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Mailbag 9/4

Is Georgia Tech better than Georgia State? Yeah, probably...

NCAA Football: Georgia Tech at Clemson Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports

Who is worse: ACC Coastal or Sun Belt West?

Ben: For those who are wondering who is in the Sun Belt West (like myself), here are the teams: Louisiana-Monroe, Arkansas State, Louisiana-Lafayette, South Alabama, and Texas State. I know this was asked tongue-in-cheek, but there are some promising young coaches at some of these schools. I know Arkansas State in particular has been good about churning out future Power 5 coaches.

Stephen: c’mon, that’s a clown question bro. Except give me that ULL punter from a couple years back that volunteered as Santa. He’s one of the good ones. Do your own sleuthing to find that one.

Nishant: Don’t forget there was a Power 5 division that had losses to Wyoming and Georgia State last week. (okay, they have a couple pretty good teams too, but still)

Akshay: ^Man, if another conference had teams lose to G5s that badly, we’d be talking about how they’re already effectively eliminated from the Playoff.

Carter: C’mon, man. It’s not like the future Coastal champ lost to James Madison. I mean, this time.

What are the odds that GT plays Clemson again in ACCCG? And if Trevor Lawrence goes down before that game, does GT stand a chance?

Ben: I think there’s more of a chance this week than I thought we had last week. I still don’t think it’s a great chance right now. Looking back at Week 0/1, I’d say either Virginia or North Carolina are probably the frontrunners at this point, as hard as that is to hear. If by some chance Georgia Tech did make it to the ACC Championship Game, I think it could be a decent game for a little while. I think Clemson is clearly a better team, but Tech was a few bad plays away from playing Clemson a lot closer.

Stephen: Funny, I thought I already used that clown question link...

Nishant: Take it away, Jim Mora.

Akshay: Sir, how much Kool-Aid have you had to drink tonight?

Carter: I’ll give you the same answer I give everyone who asks me this question: okay, look, here’s a dollar, I need to get to work.

Who would win an Atlanta cross-town game?

Ben: Georgia Tech. If you’re trying to come to any conclusion following the Tennessee-Georgia State game, that conclusion should be that Tennessee is a dumpster fire.

Stephen: Tech would be about a 3.5-4 point favorite at home, but I think we’d be able to beat them. I say that, but it’ll never happen because they won’t schedule us. But I don’t want us to because it’s a lose-lose for us anyway.

Akshay: Ben more or less summed up my thoughts, but I’ll add that Tennessee is not a dumpster fire, but rather a boat fire.

Carter: Is this like an LA Galaxy-LAFC thing? State doesn’t even have a Carlos Vela-type.

Akshay again: If they did, does that mean we’d have Zlatan, Carter? I’d be kinda ok with that, personally.

What are your thoughts on these GSU “fans” claiming they run the city now? Is it worth scheduling them at some point?

Ben: I would love to schedule them, personally. They can say what they want, but before they can start exclaiming that they’re so good, they should beat a team that isn’t a dumpster fire.

Stephen: Shoot, I already answered that one. Jake or Akshay can probably give a more detailed history of this.

Akshay: [scrambles to cover for Jake’s absence] I learned tonight that these teams have never met, but I agree with Stephen’s previous answer: it’s probably a lose-lose for Tech.

Carter: Does State have a totally-not-quite-official deal with Waffle House? I think not.

What’s the over/under for the season that we have a goal line or 4th down and short yardage play that we run from the shotgun and get stuffed?

Ben: It’s gonna be a whole lot more than you want, I can guarantee that. From the one game, it seems like Tech will be coming out of the shotgun/pistol almost exclusively.

Stephen: I screamed at my TV when this happened. I’m not proud of that fact.

Nishant: My in-the-moment reaction to that fourth-and-inches play, both in person and in text, was not something that can be printed here. I don’t think anyone needs me to write out all the layers of rage, but I will anyway because my blood is already boiling again. The first is the obvious one: if you need to move the ball forward six inches, starting by moving the ball six yards backward is not useful. If Oliver and Cooper weren’t used to under-center exchanges, I could maybe begin to understand, but they’ve each spent multiple years practicing those endlessly, so THAT WAS NOT A CONCERN HERE. What hurt the most, though, is that it looked like Oliver saw the linebackers playing back—conceding the QB sneak, in effect—and made a snap decision to run up and try the sneak before they could react. If so, it was a brilliant judgment call by a young quarterback, and yet it didn’t even matter because Collins called timeout before the snap. I’ve gone back and confirmed that he was already trying to call timeout before Oliver walked up to the line, which isn’t much solace, but if I had found out that they called timeout specifically because the QB tried to run a play from under center, it might have broken me. To actually answer the question... I’m bracing for this to happen once a game the rest of the way, so let’s put the over/under at 10.5.

Akshay: sigh. I miss the old fourth-and-short line-up-quickly-and-put-two-guys-in-motion-then-end-up-calling-a-timeout play. The timeout and ensuing playcall were not a great decision by Collins — Nishant did a great job of explaining why.

Carter: I don’t know, but it used to happen to the Falcons all the time, so we’re all used to it, right? And we won’t want to rip all the hair out of our head the next time we see it happen, right?

Any news on the recruiting front? Anybody else close to pulling the commit trigger?

Ben: News broke not too long ago that former Bama commit Javier Morton decommitted and that Georgia Tech is the current frontrunner, so that’s something to keep an eye on.

Stephen: Jayson Jones is a name to keep an eye on. He’s been vocal on twitter about his support of Tech and might be on the Flats this weekend for the home opener. Slackbot reminder: Don’t tweet (weird things) at ‘croots.

How does USF’s 49-0 loss to Wisconsin affect your predictions for this Saturday?

Ben: I’ll give an official prediction later this week, but I think Tech rolls.

Stephen: I’m not changing anything. Barring two kick returns for touchdowns, we’d have won last year, and I like us by about a touchdown on Saturday, seeing as how we tend to like nice even increments of 3 or 7 often.

Drew: That definitely changed my prediction. USF absolutely fell apart in the second half of last year and after 1 game they don’t look like they’ve turned it around. I though USF was going to be a decent favorite, but I now think our offense can move the ball and win this one.

Akshay: Ben raised a good point on the podcast this week when he pointed out that the six straight losses that USF suffered to close out 2018 were to quality teams (UCF, Cincinnati, etc). Last week was just the seventh in that series — USF just looked overmatched playing against a clearly better team. Last time I checked, the spread for Saturday’s game was at GT by 5.5, which sounds about right considering last week’s results for both teams. It could get ugly if USF’s second- and third-level defense fails to, you know, exist (like it did at times versus Wisconsin), but we’ll just have to wait and see on that part.

Carter: I feel slightly better than I did before the season. Not great. I never feel great about Georgia Tech football.

What are your updated season win predictions for Tech after all of the games this past weekend?

Ben: I think there’s a decent chance that Tech makes a bowl as long as they continue to clean up the little mistakes.

Stephen: 4.

Drew: 3

Akshay: Still a solid four. Some teams looked a little better in Week 1, some teams looked a little worse — it all evens out. There’s not much you can take away from Week 1, anyway.

Carter: 4, but ask me again next week, and every week until the season is over. I’ll know for sure by then.

Did a CPJ team ever start a drive on the opponent’s 2 yard line and not score?

Stephen: I’m going to assume no. Just by the sheer fact that that happens so rarely in this sport that seemingly out-crazy’s itself on a weekly basis.

Nishant: Can’t think of a specific instance, but it probably happened at least once. The 2010 season comes to mind, when seemingly every promising drive ended in a fumble.

Akshay: I’m going to say no, mostly because I don’t want to look it up and potentially get twice as sad.

Carter: No way. Not a chance. I’m not even going to look this up.