Tech trying to keep focus, edge




At halftime last week, an opportunity for history tugged at Jay Finch.

Georgia Tech had kicked Boston College around for two quarters, hoarding 407 yards of offense in taking a 28-3 halftime lead. If the Yellow Jackets could continue the pace, the Tech center realized, they could break the single-game total-offense record of 768 set in last year’s 66-24 rout of Kansas.

Instead, Tech managed just nine more points and 156 yards, leaving bushels of scoring opportunities on the field. For the fourth consecutive game, the Jackets were outscored in the fourth quarter. In a game where Tech had an extra week’s rest and carried the motivation of stopping a three-game losing streak, coach Paul Johnson and players said the team backed off and lost focus.

Tech still beat Boston College, “but it’s something that I’ve noticed,” Finch said. “But I’m not sure everyone notices, but that’s something that we do need to work on.”

BYU, Tech’s homecoming opponent Saturday at Bobby Dodd Stadium, figures to be more capable of punishing the Jackets for wandering off course than Boston College. With BYU boasting the No. 8 scoring defense in the country, Tech likely can’t fritter away scoring chances or gift the Cougars with points as they did with the self-destructive Eagles.

“I think guys get comfortable,” A-back Orwin Smith said. “And you can’t get comfortable. We’ve been up a lot of games and just lost it towards the end.”

It’s a fitting summary for the first six games of the season. In starting out 2-4, Tech held fourth-quarter leads in three of the losses, two of them into the final minute. Against Miami, the Jackets scorched the Hurricanes with 36 consecutive points to take a 36-19 third-quarter lead before giving it all back and losing in overtime. Tech’s no-show 49-28 loss to Middle Tennessee State followed seven days later.

“I want them to be competitive,” Johnson said after the Boston College game. “And at times, we are. And when we are, we’re pretty good. And at times we lose focus.”

Johnson cited missed reads by both quarterbacks, Tevin Washington and Vad Lee, and poorly executed plays that prevented shorter gains from turning into larger ones. Johnson was so undone by the lack of fire that he took backup players to task for not being attentive and supportive from the sideline.

“It should be a privilege to be able to dress and have your name on the back of the uniform and be on the sidelines at Georgia Tech,” he said. “It’s not something that you should just kind of show up. If you want to giggle it up and laugh and cut up and have fun and dance to the video board, then go get in the stands.”

As a whole, the Jackets are easily described as hardworking and high-character, but perhaps not viciously competitive. Smith was bothered by players smiling and laughing last Saturday when the game was at halftime. He questioned whether his team has the ruthlessness to put teams away.

“I feel like you develop that from before you get to college, that drive to just always, no matter if you’re up 100, you still want to put up another 100,” he said. “Some of the guys, I can tell, just don’t have that.”

The Jackets have another opportunity to direct 60 minutes of channeled energy and cold-blooded ferocity at their opponent. They already know what can happen when they don’t.

“Even when we’re up, people still believe they can beat us,” Smith said. “It shouldn’t be like that. We need to just finish guys off.”

In case you missed it…

Penn State, Georgia State possible Tech opponents

Tech notes: Jackets prep for BYU hurry-up

Tech notes: Pocket containment key vs. BYU

Surgery probable for Tech’s Holton

Finch motivated by Tech streaks

Notes: Tech faces age-gap challenge vs. BYU

Notes: Johnson’s concerns about BYU

Notes: Field-goal unit needing repair

Tech-Maryland at 12:30 p.m.

Tech vs. highly ranked run defenses

With BYU next, no-huddle issues loom for Tech

Thanks for reading.

Ken Sugiura, Georgia Tech blog

71 comments Add your comment

1 4 GT

October 26th, 2012
3:51 pm

Wow! 2 firsts in 2 days!

jwill

October 26th, 2012
3:56 pm

Need that TJ Combo, Orchid Killer Instinct. Scorpion, Sub Zero FINISH HIM fatality.

1 4 GT

October 26th, 2012
4:00 pm

The guys really should have the attitude that Fince, Smith & CPJ talk about. It’s called killer instinct! I suggest Finch & Smith gather the team around them and PUMP’EM UP ala Brees with the Ain’ts. Someone has to do it! If they truly believe what they said, who better. Maybe they will see this & act on it. Ruthless, Smith said. I like that! He needs to figure pit the team needs leadership & take that role upon himself & run with it. Just like he runs with the ball in a game. Hard & determined. GOOOOO JACKETS THWGeorgie

st. pete tekkie

October 26th, 2012
4:13 pm

sorry but it seems like Mr. WASHINGTON IS TOO COMFORTABLE AND LOSES FOCUS!!!

Ken Sugiura

October 26th, 2012
4:22 pm

well done, 1 4 GT.

Wrecking Ball

October 26th, 2012
4:56 pm

It being homecoming, hopefully the stadium will be packed and loud (and loud for the Jackets this time, unlike the Miami and MTSU games), and maybe some of that energy will rub off on the players.

GT Joe

October 26th, 2012
4:58 pm

st. pete: be careful, the TW fans are CRAZY.

jwill

October 26th, 2012
5:03 pm

Did Kano have any fans when he ripped out an oppenents heart? Hell no that guy sucked! 60 minutes of football NO EXCUSES

[...] Tech trying to keep focus, edgeAtlanta Journal Constitution (blog)Georgia Tech had kicked Boston College around for two quarters, hoarding 407 yards of offense in taking a 28-3 halftime lead. If the Yellow Jackets could continue the pace, the Tech center realized, they could break the single-game total-offense record …BYU football vs. Georgia Tech: How the Cougars match up against the Yellow …Deseret NewsTech, BYU to match similar kicking woesAccess North GeorgiaGeorgia Tech, BYU to match similar kicking woesWMBFSB Nation -Technique -Daily Heraldall 103 news articles » [...]

Jmonty

October 26th, 2012
5:08 pm

I think we are going to have to air it out. BYU will put 8-9 men in the box at all times. I expect them to have their 2 DT’s crash the middle each every play. They will veer off the 3-4 scheme some. They will use the LB’s to fill the outside. If GT’s is going to run, it will be on the outside. The DB’s will be in man to man coverage the whole game. If TW or VL and complete some passes. BYU might think about a cover 2 of a zone. However; no one seems to respect GT’s passing game and with good reason. CPJ has got to create some quick slants and some screens to deter the other teams “D” to play assignment football. Go to where they aren’t if you are a receiver. Help the QB be a little better. I hope the TW can avoid the turnovers and hit some big passes. If he doesn’t, it’s going to be a long day for the Jackets. If the defense can keep it up, the offense will score enough to win. Again.. I am predicting 38-24 Jackets win. :) Go Jackets! THWG

yeller bug

October 26th, 2012
5:28 pm

I think Finch and the “Goon Squad” should be able to drive that killer instinct. Although we have some injuries this week—we’re deep and each and every play the O-line should want to drive their opponent into the ground. DOMINATE EVERY PLAY! I know we do cut blocks, etc. but hustling downfield, making blocks, opening holes…just go after it. If we win the LOS, then we’ll have a strong rushing attack and that effort will pump up the rest of the team. It’s one thing to talk it at halftime when you get 400 yds—-keep the fire going. We’re so bad in the 4th QTR that teams who are behind have more confidence than usual because they are playing us and have seen us collapse in the final QTR. Need to reverse that thought process and start owning the 4th QTR.

UGA = Yawn

October 26th, 2012
6:14 pm

Seriously! If we have to talk about keeping focus, edge – it means we have a huge issue. Our team never plays 60 full minutes of intense football. I have NO idea why now or what is the answer. The best teams are on GO the full time. No let up – even when up 20 or 30. It’s just amazing to me.

Tech Fan For Life

October 26th, 2012
6:24 pm

Go BYU!
Go Johnson—– GA. Southern or maybe Western Carolina or maybe Valdosta State or maybe Pike Co.
Please Paul for the love of everything decent and good just leave Tech and go somewhere.
You have enough $ to last you go to a small place where you can be successful.
Live out your golden years in good graces and please, please, please with a cherry on top!
Paul Please.

Tech Fan For Life

October 26th, 2012
6:25 pm

Enter your comments here

Tech Fan For Life

October 26th, 2012
6:31 pm

I’ll enter them – please Paul – you are a good man and a good coach.
You are just behind current college schemes – no cut on you- man plenty
of coaches in High School would love to have your financial security and
your high school offense- you could live in the Atlanta area- win some state
titles – build you a house in the blue ridge mtns and live the good life.
Live the good life Paul – but please let us move into the 21st century.
If you want me to come down to your office and beg, I will.
I will buy back my season tickets, I’ll do anything but watch you destroy our
program because of your pride- stop it man- you got it made-
please just leave us in peace!!!

Sad

October 26th, 2012
6:37 pm

Look at ” 1 4 GT” excited about being “first” twice. Wow what a loser. Tells you a lot about Tech fans. Enjoy the loss tomorrow boys!

Supersize that order, mutt

October 26th, 2012
6:38 pm

@ Tech Fan For Life…….you are free to post your opinion, but you definitely do not speak for all Tech fans……certainly not for me.

Supersize that order, mutt

October 26th, 2012
6:39 pm

Tells you a lot about a troll who is concerned with how people play games on the blogs, no matter how silly they may be. Get a life, bubba.

Smyrna Gold

October 26th, 2012
6:43 pm

@ Tech Fan For Life
I agree with everything you said. As long as apathetic Tech fans continue to let a $2.6 million dollar coach run this program into the ground, the downward spiral will continue. The man simply cannot compete with other programs in the ACC for good talent, much less the SEC. It’s time to get serious about football or get the heck out. The same old excuses are getting old.

jwill

October 26th, 2012
6:44 pm

@Sad already for tomorrow aintcha boy?

Supersize that order, mutt

October 26th, 2012
6:47 pm

@ Smyrna….those of us who support Johnson are NOT apathetic. If I remember correctly, you have said you do not and will not go to Tech games. THAT is apathetic. WE buy tickets, attend games, and contribute to the athletic funds. DO YOU ???

I love Jan Kemp

October 26th, 2012
6:47 pm

No killer instinct? Really? Then why are they playing football? Thats on the SRs. Team leadership needs to create that. I remember seeing some of Tashard Choices’ pregame speeches, now HE could get em fired up!

uafuneman

October 26th, 2012
6:52 pm

CPJ, you recruited these kids. If you can’t get them o stay focused on the sidelines and at practice that’s your fn fault.

5150 UOAD

October 26th, 2012
6:53 pm

Should I Copy/Past the UGa fans and their FIRST posts?
The ONLY time a UGa fan should say FIRST is if they actually make IT FIRST with a UGa Freshman Female.

5150 UOAD

October 26th, 2012
6:55 pm

Tech Fan For Life

October 26th, 2012
6:56 pm

I wish I did speak for all Tech fans then we could cut off the money and get back to helping these kids.
I’m not going to lie – it hurts me after 40 years of pulling for Tech – even with Reggie and Chan I stood with them, but I realize my mistake. It is about these kids – the players – the yellow endzone crew.
We need to give them a chance – they did not allow this to happen- it happened on our watch. As a season ticket holder since 1987 (no longer) I bear the brunt of that responsibility. Now I’m sticking to my guns – no games, no Tech merchandise – no money to Tech until Paul leaves- I really do hate that this is my only option (no pun intended). Guys I LOVE TECH. I just know that we have to do something – hire a innovative coach – we have to try!!
Supersize – I understand your loyalty – but think about the kids- think about the future – don’t you think P.J. is set – he could go to HS and be great.
If he did at least we could TRY to be great. I am sorry but I will NEVER accept losing to Georgia 5 out of every 6 years – if you will then I really don’t what to say.

Tech Fan For Life

October 26th, 2012
7:06 pm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=-txX4d-51wk

Copy – Paste – and remember – we are doomed – just misled

Tech Fan For Life

October 26th, 2012
7:08 pm

not doomed – just misled – just mutted

Georgia Tee

October 26th, 2012
7:14 pm

I sure do miss the gold helmets…….does anyone else?

Tech Fan For Life

October 26th, 2012
7:15 pm

I guess I was lucky to be in Virginia and Orlando.
Now I just feel cursed.
I guess I still think we can win.
Listening to others, maybe I’m the only one.
Click the above and comment.

5150 UOAD

October 26th, 2012
7:22 pm

To HELL with the Honeycomb Helmets.

Supersize that order, mutt

October 26th, 2012
7:22 pm

Obviously the post at 6:51 was not made by me.
That being said, TFFL, I am of the opinion that if you SUPPORT something, no matter what, then you give your all to it, When you stop giving, then you stop supporting. You see your methods as not supporting JOHNSON, but what it really amounts to is that you do not support GA TECH. Dont’ mean to comet down too hard on you, but if you don’t support Tech, then frankly, why should your opinion matter? I HATED Chan Gailey, but I never withdrew or even threatened to withdraw my support for the program. Actually,by withdrawing your financial support, you (and others like you) have really created a Catch 22 situation. You want them to buy out Johnson’s contract, but if they don’t have money from you and others, then how the hell can they buy it out?

Tech Fan For Life

October 26th, 2012
7:42 pm

Come on really? Is that your argument. If I don’t support Johnson, I don’t support Tech?
We have the money in reserve to buy off Johnson- you know that and everyone reading this
blog knows that.
There is no Catch 22. I support Tech not Johnson and if it takes a few lean years to get back
to solid ground then so be it.
What it is your argument? Keep going? If we do then you know we will keep Johnson.
Again, Mutt if you are okay with that I don’t know what to say.
But you need to say it – You need to admit right here tonight-
You need to say to the fans and these kids- I will leave you with the disease,
because I don’t want the shot to hurt.
Honestly, Seriously- I cannot see how you believe what your are saying.
Again, I guess I’m alone- I expect more for these kids and more for this university.
I expect to win.
If it takes me giving the shot – so be it.

Supersize that order, mutt

October 26th, 2012
7:49 pm

BTTF…..What I am saying is that I think Johnson is an excellent coach who WILL get the job done. I don’t have time right now to expand on that; I have got to sign off for the night. But I have absolutely no doubts that he WILL prove you and the other “haters” wrong.

Reformed Toady

October 26th, 2012
7:50 pm

I do not like the new uniforms. BUT does that really make a difference between winning and losing? I doubt it.

Good Lord, all the naysayers and chicken littles! Go rent a bunker. You don’t go to the games anyway. I’ll be there tomorrow! If CPJ fails then he fails. I’ll still root for my team. When Tech wins can you guys please go away forever. Shouldn’t you be in a bunker anyway? Maybe with some bubble wrap for extra protection?

Go watch the dogs because you deserve it. FYI- this is a Tech blog.

Supersize that order, mutt

October 26th, 2012
7:51 pm

@ Reformed Toady……come tailgate with us at juvenal’s spot tomorrow starting about 12:15. Plenty of food, and there will be about 10 of us regular bloggers there. Would love to meet you.

Supersize that order, mutt

October 26th, 2012
7:53 pm

OOPS…..forgot to say where that is. The lot at the corner of 2nd Street and West Peachtree. Look for a guy in a wheel-chair; that will be 1 4 GT

Why do a lot of Tech guys...

October 26th, 2012
7:53 pm

…even when writing about another topic, seem to always end their thoughts with THWG? I mean, I know that that is how you are indoctrinated when freshmen, and by parents even before then, but, c’mon, you are not still in college, so why the obsession with UGA? Even the fight song includes the words that go with the letters…inquiring minds want to know why…

Supersize that order, mutt

October 26th, 2012
7:53 pm

@ Reformed Toady……I just saw your post on the other blog. We have a blast too; would love it if you could stop by.

Supersize that order, mutt

October 26th, 2012
7:54 pm

Because it is TRADITION !!!

Clyde

October 26th, 2012
7:55 pm

Have ya’ll gotten your shirts with your blog handles on them made up yet?

Supersize that order, mutt

October 26th, 2012
7:57 pm

It’s sort of like saying “Amen” in response to something you agree with. It doesn’t have to be a prayer; it’s just a word of agreement. THWG is something that binds all Tech fans together.

Anyway, I AM outta here now. Have fun at the game tomorrow, those of you going.

GO JACKETS !!!
GO GATORS !!!
TO HELL WITH GEORGIA !!!!!

Well, at least Orwin...

October 26th, 2012
7:57 pm

…did not name names (“I feel like you develop that from before you get to college, that drive to just always, no matter if you’re up 100, you still want to put up another 100,” he said. “Some of the guys, I can tell, just don’t have that.”) like the UGA guy did – but he did just c r a p on his teammates…

Tech Fan For Life

October 26th, 2012
8:05 pm

Johnson is an excellent coach.
An excellent 1AA or H.S. coach
He has NOT repeat for you NOT got the job done
If you want to fantasize that he will.
Enjoy the trip.
Me – I’m going to stay in reality and that means
I will never be at Dodd while Johnson is the coach.
Jacket players – students love you guys – you deserve better
You WILL GET IT
Signing off

GT #1

October 26th, 2012
8:07 pm

“Super size” I agree with you Coach Johnson will get the job done.
When you get someone down–keep them down are they will get up and kick your a@@..What my Dad always told me… How true that is.

GTGirl

October 26th, 2012
8:36 pm

I miss the gold helmets too Georgia Tee. I think they look better than the new ones.
Go Jackets!

Paul in Nh

October 26th, 2012
8:51 pm

TFFL has an interesting way of supporting GT – won’t go to the games, won’t buy tickets and won’t buy merchandise while Johnson is coach.

I love Jan Kemp

October 26th, 2012
9:21 pm

I realize if you dont like the coach you dont wnna go to the games BUT its embarassing! Tech cant fill a 55,000 seat stadium and it makes us look like a JOKE! How are we suppose to recruit with only 30,000 people in the stands? what kind of message does that send to potential recruits? Im not even an alum and Im there! As for the unis, CPJ said the recruits like em so theyre not goin anywhere. they need all the HELP they can get recruiting! i dnt wnna see the gold helmets go tho. maybe use em every other game r so.

Reformed Toady

October 26th, 2012
9:38 pm

“Why do a lot of Tech guys…”

October 26th, 2012
7:53 pm

Interesting question…
Let me turn it around for you.
Why does UGA rip off the same phrase? We came up with it.
Why does UGA rip off the The Green Bay Packer logo. I know you guys pay for the infringement. Nothing original from that lib arts school. Funny!
Why do UGA fans find humor in violent crime related to Atlanta and Georgia Tech in particular? Is there a certain segment of your fan base that needs serious psychological help or has it already gone beyond that point? My educated guess is YES to both points!
Why do UGA people troll Tech’s message board? My uneducated guess is to make themselves feel important.
Here’s something I know you’ll understand…Go Dwags! FYI- that’s one of your fans spelling not ours.
THWG!

Reformed Toady

October 26th, 2012
9:41 pm

“Tech Fan For Life”
LOL
Misnomer if there ever was one. Good for you and please stay away.