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BOSTON (AP) — Boston College avoided a letdown after its upset of then-No. 9 Southern California.
Now the Eagles can start looking to the future.
BC (3-1) plays Colorado State on Saturday with an eye on its fourth win. A victory in the nonconference and rarely played matchup would bring the Eagles a step closer to a bowl game and a second straight year in the postseason after missing it the previous two years.
"I think if you said to this point that we would be 3-1 with an opportunity to get our fourth win, we'd all feel like 'You know what? That's not a bad place to be,'" Eagles coach Steve Addazio said.
BC beat UMass in the opener, but after a loss to Pittsburgh it seemed unlikely that the Eagles would rebound against Southern Cal, which was ranked ninth at the time and coming off an emotional victory over Stanford. BC won 37-31, and followed it up with a victory over Maine of the FCS.
Here are some things to look for in Saturday's game:
THE RUNNING GAME: BC's Tyler Murphy leads all quarterbacks in the nation — FBS and FCS — in rushing, with 500 yards, and the Eagles are fourth overall in the country with 336.3 rushing yards per game. Murphy has run for a touchdown in each game so far. Meanwhile, BC has only allowed 36 yards combined in the last two games in victories over then No. 9 Southern California and Maine.
OFF A BYE: The Rams are coming off an off week, having beaten California-Davis on Sept. 13. "They've had two weeks to prepare for us," Addazio said. "If we can play one of our better games to this point, we have a shot." Colorado State beat Colorado in its opener — the third consecutive year the Rams have beaten a team from a power conference.
NEW ACQUAINTANCES: BC and Colorado State have only played each other once before, with the other meeting in the 2003 San Francisco Bowl. BC won the game 35-21 when Derrick Knight ran for 122 yards and three touchdowns to become the school's all-time rushing leader — a mark that has since been surpassed twice, the latest by Heisman Trophy finalist Andre Williams last year.
HOME COOKING: BC hasn't had to leave the state of Massachusetts yet, opening the season in Foxborough against the Minutemen and following that with four home games. The Eagles have an off week before traveling to North Carolina State for their first plane flight of the year.