Boston College at Central Florida: Offenses


Due to severe time constraints created by my older brother’s non-local wedding this weekend, this article will be truncated. Please bear with me.

BC offense so-so, UCF offense torched FCS team.

Alright, not that truncated, but there is plenty to dissect in that overly-simple statement.

First, the Boston College offense was indeed so-so against Northwestern in a 24-17 loss this past weekend. Though they only scored 17 points, and haven’t cracked 30 against an FBS team since 2009, they did manage 479 yards. That is the most they’ve racked up since October 17, 2009, when they beat NC State in a 52-20 rout. So, why did BC win that game and lose this most recent one?

Offensively, there are a few reasons. The 10/17/09 Eagles didn’t turn the ball over at all in that game, while the 9/3/11 Eagles did once (though BC got it right back a few plays later). Most importantly, the ’09 Eagles had a healthy Montel Harris, while the 9/3/11 Eagles did not. It’s not to say Andre Williams didn’t have a decent day, but I’m not sure he or Montel could have done any better on Saturday, thanks to the offensive line. We’re known as O-Line U, but Boston College sure didn’t play like it in the season opener. I don’t care who you play, if your offensive line is getting run over for whatever reason, whether by injury, newness, or lack of ability, you will have trouble with any decent team.

Speaking of Central Florida, they’re a decent team. Now, the Eagles might not only have to face them without Montel Harris for a second week, but they definitely will not have Ifeanyi Momah, Saturday’s leading wide receiver, who tore his ACL and is cooked for the rest of the season. I wish him a speedy recovery (meaning I hope he gets a medical redshirt and we see him next year), but this is yet another blow to the Eagles’ offense. The receiving corps was already depleted with the offseason losses of Shakim Phillips and Clyde Lee, but now losing one of the key weapons on the team is going to leave a mark. A healthy Colin Larmond, along with others like Alex Amidon and Bobby Swigert, will have to pick up even more slack.

The Knights, on the other hand, had a very, very easy first week of the season. So easy, in fact, that I would throw out all of the stats. In case you were wondering what they are, however: 560 yards of offense (244 passing, 316 rushing), 25 first downs (versus 6), and 6/9 on third down. Playing an FCS team, a bad one at that, counts in the standings, but UCF won’t be winning any awards for hanging 62 points on them. This was likely their best and easiest performance of the year, and their future opponents will tamp down those statistical averages.

That’s not to say, however, that UCF doesn’t have ability. Including quarterback Jeff Godfrey, the Knights return a number of offensive starters. We don’t know how the 2011 UCF team will fare against an FBS, AQ-conference team just yet (we will on Saturday, however), but we do know how their relatively similar offense did last year. Overall, they were 65th in total offense last year, and 31st in FBS in scoring offense. You’d think that they’ll be a decent to good offense this year as well.

On paper, I’d say the Eagles have a better offense, but in practice, I don’t think things are quite so clear cut. The Eagles gained plenty of yardage last weekend; the only problem was that they didn’t score points. Central Florida did both of those things, but their opposition was a big part of why. This week, going down to Orlando, the Eagles are going to have to not only compensate for their latest offensive loss, but fix the problems with their offensive line. If they don’t, it could be another long afternoon.