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Boston College football coach Frank Spaziani believes the Eagles are close to turning around their fortunes. BC showed signs of progress Saturday, but errors at crucial times were costly in a 22-13 loss at Northwestern.
The Eagles had the lead late in the first half and had chances to take command against the Wildcats. A turning point was a lost fumble as BC was driving for a possible go-ahead score, surrendering possession at the Northwestern 4-yard line in the third quarter.
“We’re very disappointed,” Spaziani said during a conference call Sunday. “We left some stuff out there on the table. We had some things we didn’t execute — a snap over [quarterback Chase Rettig’s] head, a dropped pass, a throw here, a fumble — some things, if you’re going to win games, you need to execute them.”
Rettig completed a 31-yard scoring pass to Johnathan Coleman in the second quarter, but failed to connect on other throws to receivers in the end zone.
“[Rettig] played an excellent game, but to be elite there are a couple plays you’ve got to make,” Spaziani said. “And he can do that. For time and forever, it’s five or six plays that make a difference in a game and you’ve got to make those five or six plays. The ball has to bounce your way a couple times, but we have to make some of those plays.”
The Eagles (1-2) have two weeks to prepare for a Sept. 29 home game against Clemson.
“I don’t think there is any magic elixir,” Spaziani said, “other than being truthful and honest with them and, hopefully, there’s the trust that we’ve always had. I think they have a good grasp of what they need to do to cross the line to become a good team.
“We’ve just got to get it out of them. We know how to do it and they need to respond and we’ll see. Different things we need to do – little, subtle things have to be done in practice. Although they are working and doing a lot of things, it’s still not paying off in wins, and we need to tweak it a little and do some more things.”
The Eagles’ lack of rushing offense – 25 yards on 21 attempts – was their most obvious problem.
“We have to run the ball,” Spaziani said. “We can’t have that kind of effort, and that has to improve for a lot of reasons. In our offense you can’t be one-dimensional.
“They’re good kids and they’ve got talent. I haven’t changed my mind on that. They’re good enough, but they haven’t performed up to their capabilities.”
Frank Dell’Apa can be reached at email@example.com.