Archive for January, 2013

2013 could be big for Tech, which could stand a big year

A day in the Sun brought much happiness. (AP photo)

One day in the Sun brought much joy to the Yellow Jackets. (AP photo)

For Georgia Tech, many things happened en route to 7-7. The Yellow Jackets barely got bowl-eligible, and then they got bowl-ineligible by losing the ACC Championship game, and then the NCAA granted a waiver that allowed Tech to be invited back to the Sun Bowl, which is where it became the only team ever to beat the preseason No. 1 after losing at home to Middle Tennessee.

When you lose seven games, you can’t say you’ve had a good season. (Unless you’re Duke, which in football nobody aspires to be.) When you win seven games after starting 2-4, neither can you say the whole thing was a total loss. The Jackets took a season going wrong and wrestled it into something that seemed better than mediocrity, even though .500 is the definition of mediocrity.

The sense now is that better days are ahead, but that sensation is largely the result of beating USC in El Paso, and bowl results aren’t always indicative of …

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Clemson notches ‘a landmark win’ for itself and the ACC

The thrill of victory, the agony of defeat. (AJC photo by Curtis Compton)

Clemson depicts the thrill of victory, LSU the agony of defeat. (AJC photo by Curtis Compton)

Not to sound like the Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, but the 45th Chick-fil-A Bowl featured the third-best matchup on this year’s cluttered postseason board. (Behind only Oregon-Kansas State in the Fiesta and Notre Dame-Alabama in the BCS title game.) You had LSU, which this time last year was preparing to play for a national championship, and Clemson, which at the dawn of 2012 was, er, readying to yield 70 points in the Orange Bowl.

And that recent history, divergent as it was, is what made the Chick-fil-A so enticing. LSU is a big-time program from The Only Conference That Matters, while Clemson remains a wild card from that basketball league. Clemson entered 10-2, same as LSU, but the orange Tigers closed their regular season by losing at home to a South Carolina team without both Marcus Lattimore and Connor Shaw.

This happened on the same day Florida State lost at home to Florida …

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