To say this was a tough week for the Eagles would be an understatement. They were beaten thoroughly in every aspect of their game, and the results clearly showed these efforts. Yesterday we saw an offense basically stuck in neutral and a defense that couldn't get off the field. For weeks I have been able to find the good in Boston College football, this week it will be a challenge, but let's give it a whirl.
Andre Williams - He had the lone touchdown for the Eagles, on an epic steamrolling 55 yard run. Williams again made every run count. Although the Heels stacked the box and made life difficult for him, Williams still rattled off 172 yards on 26 carries. He is truly a joy to watch, putting in everything he has on every run, even when BC was down by multiple touchdowns he was still plowing over UNC defenders. The defenders know what he is going to run, but Ryan Day has him do it out of multiple looks, which shows the pure ability of this kid. Will he make in the NFL? Given the emphasis on the pass in the pros, it looks grim, but his stock goes up every week.
Sacks! - My favorite college football statistics warehouse is not updated for this week, but I believe the Eagles go somewhere between 4-6 sacks yesterday. Or basically 2012 in one game. I'd like to give particular props to Steven Daniels who destroyed Marquise Williams on one hit, and for Kevin Pierre Louis who again made plays.
Kaleb Ramsey - Two big time sacks for the senior. The announcers were singing his praises, which they rightfully should have because he made some good plays out there. Don Brown's blitz schemes got the Eagles burnt a few times, but with the bad came the good, and that was some big time sacks.
The Offensive Line - I just want to preface this by saying the term "good" is all relative given the s*** show we watched yesterday. Again on running plays they did well, opening holes for Williams. Chase Rettig was pressured, a few times, but I thought for the most part the offensive line did a good job of giving him time, it was just Rettig just held onto the ball too long and never looked past his first progression. A more confident quarterback would have had a much better game with the way the offensive line play. Two holding plays not withstanding.
Sean Sylvia's Targeting Penalty - After watching three SEC teams lose players last week to this rule, almost all on questionable calls, I wondered how long it would be before this rule negatively impacted BC. We got our answer yesterday. This rule is absolutely horrible. What was Sylvia supposed to do there? He had less than a second to react, and he had no idea Bug Howard was going to do with his body after the catch. Stupid rule, stupid enforcement, stupid everything.
The Kick Return Game - Where did all those explosive returns by Spiffy Evans and Myles Willis go? The Eagles averaged 15 yards a return, and seemed to be starting every set of downs inside their own 20.
The Officiating - I am not going to blame this loss on the refs, because that clearly was not the case, but there were at least two calls that were absolutely horridly called. The first was a holding call, I believe it was on Andy Gallik, in which UNC clearly jumped offsides, but that wasn't called. Instead, BC was hit with a ten yard penalty and as we all saw that was a hole Rettig wasn't going to be getting out of. The second, and more aggravating penalty was that fair catch interference call in the fourth quarter. The fact that it was over turned just because Larry Fedora was screaming at the refs just showed how inept this crew. Unbelievable.
The Two Minute Drill - BC had the ball and was moving it relatively well (albeit on the ground), and instead of trying to put points on the boards, they just let the clock run out. No long Hail Mary attempts, hell nothing underneath for 20 yards or so to put them in field goal range. I don't like bagging on the coaching staff often, but their two minute drill is clearly becoming an issue.
Andre Williams Fumble - Terrible handoff by Rettig, shouldn't put the blame on Andre Williams here.
Chase Rettig - Chestnut Hill, we have a problem. Steve Addazio and Ryan Day have to do something here, because Rettig not only regressed from good (beginning of the year) to average (Army game), he has furthered regressed to bad. The announcers yesterday were pointing to it, that BC had wide open receivers, it was just Rettig was either locked in on Alex Amidon or had too much happy feet to make the throw. It was real tough to watch him play, he has literally zero confidence left. He can't throw the ball more than 5 yards down the field, he flounders under pressure, in short he's just a hot mess right now. Should the coaches bench him a game and try something else? At this point I don't see how that could be any worse. I would rather see Josh Bordner run read option until the cows come home then what I've seen out of Rettig the past two games. Maybe he just needs a brain break, and with VT coming up that would be a great week to give him a rest from the carnage that he has put upon himself.
Third Down Defense - BC had periods of time where they were able to get off the field (see middle of 1st quarter, start of 3rd quarter) but otherwise they just couldn't stop UNC on 3rd down. As we have mentioned here one of the knocks on Don Brown historically has been a bad third down conversion percentage, and we have seen that numerous times this year. Sure getting stops on 3rd and manageable are tough, but how the heck did BC allow at least two 3rd and longs to be converted? Unacceptable.