Scouting Boston College: how the Eagles win
1. Don't self destruct: The Eagles have all the markings of a solid, well-coached team in that they rarely hurt themselves with penalties and giveaways. In its first four games, BC was penalized just eight times. Going into the Army game, the Eagles were college football's least penalized team, both in number of penalties and penalty yardage. In the Army game, the Eagles were penalized six times, but won anyway. Likewise, BC turned the ball over just four times in its first five games - one fumble and three interceptions - and, like Clemson, ranks among the nation's best in turnover margin. If the Eagles don't shoot themselves in the foot, they'll give themselves a chance to pull off an upset.
2. Win special teams: Coming out on top in the all-around special teams game is a key element of Dabo Swinney's 'Plan to Win.' The Eagles have the tools to be a tough out in that area. Kicker-punter Nate Freese is one of the nation's best. He's perfect on field goals this season, and is averaging better than 42 yards per punt. The Eagles burned Florida State repeatedly in the return game, as Spiffy Evans had two punt returns for 53 yards, including one that set up a touchdown, and Myles Willis had a 71-yard kickoff return and 211 all-purpose yards vs. the Seminoles. If Bradley Pinion allows a chance at returns, BC needs to take advantage.
3. Keep things balanced. The Eagles need to mix up their offense and try to get into a rhythm against an improved Clemson defense that specializes in disruption. If Andre Williams can get consistent yardage in the running game, then Chase Rettig has a bevy of capable receivers, led by Alex Amidon. They connected 32 times in the Eagles' first five games. BC can't afford to let Clemson force a one-dimensional offensive game.