Georgia Tech started off slowly, especially on defense, but was able to pull away from Western Carolina on Saturday night in Bobby Dodd Stadium. It was not the cleanest performance for Georgia Tech, but it should be pointed out that they were operating on just five days of rest and that is tough for any team. However, that is not an excuse for some of the breakdowns they had on defense or for quarterback Jeff Sims performing as he did.
Let’s break down the good, the bad, and the ugly from the win against Western Carolina.
1. The running game was very solid- Dontae Smith led the way with over 100 yards and three touchdowns, including a 51-yarder in the first half. Sims chipped in with 55 yards on eight carries and wide receiver Nate McCollum had a 40-yard touchdown run on a reverse in the first half. Dylan McDuffie scored a touchdown, but both he and Hassan Hall have struggled to make an impact in the first couple of weeks. Still, Georgia Tech finished with 243 yards rushing and averaged 7.1 yards per carry.
2. The defense got three interceptions- There is plenty of bad and ugly to say about the defense, but they were able to force three interceptions.
3. The defense got four sacks- It is never a bad thing when the defense can get four sacks, especially after the way they could not get pressure last year.
4. No blocked punts- After having two blocked against Clemson, the punt team was better
1. Western Carolina outgained Georgia Tech- It is hard to win a game when you are outgained by your opponent, but that is what Georgia Tech did. The Catamounts put up nearly 400 yards of offense, while the Yellow Jackets finished with 343.
2. Western Carolina was 6-14 on third down– It was not a great day for the Georgia Tech defense and they had a hard time on third down. Letting a team hover around 50% on conversion is a recipe for disaster and against a better team, it could result in more points.
3. Georgia Tech still struggling kicking field goals- Jude Kelley only attempted one field goal, but it was a miss and this is still an issue for the Yellow Jackets. Field goal kicking has been a weakness in recent years and it is still not reliable.
4. The offensive line was better, but not great– The running game did good as previously stated, but there were some short-yardage situations where there was not much push on the line. This is still a big concern going forward.
1. The defense giving up big plays– The first quarter looked all too familiar for Tech fans on Saturday. There were guys running free against this secondary and it allowed big plays in the first half. They did a better job in the second half when Charlie Thomas returned, but it was still concerning the successes that Western Carolina had.
2. The passing game– Jeff Sims did not play very well on Saturday night, going 8-17 for 100 yards, with most of that being in the first half. He missed some receivers and was off target and threw an interception that he should not have tried to force.
It is not just Sims though. The wide receivers have not been very good in these first couple of weeks and it is another position to be concerned about going forward. None of the tight ends have had an impact this season so far.
3. Time of Possession- Time of possession is not always the best stat to look at, but when the other team has a massive advantage, it is concerning. Western Carolina had the ball for 40:16 and Georgia Tech for 19:44. That is a massive advantage and it is rare to win a game by three scores when it is that lopsided. Western Carolina also ran 75 plays compared to Georgia Tech’s 51.
Overall, there are a lot of things to be concerned about with this team going into the coming weeks. The passing game and defense took big steps back and the offensive line is still shaky. Ole Miss awaits this weekend at Bobby Dodd for Georgia Tech
Follow us on social media for the latest with Georgia Tech Athletics!
Facebook: All Yellow Jackets
Follow Jackson on Twitter: @jacksoncaudell
See all of the latest Georgia Tech News at AllYellowJackets.com
Check out the Georgia Tech Homepage
Listen to the Goal Line Stand Podcast for the best Georgia Tech and national college football coverage!
More Georgia Tech Related Content:
Three Biggest Takeaways from win against Western Carolina
Georgia Tech Pulls Away from Western Carolina after slow start
Former Georgia Tech star Darren Waller earns massive contract extension
Georgia Tech Football: Three things to watch vs Western Carolina
Georgia Tech reveals uniform combination for Western Carolina
ESPN’s FPI Expects a big win for Georgia Tech over Western Carolina
Georgia Tech Volleyball notches big win over 10th ranked BYU
Georgia Tech Football: Official Prediction for game vs Western Carolina
Georgia Tech Baseball has one of the top recruiting classes in 2023
ACC Football: Official Game Predictions for Week Two