Game Preview and Prediction for Duke vs. Boston College


Your Duke Blue Devils take on one of the top defenses in the country in the Boston College Eagles today at 3:30 ET at Wallace Wade Stadium. It is a clash of two of the top ten defenses in the country with BC ranking number one in both total defense and against the pass. They are also averaging given up 7.8 points per game and only 46 rushing yards a game. On the other hand the Blue Devils are 10th in the country in total defense and 7th in scoring defense. With the forecast of Hurricane Joaquin making its way up the East Coast, rain, heavy rain is expected to slop up the game even further. This could be a 6-3, 3-0 type of ball game. Here are some keys to the game.

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1. Turnovers

Duke has had a tough time hanging onto the ball whether it be a fumble or an interception the entire season. With the rain that will be pouring down onto the players today, the way Duke holds onto the football will be even more important than usual. Boston College should not be able to score on offense. But a way they could manufacture points is through a turnover that sets them up well in Duke territory. Troy Flutie, nephew of Doug Flutie, makes the start at QB for the Eagles. He will not be asked to do too much as way of throwing into one of the best secondaries in the country. If Duke can hang onto the football and not give away points then BC can be shutout.

2. Running Game

RB Shaquille Powell had 3 TDs last week in a win over Georgia Tech and he looks to continue his momentum this week. Now BC’s defense is league’s better than Tech’s but Powell along with Shaun Wilson, Jela Duncan and Thomas Sirk will have to find a way to churn out yards on the ground in a game that expects less than ideal conditions. Sirk has been unspectacular throwing the ball the past two games and that continues today especially with WR Johnell Barnes missing the first half of the game because of his ejection in the second half of the Georgia Tech game last week for targeting.

3. Special Teams

The field position game will play a big factor today. This game will be decided by field goals and luckily K Ross Martin is one of the very best. Ryan Smith had an important 69-yard return last week that put Duke in position to score. This week Smith returning punts and DeVon Edwards returning kicks could play a huge factor in the overall makeup of the game. As I said already, this game will be low scoring and a slug fest. One electric return could make all the difference.

Prediction – Duke 10, Boston College 3

There is just no possible way I see BC being able to move the ball at any kind of rate. I expect Jeremy Cash to have another monster game and force a turnover to put

Duke in pretty position to score a TD. Whoever scores the first touchdown wins the game. I like Duke at home in a game that will be close throughout. To all those heading out to the game, stay safe!