Our first Guest Blogger: Why Tech will finally win at UVA

Today we present something new on the ol’ MB blog: A post written by someone other than MB. (For many of you, this will represent the best development yet.) Our first Guest Blogger is Matthew Harrison, who won the right to write by answering a trivia question that turned out not to be so trivial. He grew up in Atlanta and lives in Midlothian, Va. He started going to Georgia Tech games at age 5 with his grandfather, who had season tickets.

Matthew’s two favorite things regarding Tech games: “Before the games we would sometimes go to Krystal [or the Varsity]. I remember how excited I was when I could finally eat 2 Krystals! Another thing that was neat? I got to say a bad word at the Tech games with my grandfather. ‘Helluva engineer’ — love that fight song!”

As was part of the guest-blogging arrangement, Matthew got to pick his topic. And here, by golly, it is:

Nineteen years is too long

By Matthew Harrison

In 1990, gas was $1.16 a gallon; “Murphy Brown,” “L.A. Law and “Northern Exposure” were on TV and the top movies were “Dances with Wolves” and “Goodfellas.” In the fall of that year, Scott Sisson kicked a field goal with seven seconds left to lift Georgia Tech over then No. 1 Virginia. That was the last time the Yellow Jackets beat Virginia in Charlottesville. That’s a long streak, and one that will come to an end this year.

There are several reasons why Tech will beat Virginia:

• UVA will be running a new offense this year — a spread (I guess imitation is the sincerest form of flattery) and Jameel Sewell, the projected starting quarterback, has not played in a year because he was not in school last season. He has to get back into playing shape while he learns a new system under a new offensive coordinator. So the area that is the one question mark for Tech — the defensive line — should see an offense that is a pale imitation of what it’s used to seeing in practice. That also means, hopefully, that Coach Paul Johnson and Coach Dave Wommack will be better equipped to defend against this offense.

• Three starting Virginia linebackers completed their eligibility, so if Tech can keep the Cavaliers guessing, they should be able to run the ball into the secondary.

Guest blogger Matthew Harrison. (Photo submitted by author)

Guest blogger Matthew Harrison. (Photo courtesy of same)

• Tech has had a year to grow with this offense and Paul Johnson has said that he will be throwing the ball more. Virginia’s secondary is young with one senior starter, so that will also be an advantage for the Yellow Jackets. The one question mark will be Tech’s offensive line especially since it lost both starting tackles. Let’s hope Dan Voss at center is healthy.

• The biggest reason is this: Coach Johnson plays to win, as opposed to Chan Gailey playing not to lose. I was at the game in 2007, and Tech had plenty of chances to win. After taking a three-point lead, it began to play conservative football and that ended up contributing to the loss. I am aware Tech lost to Virginia last year in Atlanta under Coach Johnson. Cedric Peerman had a big day, rushing for 118 yards; Mikell Simpson, the tailback slated to replace him, gained 262 yards all last season.

Virginia is a struggling program that really should not have won last year. Tech is a contender in the conference, while UVA will finish with five wins. Al Groh is on the hot seat while Tech has its coach for the future.

There will be two streaks broken in 2009. The Atlanta Falcons will finally have consecutive winning seasons, and Georgia Tech will finally beat the Cavaliers in Charlottesville.

228 comments Add your comment

Akhmed Picklesimer

July 17th, 2009
11:07 am

It’s true that Johnson had little of his passing game in last year, so watch out for an exciting offense to blossom.

Brock D

July 17th, 2009
11:07 am

Who cares? It’s GT vs UVA! Can you say local blackout.

Wally Gator

July 17th, 2009
11:10 am

Nice job Matthew. Is it a prerequisite of writing in MB’s space that one must make bold predictions?

Sting 'em Buzz

July 17th, 2009
11:10 am

Here’s to beating the Cavaliers!!!!

David

July 17th, 2009
11:10 am

Nice post, man. I hope you’re right… on both predictions, that is.

Mark Bradley

July 17th, 2009
11:13 am

It’s not a prerequisite, Wally. But a bold prediction tends to make for interesting byplay.

Mark Bradley

July 17th, 2009
11:14 am

Oh, and Brock: I don’t believe Tech and Virginia play in the NFL. There are no local blackouts in college football. (Except at Georgia against Auburn and Alabama. Ha, ha.)

Julie

July 17th, 2009
11:14 am

Cletus

July 17th, 2009
11:20 am

Well, I guess you figured out a loophole in the ole “write your fingers off” directive you mentioned last week.

Mrs. Chanandler Bong

July 17th, 2009
11:22 am

To heck with Tech. Go Dawgs! MB, I’m going to win the trivia next time. I’ve already chosen my topic. “How to orchestrate a revival of the ‘Dirty Bird’.”

Who is Gt??

July 17th, 2009
11:29 am

Gt is IRRLEVANT!!!!! So is Virginia for that matter!!!

BLAZER

July 17th, 2009
11:29 am

we are due up there!!

Alex H.

July 17th, 2009
11:29 am

Thank the almighty that a Tech man won the blog. I think Matthew should get a full time job blogging for our beloved Jackets. Nice article. I hope we pound UVA into the ground this year.

Who is Gt??

July 17th, 2009
11:29 am

Gt is IRRLEVANT!!!!

Who is Gt??

July 17th, 2009
11:30 am

gt IS irrlevant!!! No one cares

BLAZER

July 17th, 2009
11:30 am

Mark Bradley

July 17th, 2009
11:32 am

Thanks a good one, Mrs. CB.

And Cletus: Questioning my work ethic, are you? How dare you, sir!

Supes

July 17th, 2009
11:32 am

Wow, Mark, you really want Jeff Schultz to win today in who gets more replies to each blog with this topic. Tech football in the middle of july? When was the last time Tech football was relevant nationally?

Brock D

July 17th, 2009
11:34 am

You’re right MB….it’s called sarcasm and do you really wanna bash the dawgs who get 90,000 to the games you mentioned while Tech can’t sellout a 35,000 seat stadium?

Supes

July 17th, 2009
11:39 am

UGA football news in July…a decent bet to get responses on a blog.

GT football news in July…not so much.

It is what it is:)

Reid Adair

July 17th, 2009
11:41 am

Well done. You make some valid points. Hopefully GT can get it done at Virginia this year.

And, I’m hoping Mrs. Chanandler Bong wins the next contest. I am eager to read her post about reviving the “Dirty Bird.”

Kathryn

July 17th, 2009
11:42 am

Go GT! This should be a great game to watch this year. Matthew has made some very perseptive observations.

Class of '98

July 17th, 2009
11:43 am

Yeah, GT has the coach of the future.

Notre Dame’s future.

Phil McCrotch

July 17th, 2009
11:44 am

So some guys take the time to get on here to say GT is irrelevant. Is that irony or stupidity?

UGA & SEC Rule Forever

July 17th, 2009
11:45 am

Who cares about Tech? No one! It’s all about the ‘Dawg baby! Sure my 2.1 GPA and 900 on the SAT couldn’t even let me sniff gaining admissions to GT but UGA is so much better because our fans yell louder and wear ties to games! Class baby, we’ve got it and you want it.

Oh, and did I mention we’re in the SEC? I think as a Dawg fan I am required to point out the superiority of our conference whenever possible. It doen’t matter that we usually are not in the championship game or at the top of our division because it’s the SEC! Yeah! *shotguns a beer*

Predictions? You got it. UGA: 72 GT: Pie

Eat that smart kids!

MatthewH

July 17th, 2009
11:50 am

I told MB that I wouldn’t get a lot of comments, but since this was my one shot I had to take it. Even if it meant blogging about GT in July. And Alex, you set up that job offer and I’ll take it.
It was a fun experience and I hope the next winner has as much fun. Thanks again MB.

Dawgs

July 17th, 2009
11:51 am

Wish a dawgs fan had gotten the chance to write something. AJC.com is the only place I ever have to deal with pointless articles about GT. No one outside of Atlanta cares about Tech. At least UGA is starting to build up its national brand to the same level as USC and Texas. Tech fans are some of the worst in college football…they lose 7 straight to UGA and then win one and suddently its time to get the old tech sweater out of the closet. Awful fans.

A Falcons article would have been welcome as well. Tech? Nah…I’m good.

doc

July 17th, 2009
11:51 am

matthew pretty cool. i did the same thing with my grandfather, only i started at the age of 5 in 1955. he had seats among old tech grads who played football, right off the cinder track you walked on to get to the seats on the 46 yd line. spoiled me for life. best game ever? when tech beat namath and bama in his first visit to grant field. we werent so lucky the next time even though he had a brace on his leg and played one quarter. i think we were down quickly 24-zip. my grandfather also played for john heisman on the tech team that won 222-0. i have somehow learned that uga isnt so bad but it took a long time. thanks for the memory trip.

Dawgs

July 17th, 2009
11:53 am

If I had of gotten the chance to write an article, I would have actually done some research. Maybe try and get a national perspective on UGA. How do college football fans in Texas or California perceive the dawgs? New York? Oregon? Maybe I would have written about whether or not the Falcons D will keep them from making a deep playoff run. GT vs Virginia? Who cares?

bb

July 17th, 2009
11:54 am

I love all the ‘Tech is irrelevant’ posts. It begs the question, “WHY did you click on this blog, and WHY did you take the time to post a comment?” Maybe Tech is not as irrelevant, to even yourself, as you like to pretend.

Dawgs

July 17th, 2009
11:56 am

haha tech is irrelvant…I clicked on the blog bc I’m a big MB fan and I like to read about sports. I was discouraged to see that it was about Tech. It’s not a coverup for my insecurities about Tech…we beat them 7 straight years. I barely see it as a rivalry at this point.

Angus

July 17th, 2009
11:56 am

While the SEC/UGA homers comments are childish, sub-literate, and annoying, there’s much truth to GT vs. UVA being “irrlevant” – it shouldn’t be relevant.

GT needs to start beating all the teams they are “supposed” to beat – stop having the lapses against UVA, NCSU, Duke, etc.

This year’s edition – JSU, Clemson, MSU, UVA, WF, Vandy, Duke.

Losses to any of these teams will be a disappointment (like UVA last year).

Sweep these + 2-3 split with the rest = good season. (3-2 split or more = great season)

Angus

July 17th, 2009
11:58 am

@ Dawgs 11:53

Of late, the AJC has been posting about 10 SEC/UGA to 1 GT/ACC blogs/articles.

What would be more appropriate to you? 50/1? 100/1?

Dawgs

July 17th, 2009
11:58 am

And before you complain about UGA fans posts here…go read ANY post about UGA…all you see in the comments are nerdy tech fans screaming ramble on like anyone even knows what the **** a ramblin wreck is outside of atlanta. hahaha

Dawgs

July 17th, 2009
11:59 am

No, 10/1 seems like a good ratio to me. All I said was that I would have loved to see a dawgs fan get a guest spot. Maybe next time.

ahope3

July 17th, 2009
12:00 pm

Dawgs, there are plenty of people outside of Atlanta who recognize that Tech is a contender for big things this year. Hello, we’re ranked ahead of you……but wait let’s not just use that as a justification because we see how you all played against Alabama, Florida, and oh could it be the Tech triple option. You saw it all year and still couldn’t prepare for it. Tech is better all around. UGA may be good at sports, but so is Tech and that’s not our only claim to fame like UGA. Can we say one of the best Institutions in the country. We outdo you in EVERY area. Academics, Sports (45-42, Basketball, and volleyball), and we live in Atlanta “farm boy”

rick

July 17th, 2009
12:02 pm

Tech will be 14-0 this year, write that down.

ahope3

July 17th, 2009
12:03 pm

Agreed Rick, all we need is a good start. Clemson, sorry you had to be the warm up after Jack State. You should be used to losing 5 of the last 6

Cal Dude

July 17th, 2009
12:04 pm

D- How do fans in California percieve the dogs you ask?

IRREVELANT!

Dawgs

July 17th, 2009
12:04 pm

ahope3, I haven’t gotten in a true debate with a Tech fan in years, and I don’t plan on doing it today. Reason being: One stat – 7-1. UGA’s record against Tech in the last 8 years. That isn’t a rivalry by my standards, and so the fact that UGA slipped up in Athens right before my eyes last fall doesn’t bother me as much as losing to Florida or Bama. You don’t support either of those teams, so we have no reason to debate.

In terms of UGA and GT as institutions…I’m a student at UGA and I wouldn’t trade my experience there for any other school in the country. I’m getting a first rate education thanks to the HOPE scholarship making UGA very competitive in terms of academics over the last 10 years. The nightlife in Athens is outstands (much better than Atlanta where you face cover charges and annoying Atlantans). UGA is a dream school for me and about 30,000 other students. Who would want to live in dirty Atlanta and go to Tech? Not me. I’ll graduate with a degree from UGA and go on to make just as much as a Techie would.

Phil McCrotch

July 17th, 2009
12:05 pm

So just because there are some dumbass tech posters on ga blogs, some of you dog fans feel the need to come to a gt blog and belittle the team and fans with your childish rants. Yeah, that’s intelligent. Grow up and get a life will ya. It’s just football. You’re complaining about the same thing you’re doing.

Dawgs

July 17th, 2009
12:07 pm

Cal Dude-

I HIGHLY doubt you are actually from Cali. Why would someone from Cali be reading an AJC post about Tech? And if that’s what college football fans from California think of UGA, so be it. It excites me to get the chance to prove ourselves against OK St and AZ st (as we did against Hawaii, Boise St, Ok St at home, and AZ St on the road.) I was a fan before Richt’s success, I’m a fan now, and I’ll be a fan once UGA wins another national title. Seeing my team rise has been an amazing experience. I can’t wait to see what we do next.

Supes

July 17th, 2009
12:10 pm

“why do you click on this blog, why do you reply blah, blah blah”.

Because some of us follow Mark Bradley’s Blog’s.

Is that too much of a reach? I can’t speak for other NONE tech fans who have replied here, but I read Mark’s blogs and I reply. It’s what we do in an interactive world, we also offer our opinion…which like I said is to me, this blog is a bit of a stretch in mid-July.

You can UGA football in mid-july, not Tech. Tech doesn’t have the following or the blog numbers to back it up.

[...] this year. Matthew Harrison is a Virginia resident after moving here from Atlanta. Click here to read the whole post but here’s a short glimpse: There are several reasons why Tech will [...]

Dawgs

July 17th, 2009
12:13 pm

Supes-

Exactly what I meant. Tech may be relevant IF it wins some big games this season to back up its high preseason ranking. Until then, let’s spend the summer reading and writing about some other teams that have had proven success for the last few years.

Mark Bradley

July 17th, 2009
12:13 pm

Under the heading of “Great Minds Think Alike” … I picked Georgia Tech to lose two games this season, with neither of the losses coming in Charlottesville.

ahope3

July 17th, 2009
12:14 pm

Dawgs, I doubt you’ll make as much as a Tech grad. Seeing as how many UGA students we have at Tech trying to get an MBA. And I’m a student at Tech, have been to Athens and think it’s nothing compared to the city of Atlanta. That isn’t even a debate “Atlanta or Athens”, that’s just crazy

ahope3

July 17th, 2009
12:15 pm

And if you wan’t to throw your 7-1 in eight years and talk about the past, do some research on how Tech would hand UGA their face in the early days. We even beat you our first year in existence.

Sting 'em Buzz

July 17th, 2009
12:16 pm

I live outside of Atlanta and care about Tech.

ahope3

July 17th, 2009
12:19 pm

“I was a fan before Richt’s success, I’m a fan now, and I’ll be a fan once UGA wins another national title.” Could you tell me when this will be. Last time I checked Tech had a National Championship more recently that UGA