Georgia Tech Readies for USC
By David England
Follow us at Twitter.com/SouthernPigskin. Become a fan at the SouthernPigskin.com Facebook Page
Georgia Tech has not won a bowl game since 2004.
Georgia Tech(6-7) vs USC(7-5) 2 P.M. ET/ CBS
It is quite simple for Georgia Tech this bowl season: win and finish with a .500 record to build momentum for next season, or lose and finish with a 6-8 record and extend your bowl losing streak to eight games. To become a top tier program, winning big games is a must and Georgia Tech has not been on top of its game in December and January recently.
The Yellow Jackets will face the USC Trojans in the 79th annual Sun Bowl at 2 PM on December 31st. The game will be the fourth meeting between the two schools, with USC holding a slim 2-1 series lead over Georgia Tech currently.
Historically both teams have been great in bowl games, as USC ranks second all time in bowl wins, while Georgia Tech ranks tenth. For Georgia Tech, playing teams from the state of California has been no easy task coming into the Sun Bowl. Tech is 6-8 in games against teams from California.
The Sun Bowl will host Georgia Tech for the second year in a row. Last season, the Yellow Jackets faced Utah and lost a heartbreaker in overtime by a score of 30-27.
The last time Georgia Tech came out victorious in a bowl game was 2004, when they clobbered Syracuse 51-14. A similar performance will be needed from Tech this season in order to defeat an offensive powerhouse which has two of the best receivers in the nation. It has not been all roses for the Trojans this season, however, as inconsistency on offense and injuries have cost them in a season where most expected a national championship.
For Georgia Tech, the equation is simple: efficiency on offense equals wins. The Jackets must have a big game on the ground, but more importantly, must control the clock. The spread option offense relies on big plays to keep the defense at bay and on their heels. Paul Johnson's squad will look to eat up clock and strike with some big plays led by A-Back Orwin Smith, who enters the game averaging 9.6 yards per carry for his career.
The key player for Georgia Tech will be linebacker Jeremiah Attaochu, who is having a career year with 10 sacks. For the Yellow Jackets' sake on defense, a pass rush will need to prove huge to disrupt an offense that can beat even the best defenses through the air. A great pass rush starts up the middle, though, and T.J. Barnes must clog up the middle of the Trojans offensive line to allow Attaochu to do what he does best. To stop Marqise Lee and Robert Woods on the edges, you must reach the quarterback repeatedly.
Georgia Tech has not played well in bowl games under Paul Johnson and expect more of the same on Monday. USC's offense will prove too much for Georgia Tech.
Score Prediction: USC 45, Georgia Tech 20