Banged-up Boston College football team pays price for physical encounter with Clemson
CLEMSON, S.C. — The training room is getting crowded at Boston College.
The Eagles played No. 2 Clemson physically in Saturday’s 34-7 loss at Memorial Stadium and paid the price. BC added two key players, left offensive tackle Aaron Monteiro (lower body) and middle linebacker Max Richardson (knee), to its list of injured starters on a team with depth issues.
Also, redshirt freshman quarterback Anthony Brown exited late in the fourth quarter with an undisclosed condition. Coach Steve Addazio said the move was precautionary.
BC went into Death Valley without center Jon Baker (knee), outside linebacker and leading tackler Connor Strachan (knee) and wide receiver Charlie Callinan (knee). Baker, Strachan and Callinan have appeared in a combined 116 games with 78 starts.
Addazio must account for all the fallen regulars as he prepares the Eagles, who are 1-3 overall and 0-2 in the ACC, to face Central Michigan in a nonleague matchup on Saturday at Alumni Stadium.
“I am very concerned right now with the amount of injuries that we have and what we just took in this game,” Addazio said. “I don’t know the extent of them right now but we are losing an incredible amount of starters right now. That is a big concern that I have right now and I have to get my arms around where we are. It seems like every week we have to restart something. I have to figure out the extent of these right now.”
Strachan and Richardson were part of a complex switch at linebacker. Last season, Strachan was the mike linebacker and he led the team with 80 tackles despite missing a game. Addazio decided to shift Strachan to the strong side to replace Matt Milano, a fifth-round NFL draft pick of the Buffalo Bills. Addazio made the move when Richardson showed he could play the mike in training camp.
Kevin Bletzer made his first career start in place of Strachan against Notre Dame and had four assisted tackles. Bletzer showed improvement against Clemson with three solo tackles, three assisted ones, a half-sack and a forced fumble.
“I built off my first career start to get better,” Bletzer said. “You just have to show up and play and correct mistakes I made and fix everything I could fix. I always wanted to start and play football here, so it’s a dream come true.”
Richardson had four solo tackles and three assists before being helped off the field late in the second quarter. Freshman John Lamot replaced Richardson and assisted on seven tackles in his first action at middle linebacker.
“The key right now is having enough guys to come out of this thing and take that experience and what we’ve been able to gain and able to do,” Addazio said. “That is something to be told. I don’t have an answer for that.”