Get well soon, Charlie Davies

Get well soon, Charlie Davies

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Jags, Davis, Crane, et. al.

I have a self-imposed rule to limit my posts about football to 1-2 per week, as from the beginning, I didn't want to have just another blog designed to dump on the players and coaches of the football and men's basketball teams - we have enough of those. Not just BC, but college sports in general.

But sometimes, circumstances overwhelm. I've had several people call me a "Crane apologist," and I suppose it's fair for people to think that. So I'll try to further explain my position on this mess under center.

A commenter to this  blog said that with a decent QB, BC would be 7-1. This is very true. However, with an above-average high school kicker, BC would be 7-1, too - even with Crane as QB. To pin all of the team's problems on Crane is short-sighted and unfair.

Crane is a very poor quarterback. I think everyone agrees with this. But that does not mean that all of the team's problems are his fault, and it certainly does not mean that Dominique Davis is a cure-all who is going to turn our season around.

There isn't one skill that Davis has that's better than Crane. We've all seen how bad Crane has been, and yet through spring practice, summer practice, and through limited game action, Jags hasn't seen anything to convince him that Davis is better. Shouldn't this tell us something? I get the sense that Jags would do whatever he has to do to win and isn't going to be stubborn just to prove a point.

The only convincing argument to play Davis, IMO, is that the presence of a new quarterback might give the rest of the team a 'spark' and add a little confidence and energy to their game. I've pooh-poohed this idea, but I'm starting to be convinced that it's a reasonable argument.

I do think Davis should get snaps and I'm curious as to why we haven't seen him for a few drives per game.

But in the end, the starting quarterback has to be the one who gives you the best chance to win, and as sad as it is, that quarterback is Chris Crane. 

With that knowledge, our coaches need to call plays that are aware of Crane's limitations. I'm not calling for Bible-ball, but would lining up in an I formation be terrible every now and then? Do we have to go out of the shotgun every down, even when on the 1 yard line? Must almost every play be a mis-direction? Must we call for Crane to roll out and throw across to the other side of the field so often?

I'd heard rumblings in the spring that we were going to run the option... we have done very little of that. Crane can move, and running the option a few times per game with Haden or Harris could add a nice element to our game. Why not?

It's foolhardy to give up on the season right now. 5-3 is not what some of us would have hoped for, but it's still a solid record, and the current fear of losing out is nothing more than overreactionary panic and defeatism.


Claver2010 said...

The Patriots had no clue they had the Tom Brady sitting on the bench that we all know now. Belichick is clearly a smart coach, but why wouldn't he play Brady if he knew he was so good? The answer is clearly the kid preforms better in game situations than practice. I remember all of the Patriots fans ready to dump the season when this 7th round draft pick came in for the third game of the season.

By no means am I comparing DDavis to Brady whatsoever, but the point is you don't truly know what you have until you see him in game situations (applies to recruiting too). Give the kid a shot, the offense produced negative points in the 2nd half of UNC, couldn't sustain a complete drive the entire game, and were unable to score unless the D gave them the ball inside the 35. We have 2 quality backs in Montel and Haden and Davis is more athletic than Crane. That zone read is a joke, everyone knows its coming and Crane isn't fast enough or elusive enough to run it. What's the worst that happens? We turn the ball over so the other teams D scores? That already happens (Crane avg 2 pick sixes per game the two games before this). Not score? That's already happening. What do we have to lose?

Claver2010 said...

And even if for some reason he is worse than Crane, the kid has 3 more years after this to develop if God-forbid Tuggle isn't as good as we expect him to be. Crane has 4 and maybe 5 more games left in his career, not a whole lot of room for improvement.

Ed said...

Skills Davis has displayed that are better than Crane:

1. mobility
2. decision-making
3. trust of teammates (OK, that's really not a skill, and I'm speculating, but it seemed that way from watching the O perform under each QB back when Jags actually let both play)

That's enough for me.

Crane is physically talented. He seems to have a strong arm. But he is mentally clueless. He makes poor decisions, locks on to receivers, throws too hard when touch is needed, and throws too soft when he needs to rifle one in.

I don't think you can simulate that in practice. The main area where Crane is killing us is something you can't really evaluate well in practice. So put Davis out there. About the only thing he can be is a tie with Crane -- it's almost impossible to imagine how he could be worse, short of throwing THREE pick-sixes in a game.

Joe Grav said...


Actually, according to a book I read about the 2001 Patriots (I'm not positive, but I think it was Michael Holley's "Patriot Reign"), Belichick was 2-3 games away from turning to Brady if Bledsoe didn't get things turned around.

Apparently Belichick was never particularly high on Bledsoe, and was a big fan of Brady's game and work ethic; that's why he drafted him. He wanted him earlier in the draft, but the team determined that he would still be available in the 7th round.

Additionally, Bledsoe was the face of the franchise, arguably the best QB in team history to that point, and had a massive multigazillion dollar contract.

None of those restraints to making a change apply to Crane.

And if Davis is the starter next year or the year after, God help this program.

Developing for the future is all well and good, but that implies that hope is lost for this year. We're 5-3. That ain't bad.

Joe Grav said...


I'm gonna call BS on 1). Crane's 40 yard times are quicker than Davis's, and Crane has shown himself to be quite mobile. In fact some of Crane's best plays all year have come as a result of his speed, and he's made a number of great long runs... it's an aspect of his game that's been underutilized. I didn't see anything out of Davis that indicated he's any sort of threat as a running QB. Crane is a slightly better runner.

As for 2) decision making, I didn't see Davis have to make many decisions out there because almost every snap was a handoff during his times in the game. He probably wouldn't throw many pick-6s, mainly because his throws would land 10 feet shy of the WR and the secondary wouldn't have a chance to get to them.

3)... totally impossible to measure or gauge.

The Trophy Case: BC's honors during my years at school

  • Men's Basketball
  • 2006 - Commonwealth Classic Winner
  • 2008 - Commonwealth Classic Winner
  • Women's Basketball
  • 2008 - Caribbean Challenge Winners
  • 2008 - Blue Sky Classic Winners
  • Sailing:
  • 2008 - ICSA Women's National Champions
  • 2008 - ICSA Co-Ed National Champions
  • Football:
  • 2006 - Meineke Car Care Bowl Winner
  • 2007 - Ireland Trophy
  • 2007 - ACC Atlantic Division Champions
  • 2007 - Champs Sports Bowl Winner
  • 2008 - Ireland Trophy
  • 2008 - ACC Atlantic Division Champions
  • Men's Soccer:
  • 2007 - ACC Regular Season Champions
  • 2007 - ACC Tournament Champions
  • Women's Soccer:
  • 2006 - Sweet Sixteen
  • 2008 - Sweet Sixteen
  • Women's Hockey:
  • 2007 - Beanpot Champions
  • 2007 - Frozen Four
  • 2009 - Beanpot Champions
  • Men's Hockey:
  • 2007 - Hockey East Tournament Champions
  • 2007 - Frozen Four
  • 2007 - Mariucci Classic Champions
  • 2008 - Beanpot Champions
  • 2008 - Hockey East Tournament Champions
  • 2008 - Frozen Four
  • 2008 - National Champions

Games I Attended in '07-'08

  • Overall: 51-30-11 + 12 non BC + spring football = 105 games
  • Home: 40-25-6 + spring game
  • Away: 4-5-5
  • Neutral: 7-0
  • Non-BC NCAA Games: 12
  • Men's Hockey: 13-6-5
  • Women's BBall: 8-2
  • Football: 6-1 + spring game
  • Baseball: 5-1
  • Softball: 4-0
  • Men's BBall: 6-4
  • Women's Hockey: 8-11-5
  • Men's Soccer: 1-2-1
  • Field Hockey: 0-1
  • Women's Soccer: 0-1

Stadiums/Fields Seen 07-08

  • Total: 20
  • Conte Forum [BC] - (49)
  • Alumni Stadium [BC] - (8)
  • TD Banknorth Garden - (7)
  • Shea Field, Baseball [BC] - (6)
  • Newton Soccer Field [BC] - (6)
  • Walter Brown Arena [BU] - (4)
  • Shea Field, Softball [BC] - (4)
  • Matthews Arena [NU] - (3)
  • DCU Center [Worcester] - (3)
  • Schneider Arena [PC] - (2)
  • Ridder Arena [Minnesota] - (2)
  • UConn Hockey Arena [Conn] - (2)
  • Agganis Arena [BU] - (2)
  • Tsongas Arena [UML] - (1)
  • Whittemore Center [UNH] - (1)
  • Mariucci Arena [Minnesota] - (1)
  • Bright Arena [Harvard] - (1)
  • Harvard Stadium [Harvard] - (1)
  • Newton Field Hockey [BC] - (1)
  • Houston Field House [RPI] - (1)

Games I attended in 06-07

  • OVERALL 67-27-3 = 97 games
  • Football 6-0
  • M Hockey 17-6-1
  • M Basketball 14-4
  • W Hockey 13-6-2
  • W Basketball 6-3
  • Softball 3-1
  • W Soccer 3-1
  • M Soccer 3-1
  • Baseball 2-4
  • W Lax 0-1

Best Moments

  • Men's Hockey, 4/12/08 - National Champs.
  • Football, 10/26/07 - BC rallies with two touchdowns in the last 2:11 to win at Virginia Tech and maintain their #2 ranking. Students spill out of the dorms and have an impromptu celebration all over campus. What a night. WOW.
  • Men's Hockey, 3/30/08 - BC scores 3 goals in 1:58 to come from an 0-2 deficit to a 3-2 lead late in the 2nd against Miami in the NCAA regional final.
  • Men's Hockey, 3/30/08 - Joe Whitney's ridiculous diving goal sends BC to the Frozen Four, beating Miami 4-3 in OT.
  • Men's Hockey, 3/21/08 - Benn Ferriero's 3OT goal caps a comeback against UNH in the Hockey East semifinals at the Garden.
  • Men's Hockey, 2/11/08 - Nick Petrecki's OT goal wins the Beanpot for BC!
  • Football, 9/1/07 - BC scores a touchdown to tie the game at 21 right before half time against Wake. BC wins 38-28
  • Men's Hockey, 11/30/07 - BU goalie Karson Gillespie gets sent to the box by Benedetto for a swan dive... piss-your-pants laughter follows
  • Men's Hockey, 3/15/08 - Nate Gerbe's amazing penalty shot goal makes it 4-0 BC over PC in Game 2 of the HE QFs
  • Men's Hockey, 2/4/08 - Gerbe slays BU in overtime
  • Men's Hockey, 3/22/08 - BC cruises to another Hockey East title, beating UVM 4-0
  • Men's Hockey, 3/29/08 - BC gets past the Gophers 5-2 in the NCAA tournament.
  • Men's Hockey, 3/15/08 - BC sweeps the Friars with a pair of 5-1 wins in the HE QFs to advance to the TD Banknorth Garden.
  • Women's Hockey, 2/29/08 - Eagles top PC 4-2 in the season's penultimate game to keep their playoff hopes alive. Stack with the ENG to ice it with 4 seconds left.
  • Women's Hockey, 1/4/07 - BC kills off a 5-on-3, Lindsay Wright aka CANADA scores a sick goal, and BC upsets #4 SLU 5-2
  • Women's Basketball, 1/6/07 - BC stuns NC State with a thrilling 1 point come-from-behind victory
  • Men's Soccer, 11/9/07 - BC clinches ACC reg. season title with a win at home against VT.
  • Women's Hockey, 01/12/08 - MN native Allie Thunstrom's goal with 1:30 to go gives BC a tie @ #4 Minnesota
  • Men's Hockey, 3/14/08 - BC blitzes Providence early and often en route to 5-1 win in Game 1 of HE QFs at BC
  • Men's Basketball, 12/23/07 - Tyrese Rice knocks down a floater with less than 5 seconds to play to give BC the 57-55 win over Northeastern.
  • Men's Hockey, 1/19/08 - Carl Sneep's goal in the 3rd ties BU 2-2; pandemonium in the student section
  • Football, 11/24/07 - BC finally snaps the long losing streak against the U.
  • Women's Hockey, 2/10/08 - BC's Stack scores in the 2nd to tie UNH 1-1. We lost, but that was a great moment.
  • Women's Basketball, 12/31/07 - Picco nails back to back three pointers as BC wins a thriller against NU
  • Baseball, 5/13/08 - BC rallies from big early deficit to beat UConn.
  • Softball, 3/26/08 - Fence Girl crashes into the fence, Thunstrom scores winning run, BC downs HC 4-3
  • Women's Hockey, 11/29/07 - A clutch goal with under a minute remaining by Stack gives BC a much needed point @ UConn
  • Women's Hockey, 3/15/08 - UNH tops St. Lawrence 3-2 in OT to give Hockey East a representative in the Frozen Four.
  • Men's Hockey, 11/30/07 - BC explodes for a 3-0 1st period lead en route to a 6-2 win over BU
  • Football, 10/7/07 - BC scores 31 points in the 2nd quarter against Bowling Green and rolls to 55-24 win - up to #4 in the country!