Sunday, December 8, 2013

Will It Be Music City Bowl Or Independence Bowl For Georgia Tech?

Bowl announcements will be made official tonight, but many athletic departments have a pretty good idea of where they are heading.

Georgia Tech finished the season 7-5, 5-3 in ACC games and will be making their 17th straight bowl appearance somewhere. Obviously, FSU is heading to the BCS Championship Game possibly opening a spot for a 2nd ACC team in the BCS. Clemson is lobbying hard for the Orange Bowl and considering that bowl's ties to the conference it would seem very hard for them to pass over the Tigers.

The Chick-Fil-A Bowl in Atlanta has the next selection within the ACC and any team finishing 5-3 or above in league regular season play is eligible. If Tech had beaten Georgia last week I think this bowl would jump at the Yellow Jackets but history says a loss against the Bulldogs knocks GT out of this bowl selection. My guess here is Miami. UGA is a strong possibility to be the opponent as the Bulldogs will very likely be here or in the Gator Bowl.

Ga. Tech has been to the Sun Bowl two years in a row so no trip back to the El Paso. This bowl is locked into taking the ACC Championship Game loser if they are not already selected.

So where will the Yellow Jackets end up?

A little Twitter research revealed this nugget:

Who is Gregg Garrett you ask? Just a large donor and friend of Tech head coach Paul Johnson.

Then again, if the Jackets aren't going to Nashville he has the dispensable cash anyways.

My guess is Tech fans would be jumping at the chance to face an SEC team, very likely to be Ole Miss, in nearby Nashville.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

SEC Football On CBS Meets Dukes Of Hazzard

Verne Lundquist as Boss Hog and Gary Danielson as Roscoe 

Sunday, December 1, 2013

The Key To Auburn's Improbable Win

Not Gus Malzahn. Not Nick Marshall. But a hidden seamstress on the sideline. 

Pretty soon every coach will go to their AD and say "we need a seamstress to compete".

What Was It Like On The Field At Auburn During Winning Touchdown Over Alabama?

Auburn Athletics shared this video of Chris Davis' 109 yard missed FG return for the winning touchdown. I would advise you turn down your speakers from full blast.

Rivalry Weekend Wrap: Auburn Is A Team of Destiny But That May Not Be Enough

1. Auburn appears to be a team of destiny.
In no other universe could you imagine how their last two wins would come - the tipped hail mary to beat UGA and a 109 yard FG return to beat #1 Alabama.   However, the Tigers win may take the SEC out of the BCS race unless FSU or Ohio State.  You have probably seen the stat showing the Tide just 7-5 in November vs FBS teams since 2010.  If Nick Saban has a flaw it is that he rides his teams too hard physically and mentally and all that preparation wears his players out by the end of the season.  Or it could  be they typically play LSU and Auburn, their two toughest games, in November. 

2. FSU dominated Florida as everyone outside of the Gator football program thought.
The slide from 11-2 to 4-8 is remarkable considering Florida is one of the top 5 jobs in college football.  No drawbacks exists for the Gators football program.  Equally remarkable is how FSU, in this age of SEC dominance, has been able to continue to recruit with the best right in their backyard.  The Seminoles are the odds on favorite to win the BCS title, IF Jameis Winston remains eligible.

3. Steve Spurrier continued his mastery of Dabo Swinney with the Gamecocks fifth straight win in the series. 
That has never been done by South Carolina in their history.  The only thing Spurrier hasn't accomplished in Columbia is win an SEC title and those hopes were dashed when Mizzou beat Texas A&M.  I hope the South Carolina AD has a plan for a statue of the Ol' Ball Coach when he does decide to retire.  But to show how fickle fans are I was talking with a SC alum last weekend and he was ready to move on from Spurrier because the Gamecocks were not in the BCS title hunt.  I just shook my head.

4. Georgia Tech put everything they had on the field against Georgia, but came up just short in double OT. 
The Bulldogs were behind for 55 minutes and did not lead until the second OT.  Once again, the Yellow Jackets outgained the Bulldogs in yards, but did not win the turnover battle.  Under Mark Richt, UGA has nearly as a 3:1 advantage in turnovers in the series. Georgia finishes the regular season on a high note to what was a disappointing regular season marred by injuries while Georgia Tech has to find a way to pick itself backup and prepare for their bowl game .

5. Wake Forest played Vanderbilt much tougher than anyone expected. 
The Commodores have their second straight 8-4 season which is remarkable considering the Commodores history.  James Franklin will get some serious looks this offseason, but his price will be raised after another good season.  The Demon Deacons are again home for the holidays.  I don't know what Jim Grobe's status is amongst the powers that be in Winston-Salem but I would not be surprised to see Wake go in another direction.  

6. Duke wins 10 games for the first time since....ever.
And the Blue Devils have another chance to shock the world in the ACC Championship Game vs new #1 FSU.  David Cutcliffe's team started the season 2-2 but then went on an 8 game winning streak.  Duke certainly benefited from not having to play FSU or Clemson during the regular season, but they beat enough of who they did play for a remarkable season.

7. Kentucky lost to Tennessee to finish the SEC regular season 0-8.
Somehow, the Wildcats have a top 10 class pegged for this February.  Does anybody know Mark Stoops is selling these recruits

8. Arkansas also went win less in the SEC after allowing a true freshman to drive 99 yards for the winning score.
Bret Bielema's team went win less after his bride tweeted "karma" following Wisconsin's (her hubby's former employer) last second loss to Arizona State.    Les Miles avoided what would be disastrous 8-4 season considering where he and his predecessor have brought the program.

9. Virginia Tech beat UVA for the 10th straight time.
It is extremely rare for U. of [State] to be dominated by the "secondary" school in a state for this long.

10. Dan Mullen found a way to get his Bulldogs back in to a bowl game and relieve the heat on his seat.
Ole Miss is probably disappointed with their record this season, but they could be in a big jump next season when that talented 2013 class has a full off season to prepare.   

Saturday, November 30, 2013

How This Ohio State Buckeye Coach Possibly Saved Their Season

The undefeated Buckeyes are down in Ann Arbor against a feisty Michigan team with a BCS title game on the ropes.  After a relatively harmless kickoff return a fracas breaks out between Michigan and Ohio State special teams players.  Heisman candidate and the unquestioned leader of the Buckeyes Braxton Miller runs into the fracas and  grabs a Wolverine's helmet.

Some Ohio State assistant, it could have been Urban Meyer but I am not sure, runs off the sideline an yanks Miller away from the Michigan player to avoid Miller being tossed.  After what happened in Auburn, kudos to this Buckeye coach for quite possibly saving their BCS title hopes.
Was this Urban Meyer running off the sideline to save Braxton Miller from being tossed?

Georgia - Georgia Tech: One Statistic Has Dominated This Game In The Mark Richt Era

Today represents Georgia Tech's best chance to beat their bitter in state rival since 2009. The Yellow Jackets are also looking to break a home losing streak to the Bulldogs that stretches back to 1999.

UGA will be without fifth-year senior QB Aaron Murray who was added last week to the litany of the injuries for Mark Richt's team this season.  Hutson Mason came on relief last week leading Georgia to a rout of Kentucky. 

Here are 6 thoughts on today's rendition of Clean, Old Fashioned Hate:

1. The talent advantage for UGA is MASSIVE.  Since 2009, Georgia has signed a total of 117 players.  Of those 116 players, 62 have been 4 or 5 star players.  Over HALF of UGA's signees in the last 5 classes are 4 or 5 star players.  Meanwhile, Georgia Tech has signed just 94 players since 2009 and only 9 are 4 stars (no 5 stars).  Two of the four star players were injured and are not playing today. 

2. This is Paul Johnson's best chance to beat UGA since 2009 when he seemingly had the upper hand in the rivalry.  His Jackets bested the Dogs in Athens the previous year and were 10-1 heading into the game.  But UGA pounded out over 300 yards rushing, held the ball, and beat BCS bound Tech with Joe Cox at QB (an no AJ Green).  Mason is certainly capable of repeating. especially because...

3. Todd Gurley is the key to this game.  When the Sophomore tailback was hurt, Georgia nearly lost to Tennessee, lost to Vanderbilt, and lost to Missouri.  While losing Murray stung the Bulldog hearts, losing Gurley would be the MUCH, MUCH bigger loss.  Look for GT to stack the box and force Mason to beat one-on-one coverage.  If Gurley gets off, UGA gets out with the win.

4. Back to Johnson and this rivalry.  He has put his foot in his mouth before about this game and I don't think he will make that mistake again.  A 7-4 Bulldog team with a backup QB gives Tech their best chance in a few years and maybe again for a few years as UGA will be more experienced on defense next season.  A loss would mean the fifth in a row for Johnson and only one coach has lost six in a row, his predecessor Chan Gailey. 

5. Under Mark Richt, UGA is 11-1 against Georgia Tech.  Richt was hired after Jim Donnan lost three straight to Georgia Tech.  Richt has five wins in the series by a total of 30 points.  Georgia knows how to win the close games. 

6. The key to those close wins and the series dominance has been turnovers.  In the 12 Richt vs GT meetings, the Bulldogs have forced 31 turnovers while only giving up 12.  In Richt's lone loss, UGA lost the turnover battle 2 to 1.  Last season, Georgia Tech actually outgained Georgia but lost by 32 points because of turnovers.

The only way UGA loses today is if they are severely out coached or they lose the turnover battle.  Even with the loss of Aaron Murray the Bulldogs have so much more talent and that is embodied by Todd Gurley who I think is the difference today for Georgia as they cover -3.

Georgia 34  Georgia Tech 28

Friday, November 29, 2013

5 Thoughts On Ole Miss vs Georgia Tech Basketball

The Rebels and Yellow Jackets meet in the semi-finals of the Barclays Classic in Brooklyn this afternoon.  The game can be seen on the NBC Sports Network starting at 4:30PM ET.

1. Ole Miss is 4-0 on the season and is favored by 1 point over once beaten Georgia Tech. The Rebels have yet to face a team from a multi-bid league whereas the Jacket have played an SEC and A-10 team. This is the first time this season Brian Gregory's team has been an underdog.

2. The two teams have faced two common opponents thus far - North Carolina A&T and Mississippi Valley State.  Both teams won both games, but Andy Kennedy's club did it in much grander fashion winning by 34 over NC A&T and 31 over MVSU while GT won by 7 and 17, respectively.

3. Georgia Tech has a recruited talent edge over Ole Miss.  The top 9 players for Tech have an average Rivals star ranking of 3.75 vs 3.11 for their opponents today.  Experience level is about the same.

4. Tennessee transfer Trae Golden played in two game last season against Ole Miss both losses for the Volunteers.  The Senior scored 17 points on 7-18 shooting with 6 assists and 4 turnovers playing a total of 48 minutes.

5. The much talked about Rebel guard Marshall Henderson was suspended the first game of the season and is averaging 14 points in 21 minutes per game on the season.  The Senior is shooting 45% on 3 pointers, but is just 36% from the field.

The winner of this game will play the winner of the St Johns-Penn State game tomorrow afternoon with losing teams of each playing for third place. 

Thursday, November 28, 2013

UGA - Georgia Tech Thanksgiving Day Reading

A story on Georgia backup running back Brendan Douglas who was a GT commit until one week before signing day.  UGA had missed on backs like Alvin Kamara and Derrick Henry and called up Douglas who happily switched being a lifetime Bulldog fan. Teammates remind TB Douglas that he was almost a Yellow Jacket 
“Brendan was really a late take for us,” Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson said Wednesday. “I thought he could play either (B-back or A-back). We'd recruited ...
If Georgia Tech loses the next two against UGA then Johnson will suffer the same fate as his predecessor, but a win changes everything
Tech's Johnson: No bigger game than Georgia 
In the proud history of Tech football, only one coach has ever lost as many as five consecutive games to Georgia. That man was Chan Gailey, who lost six in a row...
Jim Donnan and Paul Johnson are in similar positions. Both beat everyone else except their rivals.  Mark Richt made beating Georgia Tech a priority from day 1 and he will very likely go down as the winningest UGA coach in the rivalry (percentage-wise)
Seniors' careers marked by wins vs. rivals
In fact, these Bulldogs have held their own against Georgia's big four as well as any senior class since Tennessee came onto the schedule as an every-year rival in 1992. Their 12 wins match the win total by last season's seniors, who were 12-4, as the most against those rivals by any Georgia senior class in that time frame.

Before last season, the best four-year record for any senior class in that period was 10-6 -- a mark set by Georgia's 2004, 2005 and 2011 classes. And the 2013 seniors can pass all of them with a win against the Yellow Jackets on Saturday. 
The Georgia Athletic Department is flush with cash yet has to bus 45 minutes to practice indoors?  I guarantee if Georgia Tech somehow pulls off the upset on Saturday, UGA will have ground broken on an indoor facility by next season
UGA's trip to Flowery Branch re-ignites indoor facility discussion 
Georgia Tech has one, which it was utilizing on Tuesday. ... UGA doesn't want to give up one of its four, outdoor practice fields and doesn't want to displace the ...
The good news is most of the defense will be back.  The bad news is those players were not that good this season so the only variable here is experience. 
Bulldog defections to the NFL could be slim or none 
ATHENS, Ga. — It has become about as routine in the wintertime for Georgia as going to a bowl game and coaches hitting the road to recruit – underclassmen ...

Friday, November 15, 2013

Georgia - Georgia Tech Basketball: Talent vs Home Court History

The Bulldogs and Yellow Jackets meet on the hardwood in Athens Friday night in an early season, but still very important rivalry game.

Mark Fox has lost his last two games against Ga. Tech and is coaching for his job this season. Brian Gregory coached Tech to their first win in Athens since 1976 (1981-1994 meetings were played at a neutral site) and followed that up with a win at home last season.

Georgia Tech has an edge in recruited talent over Georgia. The average recruiting stars according to for the top 10 Jackets' players in 3.6 stars compared to 2.9 for the Bulldogs.

Georgia Tech                                                                     Georgia

Experience matters too. GT and UGA have essentially the same experience level from their top 10 players with 2.4 and 2.5 years of experience on average respectively.

While the talent advantage lies with the ACC team, the home court favors the SEC program.  Games played in Athens have resulted in 51 wins and only 29 losses for the Bulldogs.  This winning percentage is likely why GT is favored by just 1 point despite the recruited talent advantage.  

Georgia has not three in a row to Georgia Tech since 1994 and has lost back to back home games in the series since 1961.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Georgia Tech Football by the Numbers: The Best and Worst Games in 2013 (So Far)

The Yellow Jackets are 75% through their 2013 season so I figured I better post something before the season ends.

Below is a game by game analysis of Tech's Offense and Defense using my favorite efficiency statistic: Yards Per Point (Y/Pt).  Y/Pt has its positives and negatives as does the popular Yards/Play.  To me the scoreboard at the end of the game is what matters most so that is why I prefer Y/Pt, but like any statistic it is not perfect.

You may notice the Elon game is not included.  I don't think stats versus non-FBS are very valuable so they are not included in any of my calculations - GT or opponent.

The far right of the Offense chart is an attempt to measure team performance (Offense and Defense).

  1. GT's best game by a large margin was the 56-0 win vs Syracuse.  I substituted a value of 100 for Y/Pt because the Orange were shutout.  This is the equivalent of a team having 1000 yards and 10 points - basically impossible.
  2. The second best performance of the season vs Duke ranks as the second best game of the season.  This give credence to the saying "you make the most improvement from the first game to the second".  The Blue Devils win also followed a bye.  Also, Duke has gotten better as the season has gone on making this win look better and better.
  3. The most recent win over Pitt was the third best game but this is entirely driven by the defense - who would have thought that at the beginning of the season?  The Jackets yielded 22.8 Y/Pt (the higher the value the better on defense) to the Panthers, 66% better than the Pitt offense season average.  Paul Johnson's offense actually performed pretty poorly last week when you compare to Pitt's opponents.  This was Pitt's second straight game against the spread option and that is a much bigger advantage for them than GT having tape on how they defend.
  4. The Virginia win truly was a win that GT would have not won in the past three seasons as Johnson stated in the post game presser.  The offense looks good initially on paper but when you compare to what opponents are doing vs UVA it actually wasn't. Five turnovers certainly don't help.  The defense made some key plays but was also worse than the UVA offensive averages.
  5. Johnson said he would like most to have the Virginia Tech game to play again.  These stats show why it was by far the worst game of the year for Ga. Tech. The offense performed about half as well as other Hokie opponents.  The Defense was just slightly worse the season average. Bud Foster truly does have Johnson's number.

(So is this blog back?  Tough to say.  Work is very busy right now and doesn't look to be slowing down anytime soon and a major life event is coming in February, but I was able to finally find some time and more importantly motivation to look into these stats)

Monday, April 29, 2013

Georgia Tech, NFL Draft, and Paul Johnson Recruiting

The 2013 NFL Draft came and went and not a single player from Georgia Tech was selected. This marks the first time since the 2005 Draft a Yellow Jacket was not selected.
Stephon Tuitt would have been one of those "1-8" guys/

The lack of Draft picks is without question a direct correlation to the lack of elite talent on Tech's squad last season which led to 7-7 year.

This past February did not bring a lot of hope things would get immediately better when the Jackets signed a small recruiting class which some services ranked in the 80s nationally and near the bottom of the ACC.

Small class numbers aside, that class lacked ready made talent and will take more than the average development to turn it into ACC and State Champions (in state rival UGA racked up eight Draft picks tying a school record).

Is Johnson bad at recruiting/developing NFL Draft talent or is he simply following along the Georgia Tech trend?

I decided to look at BCS era coaches on The Flats.  Below are the three coaches, their number of seasons, total picks, and picks in the first three rounds.  

George O'Leary (7+ seasons): 9 total picks; 5 in first three rounds
Chan Gailey (6 seasons): 12; 5 in first three rounds
Paul Johnson (5 seasons): 9; 5 in first three rounds

The first thing that jumps out Johnson is three draft picks off of Gailey's mark in one less season.

The Yellow Jackets would appear to have two almost sure draft picks for next season (Jemea Thomas, Jeremiah Attaochu) as well as a few others that could work their way in big Senior seasons (David Sims, Brandon Watts, Louis Young among others)

While Johnson did not recruit all of his nine draft picks, neither did Gailey with his 12 picks. Daryl Smith was recruited by O'Leary (in a big battle with UGA) as well as four other picks in the 2004 draft which are credited to Gailey above. O'Leary was on staff for his predecessor so you could attribute some of the mid 90s picks to him.  (FWIW if the coach was in place on National Signing Day I consider those signees to be "theirs" as nothing is official until the LOI is signed and faxed). 

I think Johnson said it best himself: the 1-85 talent is definitely better than when he arrived, but the 1-8 talent is not. This is where Johnson and his staff must improve for Georgia Tech to get back to winning ACC Championships and challenging (and ocassionally beating) UGA.  

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

NCAA Tournament Bracket Entries: How The Statisticians Did?

Having not followed college basketball as closely as years past, I relied more on "statistical analysis" to fill out my bracket using two sources: Georgia Tech Professor Joel Sokol's LRMC method and New York Times' Nate Silver (guy who predicted Presidential Election)

If you need a quick brush up on LRMC you can find it here.

Nate Silver's prediction performed the better of the two, especially when you factor in points which many bracket challenges do.

I did not count points from the 1st round (i.e. the First Four) as very few bracket challenges do. If you were like me you were filling your bracket out at 11:30 on Thursday morning, the day the Tournament started. 

Georgia Tech Industrial Engineering Professor Joel Sokol bracket using LRMC
1st rd: 1-3
2nd rd: 21-11
3rd rd: 11-5
Sweet 16: 4-4
Elite 8: 1-3
Final 4: 0-2
Champ Game: 0-1
Total: 38-29 (57%)
Points:  67

Sokol gained fame in the Atlanta community after being one of the few (Jessica Simpson being another) to pick his employer to make it to the Championship Game in 2004.  This year was a down year for his method only picking 57% of games correct and only getting one Final Four team.  A major flaw of this bracket was having Gonzaga advance all the way to the Championship Game (vs Florida).

Nate Silver New York Times

1st rd: 3-1
2nd rd: 22-10
3rd rd: 11-5
Sweet 16: 4-4
Elite 8: 1-3
Final 4: 1-1
Champ: 1-0
Total: 43-24 (64%)
Points: 116

Silver did considerably better nailing the Louisville pick to win it all although his numbers suggested the Cardinals were only a modest favorite.  

Silver would have placed in the 96th percentile of ESPN's Bracket Challenge, just behind Dick Vitale but chances are he would have not won your office pool. 

Me?  I finished a respectable 85th in a 564 member pool with Louisville winning but way too many 2nd and 3rd losses did me in.  

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Georgia Tech Baseball Defeats UGA 7-5 Tuesday Night In Athens

Yellow Jackets Manager Danny Hall talks about GT's win over the rival Bulldogs.  Georgia Tech has won 9 of the last 12 against Georgia and five of the last six at Foley Field. With the victory, Hall moved to 40-29 against UGA.

The Bulldogs are having arguably their worst season ever under David Perno fell to 12-22 on the season.

Tech and Georgia will play two more times this season - April 23 at Turner Field and May 14 at Russ Chandler Stadium

via RamblinWreckTube

Thursday, April 4, 2013

First Look At EA Sports NCAA Football '14

EA Sports usually puts out several videos each year prior to game release in mid-July. This is the first I am aware of for NCAA Football '14.

The video focuses on EA's enhancements to the running game in this years edition.

Offense sells video games so it is not much of a surprise to see focus on this side of the ball in an early release. For many years, the running game was neglected because passing is what made the game fly off the shelves. With the emergence of programs like Oregon and the success of the Tim Tebow's, Cam Newton's, and Braxton Miller's of the world more players are using the running game in their video play.

I hope NCAA '14 places more focus on the elements surrounding the game - the crowd, the sidelines, the band. EA has put a lot of work into gameplay the last few years and it shows. But I hope they continue to work on these items as they are really lacking in my opinion. And bringing back a college basketball and college baseball game would be cool too.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

How The Major Conferences Are Doing Versus Expectations In The NCAA Tournament

How is your bracket looking? I filled out two brackets in a work pool along with 564 other brackets. One is in 90th place, the other is somewhere north of 450.

The NCAA Tournament is the best time to compare the majors conferences versus one another as every team from the top 8 conferences is good and every team is in survive and advance mode.

Below is each conference's record and how they are doing versus their seed. A win over a lower seed yields 0 points as this is expected while a win over a higher seed yields 1 points for an upset.8 vs 9 games are awarded a 1/2 point for a win and 1/2 point for a loss since these games are generally toss ups

Ordered by the pre-NCAA Tournament RPI:

Big 10
Teams In: 7
Teams Remaining: 4 (#1 Indiana, #2 Ohio St, #3 Michigan St, #4 Michigan)
10-3, 0

Mountain West
Teams In: 5
Teams Remaining: 0
2-5, -3

Big East
Teams In: 8
Teams Remaining: 3 (#1 L'ville, #3 Marquette, #4 Syracuse)
6-5, -5

Teams In: 4
Teams Remaining: 2 (#2 Duke, #2 Miami)
5-2, 0

Big 12
Teams In: 5
Teams Remaining: 1 (#1 Kansas)
3-4, -2

Pac 12
Teams In: 5
Teams Remaining: 2 (#6 Arizona, #12 Oregon)
5-3, +3

Teams In: 5
Teams Remaining: 1 (#13 LaSalle)
7-4, +2

Teams In: 3
Teams Remaining: 1 (#3 Florida)
3-4, +1/2

Conferences having the best tournament versus seeding expectations:
1. Pac 12
2. A-10
3. MVC/A-Sun due to Wichita State and SWAG U aka Florida Dunk Coast University aka FGCU

Conferences having the worst tournament versus seeding expectations:
1. Big East
2. Mountain West
3. Big 12

The ACC, SEC, and Big 10 are doing as you would expect.

Friday, March 15, 2013

How Joshua Nesbitt Converted So Many Third Downs For Georgia Tech

Joshua Nesbitt ran in the 4.5s at Georgia Tech's Pro Day/

Joshua Nesbitt left Georgia Tech's program following the 2010 season. After spending the 2011 season with the Buffalo Bills Practice Squad as Defensive Back, the Greensboro, Ga. product was released before last season.

Nesbitt was back on Tech's campus this week competing in Georgia Tech's Pro Day in front of NFL scouts in hopes of getting another shot.

Jay Bilas Nails It On What Is Wrong With College Basketball

I don't agree with everything Jay Bilas says, but he is spot on with his comments in this interview with Charlie Rose about why college basketball has sunk to its current level of mediocrity and fan apathy. 

Fast forward to the 8 minute mark to hear Bilas dissect what is wrong with college basketball (the first 8 mins is Bilas talking about his book).

Bilas makes some great points about refs and fouling as well as the apparent dearth of talent due to early departures.

1. The ESPN commentator says that college basketball doesn't have any one person in charge like USA Basketball does. 

When USA Basketball had a committee the product stunk.  With one person in charge, Jerry Colangelo, America has returned to the top of the world. 

Essentially a czar for college basketball.

I nominate David Stern once he retires from the NBA, though I honestly have not thought much about it.  He is the first person who comes to mind and could be perceived as unbiased (i.e. he is not a former college administrator or coach)

2. Next, Bilas dives into the fouling issue; meaning not enough fouls are being called. 

This generates from the cries of "let them play" by fans.

Well, when you let players who 15-20 years ago would not be playing on a college basketball court because their spots would be taken by Juniors and Seniors who would go on to play in the NBA "play" then you get ugly basketball because nobody can make a shot when they are constantly being bumped and pushed.

This is what college basketball is today.  A bunch of missed shots and games in the 50s.  That is not exciting at all.

3. But wouldn't too many fouls slow down the game and bore fans even more?

Ah, Bilas has a great counter.  If the refs call the proper fouls then players won't foul as much because they will be sitting on the bench in foul trouble.  Essentially, if refs call the proper fouls than players will stop fouling so much.

4. Bilas' points on referee performance are spot on too. 

Like Bilas, I think the officiating by and large is ok, but no repercussions exist for bad officiating because all refs are simply contractors.

If one league fines them or is suspended by a conference another league will simply pick them up for their games.

Last season Karl Hess was "suspended" by the ACC after his actions at an NC State game, tossing two former Wolfpack greats from the stands. 

No matter to Hess and he simply picked up games in the Big East and SEC to fill his schedule.  Those leagues didn't care how bad Hess' actions were.

The refs have all the power when it comes to relationships with conferences.

And to show how serious the ACC was about suspending Hess, they invited him back to ref the ACC Tournament but Hess declined and the league allowed his fellow refs to display messages of support for him.

Very honorable John Swofford. 

Then Bilas dives into less desirable subjects like NCAA amateurism.  I will let him have his views here without comment only saying I mostly disagree. 

Jay Bilas - Charlie Rose Interview

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Is Georgia Tech Basketball Being Slighted By ACC Referees?

This is not another "we got screwed by the refs" post.  Teams with losing records tend to have a negative foul margin.  This is not a post about Georgia Tech's -3.2 foul margin in ACC games.

This is a detailed look at how referees in ACC games are calling fouls against Georgia Tech and their opponents comparing to the season averages of each.

I looked at all 11 ACC opponents for GT across all 18 games, the ACC season averages for fouls called for and against each ACC opponent, and then compared those season averages to when ACC teams faced Georgia Tech.   Please see the linked spreadsheet here for details.  

I think Brian Gregory has a gripe to the ACC in how the opposition is officiated against his team.

1. Georgia Tech ranked 5th in fouls called on them in ACC games at 17.6 per game.

GT had three games where they were called for 23+ fouls (vWF, @UNC, @UVA) or one standard deviation above their season average (see column D); GT went 1-2 in these games.   The Yellow Jackets had five games where they were called for 14 or less fouls or one standard deviation below their season average (see column E); GT went 1-4 in these games. 

Therefore, in games where the fouls called against Ga. Tech were one standard deviation above or below Tech's season average they went 2-6. 

2.  When ACC teams played the Yellow Jackets they were able to draw 0.8 fouls more per game than their normal season average (column J in spreadsheet). 

For example, when Tech played at home against NC State on March 3rd, the Jackets were whistled for 23 fouls which is 5 fouls per game more than the Wolfpack typically draw against their opponents (column I - 17.9).  Georgia Tech had 3 games where they were whistled for 5+ more fouls than their opponents normally draw (vNCSU, @UNC, vWF)

At this point we can say the number of fouls called against Georgia Tech is about on par, albeit slightly higher, with the Jackets season average and has little effect on winner or loser of the game considering the 2-6 record.

3.  The biggest complaint Gregory should have is how many fouls his opponents are called for. In 18 ACC games, GT opponents were called for 2.1 fouls less per game than their normal season average (column H). 

The numbers got especially bad in the last 5 ACC games - @UVA, vMD, vNCSU, @MIA, @BC.  In those five games, Georgia Tech opponents were whistled for a total of 21 fouls less than their season average or 4.1 less per game.

If you take out the Maryland game, the per game average is 5.5 fouls less than the opponents normally foul. 

Playing on the road was especially tough for Ga. Tech to draw fouls.

In its nine ACC road games, GT opponents were whistled for more than 3.8 fouls less than their season average. Last Saturday at Boston College the Eagles were called for just 8 fouls all game, more than 7 fouls less than their season average. Tech lost the game by 2 points.

When you add the 0.8 fouls per game more than their season average called on Georgia Tech to the 2.1 fouls less per game than the season average GT opponents are called for then you essentially have a 3 foul difference than the season average swing in favor of the the Yellow Jacket's opponents (column L).

Based on this it would certainly appear referees are not giving Georgia Tech the same calls as they do other ACC teams. You can add this foul discrepancy to the 2013 football schedule as B1G fodder now.

Georgia Tech Game by Game Foul Chart with Opponent ACC Averages

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Ranking Georgia Tech 2013 Schedule From The Easiest Game to Toughest

The ACC finally released the 2013 football schedule on Monday afternoon.  Each program is allowed to make schedule requests to the league, but none are guaranteed.  Georgia Tech's schedule requests were:

1. A bye week in September, ideally before Virginia Tech (granted, though not before Va Tech)
2. An away game on Fall Break weekend, Oct 12 (granted)
3. A bye week after playing BYU on the road (not granted)
4. A bye week before Thursday games (got one, not both)

Additionally, Georgia Tech wanted to remove the request to play Clemson on the road again after Dan Radakovich left for the AD job with the Tigers, but that was also denied.

In the end, the Yellow Jackets got 1.5 of 4 requests.

Overall, Georgia Tech's schedule is tough with a few manageable landmines.  Here are the highlights:
* Georgia Tech plays two Thursday night games after not playing one in 2012
* UNC has a bye week prior to GT for the 4th time in 5 seasons
* Virginia Tech comes to Atlanta for one of the Thursday games with both teams playing the week prior
* Only 2 of 8 conference opponents play another ACC team the week prior
* The Yellow Jackets bye weeks come in week 2 (prior to Duke) and week 11 (prior to Clemson)
* October will accumulate lots of SkyMiles for Tech traveling on their three longest road trips all season (Miami, BYU, UVA)

Here is how I rank Georgia Tech's schedule from the easiest game to the toughest.

12. Elon - Aug 31

This should be an easy opener against a squad that went 3-8 playing in the Southern Conference last year.  The most interesting note of this game is Yellow Jacket announcer Wes Durham is an Elon graduate.

11. Alabama A&M - Nov 23

The SWAC program should bring a good crowd to Atlanta as most HBCUs do (GT should schedule an HBCU every year in my opinion).  The Bulldogs were 7-4 last year and 6-3 in conference.  Besides a win, Paul Johnson will be hoping to get out of this game without any injuries as Georgia looms the next week.

10. at Duke - Sep 14

The Blue Devils are the Yellow Jackets third most played opponent all time behind UGA and Auburn.  The September 14 meeting will be the earliest ever as ACC foes.  GT has won 17 of the last 18 against Duke but has had to survive numerous games closer than they should have been in that streak.

9. North Carolina - Sep 21

Does the Tar Heels presence in this list towards the easy end surprise you?  It shouldn't.  Tech has won seven of the last eight meetings between the two and won seven straight in Atlanta.  Be prepared for the onslaught of preseason UNC love, but it won't come to fruition once the games start being played.  Yes, UNC has a bye week prior.  That obviously helped keep Georgia Tech under 70 points last season in Chapel Hill.

8. Syracuse - Oct 19

GT gets the two newbies at home this year. I believe the Orange are a step ahead of the Panthers right now, but a few things give Pitt a better chance of the road win than Syracuse. 

7. Pitt - Nov 2

The reason the Panthers are ahead of Syracuse is largely because they play Navy the week before Tech.  I believe playing a similar opponent is a much bigger benefit than having a bye week.  Pitt will get two weeks practice for Tech's spread option offense with a very, very good scrimmage opponent the week prior. 

6. at BYU - Oct 12

The 4,500 mile trek will be by far GT's longest of the season and even though the Cougars dominated the meeting last season they also lost a lot of talent off that team.

5. at Virginia - Oct 26

Charlottesville has been a house of horrors for the Yellow Jackets winning only once since 1990 despite being favored numerous times, including the last trip in 2011.  The Cavaliers are still in rebuilding mode, but will be talented enough to win.

4. Virginia Tech - Sept 26

These two programs have represented the Coastal Division in every ACC Championship Game though last year was the first time the winner of the annual matchup didn't win the division.  Both teams have just five days of prep though the Hokies play Marshall while GT plays division opponent UNC.  This will be the first time since 2009 the Hokies have not had a bye before playing the Jackets which is also the only year they lost to a Johnson coached squad.

3. at Clemson - Nov 14

Clemson is more talented than the team listed above them in my rankings, but GT has had some decent success against the Tigers going 6-11 in Memorial Stadium.  If you want to win a bar bet try this:  GT has also won 7 of the last 10 in the series.  The November 14 date is the latest the two programs have played each since 1945. 

2. at Miami - Oct 5

The Hurricanes have OWNED Paul Johnson.  I am pretty sure Johnson lives in the Vinings area of Metro Atlanta, but he basically pays taxes in Dade County.  In Tech's 2009 ACC Championship* run their only conference loss was at Miami.  Last season, the Hurricanes scored 22 straight in the second half to win in overtime 42-36.  The loss decimated the Jackets so much they lost by 21 the next week to Middle Tennessee State.  To add insult to injury, Miami like many GT opponents, has a non-conference game the week before against South Florida. 

1. vs Georgia - Nov 30

The gap between the Bulldogs and Yellow Jackets has been growing the last two seasons after being very small in Johnson's first three years.  Last year, UGA could have scored 60 if they wanted to.  Tech has not beaten UGA at home since 1999 and has only won one other time in Atlanta since 1985. To boot Mark Richt's program is also the most talented team on Tech's schedule.

Within the ACC, North Carolina appears to have the easiest schedule with bye week's prior to Georgia Tech and Miami and playing East Carolina prior to Virginia Tech.  Start your John Swofford baby blue conspiracy theories now.

Despite the B1G rumors flying, the ACC did not do any favors for Georgia Tech or Virginia in their scheduling.  The face that four of eight opponents play non-conference games the week prior has to be especially disconcerting to the Yellow Jackets. 

Based on the opponents alone, Georgia Tech is capable of winning 9 games with this schedule, however with the five day prep for Virginia Tech, three long trips in October and opponents playing non-conference games the week prior another loss will slip into the schedule as Johnson finished the season at 8-4 finding itself in another tie atop the Coastal Division.

Georgia Tech 2013 Football Schedule Analysis

By Matt Thompson

Editor's Note: Matt is making his debut on The ACC and SEC Blog with his reactions to Georgia Tech's 2013 football schedule released Monday. Be sure to give him a follow on Twitter (@MattThompson87)

Paul Johnson’s Jackets will face another tough slate in 2013, highlighted by two Thursday night games against ACC foes, home dates with league newcomers Pittsburgh and Syracuse and, of course, the season finale with the hated Bulldogs at Bobby Dodd Stadium.

First, let’s dissect Tech’s schedule, then we’ll focus game-by-game and look at some other features of the inaugural 14 team ACC schedule.

Aug. 31 ELON
Sept. 7 Open Date
Sept.14 at Duke
Sept. 26 VIRGINIA TECH (Thurs.)
Oct. 5 at Miami
Oct. 12 at BYU
Oct. 26 at Virginia
Nov. 9 Open Date
Nov. 14 at Clemson (Thurs.)


Schedule News and Notes:

• Georgia Tech requested to the ACC office for its BYE weeks to be a September Saturday and Oct. 19 after a long road trip to high-altitude Provo, Utah. Well, they got 1 out of 2 fulfilled, but the BYE after Elon surely isn’t what GT brass had in mind.
• Tech will be forced to play 8 straight games after that, including a 4-game gauntlet in 21 days against its 3 toughest Coastal Division foes and get “rewarded” with a 1,900 mile trip to BYU to end the stretch. That’s daunting no matter who you are.
• The Jackets will play in the featured ESPN Thursday night primetime game for the 26th and 27th time in 2013. Tech will face Virginia Tech for the 5th time on a Thursday night (all since 2004), including the 4th time at home. The Nov. 14 date with Clemson will be the teams’ 3rd time meeting on Thurs. – the first since 2009 and the first in Death Valley since 1998.
  1. For what it’s worth, GT is 0-4 against the Hokies on Thursday night and 0-5 in non-Saturday games as ACC opponents. The teams last met on Saturday in 2009.
  2. 2. Tech is 2-0 against Clemson on Thursday, both wins coming by 3 points on late field goals.
• Tech will play two games against FCS opponents for the first time since 2008. The Jackets were left in a bit of a lurch when ACC members voted to move to 9 conference games then changed their minds back to 8 when Notre Dame entered the non-conference rotation. By virtue of this, Tech must win 7 games to be bowl eligible.
• GT will play 10 teams who won 6 or more games a year ago, among the toughest schedules in the ACC
 A quick look at each game and what each weeks means



The Phoenix were 3-8 in 2012 and should be relatively accommodating for Tech to break in a new quarterback. In its only game against an FBS opponent last season, Elon was trounced 62-0 in Larry Fedora’s UNC debut in Chapel Hill.

BYE Week #1

Boy does this come at an odd time! Tech would have loved to at least play one more game before an off week at this point, although the only other ACC game on the schedule this week is Wake at BC – neither of whom is on tech’s schedule this year anyway for a potential swap. In fairness to the ACC, with non-conference dates already signed, this may have been unavoidable, though certainly less than ideal.

At Duke

This is first time in recent memory Tech will open its ACC slate in Durham. The Devils haven’t won in the series since 2003, when GT Defensive Coordinator Ted Roof was the Duke head coach. This is the first of 4 straight home games for Duke, and the first of 4 straight Coastal Division opponents for Georgia Tech. This is a game the Jackets must win – albeit should win – given what follows over the next few weeks.

North Carolina

The Tar Heels will be coming off an Bye when these two meet, which seems to happen about 75% of the time the teams play. Still, the Jackets have dominated the series in recent years. UNC hasn’t won in Bobby Dodd Stadium since Mack Brown roamed the sidelines in 1997. The Bye hasn’t translated to much success for the Heels in the series, but you can bet Larry Fedora will be looking to erase the embarrassment of last season’s 68-50 defensive debacle, and without Gio Bernard to carry the load, will turn QB Bryn Renner loose on the Tech secondary. This feels like a toss-up to me.

Virginia Tech

As clutch and fortunate as Tech has been against UNC, you can argue the exact opposite in the series against VT. Georgia Tech hasn’t defeated the Hokies since 2009, although you could easily argue that Jackets could have or even should have won any of the last 3. Take away a Nesbitt injury, a late hit, and a 4th down conversion, and GT could be winners or 4 straight in this series. This is tough enough on full rest after a physical conference game. But on 5 days, this feels like another toss-up. Virginia Tech will play Marshall the week before, so it’ll be interesting to watch how long and intense their starters are forced to go. It’ll be a tall order for either team to pull out a win here and could decide the Coastal for the 9th straight year.

At Miami

The Canes have won 4 in a row in the series and continue to look better under coach Al Golden. On the night of October 5 – after 4 consecutive contest against division foes – Tech should know just where it stands in the Coastal race. Of course, it was around this time last year when Tech fell to 2-4 and was “eliminated” from ACC contention, so never rule out anything in the ACC. Miami, whose prior 3 weeks will be BYE, Savannah State, and South Florida, should be prepared and lying in wait when the Jackets come to town. A slight Miami lean here, maybe 60-40 Canes.


The Cougars will return a decent core on a defense that finished 3rd in the nation in scoring defense (14.0 PPG) in 2012. Add to that a sophomore QB returning from injury and a running back who found the endzone 5 times last October in Bobby Dodd Stadium, and this is an uphill climb. Literally. Brigham Young sits over 4,500 feet in elevation. If that wasn’t enough, the placement of this game on the schedule is just a killer. With two grueling home games followed by a trip to Miami, this is the Jackets “reward?” It’s hard to be anything but a solid BYU lean here. I’ll give the Jackets 1 chance in 4 in Provo.


The Orange must replace head coach Doug Marrone and do-everything QB Ryan Nassib in 2013, but we should have an idea of who this Syracuse team is by October 19. Tech players and fans will be happy to be home after a juggernaut month, and the Orange will be coming off tough games with Clemson and at N.C. State. And when a team has to face Paul Johnson’s offense for the first time, despite the obvious chess match, advantage: Paul Johnson offense. Syracuse could be a bit of an enigma heading into the year, but this feels like a Tech W 60%-40%.

At Virginia

Georgia Tech playing in Charlottesville is always surrounded by a bit of pessimism given the Jacket’s recent success there. Only one Tech team ( Johnson’s 2009 ACC Champions) has escaped Scott Stadium with a win since 1990. The Cavs will have last year’s 56-20 thrashing fresh in their minds, but with a ton of staff turnover by Mike London this offseason, it’s anyone’s guess what this team will look like. This is the middle game in a 3 game homestand for UVA, and GT should be the more talented team, BUT it is Tech playing in Charlottesville after all, so how could this be anything other than a 50-50 tossup? For me, that’s exactly what it is.


Let’s get this out of the way first: Yes, Pitt plays Navy the week before they travel to Atlanta. Yes, the ACC could’ve scheduled this earlier in the year, but they put it right here, gift-wrapped, back-to-back with a date Pitt had already scheduled. There are two schools of thought here, one saying it helps prepare for the option in game speed, the other saying you get to see how their D will line up on film. Both are true, but getting to see the option 7 days earlier in game speed is invaluable. (Ask Georgia after they struggled to put away Georgia Southern, but manhandled Tech a week later.) Oh yes, back to this game. Navy isn’t near as talented as Navy was 3 or 4 years ago, and GT’s option will be a different animal. GT at home with better players gets about a 65%-35% win chance here from me.

BYE Week #2

Whew. After 8 straight weeks against FBS opponents, this will be a much welcomed week off. Last year’s bye came right in the middle of the season and helped resurrect Tech’s season. This one might just bring a sigh of relief, or if things have gone really well, could help set the table for a solid stretch run against arguably Tech’s two biggest rivals. We should just about know by now whether Tech will play for an ACC Championship, and the next ballgame could sow up a division title for one or both of these teams.

At Clemson

Tech will travel to Clemson for the 2nd year in a row in an effort to balance out its home schedule in odd an even years, an effort interestingly enough spearheaded by new Clemson AD Dan Radakovich. Clemson should be the most talented team in the league as of this writing and certainly has the horses to compete for a conference and possibly national title. Add to that the fact that this will be the Tigers’ first home game in nearly a month and will be ESPN Thursday primetime, and Tech could enter a double-digit underdog. Clemson hasn’t exactly figured out how to stop Paul Johnson’s offense over the years, but in a battle of two potent offenses, the home team gets the edge here. I put this with BYU at about 75%-25% for Clemson.

Alabama A&M

The reason for this game is twofold. First, the Jackets needed a 12th opponent when the ACC decided to abandon the 9 conference game model in favor of staying at 8, and Tech wanted a 7th winnable home game, considering Georgia and BYU were already on the daunting schedule. Plus, the game against these Bulldogs allow Tech to join the “Hey, let’s beat up on somebody the week before we play our rival” group that had previously been perfect by the SEC. GT, Clemson and FSU joined that club this year, and should have better success Thanksgiving weekend going forward if this is a model they continue to use. Alabama A&M did go 7-4 in the SWAC last year, but in their only game against an FBS team, lost 51-7 to Auburn. Tech wins and uses these Bulldogs to prepare for the more important Bulldogs.


The bad guys have won 11 of 12 in the series, and the gap in talent between these two teams seems about as wide as ever. GT’s been close many times recently but have had gotten some bad breaks and inopportune turnovers at the wrong times. Tech can win this game, but it’ll need to be near flawless against one of the nation’s best offenses. Georgia’s young defense has to replace NFL talent at several positions, but by game 12, they should be clicking. Due to depth, Tech would have much more success if this were an early season game year-to-year, and likely would have won many more games in the series, but it’s hard to be an advocate of breaking the Thanksgiving weekend tradition. Because it’s a rivalry and because it’s home, I’ll bum up the odds a bit in this one. Let’s say 65%-35% to the Dogs, who simply should be the more talented team. Mark Richt has never lost in Bobby Dodd Stadium, and unfortunately, it’s hard to see it happening this year.


Given the way I leaned in previewing these games, it would seem to be about an 8-4 campaign on average. Maybe Tech wins at BYU or Miami, maybe the drop a close home contest to UNC or Virginia Tech. But those 4 games all in a row really makes it hard to think Tech can go on a huge run. But if Tech can go 3-1 or 4-0 in that stretch, you could be looking at a special season. 2-2 seems most likely, and the two stiff November tests make this an even bigger year if Tech can sneak into November with just a loss or two. Paul Johnson has navigated tough stretches before. In October 2009, the Jackets went 5-0 in a stretch of games at Mississippi State, at FSU, Virginia Tech, at Virginia and at Vanderbilt. At any rate, this should be fun to watch!

Other ACC scheduling notes:

• Maryland gets a real break in scheduling this year. They’ll play 4 games, get a BYE, play 4 more games, get a BYE, then play their final 4 games. Interesting that they get their schedule broken up into thirds. Why would the ACC schedule makers do them any favors in their final year in the league when they are forsaking tradition for a heavier wallet?
• Virginia will open the season with BYU and Oregon. They’ve also signed deals recently to play series with UCLA, Stanford and Bosie State. Add Notre Dame to that list one that scheduling agreement begins in 2014 and that is quite a slate for years to come. Credit UVA for stepping up the plate. The only way to be among the best is to play and beat the best, and the Cavaliers will certainly get a chance to do that over the next decade. It’ll be interesting to follow how ticket sales respond to this in Charlottesville.
• Clemson (vs. The Citadel) and Florida State (vs. Idaho) have joined Georgia Tech in playing a lesser out of conference prior to their big games against SEC rivals. It remains to be seen how this will affect those Thanksgiving weekend rivalries, but it should help preparation far more than a tough conference game would.
• Pitt and FSU will play on Labor Day this September, continuing a trend of getting a premier holiday game in primetime for the ACC. In recent years, the game has featured Georgia Tech at Virginia Tech, Miami at Maryland and Miami at Florida State. It does create scheduling nightmares, but it’s a necessary evil if the ACC is to gain respect on a national stage.
• Also as part of ESPN’s contract with the ACC, there will now be select primetime games on Friday nights. Wake Forest will play at Boston College on Friday, Sept. 6 and Miami will play at Pitt on Friday, November 29. While this would never work for home games in the southeast due to rich high school football, it’s yet another way to get the ACC alone on TV on a big stage.
• Several ACC teams play huge non-conference games to open the year. UNC is at South Carolina, Virginia Tech gets Alabama at the GA Dome, Clemson hosts UGA, Virginia hosts BYU and Oregon, BC travels to Southern Cal. It’s important that the ACC starts to win some of these close games and at the very least look very competitive. A huge blow was dealt to the conference last November when league powerhouses Clemson and FSU lost to South Carolina and Florida, and Georgia Tech and Wake Forest were both run off the field by Georgia and Vanderbilt, respectively. If the ACC has a bad showing in the opening few weekends, it’ll really knock the interest level down for the rest of the season nationally. In a year in which it welcomes two new teams, Pitt and Syracuse, says goodbye to Maryland, and prepares to welcome Louisville and Notre Dame (on a 5 game non-conference basis) the following year, the ACC needs to have a solid year. And nothing would be better for that than
turning some heads the first few weekends of the season.

Again, make sure to follow Matt on Twitter (@MattThompson87)

Related: Ranking Georgia Tech's Schedule From The Easiest Game to the Toughest

Monday, February 18, 2013

UGA Falls In Overtime To Ole Mis: Are Controversial Calls To Blame?

The Bulldogs were poised to snatch a road win from Bubble Team, but a flagrant foul on Kenny Gaines turned the momentum in favor of the Rebels (see this shot here if you agree with the refs call - who reviewed on the monitors).

Georgia fans have a gripe with the officiating after Ole Miss shot 36 FTs to just 19 for UGA.  The Bulldogs committed 30 fouls to just 18 for the Rebels. 

Beyond that, you have to give Marshall Henderson credit for his time management skills skipping out on the post game presser to hit the Oxford bars.

Men's basketball unable to maintain momentum, falls to Ole Miss in overtime 84-74
Red and Black - ‎9 hours ago‎

The Bulldogs (12-13, 6-6 SEC) fell to Ole Miss in overtime 84-74 Saturday night at Tad Smith Coliseum, and dropped their second straight after winning five games in a row. “That's a tough loss,” head coach Mark Fox told Georgia Sports Communications.

Recap: Ole Miss vs. Georgia
Sacramento Bee - ‎20 hours ago‎

Marshall Henderson recorded a game-high 25 points as the Ole Miss Rebels defeated SEC foe Georgia, 84-74, in overtime at Tad Smith Coliseum. Reginald Buckner recorded a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds for the Rebels (19-6, 8-4, SEC).

Mississippi beats Georgia 84-74 in overtime
Yahoo! Sports (blog) - ‎6 hours ago‎

Mississippi's Derrick Millinghaus (3) and Georgia's Kenny Gaines, right, go for the ball during an NCAA college basketball game on Saturday, Feb. 16, 2013, … ... OXFORD, Miss. (AP) -- Marshall Henderson scored 25 points, Murphy Holloway added 14 and Mississippi rallied for an 84-74 overtime victory over Georgia on Saturday night. Ole Miss (19-6, 8-4 Southeastern Conference) trailed for most of the night, but came back thanks to 10 straight points from Henderson late in the second half. Henderson made all 14 ...

UGA men's basketball suffers overtime loss to Ole Miss
Online Athens - ‎7 hours ago‎

Georgia made 28 of 58 shots from the field (48 percent) and outrebounded Ole Miss 45-30. But it wasn't enough. Georgia had 18 turnovers while Ole Miss had just six, and the Bulldog scored just four points in overtime, making 1 of 6 shots from the field.

SEC Men's Basketball Roundup - ‎1 hour ago‎

Mississippi guard Marshall Henderson (22) awaits a foul call in the second half of their NCAA college basketball game against Georgia in Oxford, Miss., Saturday, Feb. 16, 2013. ... Moreover, the victory might've given Ole Miss once ranked as high as No.

Mississippi 84, Georgia 74 - ‎Feb 16, 2013‎

Ole Miss started the SEC schedule with six straight wins, but had fallen into a funk over the past three weeks, losing four of five. Ole Miss coach Andy Kennedy changed the starting lineup against Georgia, using Derrick Millinghaus and Nick Williams instead of ...

Marshall Henderson's Saturday night plans did not include doing post-game ...
Yahoo! Sports (blog) - ‎6 hours ago‎

The polarizing Ole Miss star needed just 10 words to deliver one of the season's most memorable press conferences after the Rebels' overtime victory against visiting Georgia on Saturday night. Said Henderson, "If it's all the same, it's Saturday night. I'm out." Whereas I normally disapprove when star athletes ... Basketball: Mississippi at Florida · Henderson imperfect poster boy for upstart Rebels. AP - Sports. OXFORD, Miss. (AP) -- The talkative and brash Marshall Henderson is the face of Mississippi's basketball …

Henderson, Rebels outlast Bulldogs in OT
Jackson Clarion Ledger - ‎Feb 16, 2013‎

Ole Miss' Marshall Henderson (22) scores over Georgia's Charles Mann (4) during an NCAA college basketball game on Saturday, Feb. 16, 2013, in Oxford, Miss. / Bruce Newman/AP. More. Related Links. Ole Miss - Georgia. Ole Miss avoided a major hit to ...

Fifteen (more or less) Thoughts Because I'm a Little Ticked Off...
Dawg Sports - ‎10 hours ago‎

5. So, Ole Miss is going to build a new basketball arena. Where in the hell is this school getting their money from? Maybe they'll just weld two double-wide's together and raise the roof. Man, I'm grumpy today... 6. Georgia plays better basketball on the road.

"If it's all the same, it's Saturday night. I'm out."-Ole Miss G Marshall Henderson ...
The Huntsville Times - - ‎21 hours ago‎
Print. View/Post Comments. Marshall Henderson 02.16.2013 Mississippi guard Marshall Henderson (22) slaps his chest as his team takes the lead in overtime in their NCAA college basketball game against Georgia in Oxford, Miss., Saturday, Feb. 16, 2013.

Recaps From Georgia Tech's 57-56 Win Over Wake Forest

The Yellow Jackets notched their second road ACC win of the season with a one point win over Wake Forest.  This marks the first time since 2007-2008 season Georgia Tech has won two ACC road games.  Tech faces North Carolina at home Tuesday night 9PM hoping to bolster its NIT hopes with a signature win.

Recaps from the Jackets and Deacons...

Georgia Tech holds off Wake Forest 57-56 - Robert Carter Jr. hit two free throws with 8.7 seconds left to seal the win

Post-Game Quotes - Georgia Tech 57, Wake Forest 56

Workman Win At Wake
There was a fine story in Saturday's paper about the prospect of Marcus Georges-Hunt emerging as Georgia Tech's "go-to" player. There were signs aplenty on Saturday afternoon that the freshman wing can be that.

Recap: Wake Forest vs. Georgia Tech
Robert Carter, Jr. finished with 10 points, including the game-winning pair of free throws with eight seconds remaining, as the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets took down the Wake Forest Demon Deacons, 57-56, in Atlantic Coast Conference action at Joel ..

Wake Forest still unable to finish, falls to Ga. Tech 57-56
Charlotte Observer - ‎Feb 16, 2013‎
Wake Forest's Travis McKie, left, grabs a rebound against Georgia Tech's Daniel Miller, right, during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in Winston-Salem, N.C., Saturday, Feb. 16, 2013. Georgia Tech won 57-56.

Another gut-wrenching loss for Deacons
Winston-Salem Journal - ‎Feb 16, 2013‎
Wake Forest, which was coming off a 66-63 setback at Boston College, tumbled to 11-14 and 4-9 in ACC play with its sixth loss in the last seven games. Georgia Tech improved to 14-10 and 4-8 by sweeping the season series with the Deacons. “It hurts losing ...


Sunday, February 17, 2013

Where Did The NBA All-Stars Play College Basketball?

I won't be watching one minute of the NBA All-Star Game tonight but I thought it would be interesting to see where the players played in college (if at all) and how the conference breakdown went.

High Schoolers dominate the list with five participants.  The ACC has five participants leading all conferences. 

School # Players
None (High School) 5
Duke                        2
UCLA                      2
Florida                      2
Texas                       2
Wake Forest 2
Syracuse                   1
Kentucky                  1
Marquette                 1
Georgia Tech 1
Fresno State 1
Stanford                   1
Oklahoma                1
Arizona State 1
Foreign 1
Michigan State 1

By Conference:
ACC                       5
Pac 12 4
SEC                        3
Big 12 3
Big East 2
Big Ten 1
WAC                      1

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Whatever Happend To Recruit Sent 52 Letters In One Day By Georgia Tech?

A refresher from Yahoo's College Football Blog: Dr. Saturday...
Georgia Tech must know something the rest of the recruiting world doesn't.

Last week, Wesleyan (Norcross, Ga.) safety Charles Mack received 52 letters from the Yellow Jackets — in one day. Included in the barrage were newsletters, typed letters and a handwritten letter from each coach.
Mack's father played for Georgia Tech from 1983-87. 

As the recruiting season went on, Mack received offers from Navy, South Florida, Furman, Buffalo, and Richmond according to Rivals but never from Georgia Tech.

He signed with the Richmond Spiders on National Signing Day

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

UGA Recruiting Under Mark Richt (Stats Galore)

Richt has not had trouble attracted talent to UGA/
Mark Richt has been at Georgia from 2001-2013 by the longest current tenure in the SEC.  The Bulldogs have consistently recruited at a high level under Richt as the below stats illustrate.

To illustrate just how long Richt has been in Athens, he is now on his fourth opposing coach in Knoxville.

Those two points are not simply by coincidence.  Tennessee regularly raided Georgia in the 90s and also not coincidentally beat UGA regularly.  When Richt arrived he began to shut the Vols out of the state and their program began to fall while the Bulldogs rose. 

Some of that talent recruited to play in Sanford Stadium has been character reaches for a man deep in his faith.  The 38 arrests are a regular occurrence and in addition to questionable recruiting decisions can also be attributed to lax discipline policy likely learned from his mentor Bobby Bowden.

To Richt's credit he has toughened up his stance dismissing more players as of late and I think that discipline has been displayed on the field with 22 wins over the last two season.  My guess is Richt has already a discussion with signee Davin Bellamy who was photographed on a official visit to Oregon in a room with drug paraphernalia. 

[Full disclosure here: this info is lifted from a UGA message board but it is well thought out and organized - unlike the last message board item I posted]

UGA had 298 recruits sign LOIs since CMR was hired 13 years ago, an average of 22.9 recruits per year; fwiw, the average star rating per recruit = 3.4765 stars (coincidentally, this is virtually the same star rating per signee for the Class of 2013)

5-stars: 14
4-stars: 141
3-stars: 122
2-stars: 18
Unranked: 3

SEC Honors:

- 43 signees ended up earning 1st or 2nd Team All-SEC honors (not counting the Class of 2013, as the players haven't had a chance to win an award yet), that = 16.1% of recruited scholarship players (or about 1 out of every 6 signed)
- Note that CMR inherited 15 scholarship players from Coach Donnan that distinguished themselves by earning All-SEC honors:
-- Boss Bailey (x2), Kevin Breedlove, Reggie Brown, Kentrell Curry, Terrence Edwards, Tony Gilbert, Charles Grant, David Greene (x3), Sean Jones, Randy McMichael, Curt McGill, Musa Smith, Jon Stinchcomb (x2), Johnathan Sullivan, & Tim Wansley
- Note that UGA also has had some walk-ons like Tra Battle, Billy Bennett (x2), Gordon Ely-Kelso, and Brian Mimbs that earned SEC honors


- 44 of CMR's signees were later drafted by NFL teams b/w 2005-2012 (an average of 5.5 players per year), including 5 1st round draft picks (i.e., Thomas Davis, A.J. Green, Knowshon Moreno, David Pollack, & Matt Stafford) and 5 2012 NFL All-Pros (i.e., Geno Atkins, A.J. Green, Justin Houston, Tim Jennings, & Blair Walsh)
-- Note: 24 of Coach Donnan's signees that CMR inherited were drafted by the NFL b/w 2001-2004 (an average of 6 players per year)
-- Note: Starting P Drew Butler (Pittsburgh) & LB Dannell Ellerbe (Baltimore Ravens) are two former CMR signees that were undrafted free agents, but are having successful NFL careers as starters

Attrition (x83 [i.e., 31.2% of signees] or an average of 6.4 signees/players per year):

1 player (i.e., Dexter Moody) was released from his LOI on 17 Mar 09 for academic & behavioral issues while at ECI

23 academic non-qualifiers; 9 of them returned to UGA after prep school/JUCO (waiting on Leonard Floyd [Summer 2013] to make it 10 of 23)

2 players (i.e., Jamar Cheney & Michael Grant) were denied admission

1 player (Antonio Mercier) failed a physical and was never cleared to play

13 players were granted a medical exemption (i.e., Neland Ball, Josh Brock, Trey Chandler, Antavious Coates, Tom Gainous, Marcus Jackson, Darrell Holmes, Jeremy Longo, Olaolu Sanni-Osomo, Jonathan Owens, Preston Pannell, Bryce Ros, & Reggie Weeks)

19 players were dismissed (i.e., Demetre Baker, Donovan Baldwin, Isaiah Crowell, Washaun Ealey, B.J. Fields, Chris Hickman, Walter Hill, Josh Johnson, Michael Lemon, Nick Marshall, Zach Mettenberger, John Miller, Alexander Ogletree, Montez Robinson, Chris Sanders, Sanford Seay, Antonio Sims, Odell Thurman* [returned], & Derrick White)

20 players transferred (i.e., Bama Adams, Blake Barnes, Brent Benedict, Richard Cook, Michael Cooper, Marcus Dowtin, Logan Gray, Dana Graydon, Jakar Hamilton, Cedric Haywood, Dontavious Jackson, Tavares Kearney, James Lee, Derrick Lott, Jordan Love, Ken Malcome, Derek Owens, Makiri Pugh, NaDerris Ward, & Nick Williams)

6 players left school due to academic issues (A.J. Harmon, Quintavious Harrow, Caleb King, John Knox, Dexter Morant, & Paul Oliver)

7 players quit the team (i.e., B.J. Fields, Scott Havercamp, Ian Smith, Aaron Scranton, Randall Swoopes, Carlton Thomas, & Seth Watts)



- 44 players arrested (Justin Anderson, Donavon Baldwin, Demetre Baker, Blake Barnes, Clint Boling, Tripp Chandler, Sanders Commings, Isaiah Crowell, Vance Cuff, Marcus Dowtin, Washaun Ealey, Dannell Ellerbe, Marquis Elmore, B.J. Fields, Darryl Gamble, Mike Gilliam, Kedric Golston, Akeem Hebron, Marcus Howard, Tim Jennings, Caleb King, Tavarres King, Michael Lemon, Jordan Love, Brian McClendon, Zeb McKinsey, Zach Mettenberger, John Miller, Demario Minter, Fred Munzenmaier, Alec Ogletree, Kevin Perez, Mario Raley, Antonio Sims, Branden Smith, Ian Smith, Trinton Sturdivant, Darius Swain, Randall Swoopes, Michael Turner, Chase Vasser, NaDerris Ward, Cornelius Washington, & Brandon Wood)

Monday, February 11, 2013

Georgia Tech Defeats Virginia Tech, Notches First Win Ever In Blacksburg

Some recaps from yesterday's 64-54 win by the Yellow Jackets snapping a 11 road game ACC losing streak.

Recap: Virginia Tech vs. Georgia Tech
Marcus Georges-Hunt and Kammeon Holsey each collected 13 points and nine rebounds, as the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets defeated the Virginia Tech Hokies, 64-54, in Atlantic Coast Conference play at Cassell Coliseum. By Sports Network; The Sports ...

Holsey, Georgia Tech defeat Virginia Tech 64-54
Greenwich Time
Under pressure from Georgia Tech forward Robert Carter (4), Virginia Tech guard Erick Green (11) dishes the ball to teammate Marshall Wood, right foreground, during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game

Holsey Lifts Georgia Tech Past Virginia Tech, 64-54 -

Kammeon Holsey scored all 13 points of his points in the first half to lift Georgia Tech to a 64-54 victory over Virginia Tech on Saturday.

Post-Game Quotes - Georgia Tech 64, Virginia Tech 54

Hokie Hex No More
Mission No. 1 Saturday in Blacksburg, Va., where Georgia Tech had never won a basketball game, was to hit the glass.

That wasn't all that the Yellow Jackets clubbed on the way to a 64-54 win that was not as close as that score. Georgia Tech clobbered Virginia Tech just about every which way, meeting that main challenge by out-rebounding the Hokies, 46-32.

Brian Gregory Post Game Interview with Wes Durham in a utility closet

More Bad ACC Officiating At End of Duke - Boston College Game?

Watch the end of the highlights from the Blue Devils one point win at Boston College (you can start at 1:55).

The Eagles are trying for a last second shot and after that attempt all hell breaks loose under the basket. Take a close look at Duke's Quinn Cook (#2) as he starts the play near the top of the key.

Cook blatantly pushes a BC player off the court to prevent a possible offensive rebound. Soon after the push, Cook undercuts an Eagle player with the ball in his hands. By the end of the play, three Boston College players end up on the floor as do two Blue Devils and yet no call. Can you honestly tell me that play would have resulted in no foul it had been in the first minute of the game instead of the last? What about if it was simply with 30 seconds left instead of the 3? It has been rough for refs in the ACC who missed a traveling call on Michael Snaer, a subsequent questionable push off also by Snaer, and a 3 second violation in FSU's win on Tuesday.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Georgia Tech National Signing Day ESPN Event Recap

Ted Roof should add boost to Georgia Tech recruiting/
A little late getting this up, but better late than never.

Instead of holding a Signing Day event in Atlanta with a review of the signess and Q&A with fans, Georgia Tech broadcast a 1 hour program on [insert your Paul Johnson didn't want to answer fan questions theories here]. I see the decision to g to a national platform for a NSD event as part of Tech's campaign to recruit more nationally.

Here is a run down of the event. Please excuse my note taking form. If you want to watch the entire hour you can here

Interview with Vad Lee

- talked about his recruiting process, what coaches tell him
- said once he committed to GT every other coach started negatively recruiting against GT; goes back to old saying a committment only means everyone else knows who their competition for a prospect is
- Strength and Coaching is a big change from high school to college; the weight room was not his friend in high school
- Vad will be competing with Justin Thomas for the starting QB job in Spring Practice

Liam Klein - Director of Player Personnel

- started with 1200 names for class of 2013
- check grades, call high school coaches, talk to parents, friends to find the right fit
- academic requirements is the first hurdle for prospective student-athletes

Paul Johnson Interview

- is excited about next year
- 15/16 starters back; will have more seniors than in previous years
- take momentum from last half and build on it is key for the offseason

Signees Profiles

Joe Speed profiled Justin Akins
- Akins film shows him at DT and DE but he is projected at DE in a 4-3 scheme

Lamar Owens profiled Harrison Butker
- most of Butker's film was at Punter but projected at PK
- spent his last season kicking FGs off the ground to get ready for college
- mother got her Master's Degree from GT

Joe Speed profiled Darius Commissiong
- had nearly every major program trying to switch him this week
- was up around 330 but has gotten down to 305; will likely play inside

Buzz Preston introduced Travis Custis
- first remark about Travis Custis: "y'all need to love him"
- possibility he can contribute right away
- Buzz mostly let the highlights role on Custis
- Buzz has a gregarious personality in his interviews

Andy McCollum introduced Paul Davis
- anybody in South Georgia will tell you about this kid
- he loves Georgia Tech and it is always good to have those kids
- one of best players we had in camp this Summer
- might play weakside LB or a Safety or maybe a B-Back

Buzz Preston introduced Shamire Devine
- fell in love with Georgia Tech's academics
- went to Nike event in Oregon and some considered him the best OL at that event
- got hurt towards the end of the season that held him back

Andy McCollum introduced Chris Griffin
- "mean as hell"
- still in the HS wrestling championships at the Heavyweight level
- once his upper body catches up with his lower body he is going to be a player
- some of his tape includes his HS team running flexbone formations

Brian Bohannon introduced Ty Griffin
- 1 year at McEachern, had played at North Cobb previously
- can play multiple positions
- UNC offered him as a Safety
- he will get a shot to play QB, but he can play elsewhere if he fits better

Joe Speed introduced Ricky Jeune
- a lot of his film showed his HS team throwing screens
- fits the GT need of tall, physical WR who can stretch the field

Buzz Preston introduced Antonio Messick
- new HS coach at Fayette Co wants a physical team
- Messick took on some of the best defenders and was the toughest blocker on the team
- came to camp and showed out in blocking, jumping ability
- Preston couldn't believe more schools weren't after him; diamond in the rough
- had played basketball most of his high school career

Andy McCollum introduced John Marvin
- played S, CB, RB for his high school
- his HS coach was a teammate of McCollum's in college
- rated as the top DB in GT's Summer Camp
- runs 100m, 200m
- high academic kid
- had to turn off phone last night from coaches calling

Joe Speed introduced Kevin Robbins
- from same HS as Commissiong
- Groh made the initial contact
- dad played at Michigan State and in NFL
- went with Georgia Tech due to the educational opportunities and possible early playing time
- recruited as OLB
- Bishop McNamara HS has good academics and players are used to being in the spotlight

David Walkosky introduced Donovan Wilson
- early enrollee
- could be an A-Back or B-Back
- Walkosky has recruited Central Ohio for 20 years

Ted Roof introduced Corey Griffin
- Roof mentioned how great it is to be back at GT and to be back with people who love Georgia Tech
- Sandy Creek and GT have a great relationship, have a great HS program
- Sandy Creek HS Coach called Roof and asked him to take a look at Griffin
- Griffin is a great fit for GT as a student and as a player

Back with Paul Johnson...
- we are still awaiting on a couple of guys so the class may not be completely finished (have to assume he is talking about Corn Elder here)
- classes are balanced now
- starting to see more recruiting outside of Georgia
- GT brand very well respected outside of Georgia
- thinks Devine is one of the top prospects in the state
- Roof will be implementing his system on defense
- Offense will be tweaked to match the talents at QB

Video ended with Johnson watching film of Travis Custis in his office