I hate having to bring up the 2015 offense, I really do. It was excruciating to watch, and was as ineffective as carving a Thanksgiving turkey with a spoon. But credit when credit is due, Steve Addazio saw the writing on the wall and went out and made moves to try and address this. BC clearly needed veteran help at quarterback, so he landed transfer quarterback Patrick Towles from Kentucky. Offensive coordinator Todd Fitch went off to Louisiana Tech, and was replaced by former Virginia Tech OC Scot Loeffler, and grad transfer Jimmy Lowery was brought in to sure up the offensive line. But questions remain about the shape of the offense, and how the players are adapting, so let's take a look at some of the biggest questions this spring.
With BC's offense moving forward with more of an emphasis on the pass, the play of the wide receivers and tight ends are going to be crucial to it's success. Just looking at last year's stats as a way to gauge the talent on the roster is a little unfair because a) they had two guys throwing the ball that are no longer QBs, and b) some of the most talented pass catchers were out for the year. Looking at the guys coming back you can see where BC may find some of their successes. Nolan Borgersen was out for the entire year last year due to a leg injury, and he could become a legitimate deep threat that lines up opposite of Thadd Smith. Ben Glines, reportedly had a massive summer last year before a shoulder injury, could become that dangerous quick slot receivers, that eats up yards after the catch. While Chris Garrison/Tommy Sweeney (look for BC to use him more as a hands TE/less as a blocking TE) will hopefully give BC their first legitimate tight end weapons in years. All of these players will be worth watching this spring, to see how they progress and how they click in the new offense.
The running back is another position worth watching this spring. Over the winter, we all read about the losses of Marcus Outlow, Jordin Gowins and Sherman Alston. BC also failed to bring in a bonafide running back in the Class of 2016, which raises many questions. First off, Jonathan Hilliman is still recovering from his injury, so he will be limited in the spring, basically leaving Myles Willis, Tyler Rouse and possibly Richard Wilson as the only proven backs on the roster. Word has trickled out that Davon Jones, a redshirt freshman will transition from defensive back to running back this spring. And what about the role of former quarterback Jeff Smith? Both of these players could end up filling the role of the pass catching back that needs to be accounted for whenever their own the field. The spring game could certainly give us a glimpse of their role moving forwards.
And what about the quarterbacks after Patrick Towles? Towles should be presumed to be the starter moving forward, but the progress of Darius Wade should be something worth watching. He struggled in his first games under center last year, but will he look different if the offensive line gives him a moment to make his reads? Also, this spring we will get the first glimpses of true freshman Anthony Brown. All three QB's should get some snaps during the spring game, and it should be fascinating to see which of the three grasp the offense the best.
What about the offensive line? I'll devote an entire post to this topic for Monday.