Humbled and unranked, the Eagles returned to the Heights to host Temple--an opportunity to get their young season back on track. But Boston College was far from dominant, and shoddy defense, persistent special teams issues, and injuries to key offense weapons AJ Dillon, Kobay White, and Jeff Smith meant sweating out an ugly 45-35 victory into the final minutes.
The Eagles weren’t sharp out of the gate. Tommy Sweeney, wide open in the end zone, made a terrific adjustment on a poorly thrown Anthony Brown touchdown pass to start the scoring. But BC almost immediately conceded a 75 yard touchdown run to Ryquell Armstead, which featured some woeful attempts at tackling.
The season long special teams nightmare continued on the ensuing kickoff. Addazio opted to have Temple re-kick after a penalty, and Michael Walker promptly fumbled the second kick, which Temple returned for a score. The Eagles special teams unit has now given up an astounding 4 touchdowns in 5 games.
BC answered with an efficient drive, capped by an Anthony Brown TD toss to a wide open Jeff Smith. However, Tessitore missed the PAT, and the Eagles trailed 14-13 after the first quarter.
Temple pushed their lead to 21-13 midway through the second, capping a 13 play 69 yard drive with a one yard touchdown rush by Armstead.
Following Hamp Cheevers’ third interception of the season, the Eagles offense cashed in. AJ Dillon took advantage of a big hole, and took it 52 yards to the house. Dillon would finish with 28 carries for 161 yards. Brown hit Sweeney in the back of the end zone for the two point conversion, knotting the score at 21-21.
Temple QB Anthony Russo threw yet another pick on the following drive, which Taj-Amir Torres returned deep into Owls territory. AJ Dillon quickly added his second TD carry of the half, and the Eagles finally looked awake. Freshman Danny Longman connected on BC’s first field goal attempt of the season, a 26 yarder, to take a 31-21 edge into halftime.
In a disastrous series of plays in the third, Dillon and Kobay White limped off the field with apparent ankle injuries, and BC fumbled the snap on a punt. But Zach Allen, who made his presence felt all day, forced a fumble, recovered by Tanner Karafa.
The Eagles reached deep into the playbook and scored on some trickery, with Jeff Smith hitting Anthony Brown for a 38-21 lead. It looked as though Boston College was poised to cruise through the second half, but Armstead added his 3rd and 4th touchdown carries of the day for Temple, and the lead dwindled down to 3 points in the 4th quarter. BC had a hard time stopping Armstead throughout, as he gashed them for 171 yards on 24 carries.
But the Eagles offense was able to respond all game, and a one yard touchdown run from Ben Glines put this one out of reach. With Dillon sidelined, Glines shouldered the rushing load admirably, carrying 23 times for 120 yards.
It definitely wasn’t pretty. BC suffered a number of concerning injuries, and there are some glaring issues that continue to surface every week, but a win is a win is a win, right?