BC coordinator Todd Fitch set to revamp offense
Boston College football coach Steve Addazio cited trust and continuity in his decision to promote Todd Fitch from wide receivers coach and passing game coordinator to offensive coordinator.
Addazio trusted Fitch, a 29-year coaching veteran with experience as an offensive coordinator at South Florida (2010-12), East Carolina (2007-09) and Connecticut (1996-98), would provide the leadership to maintain his offensive scheme.
“I am confident that he will help us continue to develop and bring us to new heights,’’ Addazio said in a statement announcing Fitch’s promotion Feb. 14 and the hiring of Brian White as receivers coach.
Fitch will have to address numerous challenges in spring drills and fall camp, namely the retooling of the offensive line and the replacement of dual-threat quarterback Tyler Murphy, a graduate-transfer from the University of Florida who set an Atlantic Coast Conference season record for quarterbacks with 1,079 rushing yards (in 12 games). He also threw for 11 TDs and 1,526 yards.
“Having done it before, you want to trust the situation you’re walking into,’’ Fitch said. “That was big for me. Steve and I had known each other in the past, but we had never worked together before.
“But after these last two years, obviously, he knows me a lot better and I know him, so that makes it a lot more of a comfortable situation.’’
Fitch replaces Ryan Day, who departed to become quarterbacks coach for the Philadelphia Eagles.
“Losing all those snaps from last year and getting the right combination of people up front will be a big thing for us,’’ Fitch said. “There’s some people returning and we’ve got some youth there, so we’ve got to find the right mixture there.
“Then the other big thing, obviously, is the quarterback position. “Obviously we had a change our first year, then Tyler transferred in a year ago and did a nice job for us, so we were kind of jumping off the board here with a young, new guy.’’
Sophomores Darius Wade and Troy Flutie, the nephew of Heisman Trophy winner Doug Flutie, will vie for the starting job along with incoming freshman Elijah Robinson, one of five recruits who enrolled in January.
“So you’re kind of bringing those two positions together and trying to find the right mixture of guys up front and trying to identify your starting quarterback in spring and fall camp,’’ Fitch said. “But those are two big areas that are always important no matter what kind of offense you run.’’
What excited Fitch about BC’s offense are the returning personnel at running back with power back Jon Hilliman, the speedy home-run threat of Myles Willis, and the combination of the two in Marcus Outlow. Tyler Rouse, who blends speed and strength, adds a fourth back to the mix.
“We’re blessed to have some really good players and a variety of kind of players,’’ Fitch said. “So we have great competition there. They’re all different body types and so we’re experimenting with guys there in different roles.’’
At receiver, Fitch pointed to the return of Charlie Callinan and Dan Crimmins along with Sherman Alston, who made his mark as a Jet Sweep specialist last season, as leaders of a group that likely will get contributions from sophomores Nat Dixon and Gabe McClary.
“I think our skill at those two positions will be the best we’ve had — top to bottom, 1 through 4 [at running back] and 1 through 6 [at receiver] – since we first got here and had Alex Amidon and Andre Williams in Year 1,’’ Fitch said.
“Having more playmakers around a young quarterback will help him out,’’ Fitch added, “because when you have a young quarterback you don’t want him to have to win the game for you by himself.”
``So if you can get multiple assets on the field and let him distribute the ball and keep things simple for him until he gets his feet on the ground,’’ Fitch added. ``It’ll make his job a heck of a lot easier. I think those kind of players will help in that transition for us.’’
More than likely, it will help in Fitch’s own transition from BC’s receivers coach and passing game coordinator to offensive coordinator.
``Every day you’re around the players whether you’re a coordinator or a position coach, you develop relationships and they get to know you and you get to know them,’’ Fitch said. ``I think over these last two years, I feel I’ve gotten a pretty good feel for these guys. It’s been a pretty good working relationship previously and there’s no reason to think it won’t continue to work as it moves forward.’’