The (Defensive) Eagle Has Landed

The (Defensive) Eagle Has Landed

By TJ Hartnett – @T_Hartnett2

December was not “the most wonderful time of the year” for the Boston College football Eagles.  Beginning with the transfer of three offensive players in the beginning of the month due to lack of opportunity, BC’s offseason was not exactly off to a hot start.  Just days before Christmas brought news the #1 defense in the nation feared; Don Brown was leaving.  After leading the sole bright spot of the Eagles season to the top of the polls in almost every defensive category, Brown became a Michigan Man, joining Jim Harbaugh in Ann Arbor.  The domino effect that followed was just as painful.  Recruits began to drop like flies, the defensive staff pursued greater opportunity with its newfound success, and the anticipation of who would take the defensive reigns could kill the diehard fan.  Well the anticipation and the domino effect is over.  Jim Reid is the new defensive dude.  


Reid was the Linebackers Coach at The University of Iowa for the past three seasons.  He was an integral part of the Hawkeyes near perfect season, falling short on a last second touchdown in the Big Ten Championship game to the powerhouse of East Lansing, Michigan State. Reid brings experience from many dimensions on the defensive side of the ball.  From his head coaching duties at UMass, Richmond, and VMI to his defensive coordinator duties at Virginia and most notably, The Heights in 1994 under Dan Henning, Reid has been around the block and knows a thing or two about success.  With his most recent DC job in Charlottesville, Reid increased the Cavaliers from 62nd to 17th in the nation in total defense during his three year run.  He was selected as Linebackers Coach of the Year in 2014 with the Hawkeyes by FootballScoop.  Originally from New England, Reid has many ties to the region.  Attending Maine University, Reid took his first job as a Graduate Assistant for the UMass football program a year out of college.  Five years later he was the defensive coordinator, followed by a head coaching opportunity in the late 80’s for the Minutemen.  He returned to New England for one year as the Boston College defensive coordinator, a stint in which the Eagles were ranked 11th in the nation.  Over twenty years later, Reid is back in Chestnut Hill to take over the nation’s top defense.  The only question is, can the Eagles remain supreme defensively? 


Despite losing Don Brown, the Eagles defense has remained confident.  Many players have taken to social media to show their devotion to the program, their diligence to continue to get better, and their willingness to stay on the top of the charts.  Reid’s job is to keep the defense where it is, simple as that.  With the loss of NFL prospects Justin Simmons, Steven Daniels, and Connor Wujciak, the defense will have some major holes to fill.  The one thing this defense has is potential.  Such young guns as Zach Allen, Wyatt Ray, and Ray Smith have not even gotten their chance to prove themselves on the D-Line.  Given the chance to develop behind upperclassmen is a huge positive for the future of this program.  Unlike the offense, which was forced to start many first-timers, the defense has been given the opportunity to mold young players, or at the very least learn from experienced members with NFL potential.  Upperclassmen Kam Moore, Truman Gutapfel, Harold Landry, Matt Milano, Isaac Yiadom, and Connor Strachan will provide a great foundation for Jim Reid to build upon.  On Steve Addazio said Jim Reid was “an impact coach who has left an indelible mark everywhere he has been.”  That mark included 12 W’s in the Hawkeye state.  Let’s hope he stuffed some W’s into his suitcase on his way to Bean Town.  I know a team that needs a couple.