Tech goes for back-to-back wins over UGA

Last December, Georgia Tech basketball coach Brian Gregory led the Yellow Jackets to their first win over Georgia at Stegeman Coliseum after a run of 13 consecutive losses in Athens.

Tuesday evening at McCamish Pavilion, where a near sellout is expected, the Jackets can make an additional case that they are on the way up. They can beat Georgia two games in a row, which they have failed to do since a three-year winning streak 1992-94.

“For us to beat them two times in a row going out (as a senior), I’d be real excited,” guard Mfon Udofia said.

Gregory passed up on an opportunity to pontificate on the significance of back-to-back wins.

“They talk about all the different aspects of what happens if who wins or whatever the case might be,” he said. “What it would be for us and them, it would be a step in the right direction in terms of continuing the process of this season.”

Regardless of Tuesday’s result, Tech is showing signs of progress in Gregory’s second season. The Jackets are 4-2 with a win over Saint Mary’s, an NCAA tournament team two of the past three seasons. Last Wednesday, on the road against Illinois, now No. 13 in the country, the Jackets led with just over six minutes to go before giving way, in part due to Udofia spraining his ankle, in a 75-62 defeat.

Udofia returned to practice Monday for the first time since the loss, Tech’s most recent game. Gregory said he would probably be a game-time decision. Asked what Udofia would do if the game were Monday, Gregory replied, “Knowing Mfon, I’d say he’d make a go of it.”

Pierre Jordan, who has started one game in four seasons split between Florida State and Tech, would start in Udofia’s place.

“I think we have to have multiple players step up and help us out in terms of not only ball handling and offensive efficiency but also defensively,” Gregory said.

Udofia is probably Tech’s most indispensable player. The point guard leads the Jackets in minutes (30.7 per game) and has scored in double digits in each of the past three games. He is eager for a shot at Georgia.

“Every year, you mark that one game as a must win,” Udofia said.

Two consecutive wins would speak to the team’s growth and perhaps Gregory’s ability to coach in a rivalry game. Gregory’s predecessor, Paul Hewitt, was 4-7 against the Bulldogs.

Gregory discounted the game’s impact on recruiting, saying that relationships and other factors count more heavily than one game. Tech’s freshman class serves as evidence. Forwards Robert Carter and Marcus Georges-Hunt were both recruited by Georgia coach Mark Fox, but both gave their letters of intent to Tech along with guard Chris Bolden a month before Gregory beat the Bulldogs.

Gregory, though, does owe a debt of gratitude to Tech’s football team. Carter and Georges-Hunt made their official recruiting visits Oct. 2011 and attended Tech’s upset win over Clemson. Monday, Gregory remembered that weekend as significant in the recruitment of the two freshmen, which Georges-Hunt corroborated.

“I can remember going to the Clemson game that night and them winning and (the students) all rushed the field,” he said. “It just gave me chills.”

Georges-Hunt envisioned the same sort of support for the basketball team. If the Jackets defeat the Bulldogs Tuesday, Georges-Hunt and his teammates will most certainly experience it.

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61 comments Add your comment

Paul in NH

December 3rd, 2012
10:47 pm

Good luck to GT tomorrow against UGA.
Since he is a Georgia native, I can understand how Udofia puts this as a must win game. Personally I would sooner beat UNC or Duke.

YELLER BUG

December 3rd, 2012
10:47 pm

Beat the DWAGS!!!

RWRECK77

December 3rd, 2012
10:48 pm

Could I be first?

RWRECK77

December 3rd, 2012
10:49 pm

YELLER BUG

December 3rd, 2012
10:49 pm

Agree Paul, especially getting wins over Rat face and the Dukies!

Nick

December 3rd, 2012
10:49 pm

We should expect to beat UGA. Not sure why we’d rush the court after beating them.

Biff Pocoroba

December 3rd, 2012
11:13 pm

Tickets behind the student section are $95. No wonder we can’t sell out this year. DRad never undertood supply and demand principles. Hopefully we can to better than the women’s team did yesterday against Georgia. They waited until the final 5 minutes to start scoring and were too far down by then.

1 4 GT

December 4th, 2012
12:23 am

Go ‘em Jackets! Beat Georgie. THWGeorgie

Road Scholar

December 4th, 2012
6:12 am

Paul: One game at a time!

Gordon

December 4th, 2012
6:18 am

Anyone who thinks we will have an easy time tonight isn’t paying attention. Things are definitely moving in the right direction, but we aren’t good enough to take anyone for granted, especially with Udofia injured. UGA isn’t great, but they are better than their record. If Udofia can’t play at all, our chances are less than 50/50.

Bored in Newnan

December 4th, 2012
6:54 am

“I would sooner beat UNC or Duke”…Paul in NH
Give me a break!?! You must live in NH, you sure as hell dont live in Georgia. The only game that ever matters is the UGA game. I’d rather see Tech go 0 and whatever in the conference and beat UGA every year. And that goes for any sport. Control the state, and everything else takes care of itself. UGA has painfully proven that in football.

Iluvnutella

December 4th, 2012
7:26 am

The Dwaggies scared the stuffin outta UCLA….I dont think this yr will be a cakewalk, but we do NEED to win this one by a large margin….in light of what happened on the gridiron last month.

GT-06

December 4th, 2012
8:00 am

We should expect to win in Basketball against UGA. We play in the ACC and have better resources (Thriller Dome and Zelnek) for basketball. We have better talent and at home. Give the ball to Holsey in the post and we’ll win. Beating UGA counts but Duke/UNC are far more important. Go Tech!

Pull My Finger

December 4th, 2012
8:54 am

Happy Birthday Jody T.!!!!

GT Dude

December 4th, 2012
9:04 am

Time put a beat down on the cess pool crowd.
Beat them now and we don’t have to listen to them for the rest of the season
Go Tech, take care of business tonight!

11 of 12

December 4th, 2012
9:13 am

I fully expect Tech to win in a blowout! We are pretty bad this season. I take that back. We are terrible this season.

Enjoy the win jackets and this UGA grad knows you clearly have the better team.

GT65

December 4th, 2012
9:38 am

Go Jackets!
Get a dawg………

buzz2000

December 4th, 2012
9:49 am

What difference does it make if we beat Georgia? Georga does not help our RPI. Win the ACC that is what counts.

Wayne Jacket

December 4th, 2012
9:52 am

@ Biff. Hot sure where you found seats behind the student section for $95. I bought single seats along the sideline for $51. Of course, season tickets with the required donation are more. Irregardless, BEAT THE DWAGS.

btgt69

December 4th, 2012
9:55 am

@bored: you hit the nail or mutt on the head! we sing THWg not THWD or NC,,, Paul, you need to move south, the cold weather and liberals have gotten to you !

GT Girl

December 4th, 2012
10:07 am

Go Jackets! Beat the mutts! Hope we have a LOUD sellout crowd.

BUZZ

December 4th, 2012
10:07 am

Biff Pocoroba

December 4th, 2012
10:08 am

If you order from the website and ask for best seat available, it is $97 plus service charge in section 108. If all ACC games are the same price, it will be tough to sell these tickets except for Duke and UNC

GTBob

December 4th, 2012
10:29 am

I’d rather see Tech go 0 and whatever in the conference and beat UGA every year.

Oh give me a break. 99.9999999% of UGA fans have no idea there is even a game tonight. Basketball isn’t the same as football.

Wes

December 4th, 2012
10:34 am

Gotta get this ‘W’ tonight.

I hate Georgia with every fiber of my being.

It will be quite telling (in this game) to see how Udofia looks warming up and during the game itself. He is CRUCIAL to the Jackets winning tonight as Tech’s backup point guard (Iron Head Heyward’s son) tore his acl.

Go Jackets!

#THWG!!!!

blazer

December 4th, 2012
10:48 am

Buzzzed

December 4th, 2012
10:50 am

Good chance Tech drops this one with Mfon hurt.

Sammy Dawg

December 4th, 2012
11:12 am

UGA 59
Tech 55

Sorry jackets, not this year. We have played a much tougher schedule so far and we are healthy. A 90% healthy point guard for Tech won’t cut it tonight.

GTBob

December 4th, 2012
11:25 am

Tech is far more talented than UGA. Even without Mfon it would be a bit of a let down to lose this game.

The New ACC

December 4th, 2012
11:49 am

As a GA Tech fan, I find ugag totally irrelavent. They mean nothing. We may as well play Southern Alabama Institute for all I care. This is true for football and basketball.

It is far more meaningful to defeat a coastal division team or any ACC team.

It is far more meaningful to get to the NCAA tourney or a bowl game.

This is just my opinion.

www

December 4th, 2012
12:14 pm

interesting mention of georgia tech in an article on slate.com

“What colleges are equally passionate about both (football and basketball)? It’s hard to think of many—BYU, Illinois, and maybe Georgia Tech come to mind.”

http://www.slate.com/articles/sports/sports_nut/2012/11/conference_realignment_the_acc_big_east_and_big_ten_are_all_failed_experiments.html

old man

December 4th, 2012
12:21 pm

I’m a big fan of the dawgs but from what I’ve seen, our b’ball team is just so-so. I find it somewhat incredible that GT fans are debating the difficulty of this game. Originally, I assumed that this would be another “L” for us but listening to you guys makes me think that UGA has a fighting chance. Admittedly, I haven’t seen GT play but the bloggers here are making me think that maybe GT is also a so-so team. GO DAWGS!

g

December 4th, 2012
12:22 pm

I purchased tickets directly from GT last week for $36 in section 204. I have not been in the new building, but can’t imagine there is a bad seat

GIVE ME A BREAK

December 4th, 2012
12:26 pm

The passion and excitement have returned to GT basketball. Thanks, Coach Gregory. ” GO JACKETS “

Gordon

December 4th, 2012
12:29 pm

UGA is just going to sit in a 2-3 zone most of the night and if Tech doesn’t shoot well it will lose. We need someone to slow down KCP, and if Udofia isn’t healthy I don’t know who it will be.

The Necromancer

December 4th, 2012
12:38 pm

If Tech beats UGA then UGA fans won’t care. If UGA beats Tech we will have to deal with the we even beat you in basketball from the UGA fans. It is just a neighbor thing. I’m used to it with the football team. It doesn’t even bother me anymore.

Jacket Time

December 4th, 2012
12:46 pm

Lets do this! Two in a row and many more to come!

BobinBuford

December 4th, 2012
12:52 pm

Hey Sammy!!

You’ve played a tougher schedule than GT?? You’ve lost to Youngstown State, Southern Miss and South Florida. Your RPI is 231 – Tech’s is 47. Tech’s two losses have been to Cal and the #13 team in the country, Illinois.

So again, explain to us how your schedule so far this year has been tougher.

Yurtle_the_Turtle

December 4th, 2012
12:55 pm

I’m excited that we are at least looking like a team again and are getting Hewitt out of our system. I couldn’t even stand watching the program anymore. I actually rooted for our team to lose so that we would get rid of him. I’d like to see what the new AD looks like and how he will help change the football program. Anyway, Gregory has had a good recruiting class and hopefully he can build on it for next year. How are we looking for next year’s class? Does anyone know?

Sammy Dawg

December 4th, 2012
1:07 pm

Bob, Early season letdowns aside, a loss to #1 Indiana by 13 and UCLA by 4 is not that bad. Those tests will have us ready for tonight. I truely doubt if your point guard plays, he will be at or near 100%. That is not good for your offense. UGA uses this as a breakthrough game tonight. Sit back a watch. GT will be launching 3s and their only hope is for a great shooting night.

Dawg gone it

December 4th, 2012
1:32 pm

Hey BobinBuford….did you not see UGA play #1 Indiana??

BobinBuford

December 4th, 2012
2:46 pm

Sammy:

Obviously, Sammy, you have not been watching Tech play. The days of Hewitt are over here – this team plays with energy that was not there. They won’t be launching 3’s all night, but moving the ball with purpose to find the good shot. And let’s see how well your team performs before a sellout crowd of GT fans in a newly designed arena – unlike the barn you guys play in.

So you are calling those losses to IU and UCLA “moral victories” – you know, like the ones you always make light of when talking about GT football.

Techster

December 4th, 2012
3:24 pm

Sting the dogs Yellow Jackets.

Jacket Detective

December 4th, 2012
3:26 pm

Biff,
You aren’t related to WnE, are you?
No you’re at least ocassionally funny.
If you are going to stay negative forever, may I request more humor?
I hoping u do not have much material to work with tonight.
If we can’t sell this out, then that is pathetic whether DRAD gave the students the best seats or not.

Paul Hewitt

December 4th, 2012
3:27 pm

Too bad Tech fans. I can’t come back and coach at Tech because I am too busy working on winning a NCAA title here at George Mason.

Jacket Detective

December 4th, 2012
3:34 pm

Tech basketball is on an upward course.
If you look at the players we have and that are coming in (and the injured freshman PG), it is difficult not to be optomistic.
Maybe some of my fellow Tech fans need to drop the d-cafe and go back to the real stuff.

Jacket Detective

December 4th, 2012
3:36 pm

@Paul,
You can’t come back and coach because you don’t know how.
At least not at ACC standards.

Jacket Detective

December 4th, 2012
4:07 pm

Don’t let Caldwell Pope have uncontested treys.

Toadster

December 4th, 2012
4:24 pm

Hey Paul, did you pick up Favors?

5150 UOAD

December 4th, 2012
4:40 pm

Let UGa win…..maybe it will stop their CRYING over the Bama Football Loss. What a BUNCH of CRY BABIES. Bama hit our QB and the BAMA player should be suspended. HAHAHHAHA

DUNK in a UGa players face and Hang your JUNK on the dWag players face when you do it. :)