Category Archives: Georgia Tech
PODCAST: Is Auburn the Georgia Tech of the SEC? How Lazy are Oregon’s Football Players? Will Georgia Win Any Football Games Next Year?
Chad Floyd (@Chad_Floyd on the Twitter Machine) is joined by Andrew Hall (@DudeYouCrazy) for a spirited discussion about all things football. The two great minds discuss the Atlanta Falcons and their final game in the Georgia Dome, Georgia’s 2017 schedule and how wimpy Oregon’s football players are.
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Divisions in Power 5 conferences are stupid. There, I said it.
At a time where revenues are such that all away games, with few exceptions, call for chartered flights, I don’t buy the monetary concern. When preserving the ‘sanctity’ of a Georgia/Kentucky or Mississippi State/LSU rivalry, I don’t care. And following another season similar to the last few, where:
- The SEC East is a complete dumpster fire, where 5 West teams could have easily won it.
- Clemson and Florida State carry the crown for the ACC and play in the same division.
- Ohio State, Michigan, and Penn State (and Michigan State, until 2016) play in the same division because of geography, and THAT’S A BETTER SYSTEM THAN THE ONE THEY HAD IN PLACE!
I’m adapting from a model Bill Connelly posited on SBNation this summer, because its a fascinating thought exercise, and it makes too much sense. In it:
- The Pac-12, with divisions and a 9-game schedule, is fine for now.
- The Big XII, jumbled mess as it is, has a round-robin (and a conference championship game starting next year, because SPORTS).
For the three fourteen-team conferences, division play doesn’t work. Unless you look forward to Georgia’s FIRST trip to conference rival Texas A&M during the end of Trump’s second term. Or your next trip to the Grove in 2029.
I’m not down for that. I’m not down for watching the Missouris and Floridas of the world get PASTED in the SEC Championship. I (Bill C first) want the following: keep an eight-game schedule, with three annual rivals and a rotation through the other 10 teams on a semiannual basis. Meaning, instead of going Mark Richt’s whole tenure before playing an SEC West opponent twice, you play a home-and-home with everyone every four years.
I’ll workshop this for all 42 teams involved below, but an example of what this would look like for Georgia:
Primary rivals: Auburn, Florida, South Carolina
Year 1: Alabama, at Kentucky, Ole Miss, at Missouri, Vanderbilt
Year 2: at Arkansas, LSU, at Mississippi State, Tennessee, at Texas A&M
Done in four-year cycles, one could even adapt years 3 and 4 from the first two to account for random shifts in competitive balance. Perhaps pair off each team for their non-rivals, so Kentucky doesn’t draw Alabama and Auburn, Mizzou doesn’t draw Georgia and Florida, etc.
This is the best I could come up with from a “PRESERVE OUR RIVALRIES!” perspective (and this may match Connelly verbatim, but I’m not checking):
|LSU||Texas A&M||Miss State||Arkansas|
|Mississippi State||Ole Miss||LSU||Auburn|
Some thoughts: South Carolina and Kentucky were SUPER hard to place. Kentucky gets, from a historical perspective, the easiest three games of anyone. Off the top of my head, there are no major rivalries that go unprotected, with the exception of Alabama/LSU (a more recent one, anyway).
The biggest misses? Tennessee/Kentucky, as Kentucky gets screwed out of the one game they get really worked up about. Bama/LSU, obviously.
I’d give myself a 10/10 for this. A&M, Arkansas, Mizzou, and LSU all preserve their regional rivalries. South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, and Florida all keep many of theirs. Vanderbilt/Ole Miss in the Khaki Bowl is still an annual event. Bama maintains history with Tennessee and Ole Miss, in addition to (obviously) Auburn.
If you don’t care about the ACC, you can stop reading now. Tried to draw it up there as well, but it is MUCH harder with the four North Carolina schools and the ‘old vs. new’ mentality that persists behind the scenes:
|Clemson||Georgia Tech||N.C. State||BC|
|Duke||North Carolina||Wake Forest||Louisville|
|Florida State||Miami||Wake Forest||N.C. State|
|Miami||Florida St.||Georgia Tech||Syracuse|
|North Carolina||Duke||N.C. State||Virginia|
|N.C. State||North Carolina||Clemson||Florida State|
|Virginia||Virginia Tech||North Carolina||Georgia Tech|
|Virginia Tech||Virginia||Louisville||Wake Forest|
|Wake Forest||Duke||Florida State||Virginia Tech|
This was friggin’ impossible. So many games that don’t make sense, especially for the Florida schools and the Northern schools, who would indubitably want games in the fertile Florida recruiting grounds.
Competitive balance, as it stands now, is a problem. N.C. State gets hosed, while UNC, Virginia Tech, and Pitt get relatively easy runs. I thought I’d be able to place Miami with more than one old Big East rival, but no dice.
For the B1G, I quit because I don’t care. But they need it worse than anyone else.
What do you think? Should we do away with divisions in order to make the conference feel like a conference again? Did I blow it on any rivalries?
The Coastal is peak college football– unpredictability, #GoACC memes, weird teams like Georgia Tech, former powers including Miami and Pitt…just a strange amalgamation of teams.
So much so, that last year was the first year in 11 tries that the Coastal’s representative in the ACC Championship game navigated the regular season unscathed. North Carolina, in winning its first division title, ran roughshod over the rest of the division (and weak crossover opponents).
Don’t expect that to be the norm going forward. The division has four contenders separated only by their crossover schedules (Virginia Tech avoids Florida State and Clemson), and…not much else.
The ACC Coastal
7) Virginia. They hired Bronco Mendenhall, so they’ll take the cake as the dirtiest team in a league full of them. They’ll force a frontrunning team *cough* Miami *cough* into dumb retaliatory penalties and win a game or two they shouldn’t.
Back to Bronco for a second, UVA is set to remain at the bottom of the division because the transition from recruiting the weird BYU bubble to the Mid-Atlantic is a stark one. His early enrollees from this spring:
Studly group, to be sure. True story: the black guy transferred to Northern Illinois during spring ball.
6) Duke. They’re still riding the coattails of a Peach Bowl loss to Johnny Football and David Cutcliffe’s relationship with the Manning brothers. It still…kinda works. I don’t see more than one winnable road game for them (Northwestern, Notre Dame, Louisville, Georgia Tech, Pitt, Miami) nor do I see them holding serve at home vs. Virginia Tech or UNC…so let’s nip that momentum in the bud, finally.
5) Miami. Everyone’s darling to win the division, I’m breaking stride and thinking they finish behind one of the non-contenders (Georgia Tech). ACC home games vs. FSU, UNC, and Pitt are no joke, and they don’t have a homefield advantage to speak of, anyway. Richt with less of a talent advantage will lose more games than we’re used to him losing.
4) Georgia Tech. Could win the division a la 2014, could tank again a la 2015, either way Paul Johnson is saved again only by his FULLY GUARANTEED BUYOUT.
3) Virginia Tech. And so goes the theme of this division. They could win it, or Bud Foster could decide he doesn’t like working for Justin Fuente (unlikely, Fuente is apparently a helluva dude) and blow the whole thing up. Basically, it comes down to JC transfer Jerod Evans doing Cam Newtonish things.
2) North Carolina. I’m too close to this situation, obviously, but a 2-3 start with losses to Georgia, Pitt, and Florida State and the Heels are in trouble. Hell, their next two after that are VT and at Miami. Cautionary pessimism here.
1)Pitt. Yes, I picked them last year before the James Connor cancer diagnosis. He’s back, and set to play WR, DE, and kick returner, apparently. While that’s not necessarily a great idea, they bring back a huge offensive line and a stout (never doubt Pat Narduzzi) defense.
Five Games Worth Watchin’
See, this is where the Coastal gets hard.
- (tie) Pitt at UNC, Sept. 24. VT at UNC, Oct. 8. UNC at Miami, Oct. 15. Miami at VT, Oct. 20. VT at Pitt, Oct. 27 (back to back Thursdays!). Pitt at Miami, Nov. 5. Six games between the four best teams– Miami, UNC, and VT get two at home, Pitt gets one. Otherwise, HELLO HOMOGENEITY!
- Florida State at Miami, Oct. 8: Al Golden’s Miami did an amazing job of keeping games against FSU close…when they had no expectations. CMR can achieve Schnellenberger/Johnson/Davis status FAST with a win to get to 5-0.
- Virginia Tech vs. Tennessee, Sept. 10: I mean, its being played at Bristol Motor Speedway. I came up with this idea in my first DYC post back in 2013. Timestamp: 5/10/13. Announced: sometime in 2014. I’m a genius.
- Pitt at Clemson, Nov. 12: Even if Pitt emerges from the scrum of Coastal foes, they will probably get knocked right back into the manpile.
- UNC at Florida State, Oct. 1: If my pessimism about Carolina sustaining success is unwarranted, a showdown of undefeated top-10 ACC contenders is on the books. If this is the case, I will be in attendance.
Players to Know
Brad Kaaya, QB, Miami: He’s been shoved down our throats as Felicia from Friday’s son, as a perfect Richt project, and is actually a damn decent quarterback. But he got first-team preseason votes over Deshaun friggin’ Watson. He could be on that Hackenberg trajectory.
Quin Blanding, S, Virginia: The ‘I’ve never heard of this guy and my NFL team drafted him in the middle of the first round’ guy. Also, I have a thing for Sean Taylor prototype safeties.
Marcus Marshall, FB (B-Back for those initiated with CPJ’s offense), Georgia Tech: KEITH’S LITTLE BROTHER! Unlike Keith, he absorbs contact. Tech’s offense needs competence at B-Back and QB to be successful, and Marshall put up 7.6 yards per carry as a true freshman. That’ll do.
E’Juan Price, DE, Pitt: 1st-team All-ACC last year, now bookended by senior tackles and a Tennessee transfer (Dewayne Hendrix) who is a stud in his own right, Price could blow up.
Mack Hollins, WR, UNC: Suspended for the first half of the Georgia game for targeting in the bowl, Hollins is 6’4 and runs a legit sub-4.4. In so doing, he averaged 24.8 yards per catch en route to 8 touchdowns last year. And he’s overshadowed by Bug Howard and Ryan Switzer somehow.
I promise you this, faithful readers: if the noon SEC Network game doesn’t interest you (and it rarely will), I highly suggest you invest your early games in the ESPN/ESPN2 Coastal game du jour. With Narduzzi, Richt, Mendenhall, and Fuente replacing deadbeats, Fedora stepping it up, Johnson doing Johnson/Tech things, and Cutcliffe overachieving, the Coastal is on the road to being downright treacherous.
Or, at the very least, more exciting than the two good teams and four dwarves in the Atlantic.
So, how was your Sunday?
We’ll get to the news of the day later on, but first let’s talk about the
big medium win over Tech. Despite the protestations of some on this here site, I stand by Hall and I’s assertion over the years that this is not a rivalry. Part of me realized this when toe met leather, and I realized I had watched exactly zero plays of this Jackets team all season. No matter what the #THWG crowd will tell you, this is the story of big brother reminding little brother of their place, 13 of the last 15 seasons. The Tech game is an annual pantsing that occasionally goes wrong. This year it went right, as it so often does.
– Frisky passing game? FRISKY PASSING GAME. Sure, these aren’t the numbers that forced UGA fans to lie to themselves about the ability under center after week 3, but the passing attack acquitted itself nicely Saturday. A great day out of Terry Godwin should give all of us hope about returning talent on the outside. Special shout out to Malcolm Mitchell, who continues to be a joy to watch catching and blocking. He’ll be a great value pick for someone looking for a solid WR on Sundays.
– Aggressive running attack? Check. Sony Michel and Keith Marshall looked confident, smart, and solid all day. With Sony cracking the 1000 yard barrier, he and returning Nick Chubb next year will be continuing the tradition of tailback U in Athens.
– Dominant defense? Mah gawd, you wouldn’t think we only won by 6 the way Pruitt’s boys played all day Saturday. They kept the Tech ‘quarterback’ under duress and running for his life, and stifled the vaunted
high school offense rushing attack all day.
– This was the perfect picture of an 80-20 offense; great for 80 yards, downright putrid in the red zone. Opportunities to score are usually few and far between, but the players put themselves in position to be successful, and I think everyone – coaches, players, water boys – caught a slight case of the lemon booty when it came time to score points.
– Speaking of lemon booty, Marshall Morgan, what happened man? Ever since the boating…incident last year, Mr. Automatic has turned into Mr. Maybe. Make no mistake, I’m going to miss watching him line up to boot them through the uprights. But I will not miss the last two years of misses.
– There’s quitting on a coach and then there’s whatever is happening at Tech. I haven’t watched them all year, but all I’ve heard from my Tech fan friends and my Tech football alumni friends, getting rid of PJ is the number one concern for Tech faithful going forward. Not a good scene.
There’s much already written, and much to be written, about the recent vacancy at the head job at UGA. I’ll say this before adding much more than my 2 cents tomorrow:
I tell you what if UGA went 3-9 they’d fire the governor. #LOLTech
— DPalm (@dpalm66) November 28, 2015
twice (THRICE!) in a row makes it a tradition right? Well, allow me to indulge myself with my annual tip of the cap to the Columbia Football Class of 2007. We got the chance to end our careers at home with a win, and the next week, we all hung up the pads after beating Brown on a last second field goal. I know that no one else cares, but as long as Andrew (Chad now, I guess) lets me write for this site, I’m gonna care loudly at least once a year.
Go Dawgs, and Roar Lion Roar.
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I’ve reached a point in life over the past couple of years where the drive to North Carolina for Thanksgiving has severely inhibited my ability to do the best things done in unison: drink bourbon and watch football.
Leave on Friday? Immediately tick off the family, who feels more time together is warranted. Get stuck in Black Friday chaos traffic in both Charlotte and the Commerce outlets.
Leave on Saturday? Miss out on some great football. Especially with relevant Michigan/Ohio State, scary Georgia/Tech, and a full Rivalry Week slate. Current plan is a 6:30am departure on Saturday.
Leave on Thursday? Out of the question.
Leave on Sunday? Just too damn late. Familial judgment for nonstop guttural yells at the TV for 11 hours on Saturday.
For the rest of you single people who live more than three hours away from your favorite viewing spot, how do you pull it off? Inquiring minds need to know.
The NFL Games Are Over, And Usually Boring Anyway: THURSDAY RUCKUS
Texas Tech at Texas, 7:30, FS1: It’s not Texas/A&M, but the storylines are still fun. Can Texas score enough points to keep up with Tech? Hell naw. Is Charlie Strong going to bolt for Miami? He certainly should. Is this game timed perfectly if you, like me, do the Thanksgiving late lunch? Damn straight.
Friday: Like Saturday, but with Saturday Still to Come
Send the ladies to the mall. There’s more than enough entertainment available. I have to subset a Friday now.
#16 Navy at #19 Houston, ABC: Likely determines which New Years’ Six bowl you don’t watch because of the mid-major involved. Keenan Reynolds is a wizard at the triple option (like, Tech wins 4 more games with him wizard) and Tom Herman is (insert one of 13 vacant FBS jobs here’s) next coach. In two weeks if they lose.
Miami at Pitt, ESPN2: The weirdest ‘Rivalry Week’ rivalry of them all, Pitt is pretty good. All three of their losses are to teams currently ranked in the (AP) top 11. And Miami is probably a loss to Cincinnati away from itself being ranked. GOOD, WEIRD, ACC FOOTBALL! CURING YOUR HANGOVERS SINCE…idk. Today?
Mizzou at Arkansas, CBS, 2:30: Remember last year, when we had a significant rooting interest in an emerging Arkansas team, who was coming off of consecutive shutouts of Ole Miss and LSU? I miss those days. I’d rather have Mizzou play SEC East Patsy in Atlanta than damn Florida. *sigh*
#5 Iowa at Nebraska, ABC, 3:30: Go Huskers. I may watch B1G football on purpose. Dream scenario: Nebraska wins, Iowa beats Michigan State in the B1G championship, we are spared that conference in the Playoff.
#10 Baylor at #18 TCU, ESPN, 7:30: This is just a damn treat. Both teams may be without their starting (in Baylor’s case, second string as well) QB’s, but both will still hang at least 35 points. SEC fan or not, you don’t appreciate football if you don’t watch this.
P.S.: There are other games of note, but most involve eliminated Pac-12 teams. If you stick to the above, you’ll not be cast off by your family.
Saturday, Where I May Attempt to Leave NC at 6AM
Jon Gruden has nothing on my footballgasm for this day. LEGGO
Obviously, there’s Georgia at Georgia Tech, ESPN2. I want to cut that off after Georgia goes up 35-0 on 4 Tech fumbles in the first 8 minutes of action.
#3 (YES THESE ARE LAST WEEK’S CFP RANKINGS) Ohio State at #12 Michigan (ABC): I mean…Harbaugh vs. Meyer has a TON of appeal. OSU’s offense, which should be patently unstoppable, against Michigan’s defense, which has not dominated like it did early on…this is just going to be an incredible game. Get a two TV setup like the one I plan to walk into just after noon on Saturday.
#1 Clemson at South Carolina, ESPN: Clemson’s last chance to Clemson before they Clemson against UNC.
Virginia Tech at Virginia, ESPNU: Perfect world for UNC fan: UVA wins to preserve Mike London’s job, and in so doing keeps Tech out of a bowl for the first time since like, the 80’s.
Louisville at Kentucky, SECN: Getting the ACC/SEC challenge out of the way early, huh? Kentucky can still meet my ‘they’ll make a bowl’ prediction with a win. Or Bobby Petrino is in attendance, which is fun anyway.
3:30, Also Loaded:
Iron Bowl, CBS: Go Tigers. I said it.
#17 UNC at N.C. State, ABC/ESPN2: Shit, we’re going to crap the bed. (Remembers State’s 7 wins are against the following: Troy, Eastern Kentucky, Old Dominion, South Alabama, Wake Forest, Boston College, Syracuse.) Nope, still not comfortable.
Penn State at #9 Michigan State, ESPN: I don’t know if Christian Hackenburg is good. I tried to watch some of their game against Michigan, and I saw him get sacked twice, throw 4-yard outs on 3rd and 8, and the offense punt from the Michigan 34. James Franklin brought 2015 Vanderbilt offense to 2015 Penn State, and the fact that he coaches two mediocre teams is amazing.
UCLA at #24 USC, ABC/ESPN2: Literally cannot NOT be fun. Jim Mora is going for his fourth straight different USC head coach’s scalp, which is amazing on so many levels.
The Night Slate: On One Hand, Year’s Best Combination. On The Other, Hell on Your ‘Prev CH’ Button:
The three highlights are simple: Bedlam (ABC, 8) pits #7 Oklahoma and #6 Oklahoma State. ESPN gets #14 Florida State at #8 Florida (ESPN, 7:30). Oh, and #4 Notre Dame at #11 Stanford is on FOX at 8 just to sufficiently blow our collective minds with overrated football.
But the undercard may be more intriguing.
Les Miles 200% deserves to keep his job. His record over the last five years trumps Saban’s last five at LSU. He would be a saint even in Athens. Yet, he’s coaching for his job as Texas A&M visits #15 LSU (7:30, SECN). Unreal.
Additionally, there’s the small matter of the Egg Bowl, which I’ve counted on for hilarity for my whole adult life. 7:15, ESPN2, Mississippi State at (randomly) #22 Ole Miss. Thank me later.