Saturday’s big loss at North Carolina was disappointing on a number of levels. Boston College Eagles football lost as a team, falling short in a number of key areas en route to a 24-point defeat. One young man who took a great deal of criticism (deserved or not) for his performance was Chase Rettig, the senior quarterback whose Eagles career is not ending the way we all hoped.
Though not from a majority, there have been calls for a replacement at the top spot as the Eagles trudge towards bowl eligibility.
It is not going to happen, and if it does, it shouldn’t have.
First, nobody is defending the game Rettig had on Saturday. He took too many sacks and made other questionable decisions therein; he did not throw an interception, but he did not find as many receivers as he could have. There was a lack of awareness on his part that was both surprising and disappointing from a senior. Yet, second, while all that is true, let us also remember that there was plenty of blame to go around. Also, consider the unfortunate case that is Rettig’s time here at Boston College. His redshirt was torched mid-season in 2010, and since then, he has played under five different offensive coordinators. The Spaziani-Tranquill-Rogers-Brock-Martin Eagles barely got first downs, and Rettig is not a fit for the type of offense the Addazio-Day Eagles want to run. Again, while that doesn’t make up for some of these performances, he has been a victim of circumstance and it’s hard not to feel for him.
It hasn’t been all bad for Rettig this season, and we know he is capable of being better than what we have seen. That isn’t entirely the reason why there should not be change at the top.
One reason is who’s behind him. Those expecting a non-freshman, non-Rettig option to suddenly light up opposing defenses like a Christmas tree would be left sorely wanting. Josh Bordner can allegedly run, but that’s about all he can do, and Mike Marscovetra’s best performances have been relegated to scrimmages. If either were a better option, particularly Bordner (considering that some feel he is a better fit for Addazio’s offense), they would have already gotten their shot. On that front, Rettig is the best option.
Another reason is who’s in waiting. Burning a freshman redshirt at this point in the season would be careless, messing with the future of one of these guys for some short-term satisfaction, if they even played well. This season won’t be any better than average regardless of who is taking snaps at quarterback, so eliminating a full year of one freshman’s eligibility so he can play a couple games this year with key offensive players who won’t even be around in 2014 is pointless. Besides, it would be entirely more fair to give the new quarterback next year a full season to start, learn, and grow, unlike what they did with Rettig.
One has to look at this with eyes towards the longer term. Boston College can get by with Rettig for the rest of the season, frustrating though he may be at times, as he is still the best veteran option. The freshmen, meanwhile, should be left alone to preserve their eligibility for the future. This season is already better than last year and the Eagles might still get something out of it, but it’s not worth making panic moves more than half-way through the season. Boston College is rebuilding, and will have to start rebuilding again next year.
For now, if you’re dissatisfied with the play under center, remember that this season has only five (or six) more games to go and what we see is basically what we’re going to get no matter who is running the offense. There’s no hidden offensive juggernaut holding a clipboard on the Eagles’ sideline, and the new kids aren’t ready for their moment yet. Rettig will continue to be the quarterback, and come what may.