Opponent: Boston College
Opponent’s Record: 2-0
Location: Alumni Stadium, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts
Game time: Friday, September 13, 2019 at 6:30 PM
TV channel: ACC Network
Radio: 810 WHB
Line: Boston College -21
After a disappointing loss to Coastal Carolina, the Jayhawks have a chance to make a statement against their first Power 5 opponent of 2019. In Boston College, Kansas will meet one of the nation’s premier rushing attacks led by first team All-ACC running back AJ Dillon. It’s pretty simple for the Jayhawks defense: get hats to the ball.
When Kansas has the ball
The lack of offense was the most disappointing aspect from last week’s game. While the Jayhawks were able to eclipse 200 yards rushing against the Chanticleers, the passing game went anemic. Les Miles has asserted that he is sticking with senior Carter Stanley Friday night, but Stanley needs to find his targets Andrew Parchment and Daylon Charlot if KU is going to be successful on offense. From a play calling perspective, I don’t think anyone can be surprised that Les Miles is going to run an offense that features a fullback and two tight ends. I was, however, disappointed that Kansas abandoned some of the shotgun runs that they ran successfully against Indiana State. Hopefully, they bring back some of their counter trap and pop pass plays that sprung their playmakers into space.
Through two weeks, the Eagles have snagged five interceptions. Their defensive backfield is talented and led by quarterback convert Tate Haynes, who has also recorded a strip sack this season. I expect the Eagles to line up in lots of 8 or even 9 man boxes and forcing Carter Stanley to make throws to Daylon Charlot or Andrew Parchment in one on one matchups.
When Boston College has the ball
All eyes will be on #2 of the Eagles – AJ Dillon. The All American running back should be the primary focus for DJ Eliot’s defense. While Kansas has done a good job tackling this season, it will be critical that they continue that against Boston College. Dillon is going to be the focus, but BC has another running back talent in sophomore David Bailey. Bailey is another large physical back who relieves Dillon and punishes defenses. On the outside, keep an eye out for true freshman receiver Zay Flowers, who has already contributed some big plays for the Eagles and has coach Steve Addazio giddy for the future.
For the Jayhawks, the key is going to be gang tackling and forcing BC to beat them through the air. If the Eagles gain more than four yards per rush on the ground, the Jayhawks are in for trouble.
Last week’s game was a massive disappointment and many are predicting a blowout in tonight’s game. The line is sitting around three touchdowns in most places. Sagarin has Kansas losing by 18, and SP+ has the Jayhawks losing by 21. I think this game will be plodding and slow. Both teams want to control the tempo and will likely run the football early and often. I do think KU plays with more energy this week, but still come up short.
Boston College 28, Kansas 10 (KU +21)
Season Record: 1-1 (1-1 ATS)