October 24, 2007

Youth will be served

With Boston College heading into its huge showdown with Virginia Tech Thursday night, we thought we'd take a step back from the very interesting present and look toward the Eagles' future.

We asked defensive coordinators Frank Spaziani and offensive coordinator Steve Logan to give quick progress reports on all the true freshman in the program, some of whom have already made an impact, others who will most likely get redshirted this season.

We start with the defense and Spaziani.

First off is cornerback DeLeon Gause, who has 11 tackles in six games played.

"He's doing very well," said Spaziani. "It's looks like he has a bright future. You preface everything with these guys as having potential, which means you haven't done it yet. But he seems like he gets it. We're excited to have him."

What's impressive about him?

"First of all, he's a pretty good tackler. And he seems to be a football player. He doesn't have to be brainwashed. He seems to have some natural instincts," said Spaziani.

Is his contributing faster than expected?

"Any time you have a true freshman kicking around in the secondary, it's quicker than expected," said Spaziani, who added he would like to get him more playing time. "If you don't play, it's hard to improve. And we try to play him, but circumstances are a little tough. For example, he got about six plays against Notre Dame. We had planned to play him 20 or 15, but now the game's 20-14 and you're going to put a true freshman in there for Tribble?"

On safety Dan Mulrooney, who played running back and defensive end at Holy Cross High School in Connecticut.

"He looks like he's going to be a prospect," said Spaziani. "He looks like he has potential, but it's a totally new situation for him and he's got to soak. Unlike Gause, who has been in that position, this is a new position for this kid. Moving to safety is a big change. But this kid's a football player. It takes a while for kids to do this, but we're happy with him."

On linebacker Dan Williams out of Belmont Hill.

"A good prospect," said Spaziani. "He looks like he's someone we're going to like. He's not overwhelmed. If we didn't have some of the depth that we have here, he could be contributing. He's got some quickness and he does some nice things."

On linebacker Will Thompson, out of St. Peter's Prep in New Jersey.

"Thompson is another guy that looks like he's got the right disposition and it looks like he's going to be prospect. Both Thompson and Williams, if we didn't have what we have here, they could have been in the fray," said Spaziani.

"He's bright-eyed, he understands what's going on, he's not overwhelmed by the situation. And it looks like he has some talent, which is hard to see in practice. Games are a different story. But both and he and Williams look like they've got what you want."

On defensive end Corey Eason out of Mansfield.

"Corey Eason's a multi-talented kid, he's a good football player. He's a very good prospect. We'll see how he comes along," said Spaziani.

Moving to the offensive side of the ball, we start with intriguing 6-foot-6, 215-pound wide receiver Ifeanyi Momah, who has one catch for 13 yards.

"He's got a lot of upside," said Logan. "He just needs to develop his strength and I think he's really going to be a weapon for us eventually."

On fullback Brad Newman, who has a fumble recovery on special teams and has been playing a lot in goal line situations.

"He's playing a lot for us. It's been a pleasant surprise and he's been a contributor in a lot of ways," said Logan. "We're just tickled with his progress. And, with all these freshman, the more weight room work they get in, the better of they're going to be."

On right tackle Anthony Castonzo, a starter since the opener and thus far the star of the class.

"He's really more than a freshman (because of the post-graduate year at (Fork Union Military), but he's an extraordinary talent in a lot of ways. We're fortunate to have him," said Logan.

Has he exceeded expectations?

"To a degree," said Logan. "We thought he could do it, we just didn't know mentally if he could or would stand in there and do it. But he certainly has done all of those things. He's an extraordinary freshman."

On quarterback Dominique Davis out of Lakeland, Florida.

"Like Momah, he needs the weight room. But he's very bright and I'm really encouraged about what I see," said Logan

"He's got great arm strength, he just needs to work on the rotation of the ball, which is about forearm strength and things of that nature. But it's going to be all about the weight room with him."

On quarterback Chris Johnson, out of Paterson, New Jersey.

"He and Dominique are very much the same. Both are really bright and have good football IQs. There's going to be a stiff combination between the two, which is going to make them both better," said Logan.

On wide receiver Dominick Magazu out of Mathews, North Carolina.

"He's just working his way through the receiving end of things. He's just working with the scout team right now and trying to work his way into the program," said Logan.

On tight end Lars Anderson out of Winter Springs, Florida.

"He's a good prospect at tight end and I'm sure this spring will be a big spring for him. We're losing two seniors, so he'll get a long look in the spring," said Logan.

On offensive linemen Nick Schepis, Mark Spinney and Nathan Richman.

"They're just typical freshman offensive linemen who need to get a lot of weight room work and need to get some spring ball under them so they can figure out who to hit," said Logan. "It'll be next spring before they even get a chance to really get coached, to be honest with you."

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