Monday, December 8, 2008

Headlines: ACC Championship Game Grief Cycle

ACC Championship game reactions. A journey through the grief cycle ...

Shock stage: Initial paralysis at hearing the bad news.
Brian: What. just. happened? I can't believe we let that team with a sorry ass offense beat us. For the second straight year, we let a team with an offense ranked higher than 100 nationally win a BCS conference. Ugh. How could we let this thing get away from us? The defense - after looking dominant in our last three must-wins - came out flat. Gassed.

Jeff: BC was hardly ever in this game it seemed as we watched it live. Watching the replay Sunday the first half could've turned out a lot differently if Gunnell doesn't have that fumble and Tyrod Taylor doesn't make two plays with his legs on third downs with his legs.

Brian: I didn't get the chance to watch the game back but it seemed like on Taylor's first two touchdown runs the Eagles defense was "oh so close" to catching him and dropping him for a loss. If those plays go a little differently, who knows if the outcome might have been different.

Denial stage: Trying to avoid the inevitable
Brian: They say approximately 20,000 fans witnessed this game. Maybe it didn't count? If a tree falls in the woods and no one is there to see it, did it really happen?

Jeff: Unfortunately its official. We accepted a bid to the Music City Bowl.

Brian: Nice consolation prize!

Anger stage: Frustrated outpouring of bottled-up emotion
Brian: Eff. !!??!@!?

Jeff: As you mentioned and everyone saw on TV there were plenty of empty seats yet I still got yelled at by old men behind me for stading during a few seemingly big plays. Eff them too.

Brian: The "down in front" crowd knows no bounds.

Bargaining stage: Seeking in vain for a way out
Jeff: We saved a lot of money by not having to plan a trip to Miami.

Brian: Good point. And I guess we will be the odds-on favorite to win the Music City Bowl and extend our bowl winning streak to nine. We seem to like to play bowl games that are de facto road games for the Eagles (Boise State, North Carolina, Vanderbilt).

Depression stage: Final realization of the inevitable
Jeff: I was in attendance for the Clemson loss and the ACC Championship Game loss. I can't go to Nashville and witness a game I expect us to win just in case we don't.

Brian: Your BC football attendance record this season (2-2) is depressing enough.

Testing stage: Seeking realistic solutions
Brian: At least we beat Boston University in hockey on National television Saturday night, right? ... Right? OK, well, we took care of business against a 1-5 Massachusetts men's basketball team at the Mullins Center? What?! We needed overtime??

Acceptance stage: Finally finding the way forward
Brian: OK, we let this one get away. Look on the bright side, right? We were playing with house money after Crane went down in the Wake Forest game. It wasn't realistic to expect a redshirt freshman QB, making his first start on the road to go out there and win this game for the Eagles. The Eagles are young. This will be an invaluable experience for our underclassmen. Davis will learn from this start. Montel Harris and Josh Haden got a ton of experience in the backfield this year. Sure, we lose Brace and Raji on defense, but we should be able to replace them and continue to be stout against the run. The future is bright and the Eagles have a ton of upside. If Jags could get us to the Championship Game with our young offense, we can continue to expect great things in the coming years.

Jeff: Brace and Raji are our biggest pieces to replace next season but we saw the defense do pretty well without Raji last season and they are not as big of a piece to replace as replacing Matt Ryan was this year. There is every reason to be optimistic about next year and the years following. We might not go to the ACCCG every year but we will certainly compete for the division crown annually. Are other teams in the division improving? NC State, FSU, Clemson? Sure, but they know that the road to the championship game goes through Chestnut Hill.


Big Jack Krack said...

Don't know about next year (I'm an optimist also) but I'll see you guys in Charlotte for the ACCCG in 2010.

It will take awhile to gey psyched to play a 6 and 6 Vanderbilt team. If they were 8 and 4 it would be great - now we have nothing to gain and everything to lose.

As Jags says, it's either win the thing or we're going to a 5th or 6th tier bowl - such is our fate in the ACC. The Gator loves a 7 and 5 Clemson and the Outback loves a 7 and 5 South Carolina.

Just doodling and thinking on a Monday morning - Reel in ECU, UCF, Notre Dame and Navy and form the Super ACC.

ACC North:

Notre Dame
West Virginia

ACC South:

Virginia Tech
NC State
Wake Forest
Georgia Tech
Florida State

Just checking to see if we're awake :-)

Andrew said...

I posted this over on atleagle as well, but I thought I'd share it with you guys:

"They were down 14-7 at the start of the 2nd half. Take a look at the 2nd half box score. 2 rushes for 13 yards, excluding the 2 Davis scrambles. Davis went 2 for 8 otherwise before the INT, followed by 3 Davis incompletions to end the 3rd quarter.

At that point, BC is down 24-7. At the 1st and goal, 3 passes, all for incompletions, after the VT fumble. Aponivicious hits the FG, score 24-10. We all know what happened after that. So, to summarize, 3 rush attempts from the RB on 21 plays (excluding punts and BC turnovers) in the 2nd half before the game was out of hand at 30-10. Personally, I call that a failure of playcalling, especially given that on the 2 rushes he had in the 3rd, Harris had 13 yards."

As for the defense, there was little they could do after so many 3 and outs and incompletions stopping the clock. It's hard to blame them when the offense is so inept. Granted, they let Tayor get away on some easy ones, especially on his 2nd TD when 3 BC defenders hesitated in the endzone when he was clearly scrambling.

Raj said...

Vtech's First Drive of the game, our defense wasnt flying around BC style, getting to balls. That set the stage, and gave V-tech's inept offense the confidence needed to go up against a D that they could tell was tired. I will never question the heart of our defense after the performances they put together this season. But really Paul Anderson, you let the QB tackle you?

I would love to be a BC optimist, but i'll expect 8 wins next season and be happy with anything over. I am also hoping that Tom O'Brien doesnt ride this wave of "success" into next year and bring back a team that is competing for the ACC crown. (it could happen, russell wilson is the man)

Big Jack Krack said...

Andrew - I agree a little bit about the running game, although Haden was not available should Harris get hurt.

Logan might have run Harris on first down instead of second (6 yards and 7 yards). We went 3 and out coming out of the gate in the 2nd half. Then we went 4 and out followed by another 3 and out; then the interception leading to the quick VT TD and basically the game was over - although we still had hope. 1st and goal and no TD? - come on, BC. I guess that surprised me the most. Our complete inablitiy to score. We really missed our blocking fullback.

John said...

Bottom line is that this was not the BC team that we've seen in the last four weeks. I can't explain and I don't think any of you can explain it, this was just a different team, call them Bizzaro BC. I was at Maryland and saw a solid Dominique Davis under center and then Saturday his passes were going everywhere, his fumbles were reminiscent of Wake Forest and he just didn't play well and admitted himself (check out the article on atleagle). Furthermore, I don't know where our game changing, play making, quarterback sacking defense was. Other than forcing those two fumbles in VTech territory, there were no big defensive plays. VTech was able to run all day, we couldn't control Tyrod Taylor and we just let them throw and run all day.

We saw on Saturday some other BC team, a team that we haven't seen in a long, long time, really since UNC. But, I do have hope. We really don't lose that many key players. Of course Brace and Raji will be gone, but Raji wasn't here last year and we had the same top defense last year that we do this year, so I'm sure that we can fill that hole. We lose Brandon Robinson, but I think Rich Gunnell (fumble excluded) is a highly, highly underrated wide receiver and will be a huge play maker next year. It's not going to be easy, especially with resurgent teams at FSU, Miami, and Georgia Tech, but a trip to the ACCCG in 2009 is not out of the question.

John said...
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