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Eagles fly past Terrapins to win ACC Atlantic Division, 28-21;
Davis and Flutie throw TD passes
Chestnut Hill, MA - Dominique Davis tossed two TD passes and holder Bill Flutie, nephew of Doug Flutie, threw one on a fake FG, but LB Robert Francois's interception return of 36 yards for a TD with 1:42 sealed the game to give the Boston College Eagles a 28-14 lead over Maryland (7-5, 4-4) in Chestnut Hill to put them in next week's ACC Championship Game in Tampa against Virginia Tech. For CFF.com, it was the end of a nice long Thanksgiving weekend in New England. The game marked the first time we'd ever seen a Flutie throw a TD pass for the BC Eagles. We enjoyed a good game with six GGAs who spent the weekend in Rhode Island with us.
Dominique Davis, making his first start at QB for BC in place of injured Chris Crane, led the BC offense on its first series on a 69-yard scoring drive culminating with his 7-yard TD pass on a fade route to Justin Jarvis. Chris Turner of Maryland responded on the next drive with a 43-yard pass to Torrey Smith to the BC one before he took it in himself to knot the score 7-7 through the end of the first period.
In the second period, BC LB Mark Herzlich stopped a Terp drive with a diving interception at the Maryland 45. From there, Davis (12 of 24, 144 yards 2 TDs) heaved a bomb to a wide-open Rich Gunnell for his second TD pass of the day and a 14-7 BC lead. The score stayed that way into the third quarter until BC drove from its 34-yard line to the Maryland nine. The Terp defense held to force a FG attempt, but holder Billy Flutie, faked a reverse over his head to the kicker and rolled right to find TE Jordon McMichael near the end zone to take a 21-7 lead. It turned out to be the 76th TD pass thrown by a Flutie for BC. It was Billy's first as the the others were all thrown by his Uncle Doug, but it was the only one we ever saw thrown by either one! Maryland, held to -6 yards against a tough BC defense on the day, had to "abandon the run" at this point as pointed out by GGA Gunther Neumann. Near the end of the third period, Chris Turner (33 of 57 for 360 yards, 2 TDs, and 2 INTs) converted a fourth-and-one to sure handed Danny Oquendo (9 catches for 111 yards) for eight yards and then topped off the drive early in the fourth with a third down TD pass to Oquendo again at the 13 to cut the lead down, 21-14.
The next Maryland drive resulted in a missed FG, and the Terps threatened to drive and tie on their next possession with 3:04 remaining starting from their own nine. The BC defense got involved in the scoring when LB Robert Francois picked off Turner's pass on a sideline route and raced 36 yards for a BC score to put the game out of reach, 28-14, with 1:42 left. For the seventh consecutive game, the Eagles defense of special teams scored a TD! Maryland mounted another scoring drive but ate up a lot of clock with Turner connecting with Smith with only :14 remaining in the game. The onsides kick attempt went out of bounds and BC celebrated its Atlantic ACC Division Championship to the students' section chant of "Tampa! Tampa!" BC 28 - Maryland 21. It will be the second year in a row that the Eagles will meet the Hokies for the ACC BCS claim to the Orange Bowl. It should be a good one. We hope the Eagles make it.
Extra Points - We never saw Doug Flutie throw a TD pass because we never saw the Eagles play while he was at BC. We saw the Eagles play their first game after his graduation when they came to the Meadowlands the following year to meet BYU in the Kick-off Classic. Without Flutie for the first time in four years, the Eagles were no match for the Cougars and QB Robbie Bosco who went on to win, 28-14. However, in 1982, we did watch Billy's dad, Bill, play WR for Brown in a 28-23 loss to the Princeton Tigers at Palmer Stadium that year!
We forgot to go out and look for the new statue "The Catch" in honor of Doug Flutie's Hail Mary Pass to beat Miami in 1984.
Blake Neumann, who attended his first BC game ever, was very vocal in support of the Eagles. Before the game, we attended his Indoor soccer league game where his team from Cumberland, RI won, 7-2.
We parked in a the Needham Industrial Park and took the 25-minute ride to the Chestnut Hill campus. Parking was free. The day was cold. At the end of the game, we waited about 25 minutes to get back on the bus where Ben Wylie thought his toes had fallen off. He, Eric Koreivo, and Matt Wylie all remembered the line moving much faster after we attended the BC-Syracuse game on Thanksgiving weekend in 2004 when the Orangemen upset the Eagles, 43-17! We saw another BC QB make his debut that day for an injured starter, but not as successfully as did Dominique Davis. The starter's name was Matt Ryan. Diamond Ferri had a big day for Syracuse that day defensively and on offense. The loss knocked the Eagles out of Fiesta Bowl contention. It was also the last time SU posted a winning season.
Bruce Wylie was not impressed by BC's "Super Dogs". The only thing super about the plain hot dog was its price - $4! He and Gunther were glad to find Italian sausage sandwiches later for $6 served by the end zone concessionaire's - a much better deal.
I could not find a game program to buy anywhere in Alumni Stadium!
Stained glass windows on the northern end of Alumni Field honor RB Tony Thurman, QB Doug Flutie, NT Mike Ruth, TE Pete Mitchell, RB Mike Cloud, and RB William Green. We saw all but Flutie play for BC over the years.