Friday, November 02, 2007

A Nightmare on North Avenue

GT Season Tickets image courtesy of plezWorld's Treo 680

My family and I went to Bobby Dodd Stadium at Historic Grant Field to watch my beloved Yellow Jackets sting the Hokies one week removed from their embarrassing loss at home to Boston College (and Heisman Trophy securing performance by BC QB Matt Ryan). When we limped out of the stadium, the scoreboard read Virginia Tech 27 and Georgia Tech 3, and it wasn't even that close. To make matters worse, I came home and watched the entire game again, courtesy of my DISH Network DVR!

Virginia Tech's backup quarterback, Sean Glennon looked like a candidate for the Heisman Trophy. He played in place of my injured homeboy, Tyrod Taylor (yeah, we both went to Hampton High School in Virginia), in a quickly modified throwback Georgia Tech jersey (because his VT jersey was lost).

Georgia Tech's starting quarterback, Taylor Bennett, played like a candidate for the JV team!

Glennon was 22-32 for damn near 300 yards, 2 TDs, and no interceptions.

Bennett was 11-26 for 156 yards, 0 TD, and 4 interceptions. There were a total of 5 interceptions (Bennett's backup had a late interception) and 1 lost fumble.

Tech (the one in Georgia) scored their only points on a first quarter field goal. It was then the Other Tech's turn to rattle off 27 unanswered points for the duration of the game.

This loss all but ends Georgia Tech's hopes of climbing back into the ACC Championship race AND leaves the Yellow Jackets one game shy of being bowl eligible. The remaining games are against a beatable Duke, a so-so North Carolina, and our bitter blood relatives, those dreaded Bulldawgs of the University of Georgia.

After a season that had Tech (the one in Georgia) with a 9-2 record, playing for a BCS bid and the ACC Championship, we are now hoping to get an invitation to return to the Emerald Nuts Bowl. What looked like a promising season after Bennett's outstanding coming out show against West Virginia in last season's Gator Bowl has turned into a Nightmare on North Avenue: there are rumors that Head Coach Chan Gailey will be fired at the end of the season, the offense has sputtered to a halt, the defense is spending way too much time on the field and yielding too much yardage, and special teams just ain't special!

Without an adequate running game, Tech's offense has no sting. Tashard Choice - one of the nation's premier running backs - is sidelined indefinitely with a knee injury, so we are left to rely on an exceptional true freshman running back, Jonathan Dwyer. He is quick and strong, but he's still a freshman... and he's the best we got. This game experience should tie us over until Choice returns for the UGA game.

After getting a decent running game, we have to get the ball up the field to our receivers. Taylor Bennett throws and awesome screen pass, but is lacking when he has to throw the ball more than 10 yards up the field (all of tonight's interceptions came when he locked in on his receiver up the field). Tech's offensive minds would do well to replace him with true freshman Josh Nesbitt who can create a dual run threat with Dwyer and throw a pretty deep ball. He's Tech's future QB, may as well get him in there with some reps so he'll be ready when the Bullpups roll into town after Thanksgiving.

With Nesbitt and Dwyer together in the backfield, we'll be looking at our future for the next 2-3 seasons... and maybe even salvage what remains of the current season.

We may have lost the game, but I didn't lose my mind... what kind of Georgia Tech post would this be without singing of the Ramblin' Wreck Song?!?

"I'm a ramblin' wreck from Georgia Tech and a helluva engineer..."

Footnote 1: To make a spooky night even spookier, Big Boi (of Outkast fame) performed the halftime show with the Georgia Tech band. Picture one hip-hop artist with one hundred spastic sheet-music-playing white folk in band gear... it was scary!

Footnote 2: Tech's nickname is the North Avenue Trade School because of its location on North Avenue in downtown Atlanta, Georgia.


David Sullivan said...

I'm going to BC/FState Sat. night. I hope I am happier Sun AM than you are today. I watched that game last night and was disappointed in Bennet. I was pulling for the wreck, but now its time to focus on the Seminoles (and the impending Hurricane!)

plez... said...

no one should have to feel as bad as i did we trekked back to the car... good luck with BC. i'd like to see them in a BCS bowl and have a shot at a national championship (if they don't get screwed by The NCAA System)!

as for Tech, i can only hope they make some changes, let the freshman play, get ready for the Bulldogs, and prepare for next season (if we have to go to some third tier bowl this year, we may as well stay home)!