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Mailbag 9/14

What is your favorite upset that has happened in your lifetime?

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets v Georgia Bulldogs Photo by Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images

Frodo Swagginz: My expectations have been tempered and I understand fully what kind of season we are in for. With that being said, and with the likelihood of Tech looking for a new coach next year (and maybe AD) increasing by the week, what are some of the factors that Georgia Tech has that can draw talented coaching staffs to it?

Ben: I think that Atlanta is still sellable to prospective coaches. I think it’s also plain to see that Atlanta (and Georgia Tech) are marketable. I don’t expect Georgia Tech to ever compete with the likes of UGA or Alabama, but to say that recruiting here is impossible is blatantly ignorant. Also, I am of the opinion that if you can win at Georgia Tech, you can win in a lot of places. That could potentially make Georgia Tech a bit of a coach hopping spot, and honestly, I wouldn’t be mad. At the end of it all, if Lance Leipold can make Kansas look competent, there’s a coach out there that can make Tech look good.

Logan: Atlanta is actually a surprisingly big market for past players in the Pros. Georgia Tech has had a long history of success in football and has some past players who wouldn’t mind being coaches here. Plus, many coaches trying to make a name for themselves like a reclamation project. They like the idea of being the guy who can turn a program around. I might be overly optimistic, but the list might not be as short as people think given our recent lack of success.

GT Guy: Why do we have a higher rated QB sitting on the bench and what will it take to get him in the game?

Ben: Having not been able to see practice, I have no idea what to say, so I’ll say this. Recruiting ratings are not the end-all be-all when it comes to how good players actually are. As far as Sims, he’s been the default starter for three years now, so he was always going to get the benefit of the doubt. He’s definitely on thin ice, though.

Logan: I think that coach Geoff Collins has his guy in Sims. That’s his choice and unless Sims gets injured or completely falls apart I don’t think we’ll see another QB out there. That said I am with Ben, just because a guy is better on paper doesn’t mean he is a better QB. Maybe there is something we aren’t seeing outside practice that shows Sims meshes better with the offense. I dunno for certain, but those are my thoughts.

Carter: I’ve alluded to it previously, but here’s the deal: Jeff Sims being the starter isn’t just about Sims, it’s also about Geoff Collins. Sims was Collins’ prized QB commitment, one of the crown jewels of his recruiting classes at Georgia Tech. Sims is his quarterback. To start a transfer is a tacit admission he has done a suboptimal job at developing said quarterback, and he will avoid doing it until he no longer can.

Rbissman: When would be the best time to terminate head coach and AD?? Considering present course.

Ben: Well, it depends on if you want to go the Nebraska-Scott Frost route or save money and wait until January 1. Personally, I think it’s a mistake to wait that long. If Georgia Tech is going to have a new coach, I want them to arrive in time for the early signing period. For nothing more than to the fairness of the players, I think that’s the best way to do it.

Logan: Depends on how much money you want to spend. Personally I’m fine waiting till the end of the season, just because I don’t see a new coach stepping in changing our prospects that much. Ben makes a fair point though, you also have to consider how firing the coach and setting up the next coach will impact the players.

Partywaggin: In light of the news that Poe, the Baltimore Ravens mascot, being placed on injured reserve due to a season-ending injury, has Buzz ever been placed on injured reserve?

Or is the staff and Institute usually too tight lipped about such things? Who would keep a straighter face making such an announcement: CPJ, CBD, CBR, CGC, or...?

Ben: Weren’t we just asked this question? Anyway, I think someone in the comments already said no. Also, Paul Johnson is the only answer.

Jake: I’m not sure Buzz has ever been on the IR, but I think the funniest person to plop into that scenario would definitely be John Hesiman. Especially considering that unlike someone like CGC, he would have no idea what Buzz is.

Logan: I’m not sure if Buzz has been on the IR, but I do think the Wreck was on the IR at one point due to some kind of crash into the vehicle transporting it... After looking it up, the Wreck has been damaged and had to be repaired multiple times. Not sure if that counts as being on the IR, but it’s a rough equivalent.

Carter: Okay, so I probably shouldn’t be telling you this, but here’s a little secret about Buzz. When you —

[a loud banging noise is heard from outside]

.... uh, it’s probably just someone trying to sell something. Anyway, when Buzz is —


oh god, it’s the Mascot Police. They’ve found me. You need to get out of here right now! There’s a secret exit in the back that’ll take you to the alley; take a right, and don’t stop running until you’re out of breath. I’ll stay here and hold them off as long as I can. There’s no time to wait, hurry!

GTBuzzed: Scott Frost at Nebraska was an absolute nightmare scenario. He and the AD were decent enough to negotiate a buyout reduction from $15.0M to $7.5M starting October 1, and yet... Nebraska managed to lose to Georgia Southern at home yesterday. So their AD decided to pony up $7.5M or $2.5M per week by firing Frost ASAP. I guess they couldn’t weather the [Styx]storm for three weeks.

And now for Georgia Tech... I view the main reason for not canning Collins last year to be financial, regardless of what ADTS said about possible improvement. The buyout drops from $12.0M to $7.2M in January. Having avoided a cataclysmic home loss to WCU, what other scenario (non-personnel related) could cause ADTS to pony up $4.8M to pull the trigger early? Can the Edge Building weather the storm of a 1- or 2-win GT long enough to save 5 million dollars?

Ben: It may not come down to what Todd Stansbury wants to do.

Jack: At this point, it’d have to be an off-field issue that made it impossible to keep him around. We know the GTAA is finding ways to make money right now, so pulling the trigger on $4.8M is highly unlikely.

Logan: I don’t see it happening, more so because I don’t see how firing CGC early would have any impact on the season or the players moving forward. I expect him to finish another disappointing year and get fired at the end of it, but maybe pull out a few surprises along the way.

Carter: Well, apparently the rich donors who were ready to pony up the money last year have changed their minds and decided things are fine, actually, so you can expect Tech to ride this out until the end of this year. Or maybe longer!

gtbadcarma: People said they felt Sims has progressed as a QB since last year because they saw “flashes” in the Clemson game. For the Western Carolina game, having looked at the stats, listened to the game (anyone find a feed worth watching?) listened to CGC post game interview, do you believe the original game plan was about focusing on establishing the run as CGC said or do you feel coaching turned to the run because of Sims lack of production in the air against Western Carolina? Is it time to sell Sims as Tech’s QB?

Ben: I was definitely one of those who thought Sims had progressed since last year. What I saw from Sims against Clemson was pretty impressive to me. I was out of town this weekend, so I did not watch the WCU game, but I have not heard great things. I think it’s too early to say that he hasn’t progressed at all, but things aren’t looking great.

Logan: I do think the focus was on establishing the run. After what happened against Clemson and the run game mostly getting shut down I think CGC wanted to prove that the team could attack on multiple fronts. What I have seen from Sims this year has been pretty impressive so I don’t think it had much to do with concern for his production or lack of consistency; I think CGC genuinely wants to be able to move the ball on the ground even without Gibbs at running back.

Anuj Bhyravabhotla: As Volleyball strides towards conference play and remains a top-10 team, I’d like to ask:

  • Who on the team not named Julia Bergmann is your MVP thus far?

Jake: I think Isabella D’Amico is my early season nominee. Seems like she has very capably filled some pretty huge shoes with the departure of Mati McKissock. She doesn’t play a position that gets a gone of the credit in the box score on the attack, but is a critical part of Tech’s offensive flow, regardless.

Jack: I like the D’Amico pick. For variety, Tamara Otene has been fantastic as well. She was already an All-American at Indiana State. She has a ton of power and is fantastic at changeup shots. While her scoring output yet isn’t quite matching Bianca Bertolino, she’s in the running.

  • Who on the team has surprised you the most?

Jake: This is a bit of a stretch of the question, but I haven’t gotten this take out anywhere yet, so I’ll modify the question just a bit and present something that hasn’t yet been on YJR or the podcast. With all that out of the way, I really liked what we saw of Laura Fischer in limited action on Sunday. She didn’t get a ton of action, which has been true all year, but I thought she stepped up with two key kills, was errorless on the day, and had some generally effective play given the quality of opponent and her historic playing time. When Tech is being challenged, having more options is always good, and the look was a bit different coming from Fischer.

zorro: I have footed the bill for 500 ball caps that say “Make Tech Great Again” and plan to distribute them to the fans attending the upcoming home game...any suggestions with what to do with the 100 or so leftover caps? Thx

Ben: Trade them for money and hire a financial advisor.

Logan: There are children in some countries who accept clothes and accessories from sports teams they have never heard of. Lets get some fans in those countries.

Carter: I agree with Ben; you’ve made a poor investment.

gtbadcarma: Looking at ole Miss, I see a team that is over ranked, they didn’t look great against Troy. I know there are only 2 games in the books but it looks like Tech’s “strength” on defense is against the run with Ole Miss’s strength being the run. I disagree with the Binion Index on this game and like Tech’s chances on the upset. Do you feel Ole Miss is over ranked and do you believe Tech has a better chance in this game than people are giving them credit for?

Ben: I think Ole Miss can be overrated and Tech still not have much of a chance. I have not watched Ole Miss yet this year, but I’ll try to watch some film before the game. If nothing else, I know two things: (1) Lane Kiffin knows how to run an offense, and (2) Jared Ivey is a really good defensive end. Those two things bode very poorly for Georgia Tech.

Logan: I am optimistic that we can beat the spread. For us to win is going to be a whole other bag of chips. I do genuinely think we can beat the spread though.

Carter: Where are the people confident about this game getting that confidence?

jabsterjacket: Thoughts on this tweet?

Ben: I mean, it could mean a lot of things from facilities to coaching staffs to a million other things. Without proper context, I wouldn’t bother taking this too seriously.

Logan: But do the Vols have a money down? I could take the comment in many ways as far as professionalism goes.

Carter: The tweet is the entire article.

Submitted via email: Hello All,

Hope everything is going well this week. I was pretty excited about all the upsets last week. It was pretty awesome seeing all those games play out. My question this week is about upset games. What is your favorite upset that took place in your lifetime. I think most of you would choose the miracle at Techwood, but maybe you have some other upsets that really stand out in your memory.

Later y’all

The Golden Horde

Ben: Miracle at Techwood is absolutely a great one, but I don’t think anything quite beats Georgia Tech upsetting UGA in 2008 (I don’t know if it’s technically an update, but it is in my mind).

Jake: I always think about men’s basketball upsetting Notre Dame in 2016-17, as that was the first game that I saw in person that I truly felt like I was, well, a part of the student section/fanbase, rather than an interested observer. I know you were probably going for a football one, but that day, especially the thrilling finish, will always stick with me.

Logan: The memory of working on some kind of presentation and having the Boise State v Oklahoma Fiesta Bowl will always be stuck in my mind. I don’t even remember what I was presenting for... probably some boy scout thing, but I do remember it being very late where I was and the excitement I had from watching the game fueling me as things continued. That game really changed my attitude and perspective on college football. I wasn’t as big of a fan before that, but it was such a wild game I couldn’t help but be in love with the sport after watching it.