It is always tough to lose. Especially when you are shut out for the first time since 1998 (that is 148 games). But take a step back, and ask yourself if you really expected the Eagles to defeat the Hokies. With parents on campus for Parent’s Weekend, expectations seemed to jump at the last minute. At the beginning of the week, people were surprised that I had the Eagles losing by only 7, by the end of the week, people were asking how I didn’t have the Eagles winning. Yes, Virginia Tech did lose to James Madison, but they are a very good team.
That does not mean that you can throw away this game — there were certainly questions and concerns raised from the loss– but it does not mean that the season is over, as many seem to think.
The list of concerns is distressing, but it is also well known:
- Our quarterback situation is as unclear is it was when the season started.
- The offensive line has not produced up to the lofty expectations.
- The offense is generally predictable, and ineffective. Especially in the red zone.
Each of these is true. But also consider the following:
- This week’s matchup against Notre Dame is only the Eagles fourth game. This is still the early portion of the schedule, and this was the Eagles first real game (sorry Weber State, and Kent State). There is still time for the Eagles to make adjustments.
- Virginia Tech, with Clemson being the only possible exception in my mind, was the Eagles most difficult match-up.
- The defense played a very good game, despite the score. They were hampered by Virginia Tech’s average starting field position, and costly turnovers deep in Eagles territory. Over all though, they showed that they can be a top defense in the ACC.
- Harris was able to produce (averaging 5.8 yards per carry for 111 yards) despite facing a defense that was stacking most of its defenders in the box. After two mediocre outings to start the season, Harris showed Saturday why he is one of the best.
It can be hard to see beyond the quarterback issues – after all, Shinskie was unable to score twice in the red zone, once throwing an interception, and on the other play falling just short of the end zone on an improvised scramble to end the half. Nonetheless, Eagles fans, despite the loss, need to quell their fear and doomsday predictions.
I am not trying to claim that all is well after the Eagles loss; merely that Boston College still has a chance to win 7-10 games. Obviously, that depends heavily on if the Eagles are able to find (some) production, and more importantly consistency from the quarterback position, and if the offensive line is able to step up.
Call me an optimist, or a homer, but I do believe that the Eagles will be able to remedy many of their problems. Just as the defense was able to rebound after two questionable performances, the offensive line is too talented to continue to play as they have. The quarterback situation may not remedy itself as quickly, but as long as Spaziani can find a stopgap quarterback to manage the game, then the Eagles, behind their strong defense and running game will win games.
Remember, the Eagles were able to win 8 games last year with Dave Shinskie, and they can do it again.
Take a deep breath – the sky is not falling.
About the Author
Written by Ian Boynton
Student at Boston College. Avid fan of St. Louis Rams, Boston Red Sox, as well as all Boston College Sports.