Boston College Head Coach Steve Addazio
STEVE ADDAZIO: Okay, guys. Obviously, feel great about the fact that we’re 2-0. Some good things happened today. It was great to see Nolan Borgersen have that big pick. Here’s a fifth year senior who’s really paid his dues and playing his best football. He’s all about the team. And watching Jake Burt go down the field for a big touchdown strike and watching some of the older guys have some great success.
We came out fast on offense. We scored a bunch of points and had a bunch of offense in the first two weeks, which is a good thing.
I thought defensively we tightened up a little bit in the second half. I thought in the first half we had some things we had to kind of really get corrected, but there were some big plays on defense as well with the interceptions.
That was good. We came out healthy, which was really incredibly important. We’re kind of on to Kansas and getting started on that right away. Certainly never want to not enjoy a great win because wins are hard to come by, as I guess the landscape of college football told you today.
Proud of the way our guys prepared all week. Came off a big conference win here, which was an emotional conference win, and came out with intent and purpose and came out fast. So that’s a positive as well.
We need a great week of preparation, and we’re looking forward to getting started. Happy to answer any questions.
Q. Obviously, one of the things you were hoping to see last year from A.J. was sort of the evolution of him in the passing game. How much did the injury sort of hamper those plans and hamper him, and how gratifying was that to see it play out today?
STEVE ADDAZIO: Yeah, as you said, it was a tough year, but he’s worked real hard on that. He really looked -- I thought his hands looked great too. He caught that effortlessly and spun that thing right up the field, so I was excited so see that. I thought he and David ran -- and Travis at the end, but they ran hard today and had some tough yards. What did we have over 300-something yards rushing? Offensive line did a good job.
I’m happy to see A.J. really -- last week the unknown thing that wasn’t talked about was he was excellent in pass protection. This week, as you pointed out, nice reception out of the backfield. So there’s some really nice things that are happening.
Q. This feels like a game where you can kind of -- I don’t want to say like test some things out, but explore possibilities with the guys. Especially in A.J.’s case. How much more can you get out of pass protection, pass catching? You know what he can do on the ground, but how much more room does he have?
STEVE ADDAZIO: He’s got a lot of room. He’s still a young guy that is a work in progress. All players can continue to improve and get better. That’s the beauty of college.
Q. Coach, staying on the topic of A.J., it looked to me like you guys really emphasized running the football, getting the third team personnel, running the ball out of two backs. Was that your game plan going into this week, getting A.J. and the running game going even more?
STEVE ADDAZIO: A little bit. I mean, not over the top, but a little bit. We wanted to be kind of who we were. Quite frankly, when I saw that we were having some problems a little bit on defense early, I kind of wanted to see if we could stay on the field a little bit and give them a chance to get off the field and attack some of the deals we were seeing.
So I actually thought maybe it would be best for our team if we had some long slow drives, which isn’t really how we want to play, but I thought in that situation it was warranted. It didn’t always work out that way, so we kind of shifted into that.
I actually said, before we started the game, let’s just play wide open and do our thing, and that really was the intent when we came out. I think, when I saw what was going on a little bit defensively there, I think the best thing you can do to help your defense is give them a chance to regroup a little bit sometimes. So I started to become conscious of that, to be honest with you.
Q. Steve, was it kind of a case where you kept it basic and didn’t show anything that could be useful to Kansas next week?
STEVE ADDAZIO: Yeah, we didn’t really -- there’s a lot of stuff that we intentionally didn’t really want to do in this game. So we have another piece of our game, both in the throw game and really in the option run game that it wasn’t necessary. We didn’t want to run Anthony Brown in this game. There’s a lot of things we didn’t want to do. We felt really good about handing the ball off to our tailbacks.
So really wanted to make sure that we developed in areas we needed to develop in, get some guys off the field. That was our goal, as quickly as we could. We have a short week. So all those things -- but, hey, you don’t know how things are going to go. At the end of the day, you’ve got to win the game. So you’re hoping it goes the way you want it to go, but sometimes it just doesn’t. So you’ve got to be prepared for all of the above.
So we practiced all week with a bunch of stuff with the intent that, if we didn’t need to do it, we wouldn’t do it. So we didn’t, and we got most of the guys off -- I don’t know when we did, probably early in the third quarter, which was great too. Like I said, short week, and we were healthy last week, but we were banged up, but healthy.
Now, I’m hoping -- sometimes I get surprised, but I’m hoping, I think we’ll have a chance to be in good shape because Monday is our Tuesday. So we kind of got to get going. In fact, we’ll be going at 7:30 in the morning tomorrow.
Q. So just following up on the short week this week, and after such an emotional game last week, were you ever worried about kind of a trap game this week? And how do you kind of change up preparation with such a tough week?
STEVE ADDAZIO: Well, honestly, I’m going to be real conscious of how many periods we have in practice because Monday we’re right back at it. I’m also conscious this week, we’ve talked about strength and conditioning, how much we want to do in the weight room this week. We want to give the kids -- thankfully, most guys didn’t play a whole lot more than two quarters so that we can -- tomorrow we’ll watch tape but won’t go outside with them tomorrow, and the player day off will be next Saturday that falls in our week so that we can come back in on Monday.
So Sunday is kind of like a day off. It will be a little bit of mental work but not a lot. Monday, we’ll be right back at it. We’ve looked at all pieces of that right now. It’s hard. And thank God we’re home, to be honest with you. You’ve got to turn around and get on a plane -- we’ve done that before. A year ago I think we went down -- played on a Saturday and had to go down and play Wake on a Thursday night, if I remember correctly.
You do what you have to do, but I think managing it is important. We’ve had a couple of games under our belt. One was at a high level, and then this one that we he have under our belt. So I think we’ll be in good shape.
Q. Coach, another big game for Zay Flowers. Has the emergence of him as an offensive weapon kind of made him more of a factor for you guys moving forward?
STEVE ADDAZIO: Yeah, he’s -- you know, you can’t deny that he’s an electric player. I think we’ll continue to find ways to target him. We’ve got other guys we’re trying to target too, but sure, he’ll expand with what we want to do. It would be crazy not to.
Before I forget too, I really want to thank the fans for coming out today and did a great job for us. I really appreciate our administration working hard on a great game day atmosphere. That was important. And our players really appreciate that as well. Go ahead. Anything else?
Q. A lot of times in a game like this where it’s pretty lopsided, the tendency can be to get pretty sloppy, just human nature. But you only had two penalties for ten yards. How impressive was that to see?
STEVE ADDAZIO: Yeah, it was great. Not a lot of penalties. I don’t have all the stats in front of me right now, but I thought from that standpoint it was fairly clean. I was happy about that because, yeah, it can get sloppy, and I think we contained that.
I want to look at the tape, not overly. We’re going to take a look at it and correct what we need to correct, and then we’re moving on to Kansas pretty quickly. By about 9:00 tomorrow morning, we’ll be 100 miles into Kansas.
BOSTON COLLEGE’S ANTHONY BROWN
Q. Anthony, very efficient day, but what was interesting is your three touchdown receptions to a running back and two tight ends. Just talk about working those aspects into the overall game.
ANTHONY BROWN: As I’m pretty sure we talked about it earlier this week, the guys we have in our rooms that can make plays. A.J. has really been working this off-season on his catching ability and showing that side of his game. So that’s really big for us right now. And our tight ends have always been a power for our team. So it’s really good.
Q. How have you seen him from freshman year when he catches no passes, last year he catches eight, but the injury makes it harder for him to be a weapon out of the backfield until now. How have you seen him develop as a pass catcher?
ANTHONY BROWN: Honestly, he’s been working at it every single day. When I say every day, I actually mean every day. So I feel his confidence is just through the roof. He feels like he can catch anything. He’s actually asking for passing plays now. It’s excellent to see his confidence, and I’m happy for him right now.
Q. You’re young. You like to play football. To sandwich a game against a non-major between the one you played last week and the one you have coming up on Friday, is it tricky not looking over your shoulder at all, or is the mentality the same?
ANTHONY BROWN: As you said, being young, sometimes people overlook these games, but it was really an emphasis and a big focus this week to not look past this game into Kansas, and I feel like we did that, but we need to clean some things up.
But we have another big opponent this week. Kansas is no slouch. They have a great coach. They have a very talented running back on offense, and I know that defense is going to come to play. It’s a Friday night game. This is everybody’s dream.
Everybody is going to be excited for this game. There’s going to be thousands of people watching. I feel like they’re definitely going to come here looking for a “W.”
So we’ve got to step our game up.
BOSTON COLLEGE’S JAKE BURT
Q. By the time you got to the end zone, percentage-wise, how much of that was you were elated, and how much of that was you were tired?
JAKE BURT: I honestly -- I mean, I was tired before that play, but once I got there, I was just elated. I was so happy to be in the end zone.
Q. Can you just talk about the use -- I think -- what is it now? Five touchdowns for A.B., five different receivers, two tight ends and a running back -- like you guys can do this with a lot of different targets, you know.
JAKE BURT: Yeah, we’re just really good right now at putting different pieces of the puzzle all over, keeping the ball spread out, keeping our run game proficient, and that’s been the key for us because it’s hard to game plan for one person when you play us.
Q. And I’m serious too, like I don’t know what play number that was on that drive, but how long had you been on the field, and what is that like? Because you already had these responsibilities. I can’t remember which play number that was.
JAKE BURT: We do a great job preparing in practice. Coach Addazio always makes sure we’re pushing at a fast tempo. Coach Bajakian is always getting the plays in fast. So we’re used to getting deep in those drives and being able to make plays deep in those drives when the defense gets tired.
Q. After such an emotional game last week, getting ready for Richmond this week with Kansas coming up on Friday, how different is the preparation during the week?
JAKE BURT: Preparation is the same. Every week you’re just looking to get another win. As Coach always says, it’s really hard to get a win in college football, and we’ve got a great bunch of guys who love ball. So every day we just go out there and play as hard as we can.
BOSTON COLLEGE’S AJ DILLON
Q. First and foremost, A.B. said that you are now at a point where you are asking for pass plays. When did this start?
A.J. DILLON: I guess probably more towards Bowl prep. I realized I really needed to take the next step in my game. Less, I guess, about myself and more about becoming a leader, and that doesn’t necessarily translate to stats so much, but I mean, being involved in the pass game, whether it’s catching the ball, blocking -- lately, I’ve been -- like my stats haven’t been whatever, but I felt more fulfilled than I had when I got a 272-yard game, and that’s not made up.
Just having that respect, that garners respect from my teammates, and them knowing that, when I’m out there, I’m going to make sure that it all happens, like I’m going to do my best, is the best feeling I can ask for.
Q. Be honest. How much did the ankle situation last year sort of hinder you from taking the step with the passing game that you would have liked to?
A.J. DILLON: Yeah, the offense we had instilled -- I mean, I think I got my first receiving touchdown against UMass, which was Game 1, and I was slowly working toward being more involved in that because my freshman year I barely took any third down snaps. Then sophomore year, last year was really focused on starting to get in there and do more. This year I feel like I’ve taken that next step.
Just being able to help my teammates out, that’s something I’ve been preaching. I’m really not focused on the individual stats or this and that. Whatever I can do, whether it’s blocking -- I don’t know if anybody might see that block, but if I can block for a touchdown for A.B. to throw to Kobay or Zay or Benny or whoever, that makes me feel like I’m getting the job done.
Q. Looked like you showed some patience and a little deceptiveness on that screen, though. Just talk about how that set up for you.
A.J. DILLON: Yeah, the O-line -- I haven’t seen the film, obviously, but as far as feeling goes, it felt like the O-line blocked well. I’ve got to give a little bit for them to get to their blocks and get to their assignment. That’s something we’ve been practicing. We have get a lot of -- I’m sure there’s something we can correct on it and learn from, but from how it felt, it felt good, and I’m happy to have those big offensive linemen in front of me.
Q. A.J., you guys have shown the ability to have really quick, efficient drives and then really slow, methodical drives. Can you describe your ability as a team to kind of do both and balance those out?
A.J. DILLON: Yeah, so something we’ve been harping on is just being a master of the situation. We have been focused, especially the last two years, on tempo, being able to -- so during our camp, we’re going from drill to drill. No jogging around, running from drill to drill, that fast pace, that tempo that tends to wear down opponents, and that’s something that our offense has been harping on. Coach Addazio, Coach Bajakian, and I mean in the same sense it’s gotten our defense better because we’re going up against each other all camp, and now they’re able to have that ability to stay in long drives and things like that.
And then as far as slower, methodical drives, I feel like that’s just the situation of the game, what we need to do, and I feel like that, once again, is from top down. Coach Addazio, Coach Bajakian kind of instilling the fact that we need to know in certain situations, this is how we need to carry ourselves and this is how we need to execute.
Q. How much does Zay just bring added energy to that offense?
A.J. DILLON: You guys have seen it. Zay, he’s a spark plug, I would say. He’s a great guy, energetic, young guy. He’s fast, and he makes great plays. He has a lot more than just speed and hands, and that will come with time as he gets more comfortable in the offense, but having him out there, as well as a lot of the guys we have -- we have playmakers at every position. We have depth. David Bailey, once again, playmaker. Pat Garwo got on the field a little bit today at running back, playmaker. Travis Levy, playmaker. And the same thing goes down with the receivers.
I feel like, with the guys that we have, I feel like we’re all starting to mature or are mature now, and I’m really excited for this season and our offense to kind of come into ourselves.
BOSTON COLLEGE’S NOLAN BORGERSEN
Q. So just describe what your agility drills are like in the off-season.
NOLAN BORGERSEN: No, our strength program has been awesome. They did a great job getting us ready for the season. I think everyone out there is fresh, stronger, faster, and it’s been good.
Q. What did you see on the pick?
NOLAN BORGERSEN: We were in cover two. Got my depth -- your eyes really bring you the ball on that play, and that’s what happened, and I was able to make a play on it.
Q. We’re talking about the number -- you’ve heard this before, the unknowns on the defense. For the yards you give up, you had like seven turnovers in two games.
NOLAN BORGERSEN: Yeah, yeah, the defense has done a great job and special teams, I know. Myself, Mike, and Mehdi, we all play a lot of special teams. So I think it’s really big to have a rotation and be able to stay fresh, and that’s helped the back end a lot. We have a lot of guys playing on defense, and swarming the ball creates turnovers. So that’s been really good for us.
Richmond Head Coach Russ Huesman
RUSS HUESMAN: I like the things we did offensively all game. Joe (Mancuso) played really well. He ran the ball effectively and the receivers made some plays for him. We ran the ball pretty well. BC has a good football team.’’
I told Jeff (Durden - Richmond Offensive Coordinator) as we were walking out, if we can clean some things up, not shoot ourselves in the foot, and not turn the ball over, we have a chance offensively. We got some good players, man, we got guys that can catch and make you miss and like I said Joe played really well, other than that one pick – the second pick he probably shouldn’t have thrown it - but our wideout didn’t block the guy making the interception. Again, I hope we grow from that
*This article has been edited to include the original video from which these generated transcripts are taken.