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Georgia Tech’s Defensive Woes Carry Over

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Georgia Tech allowed BC to nearly match its season rushing total.

NCAA Football: Georgia Tech at Boston College Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

Last week’s blow out to Clemson was an awful look but wasn’t a huge surprise. What happened tonight is was just inexcusable. There was plenty of blame to be placed on the team as a whole but the defense played one of its worst games right after playing its worst game. Giving up 48 points to Boston College is just awful.

Boston College managed to put this game away in about the same amount of time as it took Trevor Lawrence last week. The problem is Boston College isn’t nearly as good offensively. Boston College ranked as one of the worst rushing teams coming into this matchup averaging 66 yards rushing a game. Eagles’ quarterback Phil Jurkovec navigated around plenty of missed tackles to lead with 94 yards of 264 total rushing. That total was 70 yards shy of Boston College’s rushing total for the season.

The first quarter saw Boston College quickly build a 17-0 lead as Tech’s offense fumbled early on the second drive and then went three-and-out on the following drive. The Eagles hadn’t defended the run well most of the year but kept enough pressure in the backfield to prevent Sims or Gibbs from getting into a rhythm.

Jordan Mason saw his first action for Tech since an undisclosed injury in the FSU game but fumbled to start the second quarter that BC would return for a touchdown. Jeff Sims responded well on the next drive delivering a 32-yard strike to Ahamarean Brown to record Brown’s first receiving touchdown of the season after hauling in seven in his first year. Geoff Collins made a gutsy call to keep the momentum with an onside kick that backfired when Tech was offsides. Boston College responded quickly when Zay Flowers ran 22 yards to keep a sizeable lead. Despite the large deficit, Tech’s offense put together another drive when Sims hit his second touchdown pass to PJ Harris. The Yellow Jacket defense would stop the Eagles short on the next drive but not before BC knocked in a field goal to score on every drive of the first half.

Boston established the run game in full to start the second half with 4 run plays in a 5-play drive that resulted in a 34-yard touchdown by David Bailey. Tech would keep the score semi-respectable with a 15-play 75-yard drive that Sims would cap with a QB sneak into the end zone. However, that drive almost ended on an interception that was canceled out by a roughing the passer foul on BC.

It seemed Tech could be slowly creeping back into the game after a quick out was forced by the defense. Except, Sims very next throw would be right into the hands of the Eagles’ Jahmin Muse which would start their drive on the GT 12. Three plays later and David Bailey would punch in his second touchdown of the night.

Down 48-21 Coach Collins decided to pull Jeff Sims and put in former starter James Graham for his first action of the year. His first drive ended in a three-and-out but would manage to lead a touchdown drive on the next after a converted 4th down pass to Gibbs and pass interference on Boston College on another 4th down attempt. Ahmarean Brown would finish it off with a 2-yard sweep for his second touchdown of the night.

The Yellow Jackets would convert an onside kick that they managed to drive into the red zone before stalling and failing on a 4th down attempt when Graham had to scramble out of the pocket. With the game much out of hand at 48-27, Boston College would march out most of the clock on the ensuing drive.

If you were to only look at the stats of the game it would seem a fairly even match. Neither team had much success on third down (Tech 2-12 BC 3-9, though BC converted every second down in the 1st quarter), overall yardage was fairly even, and penalties were both 10 apiece. It was turnovers, a poorly timed onside kick, and plenty of missed tackles that doomed Tech from the start.

Notre Dame comes to town next week and it may be a nightmare of a Halloween night with them. They hung 45 on Pitt tonight and have a big tight end in Michael Mayer (Oh come on? On Halloween, really?) who could do some damage to our secondary that has struggled with covering tight ends this year.

This season wasn’t supposed to be a breakout year but it doesn’t appear much progress is being made in phases of the game. The two wins seem hollow as Louisville and FSU fall to the bottom of the ACC standings. The schedule should ease up after next week but letting BC have such a night doesn’t bode well against the remainder of the schedule.