Wade at the con­trols

BC quar­ter­back set for bowl drive

Boston Herald - - NHL / NBA SCOREBOARD / RACING - By RICH THOMP­SON — rthomp­son@boston­her­ald.com

Dar­ius Wade ex­pe­ri­enced the same pain, frus­tra­tion and heart­break that An­thony Brown is go­ing through now.

Brown started 10 straight games at quar­ter­back for Bos­ton Col­lege this year be­fore suf­fer­ing a sea­so­nend­ing knee in­jury in the Ea­gles’ 17-14 loss to North Carolina State last Satur­day at Alumni Sta­dium.

Wade will make his fourth ca­reer start when BC (5-5) takes on UConn (37) in a non-con­fer­ece “road” game on Satur­day night at Fen­way Park. BC can at­tain bowl el­i­gi­bil­ity with a win.

“I’m pretty much try­ing to keep things busi­ness as usual,” Wade said af­ter yes­ter­day’s prac­tice at Alumni Sta­dium. “It is a sit­u­a­tion where we have to make this as seam­less as pos­si­ble. It is a very un­for­tu­nate thing that hap­pened, and you never want to earn your job through in­jury. How­ever, that is how it panned out this time. We have to keep at­tack­ing it, and we have a lot of things ahead of us with two games re­main­ing to get bowl el­i­gi­ble and get to a bowl game.”

Af­ter serv­ing as fresh­man un­der­study to Tyler Mur­phy in 2014, Wade emerged from train­ing camp in 2015 as the best quar­ter­back on the ros­ter. He started two wins against Maine and Howard and made his At­lantic Coast Con­fer­ence de­but against de­fend­ing champ Florida State. Wade suf­fered a bro­ken an­kle on a sec­ond-quar­ter roll out and was lost for the sea­son.

“I told (Brown) to pretty much keep his head up,” Wade said. “Mine was dif­fer­ent be­cause it hap­pened in the be­gin­ning of the sea­son, but it is a very un­for­tu­nate sit­u­a­tion to have a sea­son-end­ing in­jury. Like me, for him this is the first time it (in­jury) has hap­pened. He has never re­ally been hurt like that be­fore. There is def­i­nitely a lot of over­whelm­ing emo­tion that kind of hits you all at once.

“There is the pain of the in­jury it­self as well as know­ing you can no longer play this sea­son. Your team­mates are out there play­ing, and you are watch­ing them on crutches.”

Wade’s big­gest con­tri­bu­tion in 2017 oc­curred in the sec­ond half of the Ea­gles’ 45-42 up­set of Louisville on Oct., 15. Brown ag­gra­vated an ex­ist­ing shoul­der in­jury on the Ea­gles’ open­ing drive of the sec­ond half and had to exit.

Wade’s game man­age­ment against the Car­di­nals was master­ful. Us­ing fresh­man tail­back A.J. Dil­lon as his pri­mary weapon, Wade drove BC to four con­sec­u­tive touch­downs that put the Ea­gles’ up 42-28 with 11:59 to play in the game.

Wade com­ple­mented the Ea­gles’ power run game with timely and ef­fec­tive roll­out and play-ac­tion passes, pri­mar­ily to tight end Tommy Sweeney. He com­pleted 7-of-10 passes for 91 yards as Dil­lon ran wild for 272 yards on 39 car­ries.

Ea­gles coach Steve Ad­dazio ap­pre­ci­ates what Wade ac­com­plished against Louisville, but he wants more than just an ef­fec­tive game man­ager against the Huskies.

“I think we need play­mak­ing. We are go­ing to at­tack just like we have been,” Ad­dazio said. “Not re­ally look­ing for a game man­ager to be hon­est. We got out of that mode and grew and got to the point of at­tack­ing de­fenses. We’ve just got to get our game plan right and make sure we are do­ing ev­ery­thing that every­one can do.”

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