DressHerInWhiteAndGold: What one thing could/should GT Admin/Athletics do in 2023 so I won’t feel as downhearted next New Years as I do now?
Ben: A few things I would like to see come from the AA itself is some progress on the unified NIL front and a large-scale donation campaign. J Batt was hired off his fundraising experience, so I expect to see that put into action soon.
Logan: I dunno man, we had a good year for volleyball and had the most wins our football program has had in a long time. I do realize basketball has been terrible, but I imagine that will be the next sport to work on. I guess this question really depends on what you want out of the Athletics program... NIL and recruiting are good, but I’m not sure that’s going to turn your outlook around. I don’t want you to feel down to start the new year but outside of having winning programs across the board I don’t know if there is a perfect answer for you.
Jake: Sounds like NIL is a recurring theme, as one would expect in the brave new world. I think there’s a lot of things (such as endowing more scholarships and coaching positions) that would free up liquid capital but aren’t very flashy that would also help day-to-day. Other than that, I think action on a longstanding campaign (Edge?) would help be a good signpost for folks.
Chris: I agree with a lot of what’s been said about fundraising, NIL, etc. Feeling like things are trending in the right direction with a long-term vision is huge in my mind.
gtbadcarma: What resolution are you setting for yourself and what should Tech have as a resolution?
Ben: I don’t know that it’s so much a resolution as much as it is a goal, but like I mentioned in an earlier mailbag, I recently bought myself a coffee roaster, so I want to start roasting my own coffee regularly. I also want to start making my own bread and butter, and generally become more self-sufficient in terms of food and groceries. My wife and I are fixing to move into a new house where we will actually be able to have space for a garden and some chickens, so that will help contribute to that as well. As for Tech’s resolution, see what I said earlier about NIL and a large-scale donation campaign.
Logan: I’m gonna run an under 14-minute mile at the beer mile in May... That’s my resolution I suppose. I guess I’m also gonna plan a great wedding for this year, but who wants to hear about that. Tech’s resolution... I would like to see a reduction in ticket prices and a push on selling tickets to students and residents in the surrounding metro areas to get more people at our team games.
Jake: Simple - eat better (and/or less) and work out more. Tech should probably follow my previous answer.
Chris: I definitely want to run a lot more this year but I don’t have any hard targets around that. Tech should have the resolution to cover in every football game and win every game they’re favored in.
BuzzForPresident: Is it true that when dwags win a natty a billion angels lose their wings and GT fans have a year of seriously bad luck?
Ben: Well they won a national championship last year and then Tech won more games than they have in the last several seasons, so you tell me.
Logan: I think of it more like the angels cry a billion tears and then GT fans surge in rage and hatred. The thing about rage and hatred is it tends to get people motivated to do something. I hope our fanbase, coaches, and players use the anger they feel about uga making it this far (I’m not gonna assume they win it, but I’m already pissed enough as it) to motivate themselves into turning a corner next year.
Jake: Not sure, but since I became a Tech fan, Clemson has two titles, Athens has one and is knocking on the door of another, and it has only been seven years. If it’s true, there can’t be many winged angels left.
GTalbatross: How should video replay be improved for next season? What penalties should be reviewable or challenged?
Ben: I think it ultimately comes down to how perfectly you want a game called. Personally, I think errors and boneheaded calls, while frustrating, give the game a bit of charm. It gives you something to get heated about when you otherwise might now. Really helps get the endorphins rushing!
Logan: I don’t know if we need more reviews in college football, we have plenty enough as is. I guess in a game winning scenario maybe I would want a penalty reviewed, but in 99% of games that’s not really relevant. I think people are getting a bit too crazy with review in some cases, I don’t want games to start taking an extra hour just because we need to review everything.
Chris: I’m not particularly annoyed at any one thing right now. I tend to agree with the notion that too many reviews is a bad thing - confirm the big stuff that affects outcomes, but let the little stuff go.
GTalbatross: When does offensive targeting become a penalty?
Ben: Hopefully ASAP. Defensive players aren’t the only ones that lead with the crowns of their helmets, and any football league should not act like they are.
Logan: Once a key defensive injury occurs on a big-name team from offensive targeting... Not how it should be but that’s usually how it works.
Chris: Hopefully soon. I think I’m with Logan, it’ll take a big name or two getting injured to really light a fire.
thebugman10: There was a lot of negativity when it was “announced’ we were hiring Willie Fritz, what is everyone’s opinion of him now?
Ben: Like was mentioned in the replies to this question, my opinion hasn’t changed. I thought it would have been a good hire, and I still think it would have been a good hire. Jamey Chadwell and Bill Clark were my preferences, but Fritz probably rounds out that Top 3 for me.
Logan: Clearly Fritz is a good coach. I wouldn’t have minded having him, although I don’t know if we could have afforded him. I’m not sure I remember the negativity which you are referring to, but I also don’t spend much time on the message boards. I think Fritz would have been a good coach for Georgia Tech. No point living in the past though, best of luck to him.
Jake: I always liked the idea; I think he would have been a great hire. I have not changed my opinion.
Chris: He’s a very successful coach and I would’ve been happy to have him.
Jellopacket98: Josh Pastner will/won’t be the GT head coach after the 2023-24 season?
Ben: I am not sure what the buyout for Pastner is right now, but regardless, I just don’t think the money is there to go through another coaching search after the football search. They still have to pay Geoff more than $10 million. I doubt J Batt is itching to fire another coach right now. I also wouldn’t be surprised to see MBB get a new coach next season.
Jack: I think he will be the coach next season, but my opinion may change after tonight’s game against Miami if nothing changes from the atrocious (Pastner’s word) showing against Virginia.
Jake: I wouldn’t necessarily be surprised, but I would be saddened on a personal level, because I really do like his attitude and quirks. That said, I think it probably comes down to money, which we certainly do not have a lot of just lying around.
Logan: I think Pastner will at least start as the head coach in the 2023/2024 season... may not be there for the entire season though.
jabsterjack: Given enough time, would Tech ever adopt a trolly 404 page for ramblinwreck.com like the one Mizzou has?
Ben: Man, I wish! That is absolutely amazing!
Jack: Whenever someone who operates the website has time, I would hope so. Atlanta United has done a good job with that kind of joke.
Jake: I’m all for it, seems like a fun idea.
Logan: I would love that, please someone get on that.
Submitted by email: Hey Guys,
Hope y’all are doing well. Sorry for not sending in a question the past few weeks, been tied up with family events over the holidays. Looking back this has been a fun bowl season with plenty of crazy games to enjoy. My question this week is what was your favorite bowl game this year, and what was your favorite bowl game of all time? Hope y’all are having, and continue to have, a happy new year.
Ben: Favorite this year is probably Tulane v. USC. That was just an incredibly fun game to watch, and it was fun to see Willie Fritz be successful. Favorite all time that I can remember is the 2014 Orange Bowl. I remember panicking during halftime after Dak Prescott threw that hail mary touchdown to end the first half. And then we got the second half, and Tech just blew them away. There were just a lot of fun highlight plays from that game, and I never get tired of watching highlights from that game.
Logan: Favorite all time is the Boise State v Oklahoma Fiesta Bowl from 2007. To much craziness in that game for me to handle in one sitting. Favorite this year... A dark horse candidate would be Pitt v UCLA because I was surprised with how both teams performed. The answer would have been Kansas v Arkansas if Kansas had completed the comeback, but since Kansas did not I will go with the game between Tulane and USC. USC fans will have a bitter taste in their mouth for a while after that one, but if you’re a Tulane fan (or just a fan of watching Tyjae Spears run the ball) that game was amazing.
Jake: I’ll tweak the “favorite bowl of all time” to “most excited for that I can remember.” I’m mainly a Tech fan, and didn’t obsessively follow college football before coming to school, but I remember the excitement around Illinois for the Rose Bowl at the end of the 2007 season being particularly poignant, even as a generally Illinois-ambivalent family. If there’s any game I could go back and see in personal, it would probably be the Rose Bowl Tech played in after the 1928 season against Cal with Roy Riegel’s wrong way run contributing to Tech’s second national championship. I think I might be a Rose Bowl guy. As for favorite this year, seeing Tulane (and Willie Fritz) cap off their best season in recent memory and second-ever 12 win season with a last-ditch defensive stop and exhilarating drive in the Cotton Bowl was phenomenal.
Chris: There have been a lot of really awesome things going on in bowls this year. I’d probably say TCU/Michigan was the best game so far though, but Tulane/USC was fantastic as well. Cliche answer, but my favorite all-time is the 2014 Orange Bowl. Nothing will beat being there in person, watching the offense run to perfection, feeling the vindication of deserving a national stage, and watching the NYE fireworks go off right after the game. It was absolute perfection.