Orwin Smith: "WINNING!"(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
In Week 3, Georgia Tech defeated Kansas 66-24. It was a beatdown beyond comparison as the good guys set a few school, conference, and NCAA records. I've watched the game four times now and I still can't believe some of the numbers put up. Yes, it was Kansas, but it's nice to finally see Tech actually drop the hammer on teams that it should obviously rip for once.
So, after the jump we'll take a further look at the numbers we've been tracking thus far! (YPP, PPP, TO Margin, etc.)
I apologize for the delay in getting this post completed and up on the site. It's been hectic at work as we near the end of the year for budgets and project deadlines. On to the good stuff!
Last week, an interesting topic came up regarding the coverage teams, specifically the kick return coverage. Since the big offensive numbers are obvious, we'll save those for later and begin with return coverage and follow that with 3rd, 4th, and red zone conversion numbers.
Leading into the Kansas game, we had used two different kickers, Chandler Anderson (RS SR) and Justin Moore (SO). During the Kansas game we saw a third kicker enter for the last two kicks, that being David Scully (RS SO). I believe Scully was in simply because the game was out of reach for Kansas and by then most of the second and third units were getting time. Anderson and Moore are the two who have been rotating kicks the most. So, let's look at some numbers.
Here's how we have fared on a per game basis:
|Opponent||KO Yardline||Return Yardline||Return Yards|
The MTSU game was bad all around because even if I take out the first two kicks that went out of bounds, the numbers are still high. We did, however, have our first touchback of the year against Kansas. Essentially, Anderson started the game and kicked it to the 8,8,12, and 17 yard lines. Moore came in next and went 17, 9, 0, 2, and 1. While I still saw plenty of arm tackles and missed tackles on the return coverage, the kicking has to improve to help the guys covering. one touchback in three games is miserable and we currently sit at 60th overall in coverage average. For the season we kick to the 7.79 yardline, allow opponents to return to the 28.41 yardline, and allow an average of 20.64 yards a return. Hopefully that streak of kicks inside the 10 by Moore is a sign that he's found his leg.
Tech went 7-10 on 3rd downs putting them at 24-34 on the season, a 70.5% success rate compared to a 40.4% rate last year. They went 1-1 on 4th downs which puts them at 3-4 on the year. Not bad, but I like the high success rate on 3rd down more because it means we don't need to attempt 4th down conversion. As for RZ rates, Tech again went 5-5, this time actually making a FG on attempt. Tech remains perfect in the red zone for the year, 15-15.
Now for the big numbers. On offense, Georgia Tech rushed 50 times for 604 yards netting a 12.08 ypp. Absurd. They only passed it 7 times for 164 yards netting a 23.43 ypp. For the year that's 7.87 ypp rushing (1st) and 22.52 ypp passing (1st) for a total of 10.34 ypp (1st). The offense also scored 66 points on a total of 57 plays for an average of 1.16 ppp.
That puts us in 1st for total TD's (25), XP's (25), total points scored (178), pts/g (59.3), and unless my Excel math is wrong ppp (0.91). Again, we are simply crushing the weak teams on the first quarter of our schedule. Some regression should be expected. How much will be the question. And just for kicks, Orwin Smith leads nation with 22.5 yards per carry, Stephen Hill leads the nation with 38.88 yards per catch, and Tevin Washington would lead the nation with 22.8 yards per attempt (37.47 yards per completion) and a 334.31 rating if he met the minimum of 15 pass attempts per game.
Defensively Tech allowed 151 yards rushing on 42 plays for a total of 3.6 ypp. They allowed 211 yards on 27 plays for a total of 7.81 ypp. As Winfield mentioned in an earlier post, most of that was allowed in the first half of the game. Kansas scored 24 points on a total of 69 plays for 0.35 ppp. For the year, Tech is allowing 3.62 ypp rushing (55th) and 6.09 ypp passing (32nd) for a total of 4.79 ypp (39th). The defense has also allowed 66 points on 210 plays for a total 0.31 ppp.
Currently we sit at a +5.55 ypp margin and a +0.59 ppp margin. That's huge and I hope it continues.
The defense is what I believe is going to be the key to watch throughout the season. The offense scored quickly at times and the defense will be on the field a lot. How they handle that and how they make adjustments during the game is probably what will determine the overall success of this team. I think we can outscore anyone not only because this offense is difficult to defend, but also because they are running it so smoothly and in synch. The defense will be expected to get multiple three-n-outs in order for this offense to stay ahead of their opponents.
Also, the turnover margin against Kansas was zero, so we are still at a +3 for the year.
Now we just need to maintain this success through the ACC schedule and that begins this weekend against UNC. They are currently averagin 7.2 ypp offensively (5.12 ypp rushing and 10.1 ypp passing) and 4.6 ypp defensively (2.35 ypp rushing and 6.7 passing). I highly doubt they will hold Tech to under three yards a carry or under fifteen yards per pass attempt. In previous years I illustrated that even the best defenses on our schedule (VT, UNC, uga, etc.) had bad days against tech in both categories. Against Tech, the name of the game is containment. There is no stopping the train, only attempting to contain the amount of damage it will do as it runs through you.
To Hell With UNC!