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Wake Forest 41 Boston College 10: Observations of Defense

A look at BC's defense in yesterday's crushing loss

On Saturday, Boston College ended their regular season at the hands of Wake Forest 41-10. Here are some of our observations of the play of the Eagles defense. 

* Prefaced the article on the Boston College offense with this, but the Eagles missed practice on Wednesday and Thursday due to 35 players getting sick with the flu. Some may want to dismiss this as an "excuse", but that is a huge factor in preparing for this game. On top of that we don't know who still had any lingering effects.

* The defense started off relatively solid, forcing two punts in the first three drives. In those drives they were able to get to Hartman and rattle him, forcing the Wake quarterback to under throw passes, and feel the pressure. 

* But as we all saw, the wheels came off shortly after that. Boston College struggled to slow Hartman down whenever he moved the pocket, and that included designed quarterback runs. Wake scored on six of their final nine drives, which is a credit to Dave Clawson who made the adjustments. 

* Saw folks saying that BC should have brought "more pressure" on Hartman. Watching from the press box that didn't seem to be the issue at all. BC was trying to do that, the blitzes and extra rushers were just picked up by Wake's offensive line. And Hartman was able to move the pocket or get the ball out quickly to avoid the rush. 

* Wake's running attack was nothing special, but it did what it needed to do against Boston College. It was deliberate, and keep the ball moving forward. This led to Wake going 52% on third down conversions, and 100% (3/3) on 4th down. BC rarely had Wake facing 3rd and long which made it far too easy for the Deacons to convert. 

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* Jeff Hafley had a right to be furious about AT Perry. On Perry's second touchdown catch he clearly pushed off of BC's defender to get wide open. But it wasn't called. 

* Thought Marcus Valdez had a handful of good plays for Boston College. But he isn't going to be enough if he returns in 2021. With Brandon Barlow leaving after this season, the Eagles will have an opening at the other end. And based on what we have seen so far, it doesn't look like BC has an answer on the roster yet. Shitta Sillah looks like a complimentary player, but not what this defense needs. There are plenty of young edge defenders, but they are just that, young. The Eagles are in dire need of an impact edge rusher to go with Valdez, you have to think they will try and address this in the transfer portal this offseason. 

* The secondary did not have a good game, certainly missing Josh DeBerry. Brandon Sebastian had a nice interception, but it looked like Perry slipped. Also CJ Burton showed some good flashes at times as well. But Hartman seemingly did whatever he wanted to in this game, and BC was relatively helpless.

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