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Florida State defense by the numbers against Boston College

Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

Florida State won an ugly football game Friday at Boston College. Let's go inside the box score.

FSU was keyed by a dominant defense that secured its first road shutout since 2003, allowing just 3.4 yards/play -- one of the ten best marks by a Florida State defense since Jimbo Fisher became head coach.

Helped out in large part by the shockingly tremendous punting of Cason Beatty, who booted seven punts for an average of 52 yards including four inside the 20, FSU's defense never allowed BC to even threaten to score. The Eagles never even reached FSU's 38-yard line. The closest the Eagles came to scoring would have involved attempting a 56-yard field goal, which of course didn't happen. Boston College would have needed two first downs from its best field position just to enter the red zone.

Boston College could not get anything going short or long. The longest play allowed by Florida State was a 20-yard pass.

But Boston College did not have any success on the short plays, either. 8 of 17 first-down runs by the Eagles went for two or fewer yards. Passes on first down were no better, as the Eagles were 1-4 for six yards and a sack.

That meant BC was constantly in unfavorable down and distance after first down, a recipe for disaster against Florida State's speedy defense. Give the Eagles some credit in that they did manage to get back to third-and-manageable a little better than a third of the time, but that was at the cost of just about any explosiveness, with everything being thrown underneath, or the ball being handed off on draws.

And Florida State's pass rush absolutely dominated the Eagles in passing situations, as the Eagles' six charted pass plays on third and long resulted in one completion for six yards, four incompletions and an interception.

Of course, Boston College's offense looked bad and committed many unforced errors.. It has to replace all five offensive line starters from a strong 2014 unit. But good defenses do this to bad offenses, especially ones with inexperienced offensive lines. Luckily for FSU's own young offense, its defense plays several other offenses with very inexperienced offensive lines, including games against Miami, Louisville, and Florida. If FSU's defense keeps this up, it will have a chance in every game.