Disastrous night in loss to Virginia Tech

The 2022 season is going to be a long one for the Boston College Eagles if issues on offense continue.

Namely, getting an inexperienced, young offensive line to gel. And to stay healthy.

The Eagles (0-2) were simply dismantled on that side of the ball, falling to the Virginia Tech Hokies 27-10 Saturday night in Blacksburg.

A week after suffering a painful loss to Rutgers, disaster was the name-of-the-game for Boston College on offense this week. And it was present from the get-go.

Boston College Eagles: No easy answers

A preview of the night happened right away, on the game’s second play.

Looking for Jaden Williams — locked in on him, really — Phil Jurkovec tossed an interception. The play never really had a chance, as Williams was forced out of bounds on his route.

Life did not get much better from then on. A lot of that can be pinpointed to an inconsistent offensive line, which was already down starter Ozzy Trapilo. The unit, no matter who was in there, had very little push in the run game. Even when Pat Garwo III picked up a few yards, he did much of the work on is own.

Pass protection was decent much of the first half. They did get pushed around some but even when Jurkovec did have time to go through progressions, the Virginia Tech (1-1) secondary was doing a good job at preventing Boston College receivers from getting open.

The last couple of seasons, Boston College has fallen in love with the downfield attack. While it’s an important part of Jurkovec’s game, they might be best served with finding shorter routes as the linemen learn. If anything, like they proved on scoring drives, playing with tempo benefits this team. And the best way to do that is with a succession of completions and decent runs.

Trouble is, the Eagles were playing behind the sticks most of the game, often in third-and-long situations, leading to nine 3-and-outs. Things went from bad to worse when another offensive lineman, Kevin Cline, left with an injury in the second-half.

All told, Jurkovec was sacked six times, contributing to the grand total of four yards the team produced on the ground. He finished 15-28 for 135 yards and one touchdown to go along with his interception.

The Eagles didn’t pick up a first down until their 8th-drive of the game, when Zay Flowers was finally involved.

Flowers picked up the first down on a seven-yard fly sweep and then had a couple of receptions for 26 yards on the drive. This proved once again how important the receiver is to this offense.

Flowers finished with 4 receptions for 79 yards, while Williams had three catches for 37 yards and the lone Eagle touchdown.

The ineffectiveness on offense is troublesome but an outstanding effort by the defense kept Boston College in this game.

Boston College Eagles ‘D’ rises to the occasion

Aside from two big plays, the defense of Boston College played well most of the game.

The first score for Virginia Tech was the result of a short field, though the Eagles did fail to stop the Hokies on two fourth down conversions.

The first really big play was a 65-yard touchdown run by Keshawn King. Aside from this, Boston College again showed improvement in their run defense. The Hokies managed to pick up a couple of decent runs in key moments. Toss that big run out, however, and Virginia Tech carried the ball 44 times for 79 yards.

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Virginia Tech’s third touchdown had a 43-yard completion as part of the drive, the only time the Eagles were really hurt through the air all night. That drive also saw a very iffy personal foul late-hit called on Kam Arnold on a play that would have forced Virginia Tech to punt.

Still, Boston College’s defense was forced to spend far too much time on the field. It’s one thing if the reason is because the offense is scoring too fast. It’s another when only getting a minute of game time to rest between a series.

For that, though, the unit performed admirably. And as long as health holds, it’s a until that could carry this team to a victory or two this season.

Arnold had 12 tackles and Jaylen Blackwell had eight tackles and a sack. Sophomore Bryce Steele added five tackles and a sack.

A lot has been left to be desired through two games for Boston College this season. The offense seemed on the verge of making things happen last week and were plagued by turnovers. This week was a step back but all that’s needed is one good game to get things rolling. Hopefully, that’s next week, and the Eagles can turn that into a special run as the season progresses.

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