1. Among the more certain aspects of Saturday’s game between Georgia Tech and BYU is that, at some point, the Cougars will use their no-huddle offense.
Among the less-certain aspects of the game is how the Yellow Jackets will respond. While Tech played with better organization and speed against Boston College in interim defensive coordinator Charles Kelly’s first game, the Jackets gave up both of their touchdowns when the Eagles operated without a huddle.
“The communication was OK,” Kelly said. “I think just getting set and getting your eyes ready to go, I think that’s the biggest thing.”
The Jackets had trouble against fast-tempo offenses when Al Groh was the coordinator. On Saturday, players wore wristbands with plays printed on them to expedite play calls from the sideline in the event Boston College quickened the pace. Tech has been working up-tempo in practice to adjust.
“We go pretty rapid-fire (in practice), so we got used to hurry-up type things,” cornerback Louis Young said.
Kelly was not quite so confident. In watching BYU game video, “you’ll see the (opposing) defenses trying to get set, lined up, so we’ve been working on that, and hopefully we’ll get better at it,” he said.
2. Saturday is homecoming, but not just for Tech alumni. BYU kicker Justin Sorensen is returning to the state where he served his two-year Mormon mission. He spent 2009 and 2010 proselytizing in Macon, Savannah, Tifton, Albany and Statesboro.
Sorensen spoke fondly of the experience, from how the topography of the region differed from his home state of Utah to the people he encountered. He developed a taste for fried chicken, grits and cornbread, all of which he learned to make on his own.
“I loved how, even if people weren’t interested in the message I had to share, they were very willing to come outside to talk to us, offer us something to drink and to share Scripture with them and have a prayer,” he said. “It was unbelievable. Everything they say about Southern hospitality is true about the South and Georgia.”
Sorensen said he’ll have about 20 friends from his mission at the game and will stay after the game to visit.
3. Offensive linemen Will Jackson and Errin Joe will not play against BYU because of injury. Without Jackson, Morgan Bailey is expected to start at right tackle. With Jackson able to play both guard and tackle, his absence thins out the line’s depth.
Kicker David Scully’s status for the game is uncertain. He has been trying to recover from a hip injury. Justin Moore, who replaced him last week, would go in his place.
4. A-back Orwin Smith will wear No. 40 on Saturday as the team continues to rotate the jersey number of former linebacker and team captain Julian Burnett, who suffered a career-ending neck injury in the Sun Bowl last year. … On television, the game will be called by Rich Waltz (play by play), Keith Jones (color) and Jenn Hildreth (sideline). The team also was on hand for Tech’s win over Boston College. The game will be broadcast on regional sports networks, including Fox Sports South in the Atlanta market. … McCamish Pavilion will be open to fans starting at 10 a.m. before the game.
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Ken Sugiura, Georgia Tech blog