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On a dreary New England day, Boston College jumped past Kent State by leaps and bounds. Despite never consistently gaining yards through the ground with 150 yards on 37 carries, Boston College came alive on the backs of receivers Rich Gunnell and Colin Larmond, Jr. The Boston College defense, which Coach Frank Spaziani calls “a work in progress”, also managed to shut down the nation’s leader in total offense, RB Eugene Jarvis, to 25 yards.
LB Luke Kuechly led the team with five tackles for a defense that allowed their first touchdown of the season in the final five minutes. DT Damik Scaife and DT Austin Giles helped clog up the line and gave Jarvis no room to run. The Boston College defense also hurt their second quarterback of the year in Giorgio Morgan.
Rich Gunnell, who was named the W.B. Mason Player of the Game, looked like an All-American with six catches for 111 yards and two TDs. On one Tuggle pass, Gunnell cut off his route, snagged the pass over the cornerback Josh Pleasant, and dragged Pleasant ten yards to the two. The drive was capped off by a Montel Harris run.
QB Justin Tuggle also created separation in the quarterback competition with 160 yards and two touchdowns compared to Dave Shinskie, who had 68 yards along with a touchdown and an interception. Tuggle threw a couple of deep balls as well as a nice run.
Both quarterbacks alternated in and out for two possessions at a time in the first half, with neither making many mistakes. The second half brought much the same for Tuggle, but Shinskie struggled with his accuracy and lack of mobility. After the game, Spaziani acknowledged a slight edge for Tuggle, but said the two quarterback would remain in place until the Clemson game. He did not imply if the starting quarterback would be named before or after the Clemson game.
When someone asked Shinskie about the starter’s spot, Shinskie squirmed a little bit and said that they “should not mess with a good thing.” Tuggle nodded his head and reiterated the same comments with both quarterbacks only concentrating on a tough road game against Clemson.
Spaziani acknowledges it is going to be a big jump from Kent State. “It’s like being thrown into the middle of a tsunami,” he mused. BC will face the Tigers in their first road and first conference game of the season on Saturday. The ACC Atlantic Division rivals have played a very competitive series and have dubbed their series “The Battle for the Leather Helmet” hearkening back to their first meeting in the 1940 Cotton Bowl. Meetings were infrequent until BC joined the ACC as this will be only their 19th meeting (8-8-2 all time).