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BC Football vs NC State: Observations on the Loss

A Sobering Dose of Reality

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 16 NC State at Boston College Photo by M. Anthony Nesmith/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

After the heartbreak in Death Valley, I was hoping that a return to Alumni Stadium with a juiced up crowd would give BC the boost it needed to beat NC State and get its ACC campaign going. Well, the first two were there Satruday night, the rest...

I’ve talked about how this BC team is not going to blow anybody out and they would need big plays on defense and special teams, and one or two big plays on offense to wins games. Neither of those things happened last night for BC. And in fact they did happen...for NC State. The Wolfpack got the blocked punt, the deflected interception, two lucky grabs by Devin Carter and Thayer Thomas, and the safety. All were the type of plays that BC needed to make.

NC State is a good football team and we knew going into the game that their defense was going to be tough but we also knew the Wolfpack were not exceptional at getting pressure on the quarterback. This puts a bit of a brighter light on Dennis Grosel and his limitations. BC could not get the running game going which meant no play action passing game. Grosel had to sit in the pocket and read the defense and makes more than one or two tough throws and he wasn’t able to do that.

That leaves Jeff Hafley with a decision. Does BC continue with the offensive game-plan currently in place? Or does BC make a change and try somebody else at QB? I’d imagine that the current offensive strategy is the most optimal for BC with Grosel as the starter, and Grosel is the most optimal QB for that strategy. If the Eagles change schemes, they likely change QBs as well.


BC can certainly win ball games with the game-plan they’ve been using. They beat Mizzou and should’ve beat Clemson after all, but it still requires a lot of things to go BC’s way and that just isn’t how football works. There is also the issue that teams will and likely have picked up on BC’s strategy and will continue to force Grosel to win games with his arm. We all remember, far too well, that that was Addazio’s biggest problem: a total refusal to adapt and anticipate. We know and BC can win games with the running game, Grosel not losing games, and defense and special teams coming up with big plays, and I wanted to believe that that was enough to win and maybe even win the ACC. Frankly, last night’s game was a harsh wake up call. The ACC may be wide open but there are still good teams, with solid defenses, and coaches who know how to watch film. I can’t say that switching QBs will mean BC wins more game than they would with Grosel, it could mean they lose more, this is a very inexperience QB room after all. Yet, is it better to take a chance, a risk even, than to play it safe?

We’ve heard Jeff Hafley in interviews and he sounds like he wants to do big things at BC. Well, big things are not happening with Dennis Grosel. I know it, you know it, and likely Jeff Hafley knows it. BC can play it safe stick with Grosel maybe win 3, 4, or 5 more games. You know who didn’t take chances? Addazio. Addazio did what he was good at and never changed and he’s on his way to another .500 season in Colorado State.

Maybe playing it safe is the right call. 7-5 or 8-4 for a team that lost its starter in week 2 is, what some would say, the best BC could hope for and they’re probably right. I think there is a part of me that just wants BC to, for once, to go for broke. Maybe they take that risk and it blows up in their face? That’s fair, but isn’t there at least some pride in saying, “We took a chance and it failed.”

To me, that feels better than just settling for another above .500 season but I will put that question to comment section. Would you rather play it safe and stick with Grosel? Or take a risk on one of BC’s other QBs?