Just a few days after a miraculous upset of 18-point favorite North Carolina at McCamish Pavilion, Georgia Tech has the opportunity to make yet another statement against the top-10 Duke Blue Devils up in Durham. The Jackets currently lead Duke by a full game in ACC play (a fact I never expected to type in 2017), but it’s more than fair to say that, as we saw with the UNC game, a lot will have to go right for Tech to come away with a victory. We could be in the midst of the waning of the Krzyzewski era at Duke, so now’s a great time to grab a victory.
Paul Johnson finally got the opportunity to dish out some thinly-veiled suggestions to a professional multi-millionaire coach, enacting revenge on a number of callers to his own radio show by employing his most lethal weapon: sarcasm. It all happened on the fateful night when Andy Demetra elected to take a call from “Paul from Vinings” during Josh Pastner’s show. I wish he’d let Tech’s first-year basketball coach in on the secret of cut blocking, which works quite well across all sports. I suppose he figured that Duke’s Grayson Allen would teach that lesson adequately on his own.
One can see why Josh Pastner was chosen to headline Georgia Tech’s massive basketball rebuild and rebrand, by the way. He was only talking about college football and basketball, but I still drove to my local polling place and cast a ballot for him. So much hope and praise with so little basis! What is this, UGA?
We didn’t get the perfect 11-0 bowl season finish thanks to the ItalLian (yes, that’s Italian with a capital L) trio of Narduzzi, Fedora, and Petrino, but the rest of the ACC managed to string together the best postseason of any conference to go 8-3. That could improve to 9-3 with a Clemson victory against Alabama in the title game, which would erase all doubt that the ACC is the best conference in college football this season. People will still laugh at that because it sounds so wrong, but the truth is that ACC teams took care of the two best teams in the B1G in Ohio State and Michigan plus every SEC foe it faced minus LSU and potentially Alabama. This column has been fueled by a steady diet of Wake Forest jokes for three years now, but I can’t even make those anymore because the Deacs just capped off a 7-6 season with a win over a top-25 school in Temple. They gave their coach an 8-year extension for that performance, but that's as close as I can get to making fun of them*. A new era, indeed.