Good morning! It's Thursday, so as far as I'm concerned it's officially game weekend. There are a few games on tonight The marquee matchup is between Texas A&M and South Carolina at 6 PM, but there's also an ACC kickoff as well, with Wake Forest traveling to powerhouse Louisiana-Monroe at 7 PM on ESPNU.
Here are some links to get you ready for the game:
Boston College Links
BC Head Coach Steve Addazio comments on football's season opener against UMass at Gillette Stadium Saturday, Aug. 30.
"Last year was about setting a new culture. It was about maximizing what we had, getting those seniors to really buy in and become a team again. And we did a good job of that," Addazio said this week as he looked to Saturday's season opener against UMass. "Then you've got these young guys who have been through nothing, and have no scars. It's an interesting dynamic in Year 2. ... A lot of unknowns, that's what this season is going to be."
"Football is not a promise to last your whole life, so I wanted to make sure I had a Plan B as well,'' Murphy said. "I wanted to get my master's and I figured if I had another year of eligibility left, I wanted to take advantage of it. So, instead of being a backup my last year at Florida, I wanted to find a place where I could compete and be a starter. "So that's when I came to my decision and figured that maybe I should look out and find something else.''
Football head coach Mark Whipple spoke to members of the media during the MAC weekly teleconference on Monday.
The 2014 UMass football campaign may well be known as a season of comebacks. Starting with the return of several home games to McGuirk Alumni Stadium on the UMass campus to the return of one of the most well-known coaches in program history, Mark Whipple, the Minutemen enter the new year with a lot of hope and optimism on their side.
And there are people who say that UMass has nothing to lose. They're the plucky underdogs, right? They're playing a BC program that is coming off a 7-6 season, a program that's clearly on the upswing under second-year coach Steve Addazio. Whipple, meanwhile, is pretty much restarting from scratch with a program that's 2-22 since the much heralded upgrade. So . . . UMass has nothing to lose on Saturday.
UMass will play a lot of three and four receiver sets, but it has only two starters technically on the depth chart. Juniors Tajae Sharpe and Jalen Williams will start, backed up by Penn State senior transfer Alex Kenney and redshirt freshman Shakur Nesmith. Juniors Marken Michel, Elgin Long and Bernard Davis, as well as sophomore Shaq Harris, are all expected to be targets for junior transfer Blake Frohnapfel. Junior quarterback A.J. Doyle is the backup.
The Eagles don't look to be tested in this first game. UMass is a struggling program in the MAC and despite the Eagles' new QB and RB combo, they are experienced enough to put a hurting on the Minutemen. While a season-opening letdown is not out of the question, as UMass has had this game circled on the schedule since the last meeting in 2011, it's hard to believe BC letting this one slip away. The ACC schedule is tough enough to allow games like this to get away from them. Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Boston College 44, Massachusetts 13
UConn transfers Ty-Meer Brown, a 6-foot, 201-pound safety from McKeesport, Pa., and Shakim Phillips, a 6-3, 206-pound receiver from Paterson, N.J., who is on his second tour at BC, are expected to be available against UMass, despite being limited in camp by nagging leg injuries. Both players were present Monday when players and coaches assembled at Alumni Stadium to pose for the 2014 team photo.
Around the ACC
Wake Forest is rebuilding with a new coach, a true freshman quarterback and new starters at a range of key positions.
These SEC openers are getting pretty routine for Clemson. The past two years, the Tigers started the season with wins against Auburn and Georgia.