Boston College trying to move forward
October, 13, 2009
By Heather Dinich | ESPN.com
Posted by ESPN.com’s Heather Dinich
This week’s theme at Boston College began as soon as last week’s 48-14 loss at Virginia Tech ended -- move forward.
The reality of the situation, though, is that even Eagles coach Frank Spaziani isn’t sure how his team is going to respond after it was defeated soundly in every facet of the game by the No. 4-ranked team in the country.
“We try to take them all one at a time and put them all behind us, but obviously that’s easier said than done,” Spaziani said. “Once again, in this team’s growth, this is an adverse situation so how we respond to it is going to be interesting, to say the least, because it’s going to be new. It’s the first time for this team and we are going to try and lead them through it.”
Technically, it’s not the first time this has happened. Boston College’s offense struggled in similar fashion last month at Clemson, a 25-7 loss in which the Eagles finished with only 54 yards of total offense. The difference in that game, though, was the defense showed up and held the Tigers without an offensive touchdown. Against Virginia Tech, the Hokies seemed to score at will.
“Our defense is going to be fine and our offense is going to be fine,” quarterback Dave Shinskie said following the loss to Virginia Tech. “It’s just one game and we just need to put this behind us and move forward.”
BC responded to its loss to Clemson with back-to-back wins against Atlantic Division opponents Wake Forest and Florida State, which is why the Eagles are still in contention to win the division. Wake Forest, which lost in overtime to Boston College, is currently atop the standings but has a tough road trip to Clemson looming. A BC win over NC State combined with a Deacs’ loss in Death Valley could quickly change the forecast for the Eagles.
“Anytime you’ve done something once, you can tell yourself that you can do it,” Spaziani said. “Every situation is different, but this might be similar.”
In order to make a similar comeback to the weeks that followed the Clemson loss, the defense will have to play significantly better against standout quarterback Russell Wilson.
“We need to come out with the same intensity every week,” said BC linebacker Luke Kuechly. “We need to come out strong and doing our jobs like we need to, and execute better I guess.”
None of Boston College’s remaining opponents will challenge the Eagles in as complete a fashion as the Hokies did, but a defense as strong as North Carolina’s will expose similar weaknesses offensively, and quarterbacks such as Wilson and Notre Dame’s Jimmy Clausen will find similar holes in the Eagles’ defense.
“This is an ongoing process and the problems are there,” Spaziani said. “Some are exposed more than others, but we have to find them and deal with them.”