On a Job Well Done

“Well done” best summarizes what I want to say about BC’s 27-17 victory over the Florida State Seminoles, the team that ended BC’s unbeaten streak last year and the team that seems to perennially underperform.

Against a team that wins on the running game, the defense’s performance was extraordinary.  FSU’s leading rusher of the game was the kicker/punter, who gained 24 yards on a fake punt.  Granted FSU had a decent game passing the ball, but some form of ball movement is expected, the passing game was (except for a brief period in the middle of the second half) contained, and the defense got three key INTs, one returned for a touchdown.  Textbook defense as always.  Frank Spaziani is a genius.

Excellent defense is expected; competent offense is not, and that was probably the difference with this week’s Eagles.  I’ve always said the greatest thing about Tom O’Brien’s departure wasn’t just his good riddance but his good graces to take the woeful offensive coordinator Dana Bible with him.  It’s easy to rack up yards and points with an NFL first rounder QB like Matt Ryan (it’s worth emphasizing the O’Brien/Bible combination was often insufficiently competent to accomplish even this).  But with a fifth year senior-first year starter, the job is made immensely more difficult.  It’s clear Logan adjusted to Crane’s inability to protect the ball (three turnovers again today) with a far simpler and more balanced offense.  He called a perfect game today with runs from the shotgun; options; and passes mixed in, aided by the offensive line that dominated the line of scrimmage.  It’s when I see games like this that I’m reminded how much Bible’s loss was our gain.

Couple brief thoughts.

The never ending Crane debate:  despite continuing to make disconcerting errors, he looked the best out of all the games I’ve seen him in.  He managed the game well and was surprisingly calm and efficient on 3rd downs.  Perhaps the credit goes to the O-Line, but hey, you gotta give credit where it’s due.

Ouch: Penalties were a huge factor in the game for both teams, first BC killing itself then FSU.  Except for one wrong pass interference call against FSU that kept the drive alive (one of those “good call, wrong call”), the refs called a good game.  Which tells me the teams were rather sloppy.

The destiny is in our hands:  If we win out, we go to the ACC Championship game?  Who would’ve thought with losses against North Carolina and Clemson?  Wake, a loser against NC State, and Maryland, at home on Thanksgiving weekend, are winnable games.  It’s nice to be in control of your own destiny.  Or it’s nice to be in a competitive (mediocre?) conference (division?).  Or both?

Beautifying NC (which I could not watch) and Clemson losses:  those games are tolerable now after wins against Notre Dame and FSU.  Those losses looked bad then, but I think they can now be considered transition games for Crane and Logan.  The offense just couldn’t execute the game plan at the beginning of the season; even that victory against V-Tech came more despite the offense, not because of the offense.  It’s better the adjust now then at a bowl game.

Coach Jags: Onside kick on the first kickoff of the game.  It’s the kind of aggressiveness this team needs to go to the next level and the reason why most of the campus celebrated O’Brien’s adios.

What if:  Would FSU have been better without its 5 WRs suspended?  The losses couldn’t have helped, but did it really hurt them that much?  There were no noticeable problems in the passing game; their lack of running was the problem.  Hard to imagine the suspensions hurting that aspect of their game.  I’d like to think that BC won because it was the better team, not because FSU didn’t have 5 WRs.

A scholar-athlete:  we should all wish the best of luck to FSU’s Myron Rolle, who is a Rhodes Scholar finalist.  It’s not widely known that BC God Doug Flutie was also a finalist, interviewing for the scholarship soon after the Hail-Mary game.  Rolle will be interviewing during next week’s game against Maryland.  A true student-athlete.  Quite an achievement.

A star is born:  Harris.  ‘Nough said.


2 Responses to “On a Job Well Done”

  1. 1 Chris November 16, 2008 at 7:30 am

    Yep, best game they have played by far, but they still tried to give it back a couple of times. Still, you can’t argue with leading the entire game, and really, two of those turnovers weren’t really Crane’s fault. On one, he got blindsided, and lots of good QBs fumble in that situation. In another, a linebacker made a great play to tip the ball. That one was partially Crane’s fault, but it wasn’t a stupid throw like he would have made earlier in the season. By the way, look back a few weeks and see my comment about Montel Harris. He’s a star in the making, and it was on display big time in this game. Haden should officially be the backup now.

    The defense is great. I didn’t see whether Brace came back in or not, but hopefully he’s all right. I am kind of afraid that someone is going to notice Spaziani one of these years and hire him to an elite program, or make him some sort of head coaching offer.

    And they mentioned towards the end of the telecast that Rolle actually won’t have to interview during the Maryland game. Apparently that was moved to a night game so he should be on a flight by the time the game starts and he will be available for the second half. Good for him, though.

  2. 2 joesas November 16, 2008 at 8:25 pm

    I agree with you completely. The game was solid, and while you can nit-pick, the whole team (even the kicking game) played a solid game all around. I didn’t see horrible mistakes by Crane, either, although it would be nice if he can stop turning the ball over at the most crucial moments and places on the field.

    I now see clearly what you meant with Harris. On several occasions, he turned no gain into 3-4 yard gain all because of his effort. He will be great for us. We haven’t had a solid running game since, I’m thinking, Knight?

    Spaziani is a jewel, and I was also thinking we don’t want anybody interviewing this guy. He’s been around 12 years and didn’t bolt with O’Brien. Hopefully that’s a sign he likes BC and wants to stay.

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