Sports, Football, Fall

Preview: BC Visits Florida State in Week Four

Boston College football and Florida State came into the 2022 season under similar pretenses, but they could not be having more different seasons through three games. Both start veteran quarterbacks, Phil Jurkovec for BC and Jordan Travis for Florida State, and both teams were projected to finish in the mid-low tier of the ACC before the season started. 

Since the season kicked off three weeks ago, both teams have faced an ACC team, an FCS team, and a team from another Power Five conference. The Seminoles defeated Louisville, demolished Duquesne, and scraped out a win in a potential game of the year against LSU in the Bayou. 

Conversely, the Eagles got dismantled by Virginia Tech, beat Maine by a margin smaller than most would have expected before the season, and lost a heartbreaker to Rutgers. Week Four presents a unique opportunity for BC to play in a game that it isn’t predicted to win and try to get its season back on track.

Who is BC playing?

Florida State

When is BC playing?

Saturday, Sept. 24, 8 p.m.

Where is BC playing?

Doak Campbell Stadium, Tallahassee, Fla.

How to watch:

The game will air on ACC Network.

Series history:

BC (1–2, 0–1 Atlantic Coast) has historically struggled against Florida State (3–0, 1–0), an Atlantic Division foe since the Eagles joined the ACC in 2005. The Seminoles have won the teams’ last three meetings. Last year’s matchup at Alumni Stadium started to look like a blowout in the Seminoles’ favor, with Florida State leading 26–3 late in the third quarter, but BC crawled back and lost by just three points. 

Most of the skill position players from that game on both teams will return on Saturday. Jurkovec and Travis will face off for the second time, with Jurkovec attempting to even the score after Travis heavily outplayed him in last year’s matchup, finishing with 103 more passing yards and two more touchdowns than Jurkovec.

What to expect from Florida State:

Offense

Travis will be under center for the Seminoles, but he is far from the focal point of Florida State’s offense. Florida State relies on its ground game despite losing top rusher Jashaun Corbin, who graduated after last season. Florida State averages over 240 rushing yards per game, five times as many as BC has so far this season. The Eagles currently rank in the bottom third in the country in rushing defense. 

Despite employing a run-oriented offense, Florida State diced up the Eagles’ secondary last year. Most of the Florida State receiving corps from last season is back this year, including all three touchdown catchers in last year’s game. This will provide an opportunity for revenge for returning Eagle defensive backs Elijah Jones, Josh DeBerry, and Florida State transfer Jaiden Woodbey.

Defense

Despite losing two starting corners to the NFL ahead of this season, the Seminoles still rank in the top 20 in takeaways per game, so Jurkovec will need to be careful protecting the ball this weekend. That will be a difficult task, however, as Florida State also ranks in the top 20 in sacks per game. BC’s offensive line, meanwhile, has allowed the sixth-most sacks per game in the country. The Eagles’ offensive line has been under fire all year, and the strengths of Florida State’s defense up front will only add fuel to the fire in this matchup.

Outlook:

The Eagles are heavy underdogs in this ACC matchup, but they will need to block out the noise as they enter into the heart of their schedule with only one non-conference game left. Along with elevated offensive line play, BC will have to win the turnover battle in order to get out of Tallahassee with a win—which could be a major turning point in BC’s season.

September 23, 2022
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