Part of BCI's season preview week.
The 2009 Eagles football season is sure to be one of the most unpredictable in recent memory. Before we reveal our final season predictions tomorrow, we thought it would be useful to rank the Eagles schedule in terms of the toughest victories to come by. Our list and thoughts below. Leave your thoughts on the list in the comment section below.
Food Chain: Toughest 2009 Games
September 5: Boston College vs. Northeastern
Brian: This is the obvious choice for the easiest game of the year. In what will be a glorified exhibition game, the Eagles should roll behind a bruising ground game. I wouldn’t expect much of a passing game and this game will likely resemble last year’s 42-0 beat down of Rhode Island where the Eagles scored 5 touchdowns on the ground and 0 through the air.
September 12: Boston College vs. Kent State
Jeff: For the real BC haters out there this game against Kent State will be our second and last victory of the season. This MAC team showed it was clearly over matched by the Eagles last year in Cleveland when they failed to score and still let BC score 21 points when their offense was not working well at all.
September 19: Boston College at Clemson
Jeff: Are Clemson fans more worried about Boston College or BC fans more worried about Clemson? BC will be 2-0 heading into this game while Clemson might be coming off a loss to Georgia Tech in Atlanta where a second loss would pretty much solidify another disappointing season for the Tigers. Clemson is in a similar position to the Eagles on offense because they have CJ Spiller returning which leaves them nothing to worry about in the backfield. However, the Tigers are going with a new quarterback in Kyle Parker who does not have terribly big shoes to fill.
September 26: Boston College vs. Wake Forest
Brian: The Deacons have to take a step back this season, right? I know that Wake Forest will be sound offensively led by senior "it feels like he’s been there for 8 years" quarterback Riley Skinner. But the Deacons seem to have lost just too much talent on the defensive side of the ball to rank this game too high up in pecking order. It is true that you should never count out a Jim Grobe-led team, and Wake Forest has given the Eagles fits at Alumni Stadium over the years, but this game seems to be one of the more winnable ACC games this season. I guess that is saying something.
October 3: Boston College vs. Florida State
Brian: Florida State has owned the Eagles in Chestnut Hill since we joined the ACC (0-2, including ending any hope of a perfect season in 2007) and this season should prove yet again to be one of the toughest outs of the season. Best case scenario for the Eagles is that the ‘Noles limp into Alumni Stadium at 2-2 with losses to Miami and at BYU in September. My fear though is that FSU comes rolling into Boston with the momentum of a 4-0 record.
October 10: Boston College at Virginia Tech
Jeff: Virginia Tech is pretty much unanimously the highest ranked team in the ACC entering the season by everyone covering the conference and college football. Those same writers would probably unanimously rank Blacksburg as the most intimidating road game for ACC opponents. Add those two factors and it does not look good for the Eagles.
Brian: Darren Evans or no Darren Evans, Blacksburg continues to be one of the toughest places to play in the ACC. Beamer will have the Hokies ready for this game and despite an anemic Hokie offense, will likely get the job done yet again on defense and special teams.
October 17: Boston College vs. NC State
Jeff: If Russell Wilson isn't giving you nightmares thinking about the problems quarterbacks of his pedigree have always given BC in the Spaziani era, he will give you nightmares after October 17. If healthy, Wilson gives NC State the chance to win virtually every game on their schedule this season. If he's not healthy, however, NC State will be in for a long disappointing season.
October 24: Boston College at Notre Dame
Brian: Despite what the media pundits would have you believe, this is not the greatest of Irish teams. You’ll see the Irish popping up in preseason Top 25 ballots based more on their strength of schedule than because of the talent they return. Notre Dame will likely have their asses handed to them by USC the week before, so they will be hungry for a win against the Eagles the following week. If the Eagles can get the offense clicking by week eight (they better!), this will be one hell of a game. Not to mention the Eagles always get up for a trip to South Bend. Still, because this game is on the road, I'd say you have to place it in the top half of the toughest games of the year for the Eagles.
October 31: Boston College vs. Central Michigan
Jeff: In most preseason rankings Central Michigan is either right above or right below BC. Central Michigan is perhaps the most well-known team in the MAC as a respectable, bowl-bound program. And with Dan LeFevour returning at quarterback, they are going to be tough to beat and hopefully will not be overlooked by the players simply because of the conference they are from.
November 14: Boston College at Virginia
Brian: The Cavaliers may very well be 3-6 or 4-5 going into this game and might even be without their head coach. With a 3-6 record including a loss to Duke at home, the Virginia AD may have already started looking in a different direction for the program’s head coach. Even though this game is on the road, Virginia doesn’t scare me all that much. Offense will be a big question for the 'Hoos starting at the quarterback position. And because of the uncertainty at quarterback, I’m less concerned about this game than I am about, say, the Central Michigan game.
November 21: Boston College vs. North Carolina
Brian: Butch Davis should have his team ready for a late season surge against Duke, Miami Fla., Boston College and NC State. I wouldn’t expect a late-season collapse from the Heels like last season. UNC will be in the hunt for the Coastal Division crown and their last two games against the Atlantic Division’s Eagles and Wolfpack will go a long way to determining whether they should challenge Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech and Miami for the title.
November 28: Boston College at Maryland
Jeff: Is BC going to a bowl game this year? It's entirely possible that their postseason fate will come down to the final game of the season at Maryland. Maryland returns their starting quarterback, a Meggett and Da'Rel Scott at tailback, not to mention several other players. However, the Terps do lose the top 10 WR they had in Darrius Heyward-Bey. If Maryland couldn't be successful through the air with Heyward-Bey, how will they be without him? Too much of their offensive success came off of running reverses to Heyward-Bey or other gimmicky plays that his speed allowed. It will be interesting to see how much success, if any, the Maryland offense has this year.
Jeff's Food Chain
12. vs. Northeastern
11. vs. Kent State
10. vs. Central Michigan
9. at Virginia
8. at Maryland
7. at Notre Dame
6. vs. Wake Forest
5. at Clemson
4. vs. Florida State
3. vs. NC State
2. vs. North Carolina
1. at Virginia Tech
Brian's Food Chain
12. vs. Northeastern
11. vs. Kent State
10. at Virginia
9. vs. Central Michigan
8. vs. Wake Forest
7. at Maryland
6. at Notre Dame
5. vs. NC State
4. vs. North Carolina
3. at Clemson
2. vs. Florida State
1. at Virginia Tech