Nov. 5 MVP: MassVarsity Pre-and-Post


Well, here's your shot, Boston College.


With ESPN's College Gameday set to descend on Chestnut Hill, the Eagles will have the eyes of the entire country on them with a chance to make some serious national noise.


One could argue even getting to this point is a major step forward. Although Steve Addazio has coached BC to now five of six seasons of bowl eligibility, each of those postseason trips finished with a 7-6 record. The Eagles are already 7-2 and ranked as high as No. 14 in the Coaches Poll.


That's all well and good, but what would it do for the program if the Eagles could unseat an unbeaten Clemson team that is currently No. 2 in the College Football Playoff standings?


Simply put, it would have the Eagles in a position they haven't been since 2007, when Matt Ryan led BC to the Atlantic Coast Conference title game and the type of nationwide relevance that is rare around these parts.


And that cache matters. It matters to fans, to the program, but most importantly to recruits.


No, Massachusetts does not produce the amount of Division 1 players that the big-time states do, but if you look around college football, the area has some serious talent playing at other programs. Players like defensive end Joe Gaziano at Northwestern, tight ends Sean McKeon at Michigan and Pat Freiermuth at Penn State, you are looking at difference-makers at big-time schools that left BC's backyard.


And, as of Sunday, Everett defensive back/wide receiver Mike Sainristil made a verbal commitment to Michigan. Sainristil is a difference-maker of the highest order who does not come along very often around these parts. That's a huge loss of a player who comes from a virtual pipeline high school to The Heights.


If Addazio and Co. can prove they can beat the Clemsons of the world, maybe the next major recruit from Massachusetts will stay home.


Fightin' Minutemen


If there is anything to be gleaned from the UMass triple-overtime win over Liberty, it's that the Minutemen can win games now that, before the bye week, they likely would have lost.


In the first half of the season, morale was low, and players and coaches made reference to how a little negative momentum would snowball and end up crushing the team's chances.


That clearly is not the case at the moment, as there were multiple times in that game where UMass could have thrown in the towel.


Even though UMass will be an underdog against both BYU and Georgia to close out the season, the Minutemen showed over the last two wins over UConn and Liberty that they have made an attitude adjustment for the better.


That counts for something, even if bowl qualification is a long shot at this point.


With authority


That had to feel good for both Harvard and Holy Cross this weekend.


Harvard put a beatdown on Columbia, 52-18, while Holy Cross did the same to Lafayette on the road, 40-14.


The other common thread? Quarterback play.


For Harvard, sophomore Tom Stewart completed 15-of-26 passes for 393 yards and five touchdowns. Needham native and St. Sebastian's alum Geoff Wade completed 16-of-21 passes for 289 yards and two touchdowns.


Obviously, you get performances like that out of that position, you'll be in good shape, and the Crimson and Crusaders both have reason to like what they have going forward.


Local 'hounds


In Assumption's 52-21 rout of Bentley in Waltham Saturday, the Greyhounds received some big contributions from Massachusetts-bred players.


Springfield Central alum Cody Williams continued his strong season at quarterback, as he completed 13-of-18 passes for 167 yards and a touchdown. His favorite target was former Catholic Memorial receiver Kyle Sonnie, who caught a career-high eight passes for 58 yards. Peabody's Doug Santos rushed for 70 yards and a touchdown on nine carries.


Comeback kids


You knew Western New England was not going to give up its 25-game Commonwealth Coast Conference winning streak without a fight.


But for Endicott, the Gulls landed the last blow in what was one of the best games of the weekend at any level.


Western New England held a 24-6 halftime lead, but Endicott put on a monster rally that ended with a Joe Kalosky-to-Riley Shanley scoring toss from 7 yards out 21 seconds remaining.


Now, Endicott holds a 5-0 conference record, and has the chance to provide the clincher next week against Salver Regina in Beverly.


Double trouble


We are closing in on the possibility of a night-before-Thanksgiving and Division 1 Super Bowl that features the same two teams.


Without question, that would be an unfortunate set of circumstances.


Of course, we still have a ways to go before we cross that bridge. Central Catholic could beat St. John's Prep, and Catholic Memorial could still beat Xaverian.


But say the Prep and Xaverian both win the North and South sections, respectively. You will have the two teams play the Wednesday night before Thanksgiving at Fenway Park, then turn around and face themselves again for the Super Bowl.


Given the atmosphere of a game at Fenway, a Catholic Conference title will be on the line, and the fact that both programs say they will never hold back when they play each other, you're probably going to see these teams go all out in both contests.


That said, these teams are already very banged up, and you don't want to see the Division 1 title decided by a war of attrition.


Again, though, there is a lot of football to be played between now and then.

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