Notes for Friday’s paper.
1. In advance of its Saturday game against Boston College, the Georgia Tech defense has been working on defending the stacked receivers look that Middle Tennessee State and Clemson both used effectively against the Yellow Jackets. In it, one wide receiver lines up at the line of scrimmage and a second takes his stance behind him. As both run downfield, the second can run behind the first without getting bumped at the line, allowing an unencumbered start to his route.
“Things that have given you problems in the past, you’re going to see them again until you fix ’em,” interim defensive coordinator Charles Kelly said. “That wouldn’t surprise me to see that.”
Kelly, who was last a coordinator in 2005 at Nicholls State, will call plays from the coaches box, with the calls signaled in from the sideline. Said Kelly of rehearsing play-calling, “You kind of do that in practices.” Much of the work is done in meetings with the defensive staff to decide what defenses to call in various situations.
“All the other coaches have a lot of input,” Kelly said. “I’m going to say it 100 times. This is a ‘we’ thing.”
2. With a three-game losing streak, it isn’t a high priority, but Tech players, in particularly the offensive linemen, have a goal of leading the country in rushing. Tech is No. 3 at 331.0 yards per game, half a football field behind Army (385.2). Tech has finished no worse than fourth since Johnson’s arrival in 2008 and led the country in 2010 at 323.3 yards per game.
“That’s on us,” offensive lineman Will Jackson said. “If it happens, we helped get it there, and if it doesn’t, we feel like we kind of take sole responsibility for it.”
3. Coach Paul Johnson’s first ACC game and victory came against Boston College Sept. 6, 2008, a 19-16 win in Chestnut Hill, Mass. In the game, Tech won despite giving away three fumbles and gaining only 235 yards. After Tech scored on a safety, B-back Jonathan Dwyer ran 43 yards for the go-ahead touchdown in the middle of the fourth quarter.
“That was probably one of our better defensive games since I’ve been here,” Johnson said.
Out of the 14 games that Tech has played under Johnson in which it has scored 20 or fewer points, it’s one of only two wins. The 10-7 win over Gardner-Webb in 2008 is the other.
4. Ticket demand for Saturday’s game is something less than gangbusters. On Thursday evening on the ticket re-sale website Stubhub, the least expensive tickets were going for $9. Upper end-zone seats were available for $12 and lower-deck sideline tickets were on sale for as little as $19.
5. Thursday, center Jay Finch was listed as probable to play in Saturday’s game, while B-back Broderick Snoddy was doubtful. Snoddy’s injury is undisclosed. Finch injured his calf in the Oct. 6 game against Clemson. … The television broadcast team for Saturday’s game will be Rich Waltz (play-by-play), Keith Jones (color) and Jenn Hildreth (sideline). The game will be televised on regional sports networks, including Fox Sports South in the Atlanta market.
After a fan fell onto the ground from railings at Bobby Dodd Stadium in each of the past two home games, the athletic department has asked stadium security personnel to be increasingly vigilant of untoward fan behavior, particularly near stadium railings and fences, Tech spokesman Wayne Hogan said in an e-mail. Neither fan was seriously injured. The second fan, a Tech freshman, later told police he had been drinking a lot of alcohol prior to the Sept. 29 Middle Tennessee State game.
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Thanks for reading.
Ken Sugiura, Georgia Tech blog