Boston College fell to Louisville on Saturday 41-39, giving new head coach Scott Satterfield his first ACC win and ending the Cardinals’ nine-game conference losing streak.
The Eagles came up short on their final possession with about a minute to go, under the direction of backup quarterback Dennis Grosel. Grosel entered the game early in the second quarter after Anthony Brown went down with a non-contact injury on the knee that cost him his 2017 season.
In a game where both teams saw backup quarterbacks play much of the game, the offenses produced a combined 1,200 yards of offense, which may say more about both team defenses in reality.
BC came out strong to start the game, driving 79 yards in nearly four minutes and 10 plays, but were foiled at the goal line by a curious forced fumble on AJ Dillon. Louisville was able to capitalize and score on the other end. From there, both teams went back and forth. A long play-action pass from Anthony Brown to Hunter Long tied up the game, only for the Cardinals to answer with their own big pass play.
BC got the ball back early in the second quarter. Driving down the field, Anthony Brown scrambled for a 14 yard gain, but went down on that very play. Grosel came in and tied the game on a touchdown pass to Korab Idrizi, who he would connect with later in the game as well.
Running back Javian Hawkins dominated with 172 yards rushing and a touchdown to put the Cardinals up 21-14. Three Louisville receivers topped 100 yards as well, with Seth Dawkins setting up the next rushing touchdown to open up a two score lead. The Eagles fought back, all on the heels of Grosel who drove the team 70 yards in about a minute. Kobay White had a great touchdown catch, and the Eagles entered halftime only down six after a missed Louisville field goal.
AJ Dillon started to get going more in the second half after largely being bottled up in the first. He posted over 150 total yards for the fourth consecutive games, and Boston College took a one-point lead early in the second half. They surrendered the lead soon thereafter, and quickly found themselves down nine after two quick scores. A Grosel interception made could have spelled the end, but the defense was able to force a three and out. The defense improved from their poor performance last week on this front, allowing 8-16 on third down, but still missed several opportunities to get off the field.
The Eagles somehow took the lead on Aaron Boumerhi’s 45-yard field goal, but freshman Evan Conley led his team down the field for a field goal of their own. Conley ended 10/16 for 140 yards and a touchdown, while Micale Cunningham had 13/18 for 288 and a touchdown. Both quarterbacks were in and out of the game due to injuries to Cunningham.
On their final possession with only one timeout, the Eagles weren’t able to move the ball much at all. Grosel tried to go for the hero play on a few shots, and in the end, the team turned the ball over on downs. A decent amount of throw aways and dropped passes saw Grosel finish 9/24 with 111 yards and three touchdown passes, but he also contributed 47 yards rushing. Anthony Brown is likely going to be out for a while, if not the remainder of the season, and so Grosel will be backed up by Matt Valecce.
Boston College falls to 3-3 (1-2 conference) on the season, while Louisville improves to 3-2 (1-1). BC gets a week off to prepare their new quarterback for a home contest against NC State.