The Boston College Eagles (2-7) haven’t had all that much to celebrate this year, as they already know that they not going to a bowl game, and Head Coach Frank Spaziani is on his way out the door in a matter of a few weeks. However, this is the Super Bowl against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish (9-0), the fourth ranked team in the land, who might be well on their way to the National Championship Game here in a few weeks.
All of this might seem like everything is in hand for the Golden Domers, but even on the road, the 18 ½-point favorites most certainly need to be worried in this rivalry game. Here are the three things that have to happen for the Eagles to pull off the shocking upset.
1. Alex Amidon has to make some big time plays: There are few receivers in the ACC that are feared more than Amidon, who has 1,073 yards on 67 receptions to go with six touchdowns. He has caught almost a third of the passes from QB Chase Rettig, and he has had at least 118 yards in three straight games, posting at least seven receptions in all three as well. For a lackluster offense, about the only combination that works consistently is Rettig to Amidon, and it is the one that is going to have to continue being special to knock off the Golden Domers.
2. Notre Dame keeps playing down to the level of its competition: It feels like the closer the spread, the better the Fighting Irish play. A game against the Navy Midshipmen in Dublin aside, Head Coach Brian Kelly has a tough time getting his team up to play against teams that Notre Dame should wax. Last week against the Pitt Panthers, the Irish needed to post a 14-point fourth quarter comeback just to fend off a 4-5 team that was +16.5. In fact, the Fighting Irish have been favored by more than seven points five times since Week 1, and in those games, just one was further apart than three points at the end of regulation, that being the 41-3 win over the Miami Hurricanes.
3. BC has to win the turnover battle: The Eagles haven’t done much well this year on the defensively side of the ball, but they do have 16 forced turnovers and a safety. In all but three games, at least two turnovers have been forced, and that’s really saying something considering the fact that Boston College has faced a pair of triple option teams that rarely cough it up. Notre Dame is a tough team to turn over though, as both QB Everett Golson and QB Tommy Rees have done a great job protecting the football, combining for just six picks. Golson threw one of those picks last week against the Panthers though, so the time might be here to get a key turnover or two to be able to pull off this upset.