Sons of Game Picks: Week 10 - Virginia Tech vs. Boston College
Friday Night Lights!
The Hokies are shipping up to Boston this Friday with a game against the Boston College Eagles on Friday night on ESPN2.
In a rare turn of events, the Hokies are actually favored in a game this season after their win over Georgia Tech. It also helps that BC's great QB, Phil Jurkovec, injured himself earlier in the season. This opens the door for the Hokies to add another road win to their resume and get back on the winning side of their record, which currently sits at 4-4.
Boston College, also 4-4, has been struggling the past few weeks. The BC offense has not scored more than 14 points since September. Now the Hokies have had their struggles on offense, but that pales in comparison to BC's recent struggles. They failed to reach double-digit points in two out of their last four games. However, the BC defense is a bit of a different story. They have only given up 30+ points in two games all season. They have been able to keep their opponents under 28 points in most of their contests. There have been some injuries on the BC defense, but this should still be a good challenge for the Tech offense.
Similar to Syracuse, BC has a good running back. Pat Garwo III is not Sean Tucker, but he's almost at the 700 yard rushing mark to go along with five touchdowns. The QB position has been an issue for BC. After Jurkovec's injury they have turned to Senior Dennis Grosel and he has not been great. He has thrown for six TDs and seven interceptions, so turnovers have been an issue for him.
These two teams always seem to have weird games against each other, however, one massive positive for BC is that it will be their "Red Bandanna" game. This touching tribute originates with Welles Crowther. He was a former BC lacrosse player who lost his life in the World Trade Center terrorist attacks on 9/11. Crowther helped lead people to safety on that fateful day as the towers began to come down. He is credited with saving the lives of at least 18 people. Survivors described him by the red bandanna he wore as he lead people to safety. The Eagles will no doubt have a bit more juice on Friday night because of the hero they are honoring.
Here's how we see the game going...
Adam Rothe - Boston College - 21-20
First off, this is a game Virginia Tech should win and that's the issue. For the first time all year, this is a game that Tech should win easily. BC's offense is god awful and Justin Fuente deciding to actually involve himself for the first time all year in the team's offensive practices has lead to positive results. In BC's last four games they have scored 6, 14, 7, and 13 points. That's even worse than the Hokies. Luckily for Tech, BC's elite QB Phil Jurkovec was injured early in the season and has been out, or else this would be a very different conversation. My only reason for picking BC here is simply because any time Tech is supposed to win they don't. Also, it will be red bandanna night at BC, which will give the Eagles some added juice. I can't believe I'm saying this but, this could potentially be a Tech blowout, that's how bad the BC offense is right now. BUT, I will not allow myself to fall into that trap again. Justin Fuente is on the way out so the kids will keep playing hard but these two teams always have weird games... so on Friday night I think we will have another. BC by one point.
Konnor Kilgore - Virginia Tech - 28-16
Boston College started out on fire but has gone into a tailspin over the last month. They've failed to score over 14 points in league play. Tech's offense has shown a little bit more life over the last two weeks with the emergence of Malachi Thomas. The Hokie defense has been a little shakier than usual over that same time period, but they shouldn't have many issues if they can keep Zay Flowers under control. A healthy Jermaine Waller should be up to that challenge. I'm sure this won't be a pretty win for Tech, and there will probably be a stretch where everything bogs down and it looks like they may let BC back in the game in the second half. However, they SHOULD take care of business. Key word is should.
Justin Cates - Virginia Tech - 20-10
An exciting Friday night is in store for everyone tuning in to watch wayward 4-4 teams under the lights. The Hokies got a much-needed win and an emotional boost from the Georgia Tech game, but we’ll see how much that actually matters down the stretch. BC is almost actively bad since losing their starting quarterback which is understandable. I think Tech will take advantage of that to the extent that they’re capable. Expect another close, ugly game that will disappoint many regardless of the result. What? No I’m not bitter at all.
Billy Ray Mitchell - Virginia Tech - 38-17
Boston college is 0-4 in their last 4 games. Boston College has averaged 12.5 points in those 4 games. Tech is coming off of back to back 400+ yard efforts from the offense and is finally scoring points. If this team still is invested and we can build off of the strides made offensively, we SHOULD win. Will we? I hope so. You know who definitely will win? The city of Boston. Its a city of winners. Massachusetts also invented America.
Grayson Wimbish - Boston College - 24-21
Boston College is wearing the red bandanna uniforms on Friday y'all. You don't think they won't be fired up? I don't know man. This one is really, really tough for me to call. Virginia Tech did just come off their first victory in what feels like forever, and that’s awesome. But Bill, Pat and I all said we didn’t like this game before the season started, and it looks like Bill has changed his mind. I’m not so sure I have. The game is still in Chestnut Hill, and that alone worries me. The Hokies have had their fair share of “hard times” up that way. The Eagles have gone 0-4 in their last four games, and that factor too has trouble written all over it. We’ll get into it on this week’s preview, but I think Boston College still has the luck of the red bandanna on their side on Friday.
Pat Finn - Virginia Tech - 23-10
Chestnut Hill is not a fun place to play at night in November. However, there is no juice with BC right now. Since losing Phil Jurkovec, the Eagles cannot score points. On the contrary, this is a Hokie offense that is playing a lot better. I predict a low scoring contest with 3 more Hokie field goals after a couple more stalled red zone drives. Hokies by 2 scores. **DISCLAIMER** If Big Philly IS back (as rumors are saying he may be), disregard all of the above.
Evan Norris - Virginia Tech - 31-17
Boston College has just been flat for the past four weeks. And some could argue the same for Virginia Tech. However, I think when you look at how those four weeks have gone for each team, they look like two very different trajectories. As of lately, Boston College has been struggling to get points on the board against teams like Syracuse and Louisville. Virginia Tech, on the other hand, has been able to put up points (with the exception of the Pittsburgh game), but just has came out on the wrong end of games. I think the Hokies are definitely feeling more comfortable with getting a road win in Atlanta. And that Boston College is still trying to figure out anything. This is a Virginia Tech team that has won in Chestnut Hill before and they have veterans who know how to do it. Give me the Hokies on the road.
Sam Jessee - Virginia Tech - 31-13
The Hokies are 4-2 in their last 6 trips to Chestnut Hill, and I think they make it 5-2. BC has been one of the worst offensive teams in FBS football over the past 4 weeks, and the Hokies, although flawed, have played better against better competition over that time. Personally, no one can show me a source for the rumor that Jurkovec will be back, I've only seen the opposite so I'm not considering that at all. BC has struggled defensively to stop the run, and the Hokies have found a rhythm on the ground with Malachi Thomas and Raheem Blackshear. On the flip side, the Hokies continue to struggle vs the run, but showed marked improvement vs a good GT backfield racking up 6 TFL's. BC has shown a resistance to running the ball predominantly and I don't think that philosophy will change.
In terms of my score prediction, I'm playing towards the law of averages for the Hokies red zone offense. I think the output offensively is similar to GT and Syracuse, but the Hokies are able to turn one of those field goals into a touchdown. I would also be ready for a big turnover here and there for the Hokies. BC QB Grosel has been careless with the ball this season and has already racked up 9 "turnover worthy plays" in just 6 games as the starter. Similar to BC's home loss to NC State, I think an early turnover helps blow this game open and the Hokies will grind out a victory.
Robert Irby - Virginia Tech - 17-14
Are you ready for some (ugly) football? Statistically, these two teams are actually pretty similar in most aspects.
Both teams are top 5 in the ACC in total defense and bottom 5 in total offense. VT is 13th in scoring offense, BC is 12th. VT is 6th in scoring defense, BC is 5th. See what I'm getting at here?
These are two less-than-good offenses and two respectable defenses. This will not be a fun game if you like offense. BC's QB situation (assuming Jurkovec does not play) is downright horrid, so I am giving VT the slight edge here as Braxton Burmeister - despite his inconsistencies - will be the best quarterback on the field on Friday night.