Saturday night, Boston College and Virginia Tech open their ACC programs at Lane Stadium, both trying to avoid predictable 0-2 starts. Virginia Tech won 27-10 after a game that featured its worst offense since 2015 in BC.
The game got off to a great start for BC when QB Phil Jurkovec threw an INT on the 2nd play of the game, leading to a Virginia Tech touchdown. BC’s offense continued to sputter after the costly turnover and didn’t even get its first score until less than 4 minutes remained in the first half. Meanwhile, Virginia Tech made enough moves with the Eagles defense to drive the ball down the field and extend the lead to 10-0, then 17-0. BC finally got something going on their final drive of the first half, converting several first downs and eventually settling for FG to make it 17-3 at the half.
BC continued that momentum in the second half, with their first TD to make it 17-10, but Virginia Tech responded quickly to make it 24-10 on the next drive. The rest of the game was uneventful, with each offense wasting possessions. Once Virginia Tech made it 27-10 with 4 minutes left, it was all over.
Problems with abuse
Boston College’s offense seems pretty lost. Their #1 weakness was an inability to establish the run. After going down, they send Pat Garow to the gut only to be immediately met by the Virginia Tech defensive linemen. Garo, their leading rusher, managed to put up only 4 yards on the ground. four! Their leading rusher of the game, Zay Flowers, was an impressive 7 yards. It doesn’t matter if Garo runs on his own, inexperienced BC can’t create an offensive line. Any Room to run all night. The terrible running game also affected the passing game, as BC’s receivers struggled to get open in coverage all game.
Phil Jurkovec also looked bad. Time and time again, Jurkovec lasers in on his first read, throws tight balls, flips open receivers downfield and makes decisions 1 or 2 seconds late. If the QB is too low compared to what we’ve seen before, the offense won’t be able to function at its full potential. Zay Flowers and company can get open all they want, but Jurkovec can’t get them the ball. On the longest pass of the day, 50 yards to Zay Flowers, the ball was thrown high and Flowers had to stop dead in the lane to catch it.
Resistant, but inconsistent, defense
What might get lost in the chaos of this game is Boston College’s defense and its resilience in the face of lopsided odds. They had constant pressure on the VT backfield, forcing several key sacks and generally keeping Virginia Tech’s offense in check while their offense failed to create anything. After the score jumped to 17-0, the Hokies went on six straight drives without scoring. And most of the points he gave up were the result of poor fielding thanks to his terrible offense.
Now, there’s only so much they can do when BC’s offense is repeatedly coming off the field, forcing the BC defense to defend a short field on limited breaks. Boston College’s front 7 saw several big runs by the Hokies’ running scheme, which included a 55-yard dash by Keshaun King.
Excluding VT’s first drive from the BC 5-yard line after the INT, Boston College’s defense allowed a total of 20 points. With a bad VT offense, that’s not an impressive number. But if the BC offense is anywhere near as good as it gets, it has enough respect for the win considering the defense’s constant dropouts.
Let’s not mince words. This Boston College team doesn’t look like it’s going to be bona-fide. 5-7 is probably a bright forecast. These games against Rutgers and Virginia Tech should have been the lightest on their schedule. After next week’s loss to Maine, where will the wins come from? The weakest remaining teams on BC’s schedule are Duke and Syracuse, and those teams are ranked at or better than BC’s Eagles. Unless some serious, drastic improvements are made on the offensive line, this BC team will not even come close to a winning record. In fact, BC OL coach Dave DeGuillimo should be fired and left in Blacksburg. Even with BC’s OL losses at halftime, this level of play is unacceptable. It’s that bad.
As always, though, pack Eags.