Georgia Tech baseball claimed a huge ACC series from No. 15 UVA over the weekend, taking two of three from the once top-ranked Hoos in convincing fashion. The Jackets dropped the first game of the series by a disappointing final of 14-4 but rebounded nicely, using strong starts from Cole Pitts and Brandon Gold on Saturday and Sunday to secure the final two games. Tech outscored UVA 15-7 over those last two games, improving to 24-12 on the season and 9-9 in the conference along the way. The Jackets will play a home game against rival Georgia on Tuesday before heading up to Chestnut Hill for a three-game series with Boston College this weekend.
Backup quarterback Matthew Jordan, a rising redshirt freshman, has proven over the course of spring practice that he is tough enough to succeed in the flexbone offense but still lacks the necessary execution. Jordan is seen by many as the heir apparent to Justin Thomas, a rising junior, and getting him some snaps over the course of the next few seasons could make his tenure at Tech even more successful. That can't happen, however, if Paul Johnson doesn't feel confident in his ability to run the offense -- he will go with backup Tim Byerly all day if he's the best option.
Georgia Tech guard Freddie Burden, who has missed all of spring practice due to an injury, is giving guard a shot as he continues his recovery. Burden was one of the anchors of Tech's fantastic rushing attack last season, and given the depth that we currently feature at guard compared to at center I can't see this move being permanent. Rather, it's just a way for him to get in some practice time despite not being able to play his natural position. The chemistry that he developed with Justin Thomas over the course of last season makes him nearly indispensable at center.
I'll leave you today with the interesting story of Georgia Southern's transition from underfunded team to successful FBS program in just a matter of decades. While the storyline itself is plenty interesting, there are also some fantastic Paul Johnson quotes and recollections thrown in as well, the greatest of which being as follows:
IT SOUNDED SEXY WHEN THEY WERE GOING TO THROW THE BALL ALL OVER THE FIELD, UNTIL THEY STARTED LOSING. THEN IT WASN'T MUCH FUN.
Johnson is still a legend at GSU, and likely will remain one forever. His triple-option attack is what first brought the program to national prominence in the FBS and also what allowed it to remain so strong for so long -- the Eagles just won the Sun Belt in their first season in the FBS. While their current offense isn't the same as the one Paul Johnson ran by any means, the run-based tradition is what has allowed for Southern to remain successful.
What do you expect from Matthew Jordan's career as a Yellow Jacket?
Have a great Monday!