Sorry about the lack of updates recently, been working my ass off this week. A lot of stuff to run down here.
First--credit where credit is due, and kudos to the staff for landing 4-star OLB Will Thompson of Jersey City. For all my criticism of BC's coaching staff, one area in which they have done well recently is recruiting the LB position. Thompson, who chose BC over Michigan, Virginia, West Virginia, and Maryland, owns his high school records in the bench (305) and squat (635) and is already 6'1/230 having at the age of 16. He's a big hitter and a big play maker. Kid is simply a gamer, and has some great comments on BC in this Jersey Journal interview. Great pick-up--and at this point, where does BC stand as a Linebacker U?? We aren't Miami or Penn State, but BC has nonetheless churned out quite a few top-quality LBs over the last few years.
Keeping on focus, though, the team recently completed its second scrimmage. Again, though, it's hard to know what to take from the various write-ups--especially without knowing which offensive units went against which defensive ones. That said, you've gotta be excited by the performance of our true freshmen; and they were led by Jeff Smith, who rushed for 67 yards on 16 carries and a TD. Not to be outdone by his classmate, Mark Herzlich (like the FHMAM staff, native to Wayne, PA) led the defensive unit with 6 tackles. Billy Flutie, by all accounts, did not impress at punter but did better at QB, going 4-6 for 73 yards, including a 4-yard TD strike to fellow freshman Justin Jarvis.
Which true freshmen will play this year?? It's a difficult question to answer. The hottest debate is swirling around Smith, who has provided an extra dimension to BC's offense in training camp but who may be better served sitting out a year rather than fighting for time with three established RBs and DeJuan Tribble in the return game. (Incidentally, if Smith does redshirt, I'd like to see Taylor Sele get a shot at KR. The kid has blazing speed and has a build that gives him a low center of gravity. Let's see what he can do.) Damik Scafe, by all appearances, seems to have worked his way into the 2-deep at DT. Alex Albright also has a good chance to get playing time at DE, a la Ramella last year. Finally, it seems highly likely that Billy Flutie will not redshirt this year. The kid is simply a jack-of-all-trades at a number of different positions of need--he can compete with Ryan Ohliger for the starting K job, back up Johnny Ayers punting, and provide emergency QB depth behind Matt Ryan and Chris Crane. He should redshirt in 2007, picking one position to focus on for the remainder of his BC career, but this year he's simply needed to fill in in a bunch of different places.
Speaking of Ohliger, he had an excellent scrimmage, going 3-3 from 43, 47, and 48 yards. I've said all along that the kid has the leg, he just doesn't have the mindset. That said, his problem has always been cracking under pressure; a scrimmage in front of coaches and a reporter or two does not constitute a pressure situation. We can always hope that he's overcome his past issues, but we won't know until Clemson comes to town on September 9th (Central Michigan also does not constitute a pressure situation). As for Ryan's underwhelming performance in the scrimmage (10-19, 82 yards, 2 INTs), again, these scrimmages mean little in the long run. They're important for getting players accustomed to game-like situations but the stats mean little or nothing, particularly on the offensive side of the ball. Matty Ice will be good to go come the 31st.
For more coverage of the scrimmage:
In case any of you missed yesterday's Internet chat with GDF, I'll sum up what he said for you: BC will neither re-institute men's lacrosse nor add the interlocking "BC" logo to the side of its football helmets. The guy literally said nothing else of substance, unless you consider insinuating that there is no possible middle ground for OOC scheduling between this year's crapfest and the team's 1995 OOC slate (Notre Dame, Michigan, Ohio State, Michigan State, Army) to be "something of substance". I applaud him for his work in getting us into the ACC but it's time to see him for what he is, a snake-oil salesman. Sooner or later, the ridiculous OOC schedules, culture of mediocrity, downright refusal to build tradition, and all-around indifference towards turning BC into a truly elite football program (and when you talk about the "program" as opposed to the "team", it includes things like tailgating) will catch up with GDF and the emperor's nekkidness will be revealed.
For those of you who have a paid subscription to EagleAction.com, Sean Stanton has an excellent article mostly regarding positional battles in training camp. To be honest, it's worth signing up for the 7-day free trial just to read it--and while you're at it, check out the highlight videos of incoming recruit Dan Mulrooney.
Finally, a pair of lighter items to close out the night. First, ATLEagle has a great piece entitled Nightmare on Simms St., Part II. I'll let you check it out yourself. Finally, it appears that the Tom O'Brien Show (his actual TV show, not a smoke-and-mirrors show press conference) will begin live broadcasts from the Stockyard starting on Monday and will accept audience questions. This will not last more than a few episodes, and whichever FHMAM reader causes the show to return to its original format by pestering TOB with a series of drunken and increasingly profane questions after the team's first inexplicable WTF loss will receive a free, signed printout of their favorite FHMAM article. Unless it's the Jimmy Clausen one, because I'm not printing out any goddamn banana hammock pictures on my PC.
Just 15 days until BC defers the opening kickoff against Central Michigan in sunny Point Pleasant, Michigan. You gotta love BC football.