I don’t need to prove it to myself or anybody. I know the program is going where it’s supposed to be going," said Addazio. The coach went on to say that the goal is to win the opener and eventually become bowl eligible.
-Addazio talked about Don Brown leaving and said that the team will still have the same calls and packages under Jim Reid. Some defensive players later confirmed that it is all of the same terminology that the team used last year as well. Addazio called it a good thing that teams are trying to poach his coaches because it means he is hiring the right coaches.