Afternoon Quickie: Where Will BC’s Tackles Come From in 2012?


There is no question that when you’re short the nation’s leading tackler, someone else will have to step up to the plate.

With Boston College losing junior linebacker Luke Kuechly to the 2012 NFL Draft as expected, Eagles fans have been left wondering if anyone can even come close to picking up where he left off.

The good news here for BC is that while losing Kuechly creates a significant void on the defense, linebacker is one of the few positions on the roster where the Eagles have good depth. It would be highly unreasonable to suggest that a guy like Kevin Pierre-Louis, Steele Divitto, or Sean Duggan will now suddenly become the FBS tackling leader, but these are three good players who by now have a solid grasp of playing defense at this level. Of those, Pierre-Louis and Divitto stand out in particular, as they were second and third on the team and had a nearly identical number of tackles (74 and 72, respectively). One would expect them to pick up some of Kuechly’s share.

Unfortunately, there’s also the question of “what if the front seven don’t make all those tackles?” Well, if these opposing players are breaking through to the next level, there are two options: (1) they don’t get tackled, or (2) they get tackled in the secondary. Now, one of Kuechly’s strengths was being like a heat-seeking missile making tackles all over the field, but if his successors can’t do it with the same ability, then the secondary will have to help out. There, BC has lost 35 tackles in Donnie Fletcher, so expect up-and-comers like Manny Asprilla and Spenser Rositano, amongst others, to have more of them next season, anyway.

Defense, if anything, is BC’s strong suit. While losing Luke Kuechly is a setback, by no means does it have to be a crippling blow. It’s highly uncertain that we’ll see anyone match his level of production, however.

Don’t ask me why, but whenever I think of “AstroTurf,” I think of George Costanza (masquerading as O’Brien) yelling it into a phone from the back of his limo. In any event, Boston College has announced that AstroTurf will now be used at Alumni Stadium.

Officially, this development makes no difference to me, though I think the leaders of the program are probably overstating its importance. BC should be a better team than how they’ve played the last few years and I don’t care if they were playing on grass, artificial turf, or dirt.

Women’s hockey senior Mary Restuccia was named the Hockey East Player of the Week. Her four points this past weekend helped her accomplish the goal.