CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — Since the whole “lede in italics” thing hasn’t been super useful lately, I decided I would ditch it. Maybe it’ll be a permanent change. Maybe it won’t. We’ll see. In real sports news, there’s not really all that much to talk about. Sure, if the NBA is your thing, it seems like it might be time to back the Brinks truck up to your local Wells Fargo and hammer the Hawks’ odds to make the playoffs in a pretty open Eastern Conference. But if you’re a Georgia Tech fan? Well, as I’m sure you know, there were literally no live events to report, other than there not being a basketball game, seeing as that was the only thing to come out of Techwood and Bobby Dodd.
So, as nice as it is to have hockey coming back soon (the Red Wings and the Blackhawks are in the same division again: good) and to have whispers of the baseball season drifting in - we will talk about that later in this week’s issue - we have what is in general the sparsest bowl season ever on our hands, and we just have to hope that basketball comes back as hoped in two days.
And, inevitably, I’ll find some way to drop 500+ words on something random like a tweet from Eastern Kentucky baseball.
Last Week on the Flats
Men’s (NR) and Women’s (RV) Basketball
With the women already on the shelf thanks to COVID concerns, the men joined them, as they were originally supposed to head to Birmingham to play the University of Alabama-Birmingham Blazers. The game will not be rescheduled.
Both teams have returned to practice as per Twitter, and will play two games apiece this week.
The Hot Corner
We have some great news out of the conference office in Greensboro, as Kendall Rodgers reported this week:
BREAKING: @theACC athletic directors voted on and approved college baseball’s season framework for 2021 this week.— Kendall Rogers (@KendallRogers) December 18, 2020
The #ACC will play:
* 50 overall games
* 36 conference games (12 weekends)
* 14 nonconference games (can be played as midweeks or weekends)
Of course, we’re not super sure of what that will look like, but we did get this tidbit too, courtesy of Eastern Kentucky baseball:
Check out our 2021 schedule— EKU Baseball (@EKUBaseball) December 23, 2020
Great home games against UofL, Dayton, Bellarmine, N.D. State, 5 OVC home series & more.
Check it out https://t.co/x2O6uu1BEr
️ Season Tickets - https://t.co/PQUblUCk1X
Alumni Weekend is April 16-18 pic.twitter.com/b1rmPIrrRc
I suppose it doesn’t matter where the info comes from, so long as we know when we’re playing. And, for that, it appears we will be eschewing the traditional Atlanta Challenge, where three northern teams make the trip on down to visit us, Kennesaw State, and the boys from Panthersville. Eastern Kentucky carries enough clout to get an annual home-and-home with noted perennially successful program Louisville, and they were at about 166 in the country in RPI in 2019, which obviously isn’t the best in the world, but they had quite a successful start to 2020, going 12-2 with a win against LSU, which is a very good program. Seems like they’re a program on the rise and a great mid-major addition to the out-of-conference schedule.
It’s worth noting we have some exceptional history with EKU. In the 1985 NCAA Regionals, the Jackets trailed the Colonels 6-3 in the ninth with the season on the line but poured in four runs in their half of the frame, and though they gave one back in the bottom of the ninth, they would go on to win 14-13 and avenge a loss in the first round to then non-conference rival Florida State before ultimately falling to Arkansas in the final. Tech and EKU have played nine times in their history, none since 2002, and Tech leads the series 9-0.
We await further schedule details, but it seems that Tech will see all but one of their conference foes this year. It remains to be seen who will be the odd man out. If there’s anyone you’d prefer not to see, leave that below in the comments. I say bring on Miami and bring on Clemson and FSU.
Check out Danny Karnik’s shots from the Fall Commencement here!
Best of the Week
This Week on the Flats
Two of each of men’s and women’s basketball this week, but if you’re going to do anything, I would block off all of Sunday afternoon to watch the Tech men and women in a doubleheader on ACC Network starting at 4pm, where each will hopefully be looking to carry over some positive momentum from before their seasons were put on hold. The women are first up, playing Notre Dame again on the road (for some inexplicable reason) at 4pm, with the men hosting Wake Forest just after.
Poll of the Week
Biggest ACC non-Playoff Bowl Lock:
This poll is closed
North Carolina (over Texas A&M)
Miami (over Oklahoma State)
Wake Forest (over Wisconsin)
NC State (over Kentucky)