Penn State vs. Boston College: 5 Pinstripe Bowl Questions With Joe Micik of Soaring to Glory

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Nov 8, 2014; Boston, MA, USA; Boston College Eagles linebacker Steven Daniels (52) is helped up by defensive back Dominique Williams (9) after recovering a fumble during the first half against the Louisville Cardinals at Alumni Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports


Penn State vs. Boston College: Question #2

VBR: What has been the biggest factor for the success of the Boston College defense this season?

JM: It would have to be the much improved play of the defensive front seven.  Boston College lost most of their starters there between last year and this one, and yet, we have one of the best run defenses in the nation this year.  Teams do not get a lot up the middle on the Eagles and Boston College is one of the better teams in the nation at stopping plays in the backfield for a loss.

Some names that feature prominently in this are Josh Keyes, a senior linebacker from New York and Connor Wujciak, a defensive tackle from New Jersey.  Both have had very good years, especially Keyes, who might actually be the MVP of the defense this season.  Notably, he was the FWAA National Defensive Player of the Week after the USC upset with 5.5 TFL in that game.  Keyes was quite the underrated player before this season and it has been nice to see him take center stage.

Defensive coordinator Don Brown blitzes a lot, and that’s why we do okay or more than okay when it comes to sacking the quarterback or getting tackles for a loss.  Of course, that exposes the secondary, and the Eagles have suffered there, but they have taken the run out of the mix and they are decent enough at the pass rush that the overall results have been good.

I also think a part of it is how the Eagles have controlled time of possession.  Boston College’s offense is one of the best in the nation at holding onto the ball, and this defense is not usually overworked.

Next: Question #1