FACTS & STATS: Site: Alumni Stadium (44,500) — Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts.
Television: RSN. Home Record: CSU 1-0, BC 2-1. Away Record: CSU 0-1, BC 1-0.
Neutral Record: CSU 1-0, BC 0-0. Conference Record: CSU 0-1, BC 0-1. Series
Record: Boston College leads, 1-0.
GAME NOTES: The Boston College Eagles will finish up a four-game homestand on
Saturday afternoon when they welcome the Colorado State Rams to Alumni Stadium
for a non-conference affair.
Colorado State enters this contest with a record of 2-1. The Rams opened the
year with a convincing win over in-state rival Colorado (31-17) before falling
to Boise State in their Mountain West Conference opener (37-24). They bounced
back with a 49-21 win over FCS foe UC Davis last weekend.
Boston College has won back-to-back games and has triumphed in three of four
overall this season. The Eagles fell behind early against Maine last weekend,
but dominated from there to pull out a 40-10 win. That victory came on the
heels of their stunning defeat of No. 18 USC.
When these teams first met back in the 2003 San Francisco Bowl, the Eagles
scored 21 points in the first quarter en route to a 35-21 win. They have not
squared off since.
With an inferior defensive squad opposing it in UC Davis, Colorado State went
to work offensively. The Rams finished with 676 total yards, including an
incredible 452 through the air. They have done a nice job of racking up yards
(512.7) and points (34.7) in each of their first three games.
Garrett Grayson has been the steady force guiding the way. He has completed
58.9 percent of his pass attempts for 993 yards and eight touchdowns, while
being intercepted just twice. He leads the MWC in passing yards per game (331)
and is actually the only player in the conference averaging more than 275 ypg.
Against UC Davis, he hit on 22-of-31 attempts for 425 yards and four scores,
his second straight game with more than 400 passing yards.
During that two-game hot streak for Grayson, Rashard Higgins has really
stepped up. After catching 11 passes for 143 yards against Boise State, he
tallied 147 yards and two scores on seven receptions against UC Davis. He
leads the Rams in receptions (19), receiving yards (306) and touchdowns
(three), with Joe Hansley (10 receptions, 198 yards, TD) the next-best option.
The Rams utilize a two-headed attack in the backfield, with Treyous Jarrells
and Dee Hart each getting plenty of work. Hart leads the team in carries (40),
which has led to 193 yards and two touchdowns. Jarrells has 212 yards and two
touchdowns on 34 attempts. Each player ran for more than 100 yards against
Colorado, but neither has reached the century mark since.
Despite a stronger defensive showing against UC Davis, the Rams are still a
work in progress on that side of the ball. They are allowing 476.7 yards per
game, which has them ranked ninth in the MWC in total defense. They also have
just a pair of sacks and have let up touchdowns on 58 percent of the
opposition’s visits to the red zone.
Max Morgan (27) and Aaron Davis (25) are the top players on the roster in
terms of total tackles, with Davis owning a team-high in stops for loss (3.0).
Running the ball has been the key for Steve Addazio’s offense before, and it
has continued in his second season at the helm for Boston College. The Eagles
are averaging 336.2 yards per game on the ground. They tore up Maine to the
tune of 413 yards rushing last weekend, giving them back-to-back games with
more than 400 yards on the ground.
It has certainly helped that quarterback Tyler Murphy is not even remotely
afraid to take off with the ball. He leads the team in rushing yards (500) and
rushing touchdowns (five). He has not been as effective when he actually
throws the ball. He has completed just 51.8 percent of his attempts for 491
yards and his touchdown (three) to interception (five) ratio is less than
While Murphy leads the team in rushing, Jon Hillman (241 yards, four TDs),
Myles Willis (208 yards, TD), Sherman Alston (155 yards, TD) and Tyler Rouse
(136 yards, two TDs) give the Eagles plenty of other options in the running
Dan Crimmins (10 receptions, 79 yards) leads the team, which admittedly relies
less on moving the ball through the air, in receptions. However, Josh Bordner
(nine receptions, 154 yards, two TDs) and Shakim Phillips (six receptions,
102 yards, TD) are the real playmakers.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Eagles are doing a solid job, letting
up just 19.5 points and 273 yards of total offense each week. They were
especially devastating against Maine, limiting their FCS foe to just 0.7 yards
per carry and 139 yards of total offense. Of course the dip in competition was
a major reason for that success.
Josh Keyes (20 tackles, 7.5 TFL, 3.0 sacks) is the player to watch for the BC
defense, as he leads the ACC in tackles for loss and has helped the Eagles
pile up 11 sacks.
It is true that Boston College has trouble with passing the ball, but it is
undeniable that it can pick up yards on the ground. Colorado State should be
able to keep up with its own strong offensive unit, but the Rams are inferior
on defense, making for a tough task on the road.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Boston College 30, Colorado State 26