Boston College picked up a much-needed win Saturday afternoon at Alumni Stadium, defeating visiting Central Michigan 28-8.
The Eagles (2-3, 0-2 ACC) snapped a three-game losing streak by dominating the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball against the Chippewas (2-3), but got a major early boost from their special teams.
In the first quarter, it was receiver and return man Michael Walker providing a spark, as he returned a low CMU punt 61 yards back to the Chippewa 6-yard line. The big return came after Central Michigan tackled running back Jon Hilliman in the BC end zone for a safety, but the Eagle defense rose up and forced a punt on the Chippewas' next possession.
Following the return, Hilliman made amends with a six-yard touchdown run, the first of his three total touchdowns on the day, a career best for the fourth-year junior.
Later in the period, Walker took advantage of another poor CMU punt, taking one back 34 yards to the BC 47. The Eagles then got going offensively, grinding CMU down with five run plays that culminated in a 15-yard rushing score by true freshman running back A.J. Dillon.
After the Eagles surrendered a touchdown midway through the second, BC again got a boost from Walker, who caught a low 33-yard punt on the run, and took it back 29 yards to the CMU 17. Following a penalty, Hilliman punched in his second score of the day to give BC a 21-8 advantage heading into halftime.
The Eagles put things on ice in the second, as the BC secondary continued to confound CMU quarterback Shane Morris. Junior safety Lukas Denis came up with a pair of second half interceptions, while the Eagle offensive line continued to wear on CMU's exhausted defense.
A 12-play, 89 yard drive, capped off by a touchdown pass from redshirt freshman Anthony Brown to Hilliman effectively ended things, and gave BC a 28-8 lead in the third.
On the "less than good news" front, A.J. Dillon took a shot with less than a minute to play in the game, and was visibly shaken up. The freshman also fumbled the ball, just two plays after he crossed 100 yards rushing for the first time in his young career.