Georgia Tech started strong, fizzled out, and then roared back as they defeated Louisville 46-27 on Friday evening at Bobby Dodd Stadium. They were led by their freshman QB Jeff Simms, who had seven carries for 64 yards and a TD to go along with 249 yards through the air and two passing TD’s.
On Georgia Tech’s third-down struggles on defense and adjusting in the second half, head coach Geoff Collins commented, “I have to give credit to coach Satterfield and the Cardinals, a good friend of mine. The things they do on offense are very unique.” Collins continued, “The way [Georgia Tech] addressed and took coaching at halftime was huge.”
The first half in the ATL Friday night started out as a dream for the Yellow Jackets of Georgia Tech and then stalled into more or a nightmare.
After an on opening drive fumble by the Cards, Tech methodically moved down the field for an early score. This came on a 12 yard TD run from freshman runningback Jahmry Gibbs. Then things really stalled out for the Jackets, while the Cards got rolling.
On the third offensive possession of the game, things started to click for Louisville. Junior QB Malik Cunningham would lead the charge for the Cards, leading three straight scoring drives. This came as the Jackets saw their lead turn into a 21-7 deficit with the 1st half coming to a close.
While it looked as if the Jackets would head to the locker room with little to no momentum, Sims had other things planned with only 1:32 left on the clock. After a short pass to Gibbs went for 41 yards, Sims connected with Jalen Camp for 11 yards on the left sideline.
This setup a 1st and goal with only 49 seconds left in the half, as the Jackets took a timeout to catch their breath. After the break, Sims took the snap and rolled out to his right side, and connected with a slanting Malachi Carter for the 14 yard TD reception, cutting the deficit to 7.
The Cards were unable to do anything with the final possession of the half, and the two squads went to the locker room with Louisville lead it 21-14. However, the Jackets had the momentum on their side as they got ready for the 2nd half.
That momentum didn’t lead to any immediate 2nd half success, as their first drive ended in a three and out. However, on the defensive side of the ball, the Jackets were able to hold the Cards on 3rd down. Antonneous Clayton picked up the big sack on 3rd and 2 to force the punt.
The Jackets were able to then take that flip of the field and turn it into a scoring drive. It went 66 yards in 6 plays, as Jamious Griffin took it in for a 3-yard TD run! However, the Cardinals blocked the PAT as they tried to regain the momentum swing.
That attempt, blew a tire on the ensuing kickoff, as Hanssen Hall fumbled the ball on the kickoff return, and the Jackets recovered. It then took Tech only three plays to turn the fumble into points as Sims took one up the middle for a 22 yard TD score.
Tech wouldn’t convert the 2-point play, though they held a 26-21 lead over the Cards with 6:34 left in the 3rd. However, Louisville would answer the call on their ensuing possession.
It came on a methodical 12 play 75-yard drive that ate 6:02 off the clock. The drive was capped off on an 11 yard TD run to for Cunningham. Though it didn’t come before a near disaster for the Cards QB on what appeared to be a fumble out of the endzone was non-conclusive.
After a stalled-out drive for the Jackets, the Cards suffered yet another turnover from a fumble. Tech took over 1st and ten at their 49-yard line. It took just four plays to see Sims connect with Gibbs over the middle for six, as Sims got rocked on the play as he stood in the pocket to make the pass.
This made it 32-27 with 8:40 left to play as they were yet again unable to convert the 2 point try. The Cards would be unsuccessful on their next possession, and the Jackets took over 5:41 left to play and a 5 point lead.
They looked to milk as much of the clock as possible, and then as the clock ticked just under 3 minutes to play, sims took the snap from the gun and looked downfield. He dropped a dime into Carter for a 34 yard TD score, making it 39-27 Jackets with 2:52 left to play.
Louisville had one last shot with the ball, and Cunnighman took a 1st down and a 4th down sack to end any hope of a miracle come back.
As the Jackets looked to run out the clock to finish this one up, Louisville elected to take a timeout with 33 seconds left. The result of that was much to their coaching staffs displeasure as Dontae Smith ran it in for a 12-yard Tech TD, making it 46-27 with 28 seconds left to play.
That would be your final, as the Jackets improved to 2-2 on the season and head into the weekend with a chance to rest up. They’ll need it as they prep for an October 18th showdown with the Clemson Tigers. The Cards, on the other hand, head back home with a 1-3 record and will prepare for an Oct. 17th showdown at Notre Dame.
Featured Image Courtesy of the Atlantic Coast Conference