Amidon Breaks Through

He sat, visibly defeated yet unbroken, his quarterback of four years to his right, his coach to his left—a little further down the table was his roommate and friend since freshman year. Shoulder tattoos exposed and short hair trapped underneath a black skullcap, he waited quietly, looking down occasionally while his coach and teammates spoke their piece. Then, when called upon, Alex Amidon deflected any attempts at praise.

“It’s all about the wins for me, [the] record is not really something … maybe later on down the road I’ll be happy I got it, but right now I’m just upset we didn’t get the win,” Amidon said at Tuesday’s postgame press conference.

The Boston College football team had very few laudable moments in a 42-19 bloodbath loss to the Arizona Wildcats, but Amidon’s performance stuck out as a detail worthy of praise. From the first minute of play, the senior wide receiver was heavily involved in the Eagles’ game plan, picking up two completions and a carry in BC’s opening six-play drive. By the game’s final minute, Amidon had 10 receptions for 129 yards and the BC record for career receptions in his pocket.

Entering New Year’s Eve with a four-season collection of 181 receptions, Amidon was nine catches shy of tying Pete Mitchell’s record, and his 10th reception of the day put him over the top.

“If you look at the numbers, he’s the only receiver targeted all year—so, I mean, we stuck to our game plan and he did a good job getting open,” said senior quarterback Chase Rettig after the game.

In the greater scheme of BC roommate power rankings, the Amidon and Andre Williams pairing must be near—if not at—the top of the list. For the entirety of their BC experience, Amidon and Williams have shared a room—they’ve been teammates on the field and friends off of it.

Amidon’s breakout season coincided with one of the Eagles’ darkest in recent memory. Over the course of BC’s two-win 2012 campaign, the 6-foot, 182-pound, industrious and agile receiver pulled in 78 catches for 1,210 yards and seven touchdowns, averaging 15.5 yards per reception and even picked up a rushing touchdown for good measure. He was arguably the focal point of the offense then, yet one season later, Amidon took a backseat to his roommate’s record-shattering season.

Amidon certainly had huge moments in 2013—his 69-yard, go-ahead touchdown against Clemson seemingly sucked the air out of Death Valley for a moment, and he opened the season with a dominant 146-yard touchdown performance against Villanova.

For the most part, though, the show was Williams’, but while the running back dominated the headlines, Amidon never stopped contributing. Flying somewhat under the radar, in the end he finished his senior season just short of his junior-year numbers with 77 receptions, 1,024 yards, five touchdowns, and a rushing touchdown. Ever the consummate teammate, Williams is the first to highlight his roommate’s efforts.

“This year there are just moments where I saw him on the field excelling,” Williams said of Amidon at the Heisman Ceremony. “Even though his role has changed, he’s still just as great as he was last year. Even the game against NC State, they say that’s my Heisman moment, but I really had to give credit to Amidon because if he hadn’t recovered that fumble near the end zone that play, it would have completely changed the game.”

Thus, it was appropriate that in one of his Heisman-finalist roommate’s toughest games of the season, Amidon was able to step up and have one of his best. Williams rushed for 75 yards and a touchdown against the Wildcats on 26 attempts, averaging 2.9 yards per carry and never breaking off more than a seven yard run, but Amidon was there to lighten the load.

After a season of playing sidekick, Amidon took the lead in his final game as an Eagle and broke a record of his own. He and Williams went out helping each other, as they have for their entire time at BC—and while they weren’t willing to accept any praise, their quarterback was willing to dish it out.

“Obviously the two guys are just amazing players,” Rettig said. “They just bring it every day—really hard workers, committed guys, great teammates—and they make tons of sacrifices, and it works out for them most of the time just because they’re such good men and friends.”



December 31, 2013