Who? Virginia Tech (3-1) @ Georgia Tech (3-0, 2-0 ACC)
When? Thursday, September 26th, 7:30 P.M. (ESPN)
Where? Bobby Dodd Stadium, Atlanta, Georgia
Impact Players, Virginia Tech: QB Logan Thomas, RB Trey Edmunds, DB Kyle Fuller, DE James Gayle
Impact Players, Georgia Tech: QB Vad Lee, RB David Sims, LB Jeremiah Attaochu, S Isaiah Johnson
Head Coach Matchup: Frank Beamer (27th year at Virgina Tech, 219-105-2) vs Paul Johnson (5th year at Georgia Tech, 44-26)
Matchup to Watch: Georgia Tech’s O-Line vs Virginia Tech’s D-Line
Prediction: Virginia Tech 24, Georgia Tech 20
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After spending their Saturday afternoon squeezing out close victories in the driving rain, ACC rivals Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech will meet in Atlanta on Thursday night, and if history repeats itself this contest will be decisive in the conference race.
The Hokies have won the last three and four out of five against Coach Paul Johnson’s Yellow Jackets, and VT senior QB Logan Thomas is responsible for two of those wins. Last year, Thomas and the Hokies won a Labor Day matchup in overtime, 20-17.
Georgia Tech has already defeated two ACC-Coastal foes, and can stay undefeated if they can find a way past the fierce Hokie defensive line. They boast the best defense in the ACC, and have had the most success of any conference team in defending Johnson’s triple option.
In 2013, however, the Ramblin’ Wreck might have their most complete option at quarterback in sophomore Vad Lee.
Lee has already amassed 598 all-purpose yards and 10 touchdowns in convincing wins against Elon, Duke, and North Carolina, and can prove his hype with another impressive performance versus Virginia Tech.
Having an impressive performance’ versus Bud Foster’s defense is easier said than done.
The Durham, North Carolina native will have to avoid the big mistakes in order to be successful.
Through four weeks, the Hokies lead the ACC in interceptions with 9, and are second in the conference with sixteen QB sacks. Georgia Tech only has four recorded INT’s, and is dead-last with only four sacks.
When Virginia Tech is on offense, the Jackets will have to innovate ways to get to Logan Thomas, or else he could torch the GT secondary. The passing game for the Hokies is depleted and in bad need of a big game, and time has proven that a Logan Thomas with time in the pocket is much better than one without.
In conclusion, the 2013 edition of the “Battle of the Techs” could be a defensive struggle. Turnovers will be a big factor in the game, something Virginia Tech did not do in their win last year. I expect this contest to be a nailbiter, with Virginia Tech forcing one or more late game turnovers to take the win, 24-20.