The 17th-ranked Virginia Tech Hokies are looking to improve to 6-0 after a loss in the Justin Fuente era this week after suffering a tough loss to Miami last week. Meanwhile, 4-4 Georgia Tech is desperate for a win to end their two-game losing streak and keep their bowl game hopes realistically alive.
Virginia Tech will also be looking to get revenge after Georgia Tech upset the Hokies 30-20 last season in Blacksburg. With that said, here are our picks for the Battle of the Techs.
Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech face off in a matchup that has usually been critical in deciding the ACC Coastal. However, both teams enter this year’s matchup eliminated from Coastal title contention with Miami poised to win its first Coastal title.
Virginia Tech’s defense is one of the best in America, but face a difficult challenge facing a triple-option offense on a less than optimal week after the travel chaos on the return home from Miami. TaQuon Marshall and KirVonte Benson have both been pleasant surprises for the Yellow Jackets, and give Georgia Tech plenty of reason for excitement about the present and more about the future.
However, Bud Foster is one of the best at preparing his defense to face the triple-option and the Hokies have the benefit of a strong run-stopping defense that has given up very few big runs.
Georgia Tech’s defense has been a big reason why the Yellow Jackets have a decent chance still at making a bowl game. Georgia Tech is ranked 28th in total defense nationally, and will give Josh Jackson and the Hokies’ offense a challenge. However, Virginia Tech has the benefit of having one of the best receivers in America in Cam Phillips. With Phillips appearing to be 100% healthy, he had his best game since getting hurt against Boston College, and seems poised for another big game.
With two of the ACC’s best defenses facing off, this has the makings of a low-scoring game that will come down to the wire. Virginia Tech has the special teams advantage and will use that to consistently have a better average starting field position and win the hidden yardage battle.
The Hokies’ defense will be dominant this week while the Hokies’ offense, led by Josh Jackson, Cam Phillips, and the passing game; will put up enough points for the Hokies to beat Georgia Tech and put themselves in great position to have back-to-back 10-win seasons.
Prediction: #17 Virginia Tech 20, Georgia Tech 13
The Virginia Tech Hokies travel to Atlanta this weekend to face the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. This game will be a difficult one for the Hokies, as it always is when facing that triple option attack. Virginia Tech should be able to pull out a victory but it won’t be easy.
On offense, Josh Jackson needs to start taking shots downfield. People were complaining about the play calling after the game and saying that they need to throw the ball more downfield and yes, they need to take more shots downfield. I also think they need to permanently establish the run once and for all. Establishing the run would give them something to build on.
Bottom line: Jackson needs to continue to stand in the pocket and gain confidence, while at the same time do whatever he needs to do to ge this offense moving down the field. The Georgia Tech defense is stingy and it will not be easy, but I think we should be able to do it, although it will be close.
On defense, the Hokies will have to stop the option attack, and it is very difficult. You either give up big plays or you stop them, and this is almost always a toss-up game. I think that the defense will be prepared enough to stop the offense by Georgia Tech, although it will be tough. Cut down on the big plays and that should be a victory.
It will be close no matter what, and I think the Hokies are up for the challenge. The fire inside each of the players will be burning after their loss last weekend to Miami, and it will give them confidence to defeat this offense. It isn’t out of the question that Georgia Tech runs all over us so don’t be surprised.
This will come down to the trenches and who can hold their line on the big offensive plays. Not a whole lot to predict, but I say Virginia Tech wins 24-20 in a close one.