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Syracuse vs. Boston College: The Shafer - Addazio Corollary Truly Ends

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Only one of them is left, but perhaps not for long

NCAA Football: Boston College vs Massachusetts Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

You might be thinking one of two things right now.

  1. Dude, you wrote this already.
  2. Dude, Scott Shafer isn’t here anymore.

I figure that’s what you’re thinking because you’re either a #BeADude Boston College fan or a #DomeDude Syracuse fan. You speak in Dude.

So yeah, both of your points are valid, but let’s push forward anyway because I’m writing this and you’re still here.

I’m always intrigued by the way certain head coaching careers can be intertwined based on the job they took and the job they didn’t take. It’s what brought Skip Holtz and Doug Marrone together. It’s what brings Dino Babers and Scott Frost together now. And in theory I’ve always felt it’s what linked Scott Shafer and Steve Addazio. Had he been on the board, I honestly think Addazio would have received strong consideration for the position against Shafer given his SU ties and bona fides.

Three years after they both took over their respective programs, the bottom fell out for Shafer. Addazio wasn’t faring much better at BC but at least he was keeping his job. The two closed out the 2015 season head-to-head and here’s what I said beforehand:

Shafer will coach his final game in the Carrier Dome on Saturday and he will be doing so with Addazio standing across the field. Perhaps there's some kind of poetry in that or maybe I'm just reading way too much into this connection. Either way, Syracuse and Boston College will continue to play football every season. Added to the budding mythology of the rivalry will be the What-If surrounding Shader and Addazio, especially if Shafer can win that final game and muddy the waters just a little more.

Shafer did indeed win that game, going out on a high-note, and driving the dagger a little bit deeper in Addazio’s outlook in 2016. In the six games between the last time we met and this, the Eagles have gone 3-3. It’s an improvement but it was also considered their floor given an easy schedule and what was supposed to be an improved offense. BC is favored but the outcome is very much in doubt. In some way, says BCI’s A.J. Black, Syracuse could end up having a strong say in whether or not we see Addazio again in 2017.

...if the Eagles lose, everything will continue to unravel. We might as well kiss this season, and the direction of the program (or lack there of) goodbye. If the Eagles lose to Syracuse, and especially if it isn’t close, which given the speed of Eric Dungey and that offense, it may not be, we may see the end of the Steve Addazio era as well. How can this administration justify bringing him back if he clearly can not handle the challenges of ACC football?

It’s unlikely he’s lose his job following the game but it could very well be the beginning of the end for him. BC has to travel to NC State, host Louisville, and travel to FSU in the three next weeks. Like Syracuse, if they want to play in a bowl game, this is a must-win.

The odds are not on Addazio’s side and there might be something that makes sense, plot-wise, if Syracuse is the team who tips the scales. Not that we hate the guy, but just because of what-could-have-been and wasn’t.

Ultimately, Syracuse and Boston College are playing for something bigger than one coach. But having the Shafer-Addazio undercurrent these past four seasons gave the rivalry a little extra spice. Given the way both their tenures have gone (or went), it seems like the question of “What If” is a moot one now.

All’s well that ends well? In this case it might be more like ‘all’s well that ends.’