Well… this game was supposed to be intriguing. Granted, the full slate wasn’t too exciting, but the 3:30 slot on ABC is typically reserved for a game worth watching. For the fans in the stands and the more rational people who stayed at home, it was far from it. There was a moment where the Tech defense appeared to make a game changing play early, but a quick replay would dash all hopes of a timely turnover. Here’s the long and short - Tech was shutout, outgained 546-214, gave up 42 points, and converted only 33% of its 3rd downs. Not to mention, our offensive identify through the first part of the season only put up 53 yards.
Here’s another, more concerning storyline - Coach Collins’ has been outscored 183-10 in his last four FBS matchups. I don’t really care if three out of four were against Top 5 opponents. His Georgia Tech teams have looked competitive in 2.5 out of 16 quarters against those teams. The only real positive in that stretch was an apprehensive FCS win against Western Carolina last week.
Thanks to some sleepy pass defense, another blocked punt, and an overwhelmed offensive line, Ole Miss jumped out to a 14-point lead within the first ~5 minutes of the game and never looked back. We did have a chance to secure a sliver of offensive momentum in the second quarter, but a poorly executed fourth down attempt inside the red zone overshadowed an otherwise impressive drive. The Ole Miss gameplan was very simple and efficient, as well. I think I saw 11 straight read options where nobody decided to take the QB. We made Jaxson Dart looked like Lamar Jackson at times.
We can see the talent on The Flats. There have been some promising athletes step foot on campus in over the past four years, and there are currently quite a few donning the White and Gold. Nate McCollum, Dontae Smith, Charlie Thomas… just to name a few.
Jeff Sims didn’t look very good tonight, but he was often facing pressure after about 0.56 seconds of handling the snap. One important improvement over last year, he didn’t commit any turnovers. In fact, the only thing we did win was the takeaway battle. An interception towards the end of the first half kept the Ole Miss lead at 21, and somehow kept hope alive for all the masochists like me. The game was never in reach.
The question now is - how long does Geoff Collins last this year? Does a bounce back win/respectable performance against UCF save him temporarily? We’ve continued to linger in the “Lose Big” phase of a rebuild, and time has to be running out.
As mentioned earlier, the challenging stretch continues next Saturday against UCF. Geoff Collins’ seat gets a little warmer. Goodnight. Going to sleep early after that one.