3 thoughts about Georgia Tech-Virginia Tech

Less than a week to go to the start of the season. I, for one, am glad, because I’m not sure I am creative enough to come up with ways to re-phrase the same questions I’ve been asking about the depth chart. Anyway, three thoughts.

1. I believe one of the more intriguing matchups will be Georgia Tech’s wide receivers vs. Virginia Tech’s cornerbacks. Perhaps Georgia Tech’s most glaring weakness, or at least area of inexperience, is wide receiver. None of Tech’s receivers has played significant snaps there or has a catch, as I’ve written before. It doesn’t mean they can’t play, of course, just that they haven’t shown it on the field.

Virginia Tech has experience in cornerbacks Kyle Fuller and Antone Exum. However, Fuller could move to the whip linebacker spot, as he has done in the past for Georgia Tech. I’m told the Hokies won’t use Fuller at whip as much as they have in the past, although Fuller said at ACC Media Days that he expected to be there for Georgia Tech. Further, Exum moved to cornerback from safety in the spring. According to the depth chart, true freshman Donaldven Manning would be next up at the field corner position.

It would appear that Virginia Tech would have the edge on paper, especially if Fuller ends up at corner, but it’s hard to say how much. Starting a true freshman in the opener isn’t typically a move any coach wants to make. How much Jeremy Moore, Jeff Greene and their cohorts can work free to open up the passing game will be a factor, as will how well they can block to clear paths in the running game.

2. I’ve noticed a lot of handwringing about the B-back spot, with David Sims still apparently returning to full health and questions about how ready Zach Laskey, Broderick Snoddy or Charles Perkins will be to handle the load if Sims can’t.  It’s a reasonable concern, although coaches have applauded Laskey and Snoddy in particular over the preseason. It sounds like Laskey has done the right things, play fast through the mesh and running hard.

It might be worth pointing out that Virginia Tech has some of the same issues. Michael Holmes, the likely starter at running back, is a redshirt freshman. His backup, J.C. Coleman, is a true freshman and the No. 3, Martin Scales, is a converted fullback who has mostly played special teams. Further, they’ll be playing behind an offensive line that’s considerably less experienced than Georgia Tech’s.

3. I had a note last night about Paul Johnson conceding the unlikelihood of playing in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff game in the future because Tech will have 10 games locked in, only half of which will be home games. To get to seven home games, which is fairly standard, Tech would obviously need the two remaining non-conference games to be played at Bobby Dodd Stadium.

Johnson dismissed playing in the game as “not a big deal to us” because of Tech’s location in Atlanta. However, the game brings national exposure, which has obvious value for recruiting. Tech had actually agreed to play USC in last year’s kickoff game before USC’s new athletic director (Pat Haden) put the plan on ice. The national platform is one benefit of Georgia Tech playing in Blacksburg on Monday. For teams coming to play in Atlanta, there’s the added advantage of playing in the heart of the state’s fertile recruiting grounds. Georgia Tech, in fact, will play against a Hokie (split end Christian Reeves from McDonough) who was influenced by Virginia Tech’s appearance in the 2009 kickoff game.

That said, adding another top-flight opponent and giving up a home game is a pretty big ask for Tech. I imagine the ACC moving to a nine-game schedule will make it tougher for the Chick-fil-A Bowl folks to bring ACC teams to the kickoff game, particularly Clemson and Florida State, who are in the same boat as Tech with annual games against South Carolina and Florida.

Thanks for reading.

Ken Sugiura, Georgia Tech blog

200 comments Add your comment

Teddy Roosevelt

August 28th, 2012
2:26 pm

Can’t wait til toe meets leather!

AtWork

August 28th, 2012
2:27 pm

Thanks Ken!

What do you feel is the vibe of the team before they head to VA? I don’t know how much you get to be around them but I would bet you could a feeling of how they think they are going to do up there?

Go Jackets!

Big Al

August 28th, 2012
2:29 pm

Ho-Hum!!! Dah Techies start another season, with a loss.

DawginLex

August 28th, 2012
2:31 pm

I have abandoned the Bill King blog permanently. An Auburn idiot named HUH?? makes it impossible to post there along with the idiot SSIGator. Bill King told me “No Adult conversation allowed” was a very simple underlying rule on his blog.

It is really sad that Bill does not have the cajones to eliminate taunters, baiters etc.

I digress

Y’all are going to win this game Monday. 28-27

You will go 10-3

Losses to Clemson and UNC on the road and to us on the road. Undefeated at home.

Win your bowl game

I don’t know enough about it to understand if my picks make you division champs or not which would give you an extra game. If so, you go 10-4 because FSU will win the ACC

Should be a great game

www

August 28th, 2012
2:34 pm

3 – georgia tech already plays a few games in atlanta every year, in case you haven’t heard. the only way this would work at the present time is if uga grees to move the gt/uga game to the ga dome and with their history there, i don’t see that happening.

this is so not an issue, but thanks for parroting wne’s trollery. i guess i know why the guy hasn’t been banned yet – someone is using his nonsense for article ideas.

sean jones

August 28th, 2012
2:40 pm

i think we might be able to wear VT down with our deep o-line but i worry Groh will cost us the game because Thomas will wear our defense down and it will come down to last drive and Groh as usual wont be able to get em of fthe field.

sean jones

August 28th, 2012
2:41 pm

Bring back Tenuta!!! FIRE Al “No Show” Groh!!

www

August 28th, 2012
2:41 pm

@ dawginlex, we all feel ya, man. same thing here with a couple of clowns that are way past due for banning. i guess free articles online come at some sort of a price, but page views at the expense of feeding the trolls isn’t the way to do things.

DawginLex

August 28th, 2012
2:43 pm

www

And the sad thing, Bill King went to Georgia!!!!!!

dry dirt road

August 28th, 2012
2:43 pm

key to game will be if Logan Thomas can be stopped; he was one man team last year at BD; Russell for NC State was one team, as was Cam Newton for Ted Roof’s Heisman school when they played Oregon

dry dirt road

August 28th, 2012
2:45 pm

Russell one MAN team, not “one team”, as was Cam

Supersize that order, mutt

August 28th, 2012
2:46 pm

Lex…..thanks for a good, intelligent post. I think your assessment of Tech’s season is very reasonable, although I for one think we will surprise the dawgs in Athens this year.

dry dirt road

August 28th, 2012
2:46 pm

“When it rains, it pours”

Supersize that order, mutt

August 28th, 2012
2:47 pm

@ sean jones……Groh may or may not be the man for the job; this season will tell once and for all. But TENUTA ???? NO DAMN WAY !!!!

www

August 28th, 2012
2:48 pm

seconded – tenuta was a one-trick pony. we’re past that.

i would like to see a few more blitzes a game this year, however.

dry dirt road

August 28th, 2012
2:48 pm

GT can beat VT, I believe, actually w/o any problem. GT has more football history than VT, that’s why.

DawginLex

August 28th, 2012
2:50 pm

supersize

Until John Jenkins and Kwame Geathers leave Athens, Tech won’t run up the middle against UGA. With the speed on the outside at LB and DB, Tech’s offense gets limited by the 2012 UGA defense.

dry dirt road

August 28th, 2012
2:50 pm

Sean, Randy Edsall might be available.

sean jones

August 28th, 2012
2:53 pm

@dawginlex

kills me to say it but you are correct! UGA too strong and talented in the middle for us. However, your edges might be green but it would surprise me.

SSI Oldtimer

August 28th, 2012
2:54 pm

I don’t really know how GT will match up against VT on Labor Day night.

This is the first year, I believe, that PJ has seniors that he recruited. I’ve always thought our undersized defensive line was partially excused by some being Gailey recruits. This year should tell us a lot about how PJ stacks up against ACC opponents with his players playing his system.

I expect the ground game to have its usual success. The passing game is a mystery. Special teams MUST improve for our jackets to enjoy success.

dry dirt road

August 28th, 2012
2:54 pm

Sean, the key to stopping LT might be gang tackling him. I recall a quote by Joe Namath back when Tech was in SEC and he said the Tech players gang tackling him tackled the hardest of any other SEC school or any school Bama played.

sean jones

August 28th, 2012
2:54 pm

atleast Tenuta pressured QBs and we were rarely run over like this Al Groh defense

yeller bug

August 28th, 2012
2:57 pm

It’d be nice if Tech-UGA could do the Chick kickoff bowl next year and then play at GT home in 2014 and UGA 2015 and get some parity in our home game schedule, but UGA won’t help us out. I’d be OK for only 6 home games if we played someone good OOC. MTSU and Presbyterian are good for tailgating and seeing future starters play—Vad Lee, etc. but I wouldn’t mind dropping one of these games every other year to have Michigan, Nebraska, UCLA, OK, or good SEC team come in to play.

yeller bug

August 28th, 2012
2:57 pm

It’d be nice if Tech-UGA could do the Chick kickoff bowl next year and then play at GT home in 2014 and UGA 2015 and get some parity in our home game schedule, but UGA won’t help us out. I’d be OK for only 6 home games if we played someone good OOC. MTSU and Presbyterian are good for tailgating and seeing future starters play—Vad Lee, etc. but I wouldn’t mind dropping one of these games every other year to have Michigan, Nebraska, UCLA, OK, or good SEC team come in to play.

juvenal

August 28th, 2012
2:57 pm

time for some D-& to bring this O into the 21st. century…

sean jones

August 28th, 2012
2:57 pm

@dry dirt road

last year it was hard to watch how we couldnt get that guy down. i just know they will have the ball in the final 2 minutes and it will be up to our defense and there is NO way they will get off the field.

Supersize that order, mutt

August 28th, 2012
2:58 pm

@ sean jones……Tenuta’s D would pressure the QB one week and fall flat on their faces the next. There was absolutely no consistency. Overall, his D probably covered the run better on a consistent basis, but that was it.

sean jones

August 28th, 2012
2:59 pm

GROH’s defense is stuck on the field….they cant get off

Supersize that order, mutt

August 28th, 2012
2:59 pm

Lex…..you probably won’t believe me, but I really don’t fear the UGA defense, no matter how good they are in the middle. My only real concern is the Tech D, and HOPEFULLY that will be greatly improved this year. We will know a lot more about that by this time next week.

sean jones

August 28th, 2012
3:00 pm

@supersize

his defense always stopped the run and i mean ALWAYZZZ!!! Groh’s d cant stop the scout team

sean jones

August 28th, 2012
3:01 pm

@supersize

Where does your optimism for this year’s defense come from??? i’m being serious.

yeller bug

August 28th, 2012
3:03 pm

sorry for the double click causing a double post—some things I write are worth repeating….this one….not so much

sean jones

August 28th, 2012
3:03 pm

I hate the dwags as much as anybody butthey will gash us like last year.. Atleast SOUTH CAROLINA will destroy em and so will LSU in the UH-OH DOME

DawginLex

August 28th, 2012
3:04 pm

I believe you but i think this defense is bigger, faster and deeper than any i have seen in 20 years. We have 3 freshmen who have come in and “gotten it” in Josh Harvey Clemons, Jordan Jenkins and sheldon Dawson. They provide depth for an already deep defense.

Big dropoff in 2013 but if the guys can stay idiot proof, I believe we can do big things in 2012.

dry dirt road

August 28th, 2012
3:06 pm

passing has to utilize shotgun + tall receivers like Darren Waller; kicking game improvement for special teams; unis need improvement badly, are some of the worst if not the worst in the NCAA, i.e. black thigh high stockings, black socks and shoes, flashy multicolored shoes that get worn for games that end up being lost, pink 60’s and 70’s style female powder puff football team socks and wristbands, just an effiminate image for a former all male school and still a mostly all male school; what ever happened to Carson’s white helmets? the gold ones are monotonous and therefore boring

sean jones

August 28th, 2012
3:06 pm

can Al Groh’s wife please come to the stadium and pick him up— His feet appear to be stuck on the field along with his defense!

sean jones

August 28th, 2012
3:07 pm

@dawg in LEX

South Carolina will beat you but yall will still win the EAST…then go to the UH-OH DOME and LSU will score a half 100 on you again.

sean jones

August 28th, 2012
3:11 pm

clemson 35 auburn 13 …..just sayin

909

August 28th, 2012
3:11 pm

dawginlex

troll someplace else. doosh

dry dirt road

August 28th, 2012
3:12 pm

Sean, I agree it was painful to watch LT burn us. It was painful to Jeremiah Attaochu when he got so frustrated he took a swing at LT. Such swing reminded me of the swing Darwin Holt took at Chick Granning during the Tech-Bama game when he broke Chick’s jaw. That was why Tech left the SEC.

Supersize that order, mutt

August 28th, 2012
3:12 pm

Lex……I just don’t see the UGA defense as being that formidable. They were good last year against average teams, but not against good teams. They really didn’t do as much against Tech as Tech did to themselves. Tech held their own in the first half and then totally collapsed in the second half, and that was not all due to the UGA defense. And something else I know you won’t agree with or even like to hear. I believe that Grantham will be gone before the season ends, because he is a loose cannon, and at some point during the season his antics are going to totally embarrass UGA, leading either to his suspension or dismissal.

Supersize that order, mutt

August 28th, 2012
3:13 pm

@ 909……Lex is ok. He is biased, but that’s fine; he at least makes intelligent posts.

dry dirt road

August 28th, 2012
3:15 pm

our rain guage has measured 3.75″ from Isaac, no dry dirt road

Supersize that order, mutt

August 28th, 2012
3:19 pm

@ sean jones……my GUARDED optimism for this year’s defense is because we finally have some depth there, as at every other position on the field. Plus, we have some real beef on D now. I can’t wait to see the “thunder from down under” hit the field.

chas_jacket

August 28th, 2012
3:19 pm

I’m not sure Groh and the defense deserve as much heat as they got last year. There were way too many three and outs for the offense along with turnover on downs putting the d in bad field position.

Ken Sugiura

August 28th, 2012
3:20 pm

AtWork – i’m not very good at gauging that sort of thing. i think they’re confident and very eager to play, but it seems like Johnson hasn’t been all that pleased with practice lately.
www – i’m not sure you read the item closely. i explained the benefits of playing in that game but also said that, ultimately, it’s not going to happen for reasons that are entirely understandable.
sean jones – you’ve made your point about al groh. thanks. i can’t see tenuta coming back, at least not while johnson is here, and likely not ever. sorry.

GTBob

August 28th, 2012
3:22 pm

Until John Jenkins and Kwame Geathers leave Athens, Tech won’t run up the middle against UGA. With the speed on the outside at LB and DB, Tech’s offense gets limited by the 2012 UGA defense.

Want to make a wager Lex? If UGA holds GT under 200 yards rushing I will go away forever. If not then you go away forever. How about it?

909

August 28th, 2012
3:22 pm

supersize

a dawg fan coming to the GaTech blog to complain about the Uga blog ?

Lame !

Supersize that order, mutt

August 28th, 2012
3:23 pm

I think when all is said and done, Grantham will be to UGA like Tenuta is to Tech. Some fans will go to their graves thinking he was the greatest D-coach ever, while the more objective will see the flaws and be glad he is gone.

chas_jacket

August 28th, 2012
3:24 pm

Ken, what do see as the defensive backfield if Holten is also out for VT?