Walking wounded

An already banged up Boston College team received more bad news Wednesday.

Boston College is 1-4 and apparently headed for its first non-bowl season in 13 years.

And as bad as the above might sound, the Eagles are just getting into the meat of their schedule.

The tough meat.

B.C. travels to Death Valley this week to visit No. 8 Clemson, the start of a three-game road swing that moves on to a date with No. 21 Virginia Tech and then to Maryland.

Then come the final two home games of the season, and one of those is a Thursday night affair with No. 23 Florida State. After North Carolina State and ex-BC coach Tom O'Brien ends the home season, the Eagles visit a Notre Dame team that is getting it together and then Miami.

It's a tough way for a young team, a struggling young team, to grow.

Meanwhile Clemson has beaten three ranked teams in a row, hammering then-No. 11 Virginia Tech on Oct. 1 in Blacksburg.

"First of all, it's always an opportunity to get a victory," BC coach Frank Spaziani said of this week's task, "but then you are going down there against a ranked team that is on a roll -- it is about how you approach it.

"It is a tremendous challenge. The higher the reward, the more the opportunity is. They are a ranked team in their home stadium, so this is a tremendous opportunity."


Montel Harris rushed for nearly 150 yards last year against Clemson but will miss Saturday's game. (Roy Philpott)
The Eagles just finished opening the season with four of their first five games at home, and they went 1-3 in those games. The three losses were all close enough to be wins, and one was decided on a missed chip-shot field goal, but 1-4 is 1-4 no matter how you get there.

As was the case against Northwestern and Duke, BC had plenty of chances to beat Wake Forest this past week. It didn't happen.

Making matters more complicated is the fact the Eagles will be without the services of star running back Montel Harris.

Harris broke BC's all-time rushing record in last weekend's loss to Wake Forest. And it was after a 26-yard run that sent him past Derrick Knight and into the record books that his left knee began to bother him again.

"Montel had an MRI and he had a little swelling so we are shutting him down,'' Spaziani told Boston.com Wednesday. "They just did the MRI. I haven't had time to discuss with Montel, but he isn't playing this week and next week we have off."

Backup RB Andre Williams is also questionable after injuring his right ankle against the Deacs as well.

Quarterback Chase Rettig continues to improve, but is getting hit too much, which points to further issues on Boston College's young offensive line.

The sophomore completed just 23-of-47 passes in the loss to Wake Forest for 188 yards.

As a freshman a year ago Rettig completed 9 of 16 passes for 136 yards and a touchdown. He also threw an interception - which was returned by Rashard Hall for Clemson's only touchdown of the game.

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