Georgia Bulldogs Game 12 Preview: Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets


The No. 9 Georgia Bulldogs are ready to renew the Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate rivalry with the No. 16 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at Sanford Stadium this week.

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Date: 11/29/2014
Kickoff Time: 12:00 pm
Venue: Sanford Stadium – Athens, Ga.
Radio: Georgia Bulldog Sports Network from IMG;
TV: SEC Network
Satellite: Sirius 113, XM 190
Internet Stream: SEC Network +
Twitter Hashtag: #GTvsUGA

Current Odds: Georgia by 13 points

Georgia (9-2, 6-2 SEC) and Georgia Tech (9-2, 6-2 ACC) are facing off for the 107th time and in a game that means more than it has to both teams in many years.

Lots will be at stake for both teams, and with Georgia riding a five-game winning streak against the Yellow Jackets, Paul Johnson’s team will be hungrier than ever for a win against the Bulldogs.

You want to see two top running games, then this will be the matchup to watch this weekend.

Keys to the game:

For Georgia, the key (as it has been every year since Paul Johnson brought his triple-option offense to the Flats) will be to limit the Georgia Tech running game, and to protect the knees and lower legs of the defensive line.

Georgia has faced two different versions of the option in the previous two weeks against Auburn and Charleston Southern, but Tech’s is an option of a different beast. The Yellow Jackets run it to perfection and have their sights set on an upset.

For Georgia Tech, they’ll have to figure out how to stop both freshman running backs Nick Chubb and Sony Michel, as well as figuring out how to cover the receivers in a resurgent Georgia passing game. Georgia will want to key the offense off of Chubb, and use the play-action to get some open looks for quarterback Hutson Mason.

Strengths and weaknesses:

Both teams pride themselves on their running games, but both do it in very different ways. The Bulldogs are 13th nationally in rushing yards, at 260.55 yards per game, while Tech is averaging 327.91 rushing yards per game, good for 4th in the nation.

The Yellow Jackets will undoubtedly be utilizing the blueprint laid out by the Florida Gators, and bouncing things to the edges in their option attack. The Bulldogs have seemingly fixed the issues that plagued them against the Gators, but defending an option attack like Tech’s adds a lot more pressure.

Nov 8, 2014; Raleigh, NC, USA; Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets quarterback Justin Thomas (5) runs in for a touchdown against the North Carolina State Wolfpack at Carter Finley Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Liz Condo-USA TODAY Sports

Georgia Tech has shown a weakness in defending the pass, giving up 223 yards per game, so Georgia’s play-action pass game will become a big factor in this game, particularly with a fully healthy receiving corps, and a compliment of backs out of the backfield.

Tech’s running game suffered a big blow last week with the horrible looking season-ending injury to running back Broderick Snoddy, but the Yellow Jackets still have plenty of backs to step in, although none really with Snoddy’s breakaway speed. Georgia is holding opponents to 155 yards per game on the ground, a number that will be tested against Paul Johnson’s team.

Game Prediction

Georgia is favored by 13, which given the similar paths these two teams have taken, seems a bit odd for the odds. Give Georgia home field advantage, and overall a much better defense, but don’t expect the Dawgs to cover 13. Richt’s squad by a touchdown, and win number six in a row for the team that still runs this state.