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ACC Season Preview: Boston College

By Carlos Pineda
SouthernPigskin.com
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Boston College is looking for substantial improvement under first-year head coach Steve Addazio.

Coach: Steve Addazio (First season; 13-11 overall)

2012 record: 2-10 (1-7 in ACC, last in Atlantic Division)

Looking back: Suffering its worst season since 1978, Boston College continued on a downward spiral in 2012. The Eagles have seen their win total decrease progressively since a nine-win season back in 2008. The Eagles went 22-29 (13-19 in ACC) in four seasons under former coach Frank Spaziani and are hopeful that the hiring of Steve Addazio can turn the tide for the program. BC lost a string of five straight games early in 2012 and closed out the year with four-consecutive losses to finish last in the ACC. The Eagles last played in a bowl game in 2010 (The Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl).

Offensive starters returning: 7

Offensive starters lost: 4

Defensive starters returning: 9

Defensive starters lost: 2

Key losses: Chris Pantale, TE; Emmett Cleary, LT; Nick Clancy, MLB

Top returnees: Chase Rettig, QB; Alex Amidon, WR; Kevin Pierre-Louis, LB

Strengths: Despite ranking in the bottom of the ACC in all offensive categories (11th scoring, 12th rushing, 8th passing and 10th in total offense), the offense is led by senior quarterback Chase Rettig. With 33 career starts under his belt, Rettig passed for 3,065 yards with 17 touchdowns and 13 interceptions last season. Aiding Rettig is senior receiver Alex Amidon, who led the Eagles with 78 catches for 1,210 yards and seven touchdowns. Amidon ranked 11th nationally in receiving yards per game in 2012 and was a first-team All-ACC selection. Senior running back Andre Williams rushed for a team-best 584 yards and four touchdowns.

Linebacker Steele Divitto enters 2012 as the team's top returning tackler with 92 and posted a career-best 18 tackles against Army last season.

The Eagles ranked first in the nation in punt returns, averaging 21.7 yards per return, according to Athlon Sports.

Weaknesses: In addition to a struggling offense, the Boston College defense had problems of its own, allowing 456.4 yards per game last season. The Eagles are without linebacker and first-team All-ACC honoree Nick Clancy, who recorded a league-high 145 tackles last year. Also gone is four-year starting tight end Chris Pantale, offensive tackle John Wetzel and three-year starting defensive back Jim Noel.

BC ranked 109th in scoring offense (19.8 points per game) and 111th against the rush (214.1 yards per game).

Outlook: Things have gone from bad to worse the last two years in Chestnut Hill, Mass. Five years removed from appearing in consecutive league title games, the Eagles are 6-18 since 2011. While the hiring of Addazio should help elevate BC in the years to come, don't expect dramatic improvements in the win column in his inaugural season.

2013 Schedule

Aug. 31: Villanova

Sept. 6: Wake Forest

Sept. 14: at USC

Sept. 28: Florida State

Oct. 5: Army

Oct. 12: at Clemson

Oct. 26: at North Carolina

Nov. 2: Virginia Tech

Nov. 9: at New Mexico State

Nov. 16: NC State

Nov. 23 at Maryland

Nov. 30 at Syracuse

Prediction: The Eagles will go 4-8 in 2013 thanks in part to wins against Villanova, Army and at New Mexico State.

Carlos Pineda - Carlos Pineda is a featured writer for Southern Pigskin. He covered the UCF Knights football team for Florida Today in 2010. Carlos' work has been published in the South Florida Sun Sentinel, Miami Herald, Orlando Sentinel and Orlando Business Journal. He attended the University of Central Florida. Follow Carlos on Twitter @CarlosFPineda.