Boston Faculty’s matchup towards Virginia Tech throughout the 2007 season carried an nearly mythological headline by the point the 2 groups set foot on Lane Stadium for a Thursday evening matchup. It was the ACC’s midweek marquee, a recreation reserved for the brilliant lights of primetime on a day put aside for essential convention video games, and one way or the other the meteoric rise of the 2 packages made for even greater theater.
This season marks 15 years because the Eagles claimed certainly one of their most marquee wins in program historical past, and what transpired on that chilly, moist Blacksburg evening continues to be etched within the tone of an annual rivalry ending its protected crossover standing after this yr. The sport itself wasn’t a masterpiece, however when it ended, BC and Virginia Tech shared high headline area with the World Collection.
“I discussed to the children at halftime, proper earlier than we went out, I mentioned, ‘Do not you dare lookup,” head coach Jeff Jagodzinski was quoted in The Boston Globe the subsequent day. “‘It does not matter what the rating is, you’ll play until the final play of the sport and we’ll achieve success.’ And the children did it.”
The win was unbelievable by itself, however the context surrounding a Thursday evening recreation at Virginia Tech made the comeback downright miraculous for a BC group cresting its meteoric rise to the No. 2 general rating. Virginia Tech was borderline invincible at dwelling, and evening video games at Lane Stadium took on mythological proportions. Only one yr earlier, the Hokies defeated a tenth-ranked Clemson group underneath the lights on a Thursday evening, and BC’s first journey to Lane Stadium as an ACC opponent resulted in a loss when the No. 13 Eagles dropped a 30-10 determination to the No. 3 Hokies in a midweek marquee.
It fashioned a cocoon that saved Virginia Tech among the many nationwide elite, and the 2007 Hokies absolutely restored that standing by the BC recreation after earlier dropping 9 spots following a 48-7 blowout by the hands of No. 2 LSU. A win at No. 22 Clemson helped transfer them from No. 15 to No. 12, however a win over Duke solidified their contender standing with their third 40-plus level recreation in 4 weeks.
The sport towards BC regarded to revive full order as a result of the Eagles had been a paper champion, a group ranked second within the nation solely as a result of no one else seemingly needed the spot. They had been an unranked group to begin the yr and hadn’t crushed an opponent worthy of top-flight consideration. Their lone ranked victory came to visit No. 15 Georgia Tech, who regarded flimsy in its subsequent losses to Virginia and Maryland, and wins over Military, Bowling Inexperienced, and a very unhealthy, 1-5 Notre Dame group lacked the panache of a top-flight contender.
It fed an undefeated begin, and the creep up the polls culminated when second-ranked South Florida misplaced on the street to Rutgers on a Thursday evening throughout BC’s bye week. Only some undefeated groups remained, and with Ohio State constantly holding the No. 1 spot, the Bulls slid into the second spot when LSU misplaced to Kentucky on October 13. No different group made sense for the No. 2 spot, however that did not imply anybody really believed the Eagles deserved to compete for a nationwide championship, both. So when BC arrived at Lane Stadium, it was a street underdog to a group anticipated to win.
“I feel it should be a hell of an environment,” Virginia Tech head coach Frank Beamer mentioned throughout the week. “We now have a wonderful coming in right here on Thursday. We’re taking a look at their quarterback because the man who will most certainly win the Heisman Trophy. They’re very robust defensively and powerful up entrance. They’re only a actual good and hard soccer group. We perceive after taking part in up there that it’ll take an incredible effort on our half to get a win.”
That did not imply an prompt traditional was assured to happen, and for the primary 58 minutes, the sport was a sloppy, uneven, damaged affair using shotgun to the Boston Pink Sox’ win over the Colorado Rockies within the World Collection. BC punted on its first 5 drives, and its sixth resulted in a turnover-on-downs after the protection pressured a fumble deep in Hokie territory.
The second half began equally poorly after Matt Ryan threw an interception on the primary drive of the half, however it wasn’t like Virginia Tech was doing significantly better after Branden Ore gained lower than three yard per keep it up common. With out quarterback Tyrod Taylor, Sean Glennon stepped again right into a featured position, however a extra considered method completed his recreation with 149 yards on 15-of-25 passing.
Glennon had staked Virginia Tech to a 7-0 lead by means of a 91-yard landing drive within the second quarter, and one other 55-yard drive yielded a 44-yard area objective to push a 10-0 lead seemingly out of attain for the Eagles. Ryan threw a second interception with six minutes remaining within the fourth quarter, and after getting buried in their very own finish, the Eagles needed to basically traverse Lane Stadium twice in 4 minutes to win the sport.
To that diploma, what Ryan completed cemented his legacy perpetually. He had thrown for simply 128 yards over the primary 56 minutes, however after going roughly 90 yards within the first eight performs of the drive, he hit Wealthy Gunnell with a sideline fade for a 16-yard landing. It injected BC with life, and the adrenaline flowed when Virginia Tech didn’t get well the following onside kick earlier than a closing drive recapped lots of of instances over the previous 15 years as Lane Stadium went quiet on Andre Callendar’s 24-yard landing catch.
“I instructed the children that issues like that can occur to them in particular years – and I feel that is a kind of forms of years right here,” Jagodzinski mentioned after the sport.
That recreation nonetheless resonates for plenty of causes round Chestnut Hill. It wasn’t essentially the most glamorous win and is not the group’s biggest efficiency, but it holds particular loftiness as a result of it proved how Boston Faculty may compete at that stage. Previous to 2007, solely a few highlights replayed again and again. Doug Flutie’s Hail Mary go was certainly one of them, however it had even been 14 years since David Gordon’s kick towards No. 1 Notre Dame. The BC neighborhood, such because it turns over each 4 years with the doorway of sophistication after class of recent college students, thirsted for a possibility in a brand new age, and this recreation supplied it.
The day after the Virginia Tech recreation, the Pink Sox rightfully held the foremost headlines. They had been midway to their second World Collection in 4 years, and the franchise held a particular apex after breaking the Curse of the Bambino’s 86-year drought in 2004…no one may contact that that means in Boston. However a flip to the sports activities part the day after Virginia Tech splashed a large image of Matt Ryan on the entrance web page, arms outstretched. On the entrance web page of The Boston Globe, the headline stole area above Jonathan Papelbon’s pumped-up image at Fenway Park.
Now 15 years later, it stands a take a look at of time by reminding BC followers of tips on how to look ahead. On Saturday evening, a visit to Lane Stadium and Virginia Tech provides potential for the subsequent step, and by sometimes glancing backwards, the subsequent technology can look to the longer term on the way it will create – and admire – the subsequent reel for the historical past of Boston Faculty soccer.