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Boston College’s eagerly anticipated return to postseason football following a two-year absence turned out to be something of a bust, as the Eagles were soundly defeated by the Arizona Wildcats in the AdvoCare V100 Bowl at Independence Stadium in Shreveport, Lousiana. Arizona outgained BC 529 to 351 in total yards and Ka’Deem Carey easily outdueled Andre Williams in the matchup of the nation’s top two running backs.
The Eagles got off to a rough start, as quarterback Chase Rettig threw an interception on the opening drive to safety Jared Tevis, who pulled the ball down at the Arizona 46-yard line. The Wildcats only made it three plays, though, before Carey fumbled the ball at the BC 30, with the defense recovering. It was midway through the first quarter that Carey made up for his mistake by scoring on a two-yard touchdown run. Boston College got on the board before the end of the period with kicker Nate Freese‘s 32-yard field goal to make it 7-3 Arizona.
In the second, Freese kicked a 41-yard FG to make it a one-point game. The Eagles had a good chance to take the lead after recovering a muffed punt at the Wildcats’ 40, but three plays later Rettig threw his second INT of the game, a pick-six to safety William Parks, who returned it 69 yards for the score. After a BC three-and-out, Arizona went on a 10-play, 80-yard drive that ended with QB B. J. Denker finding wide receiver Trey Griffey (the son of Ken Griffey, Jr.) for a 26-yard TD and a comfortable 21-6 halftime lead.
The Wildcats picked up in the second half right where they left off, going 75 yards in 11 plays on the opening drive before Carey ran it in for a five-yard TD. Later, Denker’s 14-yard rushing TD gave Arizona a 35-6 advantage.
A 12-play, 65-yard drive ended with Denker and Griffey hooking up for another score, this one a three-yard pass, making it four consecutive TD drives for Arizona. On the next possession, Williams finally got his TD, from four yards out, giving the Eagles their first points since the second quarter, but the ensuing two-point attempt failed. The Wildcats once again marched downfield, but couldn’t convert on fourth and five from the Eagles’ 10-yard line, and BC subsequently went 94 yards in 12 plays, capping off the drive with a six-yard TD run by RB Tyler Rouse with just 40 seconds remaining.
Denker took offensive MVP honors, going 17-for-24 passing for 275 yards and two TDs. Carey had 169 yards and two scores of his own on 27 carries, and WR Nate Phillips racked up 193 receiving yards on just nine catches. Parks was the defensive MVP thanks to his pick-six. For BC, Rettig went 16-for-26 for 191 yards and two INTs, and WR Alex Amidon had 10 receptions for 129 yards.
While the Eagles’ performance was disappointing, 2013 season was a very successful year for Boston College, which went 7-5 in the regular season under first-year head coach Steve Addazio after being a combined 6-18 over the previous two seasons. Williams didn’t do himself any favors with his 75-yard outing, but his Doak Walker Award was well deserved and he should hear his name called in the first half of May’s NFL Draft.