Though Justin Thomas’ speed was unquestionably the biggest storyline of Georgia Tech’s pro day over the weekend, a number of other seniors from the 2016 team had big days in their own rights. Linebacker P.J. Davis, who led the Jackets in tackles for two seasons, showed off his athleticism and versatility by trying out as a fullback in front of the NFL scouts in attendance. Kicker Harrison Butker struggled at first before settling into a nice groove, hitting from 58 and maintaining his dominant form on kickoffs. There were also some former Yellow Jackets in attendance who have been away from the program for a year or more, including defensive lineman Emmanuel Dieke and linebacker Tyler Marcordes, who were looking for another chance to impress professional scouts.
Georgia Tech baseball dropped a second consecutive series to open up ACC play, losing two of three to No. 9 North Carolina at Russ Chandler Stadium. We are now two weeks into the conference slate and the Jackets hardly look to be on the uptick, having lost four of six games to conference opponents Miami and UNC. Dropping a couple of close games to a team as good as UNC is nothing to be ashamed of, but the heartbreaking way the two defeats went is the frustrating part — both saw strong rallies in the final inning stifled. On the flip side, Jay Shadday appears to have emerged as the Sunday starter for Tech, filling a need which has unquestionably cost the Jackets a couple of wins this year. Unfortunately, the better team won the series this time around. Tech will be back in action this evening against Auburn before making the trip up to Winston-Salem for a three-game set with Wake Forest over the weekend.
As a conference, the ACC has been an absolute disappointment so far during the NCAA Tournament. As of this moment, Roy Williams and the North Carolina Tar Heels are the only remaining school from the Atlantic Coast Conference. That sucks, especially for a Tech team whose season resume relied so heavily on big wins against teams like Notre Dame and Florida State that were promptly defeated in the second round. This is exactly what the SEC did in football a couple of years ago when everyone gave them flack for being overrated, and it’s now time for ACC basketball fans to face the same music: at least this year, the ACC was vastly overvalued. Here’s the difference, however: SEC football fans were angry when their fellow schools blew big bowl games, but Duke choking in basketball will always be hilarious. So will first round exits by Virginia Tech and 39-point performances by UVA. Sucks to suck, rivals. Georgia Tech and UNC have been left alone to carry the ACC torch through the postseason.