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BC's Williams ready for expanded role

Posted by Mark Blaudschun, Globe Staff  August 15, 2011 01:45 PM

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He is not The Man--not yet, not with Montel Harris still getting the first curtain call as he closes in on becoming the all time leading rusher in Atlantic Coast Conference history.
But Andre Williams knows his time is coming--probably sooner, rather than later. He knows that Boston College will need his skills at running back to implement its formula for success which has produced bowl game after bowl game for the past dozen years.
For now, the 6-foot-225 pound sophomore who showed flashes of his talent last season, carrying the ball 95 times for 461 yards, can wait for his opportunity. Or opportunities.
Williams is very much in the primary mix in the Eagles' running attack as BC adjusts to having Harris and Williams as the main cogs in a rushing game which has more depth to it than in the past few years.
""It's like having a back up hitter to your clean-up hitter, '' says BC coach Frank Spaziani, who recruited Williams out of Schnecksville, Pa, with the intention of having Williams fill the role of clean up hitter in the Eagles line up. "He works hard, has the talent. He likes to do it. He has all the ingredients.''
Williams committed to the Eagles early--spring of his junior season, choosing BC over Georgia Tech. Home state Penn State showed little or no interest.. He has no regrets.
""At the end of last season I was getting a lot of reps because a lot of guys were down (specifically Harris with a knee injury),'' said Williams this afternoon between sessions of the Eagles first week of two--a-day workouts. "I'm leaps and bounds more comfortable with the offense than I was last season.''
Williams, who says he wants to play 10 pounds heavier than the 215 pounds he played at last season, says the techniques he wants to improve are subtle in nature.
"I want to be a smoother runner,'' he said. ""I learned a lot from Montel. I want to develop my own style, which he is says is more power runner than finesse, although Williams says he wants to fine tune the aspect of his game where he simply lowers his head and tries to run over opposing tacklers rather than run past them or around them.
Williams showed flashes of that in the Eagles' first scrimmage of the summer on Saturday night, bolting for a 20-yard TD on a cutback move which is indicative of his speed as well as finesse. He expects to do more each time he plays, peaking towards the season-opener against Northwestern on Sept. 3rd.
Eagles began a week of two-a-day drills today and Spaziani is concerned about an offensive line which has its share of injuries, most notably the left side where starting left tackle John Wetzel and Nate Richman are both nursing nagging injuries. ""We have to maneuver stuff and you don't like doing that because of cohesiveness,'' said Spaziani, who said that redshirt freshman Bobby Vardaro would move into Richman's spot at left guard until his back problems diminish....Second scrimmage is set for Wednesday evening. Eagles will get their first day of training camp off on Thursday.

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