Well, that was nothing short of a disaster, but the show reluctantly moves on. BC returns home to take on just about the only fellow conference member projected lower than them in UVA. The Cavaliers are 0-4 most recently falling to NC State as time expired. Maryland and Tennessee took care of business against them, while James Madison won the game late in the fourth quarter.
As previewed a couple months ago (humble brag that I predicted this would be on the CW - now if only I could predict one of these BC spreads), not too much is expected of UVA this season. Here’s what to expect on the other side.
After four games of data, UVA rankings outside the top 100 in total offense, averaging about 333 yards per game. Starting quarterback Tony Muskett is expected to be ready to play again after being bounced out late in the first game of the season due to a left shoulder injury. Freshman Anthony Colandrea has been playing in his stead. He’s been slinging it but turning it over quite a bit. Muskett only completed nine passes for under 100 yards in his initial debut, but is certainly able to launch it deep. Coach Tony Elliott seems more confident the Monmouth transfer will be back even though Colandrea is largely seen as the future for the program.
Kobe Pace is the rushing leader on the team and now moves up to lead back on the depth chart. Pace torched BC with Clemson last year, and has 100 yards both on the ground and receiving, combining for three touchdowns along the way. It is still a committee, with Perris Jones and Mike Hollins sure to pick up carries. The pair have two touchdowns and about 30 carries apiece as well.
The star on the receiving front is Malik Washington. The 5-8, 194 pound graduate student was named the ACC receiver of the week after his 10-170-2 day against the Wolfpack. Absurd. The Northwestern transfer set career highs and has had three straight games of 100+ yards, a feat he never accomplished with the Wildcats. Naturally, he leads the conference in receptions and receiving yards. He’s small but sure can move. His counterpart Malachi Fields is a strong playmaker as well with 267 yards on the season to date.
Heck of a play from Virginia’s Malik Washington, who is having a great night, but watch left tackle McKale Boley (#52) get out in space and flatten a defender.— Bobby Football (@Rob__Paul) September 23, 2023
Boley is a 2025 NFL Draft prospect. pic.twitter.com/rSbnKmryOs
Protection wise, the line has allowed a couple of sacks a game
Injury Riddled Defense
UVA and BC are neck and neck at the bottom of the barrel in total defense. Both are allowing over 400 yards of offense thus far, with BC allowing a tad more per play (6.65).
The Cavaliers are dealing with a bunch of issues on the defensive end. Star defensive end Kam Butler was injured last weekend. He was fifth in the conference and led the team in sacks and tackles for loss. Linebacker Lex Long will also be out with a foot injury.
A number of other guys are banged up, but they were still able to get at NC State quarterback, and former Wahoo-er, Brennan Armstrong. Despite losing their top pass rusher at the half, they ended with a pair of sacks and a handful of hurries to their credit. They’re going to bring some blitzes, but they may have to play different against Castellanos with his running prowess.
Only one interception on the season so far, but it just so happened to come against Armstrong. They still have a strong veteran presence in the secondary, but mixing in some youth pretty freely A bit of a learning curve but the likes of Coen King and Dre Walker have been allowing very little in coverage of late.
The Eagles are a 4 point favorite at home. UVA’s season isn’t in as dire despite the bagel on the wins column, but Jeff Hafley will need to come up with something to take care of business.