2007 Army look ahead: Boston College

Like Army, Boston College has a new coach, Jeff Jagodzinski, but the Eagles are much more far along than the Black Knights. In fact, Boston College is a virtual lock to qualify for another bowl game. The Eagles haven't had a losing season since 1998 and have played in seven bowl games in the last seven years. Boston College beat Navy 25-24 in the Meineke Car Care Bowl last season.

A week after traveling to Wake Forest this fall, Army gets a difficult ACC double, at Boston College on Sept. 22. Here is a look at another difficult Army opponent, Boston College. Jagodzinski replaces Navy grad Tom O'Brien, who took the head coaching job at North Carolina State. Jagodzinski brings an impressive dossier to Chestnut Hill, Mass.

Jagodzinski, 43, has coached for 21 years, including the last eight in the NFL. He served as Mike McCarthy's offensive coordinator in Green Bay last season.

Army might want to watch out for Boston College's Brian Toal, on both sides of the ball. Toal is a stud linebacker, but also lines up as a fullback in fourth-and-goal situations. Boston College students adapted the slogan "Fourth and Toal". He scored a touchdown against Army in the Black Knights' season-opener in 2005.

Toal finished the 2006 season with 180 career tackles (98 solos), 16.5 tackles for loss and two forced fumbles. He's been named to The Sporting News Preseason All-ACC second team. One of the best stories in college football last season came out of Boston College. Kicker Steve Apanovicius, a walk-on, kicked the game-winning field goal against Navy.

But while Army is searching for a kicker, Boston College is set. Apanovicius may not even be the starter this year. He has to battle freshman, regarded as one of the best kicking recruits in the country, for the job.

Maybe the loser can transfer to Army. Boston College has double trouble in the backfield. Talented running backs L.V. Whitworth and Andre Callender make the Eagles go. Whitworth finished the 2006 season with 2,221 career rushing yards and has made 31 starts. Callender completed the 2006 regular season with 1,978 rushing yards, which includes a career-best 174 yards against North Carolina in the 2004 Continental Tire Bowl.

Jagodzinski is expected to open up the offense and Boston College returns Matt Ryan, the ACC's leading passer last season. He played most of last season with an injured left ankle and the last few weeks with a broken bone in his left foot. Ryan impressed during spring drills, completing 19 of 33 passes for 233 yards without an interception in the Eagles' spring game. Jagodzinski says Ryan reminds him of Seattle Seahawks quarterback Matt Hasselbeck.

Boston College returns nine starters on defense.


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