CHESNUT HILL, Mass. -- Notes, quotes, and anecdotes from Alumni Stadium after Boston College (2-1, 0-1 ACC) upset the No. 9 Trojans (2-1, 1-0 Pac-12) 37-31.
USC head coach Steve Sarkisian comments:
The game assessment: "I'll start by saying a lot of credit to Boston College. Their coaches, their players played a heck of a game. They outplayed us. They beat us in all three phases. They controlled the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball and the end result was we didn't get it done."
Taking the blame: "It starts with me. Coaching and it goes to everybody in that locker room right now. We need to improve. Again, credit to Boston College. We did not play a very good football game tonight. We didn't execute the things that we are capable of doing. And again, that's directly on my shoulders. We have to do a better job. I don't think it was for a lack of effort."
On BC's success rushing to the outside: "For whatever reason, we didn't tackle very good tonight. We had been tackling the first couple ball games, but we didn't tackle good tonight. And then it's like anything, when you are running the ball well, it kind of feeds itself. The (BC) quarterbacks got confident running it, the running backs got confident running it and in turn we started to lose confidence that we were going to make that play and inevitably, it didn't work out."
Boston College head coach Steve Addazio comments:
The game assessment: "It's a great, great night for our team, for the players. They played really hard. There were big plays made by a lot of people. We sacked them. We harassed them. We played relentlessly on defense. That's a good football team (USC).
Now it can be told: "I said to our team going into the game that all I ask is that we play with relentless effort that we play really, really hard. That's what we talked about and to have faith, faith in each other. They did that."
The inspiration: In reference to fallen hero Welles Crowther who was a NYC fireman and former BC lacrosse player who died in 9/11 trying to save lives in Tower 2 and was honored at halftime, "We talked a lot about Welles Crowther. We talked a lot about who he was and what it takes be a BC man. Our guys really dug deep on this. We were proud to give one of the games balls out to the Crowther family after the game."
More notes and anecdotes
Key(s) to victory: Boston College shocked the favored Trojans by physically dominating them on both sides of the line of scrimmage. Boston College outgained the Men of Troy in total yardage (506-337), recorded five sacks, and never looked back after taking a 20-17 halftime lead after being down 10-0 after the first quarter.
The streak: The Trojans are now 4-1 against the Eagles. The last time BC beat a Top 25 opponent was against No. 20 Florida State in 2008.
Scoring average: The Trojans scored 31 points against Boston College on Saturday. The Men of Troy came into the BC game averaging 32.5 points per game.
Cody comments: On why the offense sputtered after jumping out to a 10-point first quarter lead, Trojans junior quarterback Cody Kessler said, "We lost rhythm. We weren't winning our one-vs-ones both in the perimeter and the backfield and up front. That's all football is. We had a lot of missed assignments. At the end of the day, I have to take the blame for that, I have to get the ball out quicker and give people a chance."
Sad sacks: Boston College sacked Trojans quarterback Cody Kessler five times while the Trojans could only record one sack on BC quarterbacks.
Defensively speaking: The Trojans defense allowed 37 points to Boston College on Saturday. The Men of Troy were allowing 11.5 points per game prior to the BC game.
Quarteback contain: On the obvious problem of trying to contain BC's graduate quarterback Tyler Murphy (191 yards rushing), Trojans sophomore strong safety Su'a Cravens said, "He just beat us with his skill. We were anticipating him to run the ball and that's what they did. We knew he liked to scramble and we just didn't execute. Third downs came up, and he was running all over the field."
Offensive blackout: The Trojans had 337 yards in total offense against Boston College on Saturday. The Men of Troy were averaging 496.0 yards per game prior to the BC game.
Frank Farmer: Although he had an 8-yard TD reception in the first quarter, junior receiver George Farmer was astonished on what happened Saturday night. Farmer said, "I am very shocked. You can't predict what's going to happen. This will make us a better team and we'll be stronger."
Defensive downer: The Trojans defense allowed 506 total yards. Prior to playing BC, the Trojans were allowing 365.0 yards per game.
Miscommunication: On the Trojans defensive problems, Su'a Cravens said, "Well, a lot of it was miscommunication on the defensive side with the high and low calls, and when we're supposed to tackle or dive, or or when we're supposed to go to the quarterback."
Below the rush: The Trojans rushed for just 20 yards. Prior to the BC game, the Men of Troy were averaging 216.5 yards rushing per game.
Banner bantering: On the offensive line's performance, sophomore offensive tackle Zach Banner said, "It was a tough game, 3,000 miles away from home. It wasn't anything we hadn't seen before. They're a Division I school and we just have to execute."
Hole in the wall: The Trojans allowed a whopping 452 net yards rushing. Prior to the BC game, the Men of Troy were allowing 142.5 rushing per game.
What a rush: The last time BC recorded 400-plus yards was against NC State in 2013.
The return: Trojans senior linebacker Hayes Pullard returned in the second half after being held out of the first half as part of his Pac-12 punishment for head-to-head contact in last week's Stanford game. Hayes had five tackles in the second half.
Hayes speaks: On his team's defensive lack of being able to contain the BC offense, Hayes Pullard said, "Boston College came out and played with great character, they had a great plan. You just can't win on raw talent. They did have great execution, they had their stadium, their emotions, and hit us in the mouth."
Passing the test: On Saturday against Boston College, the Trojans passed for 317 yards. Prior to the BC game, the Trojans were averaging 279.5 passing yards per game.
Air raid-less: On Saturday against Boston College, the Trojans defense allowed just 54 passing yards. Prior to the BC game, the Trojans pass defense was allowing 222.5-yards per game.
No. 1: Redshirt freshman corner Chris Hawkins second-quarter interception was the first of his career.
The flag is up: On Saturday against Boston College, the Trojans were penalized just three times for 20 yards. Prior to the BC game, the Trojans were averaging 81.5 yards in flags per game.
The red bandana: In honor of former BC lacrosse player Welles Crowther who gave his life as a fireman saving lives in the South Tower of the World Trade Center, Boston College wore Crowther's signature red bandana on their helmets, cleats and gloves. The Eagles also passed out 6,000 red bandanas to students, and the coaching staff wore gear featuring the red bandana pattern.
The meat wagon: There were no reported Trojans injuries.
Counting the house: Alumni Stadium attendance was announced as 41,632.
The thermometer: It was 64 degrees and cloudy at kickoff in Alumni Stadium.
Celebrity sightings: Trojans greats Marcus Allen and Rodney Peete were in attendance along with entertainer and USC alumni Will Ferrell.
Bowl evaluators: Representatives from the Florida Citrus Bowl were in attendance.
The NFL: Checking out the talent were scouts from the Eagles, Dolphins, Titans, Steelers, Ravens, Chiefs, Chargers, and CFL Roughriders.
Next game: After next weekend's bye, the Trojans will return to action on Saturday, Sept. 27, hosting Oregon State in a Pac-12 game.