WNUR Sports’ Predictions for Northwestern vs. Boston College

The WNUR staff weighs in with their picks for the Week 3 match-up between the Northwestern Wildcats and the Boston College Eagles.

Photo Courtesy of Chicago Tribune.

Welcome back to the wondrous world of wistful predictions as the WNUR Sports staff gives you their predictions of what will happen when Northwestern takes on Boston College on Saturday. Coverage of Saturday’s game will begin at 1:30 with the WNUR Kick-Off Show, and we will send it out to Ryan Field at 2:30 where Jon Rosenberg (@BigJonRosenberg) and Joe Misulonas (@jmisulonas) will have the call. If you would like to submit your picks each week, simply tweet them @WNURSports, and we will pick a few to post here each week. Last week’s winner, Jim Sannes (predicted 27-24 win for Northwestern), will get us started.

Jim Sannes (@JimSannes): Northwestern over Boston College 35-31. This one will come down to whether Northwestern’s rush offense can outscore Boston College’s pass offense, and I believe they can. Venric Mark has reached man-crush status through the first two weeks, and he will be able to catapult the ‘Cats to a 3-0 start on the season. It’s hard to fly like an Eagle when you’re getting mauled by a Wildcat. Player to Watch: Brandon Vitabile.

Seth Bernstein (@SethBernstein67): Northwestern 34, Boston College 17. Pat Fitzgerald ripped into his wide receivers Monday after the unit’s sub-par performance against Vanderbilt. Though Northwestern won with a gritty defensive performance and clutch offense late in the game, it’s clear Fitz was trying to light a fire under what is supposedly his best offensive unit. Doubt they are going to struggle a second week in a row against, simply, a bad team in Boston College. Player to Watch: Kyle Prater.

Michael Anders (@MikeAnders819): Northwestern wins 31-17. Boston College just isn’t very good this year. At rowdy Ryan Field (we all can dream), the Cats will hold on to a 3 point lead into the fourth before pulling away at the end on a Siemian pass to Prater. Cardiac Cats no more!  Player to Watch: Venric Mark. He’s been a star the first two games and this BC rush defense gave up 135 yards on 7 carries (not a typo) to Duke Johnson of Miami in week 1. That’s 19.3 yards per carry. Look for Mark to have a field day against BC.

Jon Rosenberg (@BigJonRosenberg): Northwestern wins 38-18. N-Dubs is going to burst out the block running. Expect Venric Mark to blast through the pack like Tyrell Sutton. Expect a lot of bend, don’t break D from the ‘Cats. Player to Watch: Ibrahiem Campbell.

Sam Block (@Blockless): Northwestern, 27-17. The ‘Cats offense showed up the first game and the defense the second. Expect both to show up this week against a middling BC team and expect Venric Mark to run wild on a team that gave up over 200 yards on the ground to Miami. Player to Watch: Venric Mark.

Danny Moran (@DannyJMoran): Northwestern 27-24. Venric Mark has another big day but most of it is between the 20s the game stays close until the fourth quarter. But the difference for Northwestern is their iceman in the fourth quarter, Trevor Siemian. The Wildcats will also win the turnover battle. Player to Watch: Trevor Siemian.

Sammy Levitt (@SammyLev): Northwestern 35 Boston College 28 – The Northwestern offense has a solid day against a defense that gave up 42 points to Miami in Week 1, while the NU defense holds steady after a great game vs. Vanderbilt. This is still a close one because that’s the way the Wildcats play these good non-conference teams. Kain Colter gets off to a very good start and has his best overall game of the season thus far. Player to Watch: Kain Colter.

Christian Flores (@Mr_C_G_Flores): Northwestern, 35-13. The defense continues its stout play. Boston College QB Chase Rettig can be cause for concern, but the secondary should step up after an impressive showing against Vanderbilt, without Nick VanHoose. With the return of VanHoose, as well as the success of the dual-quarterback position, I can’t imagine Boston College keeping it close. Player of the game: Venric Mark (Miami had some success in week 1 with big plays on the ground).

Greg Mroz (@TheeMrClean): Boston College 35-31. BC is averaging 330 passing yards per game and is averaging 33 points per game through their first two. Sure, one of their games was against Maine, but the fact that they can throw the ball downfield will represent problems for the Cats. NU is favored by 4, but this is the type of game that after 2 clutch wins that they will all of a sudden have a let down game. At some point, Venric Mark’s size will inhibit him from gaining significant yardage. Last score wins. Player to Watch: Demetrius Dugar.

John Castellanos (@JJCast15): Northwestern 27, BC 17. First half will be a low scoring affair as both teams are slow to get out of the gates. In the second half, Colter regains his comfort level with the offense, and the defense causes BC to turn the ball over. Players to Watch: Offense: Demetrius Fields (2 TD catches) Defense: Tyler Scott (Sack and FF).

Tralon Williams  (@TralonWilliams): Northwestern 38, Boston College 24. Coming off a fantastic defensive performance, Northwestern’s defense is going to want to prove they are for real. The extra motivation should lead to the wildcats being able to contain QB Chase Rettig and the 14th ranked passing attack in the country. The play of Venric Mark has been sensational and he will likely continue to play well and lead the Wildcats to victory over the Eagles. Player to Watch: Venric Mark.

Eric Klaus: 27-20 NU.  Venric Mark has another huge day against a very weak Boston College front seven.  The NU defense gives up over 300 yards through the air, but is able to force a couple of turnovers and seal the victory. Player to Watch:  Venric Mark.

Tara McManus (@taramcmanus): Cats’ 41-21. The defense will have a big game, picking on a quarterback with as many interceptions as touchdowns last year. The offense will rely heavily on runs from Mark and Colter, though Colter will take to the air in an attempt to prove he deserves the starting job. Player to Watch: Chi Chi Ariguzo.

Cameron Albert-Deitch (@c_albertdeitch): Northwestern, 33-24. Boston College’s offense is definitely pass-oriented, but Ibraheim Campbell and a healthy Nick VanHoose will help Northwestern continue its shocking improvement defensively. Venric Mark has shouldered the load offensively for the Wildcats so far, and there’s no reason he can’t do it again against a BC defense that is still struggling to replace former leading tackler and All-American Luke Kuechly. Player to Watch: Venric Mark.

Jeffrey Eisenband (@JeffEisenband): Northwestern, 34-27. BC quarterback Chase Rettig can throw the ball (660 passing yards and 5 passing TDs in 2012), which would usually cause problems for the NU secondary (351 passing yards for Rettig against NU 9/3/11), but not now. The ‘Cats’ front seven is brewing with confidence after pressuring Jordan Rodgers all game last Saturday and holding Vandy to just six points after the opening drive. NU gets enough pressure on Rettig to hold on for another close win. Player to Watch: Venric Mark.

Tweets from the fans

Ryan Murphy (@ryangoesboom): NU 31, Bahston College 24. Colter 3 rush TDs. Tea gets thrown into the lakefill. I get un-invited to my BC friend’s wedding.

Harry Swartout (@HarrySwartout): I have #B1GCats over BC 45-28. Venric rushes for 2 TDs. Kain adds a TD on the ground and in the air.

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