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April 9, 2011

2nd Scrimmage Observations: Quarterbacks

The Boston College football team held their second scrimmage of the spring on Saturday afternoon at Alumni Stadium. Before we look at how the quarterbacks performed, here's a quick recap of the rules during a scrimmage:

Who Plays: The 1st string offense goes against the 1st string defense, and the 2nd string offense goes against the 2nd string defense.

Time Limits: The game is not timed. Each "string" gets 12 snaps and then switches off with the other "string"

Kickoff and Punts: None. Therefore, each series of 12 snaps starts off on a specific spot on the field. Those pre-assigned spots for the offense are- Own 20, Own 35, 50, Opponents 35, Opponents 20

Other Quirks: There are downs just like a real game. Since there are no punts, when 4th down comes up the offense "resets". It becomes 1st down again, and the offense restarts at the pre-assigned yard spot for that series of 12 snaps. The only exception is if the offense is in field goal range they will attempt a field goal on 4th down.

Quarterback Protection: The quarterbacks are down when they are touched.

Special touch to the 2nd scrimmage: The 1st and 2nd team offense practiced the 2 minute drill.

Here's how the quarterbacks performed:

Last weekend, Chase Rettig dismantled the BC defense, throwing for 171 yards and 2 touchdowns with a 69% completion percentage. In the 2nd scrimmage, Rettig came back down to earth a little bit throwing for 102 yards on 10-of-20 passing to go along with two interceptions.

Rettig started off the scrimmage red hot completing 5-of-6 passes for 73 yards on the opening drive. The highlight of the drive was Rettig's 28 yard completion to Bobby Swigert, which came when Rettig threw a screamer 25+ yards down the field as Swigert hauled it in for the big play.

The drive that Rettig engineered was impressive, as the offense started out on their own-20 yard line and Rettig proceeded to take them on 12 play drive inside the 5-yard line of the defense. Unfortunately the "12 play limit" came due and Rettig's offense was forced to kick a field goal on 3rd-and-goal.

Rettig still looked good on his 2nd drive of the game even though he went 1-of-5 passing. One of the incompletions was just because of great coverage by Kevin Pierre-Louis on Lars Anderson, and another of the incompletions was actually one of Rettig's best throws of the day. Facing a 3rd-and-8, Rettig dropped back to throw and launched a very difficult 18 yard pass to Ifeanyi Momah on an out pattern along the right sidelines. Donnie Fletcher had great coverage on Momah, and Rettig threw the pass where only Momah could grab it, but unfortunately the wideout couldn't keep his feet inbounds while making the catch. The degree of difficulty on the pass was a 10 out of 10 and Rettig nailed it.


Towards the middle stages of the scrimmage is when Rettig started to struggle, and it all started when he got his chance to run the two minute offense. Rettig and the offense too the ball from their own 35, and had 2:00 and a timeout to try and tie or overcome a 3 point deficit. After a stuffed running play and two incompletions to start the 2 minute drill, Rettig was able to find Tahj Kimble for a 10 yard completion on 4th-and-10. On the next play though, Momah slipped while running his route which allowed Fletcher to pick off Rettig's pass and this ended the drive.

Things didn't get a whole lot better for Rettig from there. The next time he came out on the field later he threw an INT on his very first pass attempt. This time, the interception was definitely Rettig's fault, as he threw a 40 yard bomb off of his back foot which was picked off by Fletcher again.

Rettig did bounce back late in the scrimmage to perform a little better, but he faced constant pressure late and couldn't jumpstart the offense again.

Meanwhile, Josh Bordner bounced back in a big way from his average performance in the first scrimmage. Bordner finished 15-of-21 for 119 yards and an interception.

Early in the game, Bordner got some run with the 1st team offense and made the most of his opportunity, even though he was faced with what looked like a tough situation. Montel Harris got drilled by Pierre-Louis 4 yards behind the line of scrimmage, which put Bordner in a 2nd-and-14 situation right off the bat. The quarterback responded though by connecting with Donte Elliot on a 19 yard pass play. After Harris was stuffed on another running play, Border connected with Momah on back to back plays for 6 and 13 yards. The drive ended with a 48 yard field goal by Nate Freese.

Later in the scrimmage, Bordner led the team on another field goal drive from midfield, as he went 4-for-5 with 29 yards passing.

After a couple of drives after that stalled out, Bordner ended his day with a perfectly executed "redzone drive". In 4 plays, Border got the team in the endzone from the 20 yard line, as he scored himself on a naked bootleg from 2 yards out. The bootleg call from Kevin Rogers seemed to really fool the defense.

Yardage-wise, Mike Marscovetra had the biggest day throwing for 128 yards and a touchdown.

Marscovetra got off to a shaky start throwing an interception on his first pass attempt. Mascovetra made a mistake throwing the ball into double coverage and he paid for it when Albert Louis Jean leapt into the air and picked off the pass.

Things looked like they were headed in a downward spiral for Marscovetra at that point, especially after an offensive lineman committed a holding penalty and Mike Naples committed a false start. Facing a 1st-and-25, Marscovetra dropped back to pass and let a pass fly down the field intended for Hampton Hughes. The long pass hung in the air for a while and it looked like Jim Noel was going to pick it off. Fortunately for Marscovetra, Noel mistimed his jump and the ball fell right into the hands of Hughes. Marscovetra took advantage of the mistake by Noel, and two plays Donte Elliot found a hole in the middle of the defense and Marscovetra hit him for a 22 yard gain. Unfortunately for Mascovetra, his allotted plays were up after getting the team inside the 10-yard line, and Dave Shinskie finished off the drive with a touchdown pass.

Marscovetra threw his second interception of the day later in the scrimmage, the third of the day for Donnie Fletcher. Marscovetra was trying to hit Clyde Lee on a fade pattern and used a pump fake to try and trick Fletcher, but he didn't fall for the fake.

Marscovetra got revenge on his last drive of the scrimmage during the "redzone drive" portion of the scrimmage and threw a 7 yard touchdown pass to Jarrett Darmstatter.

It was interesting to watch Marscovetra as it seemed like he was taking more chances than usual down the field trying to make big plays.

Dave Shinskie could not replicate his above average performance from last week. Shinskie finished 6-of-9 for 42 yards. Aside from a 6 yard touchdown pass to Jonathan Coleman on a slant pattern, Shinskie didn't have many memorable moments that stuck out.


Check back soon, as EagleAction will have observations about the rest of the offense, the defense, and special teams.

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