Coming off a tough road loss against Pittsburgh, Boston College football will look to end its 2023 regular season on a high note against a Miami squad that has lost three games in a row.
BC’s offense just could not get anything going last Thursday against the Panthers, recording two turnovers. The offensive line, which has been strong all year, had a poor performance in the passing game, leaving sophomore quarterback Thomas Castellanos scrambling to keep plays alive. BC’s defense once again failed to stop big plays, allowing Pitt to tally touchdowns of 61 and 66 yards. BC also allowed 404 total yards of offense to the Panthers and forced no turnovers on the night.
Even after a poor performance last week, the Eagles still have an opportunity to finish the season above .500, which would undoubtedly be a step in the right direction after BC ended last season with a record of 3–9. With a win, the Eagles would capture their first winning season since 2020, when they finished 6–5.
Who is BC playing?
When is BC playing?
Friday, Nov. 24 at 12 p.m.
Where is BC playing?
Alumni Stadium, Chestnut Hill, Mass.
How to watch?
The game will air on ABC and on BC Sports Network from Learfield on WEEI 93.7 FM/850 AM.
Miami has historically dominated this matchup, leading the all-time series 24–6. In home games, BC is trailing 9–4 against the Hurricanes. The Eagles won the last meeting, however, by a score of 27–14.
Former BC running back AJ Dillon ran for 149 yards and a touchdown in BC’s 2018 Red Bandanna Game. This win gave the Eagles a 6–2 record, as well as bowl eligibility, against Miami, who was then No. 25 in the Coaches Poll.
Since BC joined the ACC in 2005, it has led the series 3–2. When both squads were in the Big East from 1991 to 2003, Miami did not drop a game against the Eagles, winning 12 consecutive matchups between the two.
What To Expect From Miami’s Offense:
The Hurricanes are led by redshirt junior quarterback Tyler Van Dyke. Coming into the year, there were high expectations for Van Dyke and he even garnered some NFL Draft buzz. But he hasn’t fully lived up to the hype this year.
While Van Dyke is fourth in the ACC with 241.3 passing yards per game, he has also thrown 12 interceptions on the year. Miami’s passing attack has been relatively strong, ranking third in the ACC in passing yards per game. Turnovers have limited the offense all year long, though, with a minus 4 turnover margin.
One player to watch offensively for the Hurricanes is star wide receiver Xavier Restrepo. A 5-foot-10 slot receiver, Restrepo ranks second in the ACC in both receptions and receiving yards, with 68 and 876, respectively. He has also accounted for five total touchdowns on the year.
Wide receiver Jacolby George has had a strong year as well, totalling 762 yards and seven touchdowns. The Eagles must look to contain Miami’s strong receiving core, a task made more difficult by the fact that star cornerback Elijah Jones is out for the rest of the season for undisclosed reasons.
Miami’s run game is about as balanced as can be, with three ball carriers with over 400 yards—Henry Parrish Jr. at 468, Mark Fletcher Jr. at 468, and Donald Chaney Jr. at 467. The most efficient of these backs is Parrish, who boasts 6.3 yards per carry, pacing the Hurricanes. The Eagles must be wary of each of these running backs, as they are all capable of making big plays.
What To Expect From Miami’s Defense:
The Hurricanes will look to stop BC’s strong rushing attack with their ACC-leading run defense. The Hurricanes rank first in the conference in total rushing yards allowed and yards per attempt. Their stout defensive line has only allowed 3.0 rushing yards per carry and 13 rushing touchdowns on the year. BC, on the other hand, has recorded an average of 4.6 yards per carry with 20 total rushing touchdowns. The battle in the trenches will be a fascinating scene.
Miami’s pass defense, however, leaves a lot to be desired. The Hurricanes have allowed an average of 233.9 passing yards per game, good for second worst in the ACC. They are coming off a matchup against Louisville where they allowed 308 passing yards and three touchdowns to quarterback Jack Plummer. BC will have to move the ball through the air if it is to defeat the Hurricanes on Friday.
Miami’s pass rush has been fierce all year and is tied for first in the ACC in sacks with 32. The player to watch on the Hurricanes’ defensive line is defensive end Rueben Bain Jr. A true freshman, Bain has recorded 6.5 total sacks on the season, good for sixth in the ACC.
On the back end, All-American safety Kamren Kinchens will look to turn over the Eagles. Kinchens has recorded five interceptions this year, tied for the ACC lead with BC’s Jones.
This looks to be a tough matchup for the Eagles. BC’s main strength, its rushing attack, aided by the return of running back Kye Robichaux last week, will be put to the test by Miami’s strong run defense. The Eagles will need to move the ball in the passing arena against Miami’s porous secondary if they are to upset the Hurricanes. This will be a hard task for BC offensively, as Castellanos has recorded just 281 passing yards and four interceptions in the last two weeks.
On the other side of the ball, stopping Miami’s two star receivers will be a tall order. The Eagles must look to create turnovers against the Hurricanes and capitalize on Van Dyke’s susceptibility to throwing interceptions. They must also stop the home run plays which have plagued them recently and keep Miami in front of them.
While BC is rightfully an underdog in this matchup, this is a Miami team coming off a three-game losing streak. If the Eagles can play smart and fundamental football, they have a real chance of defeating Miami and finishing their season in a positive way before bowl season begins.