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Phil Jurkovec, Boston College Eagles aim to dominate UMass

Sep 4, 2021; Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, USA; Boston College Eagles quarterback Phil Jurkovec (5) celebrates a touchdown against the Colgate Raiders during the second half at Alumni Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 4, 2021; Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, USA; Boston College Eagles quarterback Phil Jurkovec (5) celebrates a touchdown against the Colgate Raiders during the second half at Alumni Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

The offenses of Boston College and Massachusetts fell on opposite ends of the spectrum in the teams’ respective season openers.

Fresh off an electric showing, the Eagles (1-0) will look to run roughshod over the Minutemen (0-1) on Saturday afternoon in a nonconference contest in Amherst, Mass.

Phil Jurkovec threw for 303 yards and three touchdowns and rushed for a team-high 61 yards in Boston College’s 51-0 romp over Colgate last Saturday.

“(Jurkovec) looked comfortable and he looked confident running the ball,” Eagles coach Jeff Hafley said. “The expectations were on him, and everybody is talking about him, and now there is pressure on him.”

Zay Flowers likely will go a long way in helping Jurkovec handle that pressure. The wideout followed up all-ACC first-team honors last season by reeling in seven catches for 135 yards and a touchdown last Saturday.

The touchdown grab midway into the second quarter was a thing of beauty, as Flowers split two defenders to haul down a 39-yard scoring pass.

“You can use him in the horizontal pass game and the vertical pass game,” Hafley said of Flowers. “You can hand him the ball, throw him sweeps, throw him screens and he’s a dynamic player. … That’s a great way to start the season for a player that should be one of the better ones in the ACC.”

The Eagles erupted for 525 total yards of offense and limited the Raiders to just 189. Mike Palmer intercepted a pass in the end zone and fellow safety Jahmin Muse added a pick-six in the fourth quarter to pace Boston College to the convincing victory.

While the Eagles were flying high in their opener, the Minutemen were grounded en route to losing their 12th straight contest dating back to Oct. 5, 2019. Their last win came Sept. 28, 2019, vs. Akron.

UMass mustered just 11 first downs and 209 total yards in its 51-7 drubbing by Pittsburgh last Saturday.

Tyler Lytle completed just 14 of 31 passes for 167 yards and scored on a 1-yard plunge early in the fourth quarter.

“Just a little bit of self-inflicted wounds early in the football game that kept us in third and longs,” Minutemen coach Walt Bell said.

UMass will look to snap a 10-game losing skid in the series dating back to a 27-0 victory in Amherst in 1978.

–Field Level Media