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Florida State-Boston College Preview, Prediction





You could argue that no team in the nation has been disrespected more than the Florida State Seminoles this season. However, you could also argue that they are the most overrated team in the nation. Florida State is one of two unbeaten teams left in the nation (Marshall is the other) and yet they are still ranked just No. 3 in the country. The Boston College Eagles are looking to wear down the Seminoles in a week 13 matchup.

Florida State’s passing offense has been one of the best in the nation this year (11th), which is no surprise seeing as it has the reigning Heisman winner under center. Jameis Winston isn’t having nearly the same success as he had a season ago, but he is still making the most of a scandal-ridden season. Winston has passed for 2,844 yards, 18 touchdowns and an elevated 12 interceptions while completing just 65 percent of his passes. Senior wide out Rashad Greene has become the clear No. 1 target this year, catching 75 passes for 1,042 yards and five touchdowns while the next closest receiver, Jesus Wilson, has just 423 yards and four touchdowns. Florida State’s run game has been lethargic, however, ranking just 105th nationally. Karlos Williams hasn’t lived up to the hype while freshman stud Dalvin Cook‘s stock is quickly rising. Cook is soon to be the team leader in yards, rushing for 508 and seven TDs.

Boston College’s offenses is basically the exact opposite of Florida State’s. The Eagles have one of the worst passing offenses in the nation, ranking just 122nd, while boasting one of the best run games, ranking 12th. Florida-transfer Tyler Murphy has been a godsend for the Eagles’ offense despite his unimpressive passing numbers. Murphy has passed for just 1,293 yards, nine touchdowns and 10 interceptions while running for a team-high 1,006 yards and nine touchdowns. He is clearly known more for his ability to run, not his inability to pass. His top targets in the pass game have been Josh Bordner and Dan Crimmins who have 301 yards with three scores and 288 yards, respectively. Freshman back Jon Hilliman is second on the team with 620 yards and a team-high 11 scores while sophomore Myles Willis has been solid, rushing for 413 yards and two TDs.

Defensively, the Eagles have been stellar this season. If it weren’t for the top-notch defense, Boston College wouldn’t be bowl eligible after 10 games. Boston College has the 23rd-best scoring defense as well as the 16th-best total defense in the nation. Florida State has struggled a bit more than they had hoped to this season, ranking 33rd in points allowed and a much less impressive 58th in total yards allowed per game.

Boston College will travel to Florida State to take on the Seminoles at 3:30 p.m. EST on Saturday, Nov. 22. The game will be broadcasted on ABC/ESPN2.

PREDICTION: Boston College 21, Florida State 31

Want to see the Eagles take on the Seminoles in week 13? Check out ScoreBig for tickets.

Connor Muldowney is a columnist for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @Connormuldowney, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google. You can also reach him at connor.muldowney@rantsports.com.

Boston College will travel to Florida State to take on the Seminoles in week 13. Who will come out on top?

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Steven Daniels Must Lead Defense for Boston College Eagles in 2014





Last season, the Boston College Eagles ranked dead last in the ACC in total defense, allowing a staggering 428.2 yards per game. If BC has any hope of making it back to the postseason in 2014, they will have to improve on the defensive side of the ball. For that to happen, the Eagles need linebacker Steven Daniels to emerge as a leader of the group.

As a sophomore in 2013, Daniels was the third starter in what was a pretty solid linebacker corps. He finished third on the team behind fellow linebackers Steele Divitto and Kevin Pierre-Louis with 88 tackles, including 6.5 tackles for loss, three sacks, and an interception.With Divitto and Pierre-Louis both finishing their eligibility last season when they each recorded over 100 tackles, there is a definite void of leadership on the defense that Daniels must step into.

The Boston College defense is centered around their linebackers making plays, obviously. With the team’s top two backers from last season gone, the opportunities will be there for Daniels to pick up the slack as new faces get implemented into the defense. Daniels is a physical player who can make a serious impact. He’s proven himself already to be stout against the run but has also flashed some pass-rush ability as well.

He will definitely need to take his game to the next level in 2014, but Steven Daniels is the clear leader of a Boston College defense that is desperate to improve this fall. If he can hold the defense together as they move new starters into the lineup and improve on the Eagles’ porous performance in 2013, BC has a shot to make it back to a bowl game this postseason.

You can follow me on Twitter @ATylerBrett, on Facebook and on Google

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Rant Sports College Football Rankings: No. 72 Boston College Eagles





The rough and tough Boston College Eagles enter the 2014 season with a lot of question marks, but there’s no doubting the respect head coach Steve Addazio deserves after what he’s been left with from the previous regime.

The most notable absence from the 2014 Eagles team is Heisman Trophy finalist Andre Williams (2,177 rushing yards), who clearly would have won the award if it measured the impact a player has on his individual team. However, BC is also faced with the departures of its starting quarterback, both defensive ends, two linebackers, both offensive tackles and top receiver. This is an obvious concern for a team that is coming off a seven-win season and inherited a glaring lack of depth from ex-coach Frank Spaziani.

Offense

QB Chase Rettig is gone, but the Eagles don’t appear to look too much worse for wear thanks to Florida Gators transfer Tyler Murphy, who does not have the same deep-ball ability as his predecessor, but should make up for it as an open-field threat (39 rushes for 248 yards in 2013). Murphy does not have a ton of experience, but did start six games for the Gators in the SEC last season. He will be a fine player given Boston College is not looking to operate through the passing game, anyway.

Replacing Williams would appear to be the biggest issue, but the Eagles will run the ball just fine this season with a collection of backs filling the void. The leading returning rusher, Myles Willis, was very effective in limited time as a true freshman (5.8 yards per carry) and could be a 1,000-yard back in 2014, as he figures to get the most carries in an offense that was born to run under Addazio. Just how many carries he gets, however, will be determined by sophomore Tyler Rouse (125 rushing yards) and the group’s collection of freshman, which is led by four-star recruit Jonathan Hilliman.

The backs will be running behind a line that replaces two starters, but sends out five seniors — including its interior starters, which is very encouraging for a run-heavy offense.

The receiver position, meanwhile, does not appear as promising. The group seemingly features no pass-catcher who can stretch the field, but should at least be able to provide a few reliable players to move the sticks. Senior Bobby Swigert, who returns after missing last season to a knee injury, and UConn Huskies transfer Shakim Phillips, who will be eligible if he completes his degree, look like two solid starters, but are no guarantees, either.

Defense

The Eagles have a major rebuilding project ahead on defense, as the only unit returning a solid number of production is a very shaky-looking secondary that finished 120th nationally in passes completed of 10-plus yards. BC’s pass rush was excellent in 2013, but mostly all of that production is gone. There are a couple returning pieces to help put together another aggressive pass rush, however, including Brian Mihalik (27 tackles, six for-a-loss) and x-factor Mehdi Abdesmad, who impressed in early 2013 before he was lost for the season to injury.

Boston College has featured some great linebackers in recent seasons — Luke Kuechly, Mark Herzlich and Jo-Lonn Dunbar to name a few — and leading returning tackler Steven Daniels (88 tackles) could be next up at the weakside spot. Seniors Sean Duggan and Josh Keys look like the likely candidates to man the middle and strongside, respectively.

Boston College’s secondary will be junior and senior-laden, although little of that experience seems beneficial. Despite having a stellar pass rush up front, the Eagles routinely allowed the big play in 2013, which remains a cause for concern with even less experience on the line and at linebacker. Interestingly enough, this group does feature some real playmakers, including corner Manny Asprilla, who proved versatile enough to mix seven tackles for-a-loss with eight passes defended. The top-five tacklers from the unit return, but some younger players may need to be worked in if the upperclassmen continue to struggle.

Schedule

The Eagles feature a couple of tough stretches and will need to steal win or two against teams like PittsburghLouisville, Virginia Tech or Syracuse to have a shot at six wins.

Toughest Games: Sept. 5 vs. Pittsburgh, Sept. 13 vs. USC, Oct. 18 vs. Clemson, Nov. 1 at Virginia Tech and Nov. 22 at Florida State.

There is room for cautious optimism for Boston College in 2014, but a second-year drop-off — like Addazio experienced in his previous stop with the Temple Owls — may be inevitable.

Michael Briggs is a College Football Writer for Rant Sports. You can follow him on Twitter or Google Plus.

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