"That was a tough football game today, which is something that we absolutely anticipated," Addazio said. "We played a very good football team."
Villanova, considered a national title contender in the Football Championship Subdivision, sent an early message that it would pull all stops when it scored on a fake punt during its first series.
The play is called talley-ho-and-away-we-go, and it was the third time in Andy Talley's 29 years as coach that the Wildcats scored with it.
Jamal Abdur-Rahman, who Talley in the preseason said does a lot of the all-around work once performed by Brian Westbrook, scored on a 47-yard run.
Abdur-Rahman was the up-man, took the snap, had to break an initial tackle, and then broke free toward the end zone.
"That guy grabbed me and I had to get out of there and then go," Abdur-Rahman said.
Boston College tied the score, capping a 13-play, 70-yard drive on its first possession with a 1-yard pass from Chase Rettig to Bobby Wolford.
The Wildcats then took a 14-7 lead when John Robertson hit a wide-open Addur-Rahman for a 27-yard touchdown with 4 minutes, 20 seconds left in the first quarter.
Playing with more confidence as the game progressed, Villanova got greedy late in the half and paid for it. On fourth and goal from just beyond the 1-yard line, Villanova bypassed the field goal and called the right play, but had the wrong execution.
Robertson threw behind a wide-open Joe Price in the back of the end zone, and Boston College was given a major reprieve.
"I went into the game feeling like we were probably not going to be down there a lot and we needed about a yard and a half. And when you are playing up, you have to take a couple of chances," Talley said. "It was a chance, just like the fake punt was."
On the first series of the second half, Boston College came out firing and completed a seven-play, 85-yard drive when Rettig hit wide-open Alex Amidon with a 49-yard touchdown pass.
Amidon finished with 13 receptions for 146 yards.
"He's a great player and really hurt us," said Villanova free safety Joe Sarnese.
The Eagles took their first lead when Andre Williams scored on a 26-yard run with 4:40 left in the third quarter.
The Wildcats were beginning to wear down.
"I admit in the second half, I was more tired than in the first half," said defensive end Rakim Cox.
After an interception, Boston College scored the game's final points on Nate Freese's 39-yard field goal with 5:18 left.
Talley said the biggest disappointment was that two starters, strong safety Matt McCann and senior linebacker Pat Haggerty, suffered knee injuries. The severity is to be determined.
Talley wasn't disappointed with the effort.
"It was a good go, and we probably won't match up with anybody more physical or as big as B.C.," Talley said.
Robertson rushed for 94 yards on 13 carries and completed 16 of 25 passes for 158 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions.
"We should have come and won, but there were too many missed opportunities, on my part especially," Robertson said. "We are looking forward now to putting this behind and watching film for [Saturday's opponent] Fordham."
Contact Marc Narducci at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow on Twitter @sjnard.