On Saturday, Boston College lost a tough game to Clemson 19-13. Here are our final positional grades for the game.
Quarterback: It was a very up and down game for Dennis Grosel, who did throw for 311 yards, but also threw two interceptions (both on bad throws) and fumbled the snap on the final play of a huge drive. He never really looked comfortable in the pocket, and struggled to find a feel for the game until seemingly the last play of the game. While he had a moment here and there (he looked very strong on the final drive until the fumble), his mistakes were costly. That being said, he went up against the best defensive coordinator in the country, and had more thrown at him then he probably will face from here on out. Hopefully he can grow from this learning experience. Grade: D+
Running Backs: You knew going into this game this would be a tough one, even though Clemson was missing some key components on the defensive line. Pat Garwo looked effective averaging 4.8 yards per carry including the lone touchdown, but for the most part the run game was inconsistent, averaging 1.4 yards per carry. Grade C.
Wide Receivers: Boston College wide outs did a nice job when the ball came their way. Would have loved to see Zay Flowers be more of the focus moving forward, BC didn't get him the ball in the first half. Instead of having Grosel air it out, the passing game should probably look more towards short and intermediate routes to Flowers and Jaelen Gill who can use their speed to get extra yards. Jaden Williams had what looked like an incredible catch overturned on review. Grades B+
Offensive Line: Against a tough Clemson opponent the offensive line did their job. However, they were bit by some mental errors, including a handful of penalties that stalled out drives. They had to reset when Tyler Vrabel was injured and was replaced by Jack Conley. Grade C+
Tight Ends: Thought this was a huge game for Joey Luchetti and Trae Barry who combined for nine catches for 140 yards. Barry particularly had a very strong game, including some big catches down the stretch. Grade A
Defensive Line: The line didn't have any sacks all game, but did a nice job overall of getting to DJ Uiagalelei and not letting him get comfortable and pick them apart like last year. Brandon Barlow had a strong game, while Jeff Hafley went out of his way to praise TJ Rayam for his play on special teams. Overall, minus the broken coverage on the touchdown, this group played very strong. Grade A-
Linebackers: Kam Arnold had an excellent game and had a key tackle in a big spot. Isaiah Graham Mobley had a big hit as well. Just like the defensive line they had only that one blemish with a broken coverage, and otherwise played a solid game. Grade B+
Secondary: What a game by this group, who played as complete a game as we have seen from them. Brandon Sebastian, Elijah Jones and Josh DeBerry all had great moments in coverage, while Jason Maitre blew up Uiagalelei for a huge sack. As Hafley said later they played "violently" and did a great job taking away the Clemson wide receivers, who really didn't play much of a role in this game. Grade A
Special Teams: Lots to like out of this group including a blocked punt by Neto Okpala, two field goals by Connor Lytton and Grant Carlson continues to deserve conversation for the Ray Guy Award with some huge boots including a career long 72 yarder. Jaelen Gill had the one blip with a muffed punt that he ended up recovering. Grade A
Coaching: The defensive game plan worked very well. Jeff Hafley has preached that it is about points and not yards. In that regard they had a strong game. On the offensive side of the ball, Frank Cignetti might need to adjust the playbook a tad for Dennis Grosel. The biggest issues with the coaching staff has to be the mistakes, including penalties. Grade C+
Overall: Losses like this always sting, especially when you head to Death Valley and have Clemson on the ropes. It is up to the staff to improve and clean up the errors that cost them. The Eagles need to continue to adjust and adapt on offense, which struggled against a good Clemson defense. On defense and special teams BC should have an edge against almost every opponent on their schedule. Grade C
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