Amherst native Taj-Amir Torres eager to start football season with Boston College


Published: 8/30/2016 5:30:56 PM


BOSTON — He’s only a sophomore but Taj-Amir Torres handled inquiries on the Boston College football team’s trip to Ireland like a veteran.

“It’s exciting, but it’s a business trip,” said the former Amherst Regional star. “We’re going there to get a win.”

BC left for Ireland on Tuesday to play in the Aer Lingus College Football Classic. The Eagles will face Georgia Tech at Aviva Stadium in Dublin to open the 2016.

Whether the game is on emerald sod or field turf on either side of the Atlantic, Torres said the Eagles are eager to play.

After last year’s 3-9 season that featured an 0-8 record in ACC play, it’s nice to be 0-0 again with a chance to win an early league game against the Yellow Jackets.

“We’re just going to play hard,” Torres said. “Of course it sucks to have a bad record. We play football to win. That’s always the goal no matter what level you play in.”

He said everyone was glad to have camp behind them and an actual opponent to prepare for.

“It’s been fun. We’ve been working hard every day. We’re in week one so we’re grinding,” he said. “It’s going to be fun to play against other people. We have good players on both sides of the ball. I’m eager to play against opponents.”

BC is in an odd place, trying to keep things going defensively while overhauling everything on offense.

Last year, the Eagles allowed a Bowl Subdivision-best 254.3 yards per game. They kept that total low despite being on the field a lot because of an offense that sputtered badly. The offense averaged 275.6 yards per game, 125th in all of the FBS.

But BC defensive coordinator and former UMass coach Don Brown departed to join Jim Harbaugh at Michigan. Brown was replaced by another former UMass coach in Jim Reid, who is back at BC where he was the defensive coordinator in 1994.

Reid had high expectations for Torres.

“He’s been great. He’s working hard,” said Reid, who spent the last three seasons at Iowa. “He’s fast. He has amazing speed and quickness. He’s done a great job for us.

“He’s a well-developed athlete with a great sense of the ball. He’s developed some great mental toughness,” Reid continued. “He’s a core special teams guy. He’s going to be in on defense. The sky is the limit for him.”

Torres played in eight games as a true freshman last year, making 11 tackles, including eight solo stops.

Listed at 5-foot-9, 177 pounds, he said a full year in a college strength program as well as just practicing football has helped him considerably. At Amherst Regional, Torres was also a star sprinter during the indoor and outdoor track and field seasons.

“We have a great strength program. They work us every day. I got a lot stronger, a lot faster,” he said. “We have one of the best position groups in the nation. Those guys push me and I’ve come further along.”

Matt Vautour can be reached at


Support Local Journalism

Subscribe to the Daily Hampshire Gazette, your leading source for news in the Pioneer Valley.

Daily Hampshire Gazette Office

23 Service Center Road
Northampton, MA 01060


Copyright © 2021 by H.S. Gere & Sons, Inc.
Terms & Conditions - Privacy Policy