This is B.C. Football in 2011
By Paul Myerberg // Nov 4, 2011
Boston College is out of embarrassing moments. That well has run dry. There is no lower this program can go. This is B.C. football in 2011: at home on Thursday night, against a power program it has battled on even ground since arriving in the A.C.C. in 2005, the Eagles were thrashed and throttled from sideline to sideline, end zone to end zone, in the ugliest 60 minutes of a year defined in woeful 60-minute increments. It was bad even when it was good, such as when freshman quarterback Josh Bordner led the Eagles on an impressive drive down near the F.S.U. goal line late in the first half — only to botch a handoff to Roland Finch, giving the ball back to the Seminoles.
This is the gang that couldn’t shoot straight but could still yap and yammer with the best of them. The Eagles, 2-6 and well on the way to 2-7, barked like junkyard dogs for a significant portion of last night’s one-sided loss.
This is B.C. football in 2011, when one step forward is accompanied by an enormous step back. The Eagles believed they had found the answer to their offensive prayers in offensive coordinator Kevin Rogers, who came to Chestnut Hill from the Minnesota Vikings. An immediate upgrade over his predecessor, Gary Tranquill, some thought — that would be me.
Rogers lasted two games before leaving the program, citing health issues. Depending on who you ask, or how you tend to look at things, it’s just as likely that Rogers and the incumbent B.C. staff failed to see eye-to-eye, and the back and leg issues became a convenient fall guy for a relationship that quickly soured. So much for Chase Rettig’s projected growth from his freshman to sophomore season.
All-A.C.C. running back Montel Harris injured his knee in August, forcing him to miss the first three games of the regular season. He returned in time to break Boston College’s program record for career rushing yards against Wake Forest; Harris reaggravated the knee on that record-breaking carry, ending his season.
Senior defensive tackle Kaleb Ramsey, one of the anchors of the Boston College defense and a potential breakout star in the A.C.C., injured his foot in the opener against Northwestern, ending his season. The Eagles will petition the N.C.A.A. for a medical hardship waiver for each player, but those losses are indicative of the gloom and doom that has pervaded this program.
Yeah, a bit of Boston College’s stumble can be blamed on factors outside its control: an offensive coordinator that came and went in a flash and injuries to key figures on each of the ball, for example. But this happens everywhere, to a degree, and B.C. has proved itself completely and utterly incapable of handling even the slightest speed bump put in its path.
And that falls on Frank Spaziani. Who else should shoulder the blame? How about athletic director Gene DeFilippo, who replaced Tom O’Brien with Jeff Jagodzinski, cut him loose amid a dispute and then hired Spaziani, the loyal lieutenant. How about the entire athletic department?
You only have so many fingers to point. Spaziani must go, and will go if B.C. is at all serious about reclaiming its spot on the A.C.C. totem pole. The program is in shambles, and the only way to fix this problem is to tear the whole building down and start from scratch.
Just leave it with two damning facts: one, B.C. had played in 12 consecutive bowl games. That was tied for the sixth-longest in college football — along with Oklahoma, to give you an example, and ahead of L.S.U., Ohio State, Boise State and Alabama. Starting in 2012, the Eagles start from scratch.
There were 23 B.C.S. conferences teams that lost 10 or more games from 2003-10: U.N.C., Iowa State, Indiana, Illinois, Arizona, Vanderbilt and Mississippi State in 2003; Washington in 2004; Duke in 2005; Duke, Illinois, and Stanford in 2006; Duke, Minnesota and Syracuse in 2007; Iowa State, Washington State and Washington in 2008; Maryland, Washington State and Vanderbilt in 2009; and Washington State and Vanderbilt a year ago.
Only three of those teams won at least seven games the year before: Iowa State in 2003 and Maryland and Vanderbilt in 2008. This is the backdrop behind B.C. as it plays out the string over the final three games of the 2011 season: with one streak already gone, the Eagles are trying their best to avoid joining an exclusive club.
Hey, this is B.C. football in 2011. And if significant changes aren’t made — from top to bottom — this’ll be B.C. football in 2012, in 2013, in 2014…
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