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The ACC Down Year We’ve Been Waiting For Is Finally Here

Can BC take advantage?

Syndication: USA TODAY Josh Morgan via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Boston College Football has a pretty consistent formula for having a big season in a given year, but part of that formula is out of their hands. The Eagles aren’t going to be the boss of the conference anytime soon a la Clemson — they’re always going to need an upset or two and have just about everything go their way in the toss-up games in order to have a shot at making it into the ACC Championship Game.

If you look back at the insane 2007 football season, that’s mostly what happened, although having a God-tier quarterback certainly helped. The Eagles got their big conference wins over both Virginia Tech and Clemson and (for the most part) got the other wins necessary to make it to the title game. That was (obviously) BC’s best team in ages, and everything fell together the way they needed to.

More than having a big year and getting some big wins, though, is that the Eagles need its talent “peaks” to line up with some ACC “valleys.” Here we are just three games into the season, and there are just two teams in the conference that are still unbeaten: BC and [checks notes] Wake Forest. Clemson definitely looks beatable, and the only other team in the top 25 right now is North Carolina, who the Eagles don’t play this year.

Is there any game on the schedule BC fans can look at and say “we’ve got no shot in this one”? You’d have to say no, and it’s been a long time since we’ve been able to say that.

The parallels to 2007 coming in to the season were pretty interesting when you considered that BC had an X-Factor quarterback under center in Phil Jurkovec. That’s no longer the case, of course, and that definitely doesn’t fit in the “everything has to go your way” box. But there are plenty of pieces out there for the Eagles that they can win some games, and BC’s replacement at quarterback is a 6th year player who’s had meaningful ACC playing time.

The Eagles need to beat Clemson in two weeks to give themselves a shot at making it to the ACC Championship, but that’s not so far into the realm of the crazy as it usually is. And should BC take the Tigers down, it’ll be hard not to look at the rest of the ACC games as perfectly winnable. Nobody’s saying that the Eagles are favored or even likely to make it to the conference championship game, obviously. But there’s definitely a path this year, and if the conference can beat itself up with nobody looking unbeatable this season, the Eagles finally have a good enough roster to at least threaten to take advantage.