Louisville vs. Boston College prediction and game preview. Projecting who wins between the Cardinals and Eagles on Saturday in Chestnut Hill, MA.
Louisville vs. Boston College Game Preview
When: Saturday, Nov. 5 – Noon ET
Where: Alumni Stadium , Chestnut Hill, MA
TV Broadcast: ESPN2
Lamar Jackson proved once again last week that he is a special player, as the Cardinals (7-1, 5-1 ACC) stole a 32-25 victory in Charlottesville over a Virginia squad that couldn’t hold onto a late lead. The Cards trailed 25-24 before Jackson led his team on a 75-yard drive, which concluded with a 29-yard touchdown pass to Jaylen Smith with 13 seconds remaining. As if he even needed a Heisman Trophy moment, Jackson definitely had one.
Meanwhile, the Eagles (4-4, 1-4) finally won an ACC game again, as running back Davon Jones threw a 14-yard touchdown pass to Tommy Sweeney on a trick play with 4:43 left to help earn a 21-14 win over NC State in Raleigh. BC earned its first league victory since 2014.
In last year’s meeting between these two teams in Louisville, a Trevon Young fourth-down sack of BC quarterback Troy Flutie preserved a 17-14 win. It was a dominant defensive effort from the ‘Ville, as it recorded a season-high eight sacks and held the Eagles to just 79 yards (including minus-14 rushing).
What To Know About Louisville
The Cardinals are readying for their final conference road game of the season one week after failing to earn style points in the beauty pageant that is the race for a College Football Playoff berth. Having a player like Jackson helps Bobby Petrino’s squad with some of those style points, but the team has to clean up some of the problems like penalties and dropped passes that plagued the Cards in the close win over the Cavaliers. Jackson was sacked five times and turned the ball over twice, but he still finished 24-of-41 passing for 361 yards. He rushed 18 times for another 90 yards, and he now has 38 scores on the year.
What to Know About Boston College
In the Eagles’ win over NC State, receiver Jeff Smith rushed 60 yards for a touchdown and Patrick Towles was 18-of-33 passing for 204 yards to help the Eagles snap a 12-game league losing streak and win a conference game for the first time since defeating Syracuse 23 months ago. The Eagles are still tough to watch offensively, with Towles leaving a lot to be desired in the passing game. Only once this year has he completed more than 56.3 percent of his throws, and that was in the season opener against Georgia Tech. He hasn’t been very efficient in conference play, though he was able to find some success through the air against then the Wolfpack. At this point, being turnover-free and keeping drives alive is all Steve Addazio can hope for with this offense.
Offense: Louisville. Even if Jackson was taken out of the equation, the Cardinals would have a significant edge.
Defense: Even. Boston College’s defense is very stout, but the Cardinals can win games with coordinator Todd Grantham’s unit as well.
Special Teams: Louisville. As if the Cardinals need more ways to score outside of their offense with Jackson, Jaire Alexander remains a threat to make a big play on special teams. He was the one who returned a punt 69 yards for a touchdown in the win against Florida State.
Coaching: Louisville. Petrino is one of the brightest minds in the college game, and his offensive play-calling is excellent.
Intangibles: Even. BC is feeling good after breaking its league losing streak, but Louisville will want to put forth a better effort than it did last week.
Matchup To Watch
BC ground game vs. Louisville defensive front
In a defensive battle last year, Louisville allowed just one third-down conversion in 14 chances and had eight sacks. The Eagles punted 12 times and their longest drive was 29 yards. The biggest offensive issue was a lack of a run game. Even taking out the lost yardage due to sacks, BC rushed for just 30 yards in last year’s matchup. Myles Willis rushed for just 22 yards on 12 carries, and 18 of those came on one play. Last week in the win over the Wolfpack, he had 40 yards on just five carries. BC struggles to effectively move the football through the air. Its only chance to upset the Cards is if the ground game is churning and Jackson is kept off of the field.
Spread: Louisville -25
Louisville vs. Boston College Prediction
Jackson and the Louisville offense will face a little resistance from the BC defense, but Petrino will have his team prepared to put forth a much better effort than it did last week against Virginia. The Cardinals pull away in the second half and coast to a victory.
Louisville vs. Boston College Score Prediction: Louisville 38, Boston College 16