101 Days of BC Football: Chase Rettig, #11

Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

The Chase Rettig era began on a depressing night in 2010. Boston College was getting run out of their own stadium by the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Dave Shinskie, the starting quarterback on thin ice before the game, ran aground once again in previous contests. Backup Mike Marscovetra was no better. Out of options and looking towards the future, BC went to true freshman Chase Rettig to start this game, thus beginning his tenure as quarterback. (And of course, he got hurt.)

Since then, Rettig has had his fair share of ups and downs but has managed to show promise at times. In both his freshman and sophomore seasons, he hasn’t had some pieces around him. Rettig has dealt with an offensive line with issues and a failed offensive philosophy, neither of which have helped him mature as the starting quarterback we’d all like him to be. There were moments where Rettig quite literally ran for his life as defensive ends zeroed in on him, but there were others where he stood in the pocket, actually having some time, and showed great poise in leading his team down the field. Before halftime of the 2011 Notre Dame game, Rettig was very composed and accurate, putting together one of his best drives of the year. At the same time, though, the soon-to-be junior from California has been far from perfect.

Chase Rettig appeared in all twelve of the Eagles’ games last season, going 170-for-317 (53.6%) with 12 touchdowns, nine interceptions, and 1960 passing yards. His passer rating for the season was 112.38, which was good for tenth-best in the ACC. Is that going to be good enough to win, no, but many hope Rettig will be ready to take another leap forward during his junior year with a new system in place.

The bad news is that during 2012 spring football, the results were poor. In the spring game, Rettig went 13-for-23 with 120 yards and one touchdown. BC’s official wrap-up said he threw one interception, but I seem to remember something more like three or four picks. He looked tentative and inaccurate and projected some really concerning body language out on the field. Nobody should read too much into an exhibition scrimmage in March, but it was about as poor as we’ve seen him look. One good thing that came from this performance is that Rettig and his offensive players got together after the game and did some side work to try to get better, which shows his heart and work ethic are where they should be.

Paul Myerberg has his finger on Rettig’s inconsistent first two years and what may await him:

Of all the skill players present over the last two seasons, Rettig’s development has been the most stunted by the musical chairs at coordinator. He seemed to be gaining a degree of comfort late in his freshman season, when he started the last seven games of the year, but exhibited little progress last fall.

[Doug Martin’s offense] is Rettig’s third system is as many years – four if we count high school – so there will be a learning curve.

Anyone who knows Boston College football and has two or more brain cells to rub together is aware that Rettig is pivotal to this team’s near-term future. Unless you think Josh Bordner will turn into an ACC quarterback tomorrow or that some other quarterback not on the two-deep will suddenly prove worthwhile, Rettig is realistically all we’ve got. His spring performance was troubling, but it must be our hope that he comes through these problems with a renewed energy and makes 2012 his best season yet.

I’ll leave you with some thoughts from late March, which are still true a few months later:

Rettig is the guy BC needs to succeed the most at the quarterback position – his successes are our successes, and his setbacks are our setbacks. It would be in the best interest of all parties involved for Rettig to shake it off and play well in preseason camp, and then continue to develop in the regular season; the downside is that he has to stew on [the spring game] until the home opener. Clearly, if he does not look like he has taken a step forward in September, then we have a serious problem.

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