Boston College in Pinstripe Bowl, next step in rebuilding
BOSTON (AP) When Boston College coach Steve Addazio met with Pinstripe Bowl officials to make his case for the Eagles, he grew so animated he knocked over his coffee.
Whatever he said worked: BC was chosen to play Penn State at Yankee Stadium on Dec. 27.
''Well we're just passionate about wanting to be there,'' Addazio said Tuesday. ''It's easy to do that when you feel it in your heart. I know what our kids wanted. I know what our program needed. You know when it feels good and its right. It fits.''
Although Boston College has been known as a school that doesn't travel well, the alumni and students who are off for the holiday break will have the advantage of a reasonable drive to New York City. Playing Penn State gives the game a Northeast flavor in a part of the country without many regional rivalries.
''These two teams are going to clash (to be the) best team in the Northeast,'' Addazio said.
The Eagles are making their second straight trip to a bowl game under Addazio. Penn State is playing in the postseason for the first time since sanctions following the Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal.
Mark Holtzman, who runs non-baseball events for the New York Yankees, said the game sold out in 36 hours - the fastest of the five Pinstripe Bowls so far.
''Which is a good position to be in,'' he said, ''because you're not always in that position in the bowl business.''
Addazio and Holtzman said the players would have a chance to see the city while there, including trips to Radio City Music Hall and Rockefeller Center. BC linebacker Sean Duggan is hoping to visit the Ground Zero museum on his first visit to New York.
But the highlight for many of the players will be taking the field in Yankee Stadium.
''It's hard to grow up in America and not hear about the Yankees, Yankee Stadium,'' Duggan said.
Quarterback Tyler Murphy said he went to last year's Pinstripe Bowl, when Notre Dame beat Rutgers 29-16. A native of Wethersfield, Connecticut, he grew up as a Yankees fan.
''I keep it quiet, though,'' he said.