2019 Virginia Tech Football Opponent Capsule: Boston College

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AJ Dillon Boston College Virginia Tech
AJ Dillon and his Boston College teammates rushed for 249 yards and pulled away from Virginia Tech in the second half last year, 31-21. (Ivan Morozov)

Boston College Capsule

2018 Record: 7-5 overall, 4-4 ACC, No. 4 in the Atlantic Division

2018 Game Result: Boston College 31, Virginia Tech 21

2019 Predictions:

  • Athlon: 6-6 overall, 3-5 ACC, No. 6 in the Atlantic
  • ACC Media: No. 5 in the Atlantic

Returning Offensive Starters: 6
Returning Defensive Starters: 3

In 2018, Boston College continued the trend of winning seven games under head coach Steve Addazio. The Eagles have won seven games in five of his six seasons, with the exception coming in his third year when he went 3-9 overall and 0-8 in the ACC. Overall, he’s gone 38-38 at BC, with an 18-30 mark in the ACC.

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Addazio’s Eagles began last season with a 7-2 record before dropping the final three games of the regular season to Clemson, Florida State and Syracuse. Their bowl game against Boise State was canceled due to weather. BC’s last victory came on November 3 in a 31-21 win inside Lane Stadium.

Boston College Offense

S&P+ Offense: No. 88
Total Offense: No. 67

Mike Bajakian takes over at offensive coordinator for Boston College. He replaces Scot Loeffler, who was named head coach at Bowling Green. Bajakian was previously the quarterbacks coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and before that he was offensive coordinator at Tennessee, Cincinnati and Central Michigan.

The Eagles lose four starters on the offensive line, but considering their history with offensive linemen, they should still be solid up front. Once again the strength of their offense will be in the running game, with future NFL running back AJ Dillon headlining a very good offensive backfield.

Quarterback Anthony Brown, now a redshirt junior, should be better this year. He needs to be more efficient in the passing game, though he does not have dynamic receivers to help him. Kobay White is solid, but other than that we can expect the Eagles to lean on their deep group of tight ends quite a bit throughout the course of the season.

On paper, this looks like a typical Boston College offense. They won’t be quite as experienced this year, however. Against the Hokies last season, the Eagles offense started six seniors, including three graduate students.

Boston College Defense

S&P+ Defense: No. 32
Total Defense: No. 70

You normally don’t see such a large discrepancy between advanced stats and traditional stats. However, last season the Eagles had one of the country’s more efficient defenses, yet they also allowed just over 400 yards per game.

This year BC returns just three defensive starters. Two starters were lost to the NFL Draft, and cornerback Hamp Cheevers, who led the nation in interceptions last season, also declared for the NFL (and went undrafted).

Ryan Willis Boston College Virginia Tech
In 2018, the Boston College defense bottled up Ryan Willis and the Hokies in the second half. (Ivan Morozov)

Last season the Eagles started eight seniors on defense against the Hokies, along with two juniors. This season they are projected to start only two seniors on the defensive side of the ball, and they could have as many as six freshmen in the two-deep. This will be a much different group than the one we saw in Lane Stadium last season.

BC also changed coordinators on the defensive side of the ball. Steve Addazio demoted Jim Reid to defensive line coach and promoted linebackers coach Bill Sheridan to defensive coordinator. Sheridan has been a defensive coordinator for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New York Giants, and he’s one of the nation’s most experienced coaches.

The BC defense was good a year ago, but they were also inconsistent. They gave Clemson all sorts of trouble in the trenches, allowing just 27 points, but two weeks later they allowed 42 points to Syracuse. They allowed 34 points to Wake Forest and 35 to Temple, while holding NC State to 28, Miami to 14 and Virginia Tech to 21.

The 2019 Matchup

Virginia Tech at Boston College: Saturday, August 31, 4:00 PM (ACC Network)

Why This Game is Important

Boston College: The Eagles have a brutal second half schedule with games against NC State, Clemson, Syracuse, Florida State, Notre Dame and Pitt. Four of those six are on the road. BC needs to win as many games as possible in the first half of their season.

Virginia Tech: The Hokies are coming off their first losing season since 1992, and the fanbase is less than thrilled with not only that 6-7 season, but this year’s home schedule. Tech can reignite some excitement within the fanbase by winning the season opener on the road against a decent team.

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14 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Brought my kids to that game. Hard to explain how a Tech team gets pushed around to kids that have grown up thinking Tech was good on D
    Just comes down to the D line…the players we have brought in better establish dominance on the line this year or we will post another disappointing season

    1. I don’t think you can expect dominance from this year’s d line. Hoping for a really good Offense

  2. I see this as one of the most important VT games in recent history for the fan base. Win and we recapture the interest of thousands. Lose and we drop more fans and the number that even bother to tune in during the season will be very low. We need this win.

    1. I think this is a keystone game for the season because of the fact that, with most of our team returning this season, this will be a good measuring stick for how much progress our team (and specifically our defense) has made during the offseason.

      After this game we have several very winnable games before a trip to Miami, and winning this BC game can put us in a position of being (likely) 4-0 when going into that big Coastal matchup.

      1. Exactly. Win and we are looking at 8-4 or better. Lose and 6-6 is in play IMHO

        Thanks for the response

  3. My goodness there was some atrocious safety play in that 2018 game. Can only hope JH and some more game experience (and hopefully health) cleans that up real quick.

    1. How about Mihota getting pushed 3 yds off ball on the long TD run followed by Hazelton dropping the pass right into an INT.

      I’m not sure we can help but be better just by having healthy bodies at DT

      1. No kidding, that was an honestly impressive level of ineptitude on several levels within a winnable game.

      2. No kidding, that was an honestly impressive level of ineptitude on several levels within a winnable game. Although, to be fair, Mihota should have never been in the game to begin with. Dude gave it all he had, but his body was so wrecked this past year, he was just completely ineffective.

        1. Happens at other schools as well, but it amazes me that we don’t have a ready reserve that is not as good as a healthy Vinny, but better than a totally banged up starter? I hope the D line can step up this year

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