A look at Georgia Tech’s special teams

Switching from the linebackers, we take a look at Georgia Tech’s special teams:

THE SPECIAL TEAMS

  • Returning starters: Chandler Anderson, Scott Blair, Orwin Smith, Jerrard Tarrant.
  • Others to watch: Justin Moore.
  • Key fact: Blair was 14-of-20 on field goals last season, including five from more than 40 yards away. However, he missed key ones against Georgia and Iowa.
  • Key fact II: Anderson averaged a respectable 42.3 yards per punt last season on 37 attempts.
  • Key fact III: Tarrant returned two punts for touchdowns last season.
  • Key fact IV: Opponents returned two kickoffs for touchdowns last season.
  • Key question: Can Tech improve its kickoff defense? At one point last season, coach Paul Johnson joked it was hard to prepare a defense because they weren’t sure where the ball was going once it left the tee.
  • Key question 2: Will Blair relax? Johnson has said repeatedly that his kick-off and field-goal specialist has all the talent, but seems to want to fiddle around with his mechanics a bit too much until he reaches a point of paralysis by analysis.Tech recruited a kicker, Moore. Blair will be a senior, so it was natural to find a replacement.
  • Outlook: Tech’s punt teams were very good last season. After returning two for TDs early, teams started punting away from Tarrant. Anderson could be an All-ACC performer…when he gets chances. He went through a 2 1/2-game stretch last season where he didn’t punt. The kickoff return teams should be improved.
  • Your turn: What say you about the special teams?

For a look at the linebackers, go here

For a look at the wide receivers, go here

For a look at the safeties, go here

For a look at the offensive line, go here

For a look at the running backs, go here

For a look at the defensive line, go here

Follow me on twitter @ajcgatech

36 comments Add your comment

Jack G.

June 30th, 2010
5:08 am

Just so no one can say it.

Paddy

June 30th, 2010
5:20 am

Think about it….that is an amazing stat. 2 1/2 games without having to punt.

lucky21

June 30th, 2010
7:25 am

If only every game could be a clemson game then Scott Blair would be best in the nation bar none

Jacket Backer

June 30th, 2010
8:14 am

I still don’t have alot of confidence in Blair. I hope the freshman kicker is for real…

Go Jackets!

dagnabit

June 30th, 2010
8:19 am

Didn’t the freshman footballers report early this week?

Doug Roberson

June 30th, 2010
8:26 am

Yes, the freshmen did.

Art Collier

June 30th, 2010
9:58 am

I usually hate kickers but Blair saved at least one game, maybe two, with touchdown saving tackles. The lad’s going to be just fine.

It has to be said ........ again, like so many other times

June 30th, 2010
10:30 am

Well, um, ah, SEC WON the CWS ………….again. No ACC teams made the dance. NONE.

tech beat UGA 78-1 in baseball and it got them ………..no where. UGA was second a couple of years back in the CWS and has won it and has been a bunch. tech? No where.

This is one more reason why tech would never,ever be invited back to the SEC, because it is big boy ball and the ACC is itty, bitty ball. Whne the expansion talks were simmering, techies were dying to get back in the ELITE SEC. Sorry, Charlie.

AAAAAAAAAAHAHAHHAHAHAHA

BrokeBackJacket

June 30th, 2010
10:43 am

Oops…you mean those kind of special teams…thought sure would be an article about 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s….back when tech had some “special” teams!

ACC champs

June 30th, 2010
10:47 am

why is some ugay idiot bragging about SC winning the cws? Guess when you lose 5 football games that’s all you got…bragging about SC? Really?

Tarrant will have a banner year so will Scott Blair, will not be using Chandler Anderson that much to punt, all dogs go to hell

Animal control Officer

June 30th, 2010
10:54 am

I remember my first beer

Jackets2010

June 30th, 2010
11:06 am

Comments from “It has to be said” make me look forward to the Friday Marietta Daily Journal where dozens of Uga fans will find themselves in the giant foreclosure section of that newspaper.
Does that Uga memorabilia provide any comfort after losing one’s home?
I’ve cut my spending to the bone to make Georgia howl again.
That’s a taxcut I can depend on.
Might I be related to Sherman?
Probably.

gtfanfrom1951

June 30th, 2010
11:07 am

Blair job is on the line CPJ was not happy with kicking game last year. Kickoff coverage last year was very very bad.

gtfanfrom1951

June 30th, 2010
11:09 am

P.S.
let Barry Bostic return kicks!!

GT Backer

June 30th, 2010
11:30 am

I think our special teams will be vastly improved this year. Our return games showed improvement as the season went on, especially our kickoff returns. With added depth of speed and breakaway guys, we will get better. Punting will be in good hands, when we need to. I think it will punt more than people think this year with so many key away games. Blair will also be good. We like to point out he was 14-20, but like CPJ said he was messing with mechanics early. After CPJ gave him a couple of games off, he came back and finished 9-11, with many over 40 yds, which I think we would take. Although he has been inconsistent, I do not think he has ever missed a FG in a game decided by 3 points or less, and has actually made several key FG’s in tight games. Yes he was 1-2 against UGA and missed against Iowa, but it seems that UGA had two 150 yd rushers that game, and man-handled our D line for about 50 offensive plays, and then Iowa seemed to man-handle our O line all night…hard to blame a missed FG as the turning point of either game. Blair was same kicker that as a true freshman kicked off and the kickoff defense team went from last in the ncaa 2 previous years to # 2 in the ncaa. Coach Kelly was the SP coach. He will have kickoff coverage again this year. Let’s see if a change of scheme helps our kickoff coverage. And just for fun, look at Blair’s tackles on kickoffs, his freshman year (with coach kelly) 2 tackles, then we changed coaches and coverage and he makes 9 and 8 tackles the next 2 years. He may not always kick the ball where he is supposed to, but I would bet that he has to be the leading kicker tackler in the country, and all of those tackles cannot be his fault. I think the entire SP are going to improve this year. CPJ has is offense in, a seasoned QB, with an improving line and a stable of backs. CAG will take care of the D. That will leave time for CPJ to spead a little more time with SP schemes, plus coach kelly has had a solid history of SP success. Just watch.

john

June 30th, 2010
11:42 am

Doug, Did Gt run any Sp team drills in the spring that would give us a clue as to who will be handling kick-off returns. Orwin Smith was soild for us last year, but Bostic really looks like he could excel in the return game too.

dawgfan

June 30th, 2010
11:52 am

“why is some ugay idiot bragging about SC winning the cws?”

Exactly!!! Its about as crazy as a Tech fan mentioning Florida in every other breath when confronted with Tech’s horrible record against UGA. That’s just nuts. What kind of moron would do something like that?

UGA=2009 ACC Champs.

Steady GT Fan

June 30th, 2010
12:19 pm

I can’t wait for the season to start. I’ve ordered more season tickets. Have you? Come on. Fill the stadium.

HugoStiglitz

June 30th, 2010
12:29 pm

Is Scott Blair not gone yet? Seems like he has been around for forever now. Hopefully he can muster up enough confidence to get through the season. Punting wont be a problem, because we hardly ever punt anyways. Tarrant is still awesome so no problems there. It looks like the biggest issue is improving our kick return coverage. Hopefully we make great strides in that area because we gave up way too much field position last season. Having bad kick return coverage is even worse when your team scores as much as we do.

Luke

June 30th, 2010
1:01 pm

For the record for all those that are RETARDED, there were two ACC teams in Omaha, Clemson and Florida State. Florida State made the quarters while Clemson made it to the Semis. Georgia Tech swept Clemson this year. So before you start making ignorant comments about the ACC in baseball, please look at the bracket first.

Oh, congratulations South Carolina.

[...] Roberson of the AJC takes a look at the Jackets’ special teams next. Really, Doug? At 4:46 a.m. you’re thinking about the Jackets’ kickers? [...]

Systemic

June 30th, 2010
1:27 pm

I’d like to see O. Smith and B.J. Bostic returning kick-offs. Speed merchants!

Go Jackets!

Margaret Thatcher

June 30th, 2010
1:32 pm

“UGA=2009 ACC Champs”? Is that really the best you can come up with? Is it too much to ask of our opponents that they at least bring an original thought to the table?

Reality

June 30th, 2010
2:17 pm

UGA fans brag about USC winning the world Series because they have nothing else to brag about in recent years. Shreveport? No NCAA basketball tournament? College World Series? The most significant UGA accomplishment of the last 18 months was the grad who needed 11+ hours to beat a frenchmen in tennis.

DDF's

June 30th, 2010
2:20 pm

Don’t forget UGA using your logic, you guys also played Duke for the ACC championship title. Quite a run considering Duke eventually won the NC. You must be proud.

woodyjjGT

June 30th, 2010
2:35 pm

i think the uga fans just want some one to think they’re relevant. but of course we all know that the opposite is true. i almost feel bad for richt for having to wake up everyday and realize the nightmare he was having is a waking reality. he deals with half witted, inbred a-holes year in, year out. theres only so much athens a man can take. i dont expect mark to be around in 5 yrs.

woodyjjGT

June 30th, 2010
2:40 pm

bringing up usc’s cws win in argument against the acc would be like saying how much better duke is than kentucky… sad really… why participate in the toilet bowl water fight?

Bungle Bee

June 30th, 2010
3:03 pm

lol, Tech football = losing to in state rivals, winning a aye she she title, and then gettting pounded like $2 steak on national TV in a bowl game, what a bunch of losers. tech will be lucky to win 5 this year….

Really?

June 30th, 2010
3:34 pm

I really can’t consider Blair a shoo-in as the starting placekicker. As inconsistent as he was last year (sure, he only missed 6….for a FG Pct of 70%….that’s awful for a D-I kicker), you have to plan on Moore getting a good look from CPJ….especially after he gave him one of the few scholarships he had to offer.

Bungle Bee — Classy. You clearly know what you’re talking about. Props. We won our conference, and were within a touchdown with 3 minutes to go in a BCS game. Georgia was 7-5 in the regular season and beat 6-6 Texas A&M in some random bowl game in a city nobody’s ever heard of. You must be so proud. Moron.

DJ

June 30th, 2010
4:28 pm

Dawgfan, since you’re being an idiot I’ll play along. UGA isn’t ACC Champs. By deductive reasoning and your logic you’re still behind Oklahoma St., Tennessee, LSU, Florida, and Kentucky. That’s right, your “banner” season earned you a trip to Shreveport. And yes, YOUR highlight was beating Tech…..hence, your cute little ACC Champs comment. Inferiority on your part???? Me thinks so.

michael

June 30th, 2010
4:45 pm

hey SEC, if Tech were to return to the sec, to begin with, at least we’d help the gpa stats. go up. after the adjustment… are you serious that elite kids wouldn’t want to come to atlanta? Tech would be the SEC’s worst nightmare within four years and never let down. uga does not want tech to return as dooly so noted in 1978 when tech wanted to return. it’s called COMPETITION!

wes

June 30th, 2010
7:20 pm

Blair went 14 for 20?

Felt more like 14 for 200.

GT(skeptical)Armchair-QB

June 30th, 2010
10:17 pm

Not to sucker punch a college kid. But Blair is going to Tech for free. About $50k+ better than I did.

He’s AWFUL!!! Worst kicker in the past 3 decades on The Flats.

Why do you think we went for it in 4th and goal against Wake Forest?

CPJ can’t wait to rid himself of that kid, fast enough.

Student Fan

July 1st, 2010
2:29 pm

I hope we do get some help on special teams, because as awesome as it makes Scott Blair, it kida sucks watching our kicker kick off then tackle the receiver himself. Scott blairs also a boss because he had college football’s top QB rating in the nation by far. 100% completion, 34 yard average, and all touchdowns. I think that’s pretty fantastic even if it was an illegal play…

Bungle Bee

July 2nd, 2010
8:36 am

@Really? I think you fit the definition better than I. U prove my point quite well, that 7-5 UGA team came into your house and pulled your panties down, and gave you a nice spanking.

What a loser fan base and bunch of idiots you social retards are. Go buy some more Clearasil and pheromone attractant; for that face only radio could do justice. Loser.

SAINT SIMON

July 17th, 2010
2:57 pm

UGA 30 – GT 24!!!!!!!
UGA 73 – GT 66!!!!!!!!!!!!!

HAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!

WE RUN THIS STATE!!!!!!!!!!