College Football

QB Brown's impressive return carries BC past UMass, 55-21

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AP Photo

QB Brown's impressive return carries BC past UMass, 55-21

BOSTON - Anthony Brown threw for 279 yards and four touchdowns while playing just the opening half in his return from a season-ending knee injury, and Boston College opened its 120th season with a 55-21 victory over in-state rival Massachusetts on Saturday in Chestnut Hill.

Brown, a redshirt sophomore, completed 15 of 21 passes and led the Eagles on TD drives in seven of their nine first-half possession before sitting out the second half. He missed the final two regular-season games and the bowl game last year after a non-contact, right knee injury that required surgery.

AJ Dillon, the Atlantic Coast Conference's preseason player of the year, carried 20 times for 98 yards in two quarters. He also had a 15-yard TD catch in the opening half before he was removed.

Marquis Young had a 3-yard TD run for UMass (1-1). Andrew Ford completed 9 of 18 passes for 78 yards with two interceptions, and backup Ross Comis went 9 of 13 for 145 yards with a TD.

Kobay White caught two TD passes; one of 34 yards and the other 27, and reserve running back Davon Jones ran for two short scores for BC.

Lukas Denis intercepted a pass on the final play of the first half, zig-zagged across the field and returned it 59 yards for a score that gave BC a 48-7 halftime edge.

The Eagles took the lead on the game's first possession, marching 80 yards. Dillon, last season's ACC rookie of the year, caught his first collegiate pass, going in for the score when he hit the right pylon.

After UMass tied it, BC scored on its next three possessions.

THE TAKEAWAY
UMass: Hoping for a program-building statement, the Minutemen were dominated after their quick score. The offense only moved into BC territory twice in the first half.

Boston College: The Eagles were heavy favorites, but it was an impressive showing against an FBS team, though a lower-level program. The true test won't come until ACC play, starting with a nationally-televised game at Wake Forest on Sept. 13.

UP NEXT
UMass: At Georgia Southern next Saturday night.

Boston College: Hosts another in-state school, facing Holy Cross next Saturday. It's the first meeting between the Jesuit schools since 1986.

© The Associated Press.

Report: Boston College close to hiring Ohio State DC Jeff Hafley as head coach

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Report: Boston College close to hiring Ohio State DC Jeff Hafley as head coach

Boston College reportedly is close to hiring its new head football coach.

After parting ways with Steve Addazio earlier this month, the Eagles are close to replacing him with Ohio State defensive coordinator Jeff Hafley, according to Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports.

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Hafley helped the Buckeyes finish No. 2 nationally in total defense this season. Prior to joining Ohio State in 2019, Hafley served as a defensive backs coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Cleveland Browns and San Francisco 49ers.

The move particularly makes sense for BC as it finished the 2019 campaign No. 125 of 130 in total defense. Hafley also has built a reputation over the years as one of the top recruiters in the country.

The formal announcement of Hafley's hiring is expected to be made soon.

Boston College fires head football coach Steve Addazio

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File photo

Boston College fires head football coach Steve Addazio

Boston College is moving on from its head football coach Steve Addazio.

BC fired Addazio on Sunday, according to Yahoo Sports. Addazio spent the last seven seasons with the Eagles, fishing his tenure in Chestnut Hill with a 44-44 record.

Boston College ended its 2019 campaign 6-6, but was able to earn a 26-19 road win over Pittsburgh on Saturday. According to Yahoo, "BC brass made the move in the hopes of finding someone who can make the Eagles more competitive in the ACC."

Wide receivers coach Rich Gunnell reportedly will replace Addazio in the interim.

Addazio had signed a two-year contract extension with BC after last season.

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