Posted: 9:04 am Thursday, January 23rd, 2014

Are there eight wins on Tech’s 2014 schedule? 

By Mark Bradley

Image

Paul Johnson at work during the Music City Bowl. (Jim Brown/AP)

If you’re a coach whose team has been stuck on seven wins the past two seasons and your athletic director has just suggested that your program needs to do better, this is the schedule you want. Georgia Tech can win eight games, maybe more, in 2014 — provided Georgia Tech turns out to be good, which is something it hasn’t quite been for a while now.

The schedule released Wednesday appears manageable. Of the Jackets’ six road games, none will come against a team coming off more than an eight-win season. One will come at North Carolina State, which went 0-8 in ACC play. Another will come against Tulane, which lost 52-17 to Syracuse, which Tech beat 56-0. Another will come at Pittsburgh, which Tech beat 21-10.

The three most daunting road games will be staged at Virginia Tech, which hasn’t been itself the past two years and just lost quarterback Logan Thomas; at North Carolina, which hasn’t beaten the Jackets since 2008, and at Georgia, which needed to surmount a 20-0 deficit to beat Tech on Nov. 30.

The home schedule includes games against Duke, which improbably won the ACC Coastal Division but which hasn’t beaten Tech since Paul Johnson arrived; against Miami, which all but collapsed at season’s end and will be deploying a new quarterback, and Clemson, which beat Ohio State in the Orange Bowl but has lost Tajh Boyd and Sammy Watkins. There’s also an intriguing Sept. 13 date against Georgia Southern, which will be playing its first season as an FBS team (also its first season under new coach Willie Fritz) and which, still as an FBC entrant, famously beat Florida in November.

To go worse than 8-4, Georgia Tech would have to lose five of the six games that loom as losable. (Meaning Virginia Tech, Miami, Duke, North Carolina, Clemson and Georgia.) Put another way, the Jackets could lose their three toughest road games and go 2-1 at home against Miami, Duke and Clemson — and still get to 8-4. And 8-4, I submit, is the number Johnson needs to hit if he plans to coach Tech in 2015.

It doesn’t help that the Jackets will be working with a new quarterback, Vad Lee having left for James Madison, or that Jeremiah Attaochu, their best defender, completed his eligibility. But this schedule isn’t nearly as daunting as 2013′s. (There’s no road game at BYU, or Miami, or Clemson.) A program that has managed eight wins only once since 2009 has a realistic chance to win at least eight games at what would seem an important time for all concerned.

271 comments
wreckmaniac
wreckmaniac

We all know that PJ knows nothing about defense.  The question is does he know anything about offense ? 

wreckmaniac
wreckmaniac

While Tech ( not its fans)  may have become tolerant of this inferior team we have, its still no more amazing than UGA accepting 4-5 loses per year which it has. 

wreckmaniac
wreckmaniac

Losing to UGA, Miami and Va Tech is guaranteed before the season begins. So take it from there. 

Adamsran
Adamsran

The shot answer is 'no' - there are not 8 wins on this schedule.

JaySly
JaySly

Dear Georgia Tech AD:

Please give paul johnson a huge raise and long-term contract extension.  It will be appreciated.

Sincerely,

UGA fans, coaches and staff

DawgByte
DawgByte

For Christmas I asked Santa to get Paul Johnson a contract extension!!! 


I don't care how many games Tech wins, I just know they're going to lose another game to UGA and that's all that matters.

heeldawg
heeldawg

On this schedule, there are a few "no wins."  First of all, Tech will not beat Georgia.  They will likely not beat Miami, Duke, Pitt, Clemson or North Carolina--and certainly will not win all of those games. They could beat Virginia Tech, but probably won't. So if the Jackets lose to the Dawgs and split the remaining six, that's 8-4.  And that's about the best you can hope for next season.


Birmingham__Jacket
Birmingham__Jacket

Don't see anything near 8 wins.  I hope Bobinski is tough and willing to push The Hill around a little bit to get better athletes into Tech.  Because this losing stuff and as Bradley says "...not being very good..." stinks.

Honest and Frank
Honest and Frank

While I liked him, losing Vad is not that big of a deal.  Look as his stats last year.  45.6% completions, and he had one more passing TD (11) than picks (10).  That's not awful, but his rushing stats are.  513 yards rushing (2.8 ypc) and 8 TDs are WORSE than his stats as a backup in 2012 (where he had about half as many carries).


His ypc (2.8) was abysmal compared to those of Nesbitt (4.0, 3.7, 4.4 in three years as a starter) and Washington (4.4, 4.1, and 3.9 in three years as a starter).  


I had hoped Vad would work out, since he seems to be a really great person, but he never built on the "a ha" moment he had against UNC as a RS-FR, and instead seemed to be moving backward when it came to everything but passing (an area in which he showed promise, but wasn't good enough for better than an 11:10 TD: INT ratio).


What will hurt is losing Jeremiah and Jemea, not Vad.  Justin Thomas should have no problem running the offense better than Vad - he already looked more fluid making reads, pitches, etc. last year.  He just looks more natural carrying the ball.

AlwaysReady
AlwaysReady

A real offensive coordinator would be nice, like the guy at Auburn.

OkieDawg
OkieDawg

Hi guys, if I put on a urine yellow T-shirt with Black letters with my blog handle on the back, can I show up at the Varsity before a GT game and feel welcome. If I don't have a game ticket can I scalp one for $15 which includes hot dogs and a large coke?

Will POAD, Super Size, Agusta Jack, GT Bob, Stein and the rest of the Village Challenged be there? Please, please I want to so much to be a part of that distinguished group of college elite.

POAD2013
POAD2013

Now TECH can can get another HOME game and make it 7 I hope. 

ChopChamps95
ChopChamps95

I think Johnson could have kept the offseason talk about his job security and the state of the program going forward to a minimum if he hadn't found some way to cough up a 20-0 lead versus a back up QB.  I for once actually agree with Bradley in that they have a much more favorable schedule this year, although past history shows that means nothing.  On paper they should be 3-0 heading into conference play against VT to start next season.  Utimately though, I think though that "8th win" will make or break CPJ for 2014.  8+ wins and he'll stick around 1 more year, less than 8 and its Bobinski saying, "Don't let the door hit you on the way out."

TechTroll13
TechTroll13

Over the 121 years of Tech football the wining % is .593, which over a 12 game season translates to 7 wins.

Coach Dodd had a four year period in which he won less than half his games.

Coach Alexander had a ten year period in which he only won a third of his games.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

When the HC is going into YEAR SEVEN the conversation should be, "can GT FB get one of the 4 playoff spots, or can GT FB unseat FSU as ACC Champs".

Asking about 8 win seasons going into YEAR SEVEN is clear cut proof that the HC should have been fired and is not a big-timer.

Pajamas has turned GT FB into Service Academy FB, from the tone of MB's article it is clear that GT FB, is small-potatoes CFB.

Thanks for nothing CPJ!

TideDawg
TideDawg

With the schedule that Tech has for 2014, it looks like PJ should get a 5 year extension with a hefty raise. If he can't go 8-4 or 9-3 with that schedule Tech's AD will probably only give him a 2 year extension. Sorry Tech fans! It'll be fun to watch him launch his players onto the field with a hearty shove for 5 more years. Further, there's no need to hire an offensive coordinator because PJ is not going to let anyone change his "unstoppable offense".

Ted_Striker
Ted_Striker

When there's a question of whether or not 8 games is a milestone and the head coach has been in place for years, the team has an issue. Injuries are unpredictable. Graduation and early entries (not really a GT situation but it happens) are somewhat predictable. Transfers and dismissals happen. Tech has under performed under Johnson because of recruiting, coaching, and the cantankerous attitude of the head coach which hurts fund raising. 


I appreciate the student athletes at GT who lay their bodies on the line during the week, spend time in the classroom, study, keep their noses clean, and represent the OUTSTANDING University of Georgia Tech. I'm a UGA grad and a Bulldog to the core but I appreciate what GT stands for and it is excellent. They haven't had it, and I fear they won't have it under Coach Johnson. Maybe I'm wrong however I don't like who Tech is under Johnson. Under Gailey -- who plenty of Tech folks don't like -- I felt differently. He was a better recruiter, a better coach, a better man. 

HarveyPooka
HarveyPooka

 Anything less than 8 wins (AND, a 9th in bowl game) would be disappointing.

Quackmeyer
Quackmeyer

manwithplan.........I love George O'Leary but he is just moments away from commuting to campus from the Senior Center.  He is not going anywhere and still doing a great job at UCF but older guys hate any change in their living patterns.  It confuses them.  He should ride it out there and then retire to The Villages.

manwithplan
manwithplan

2 more years with PJ ... send him packing and promote Ted Roof to Head Coach ... bring back Ralph "Fat Boy" Friedgen as Offensive Coordinator (he still has a house in GA).  Or, what the H3LL ... see if George O'Leary is interested in coming back as HC.


We need a new recipe, once again.  And perhaps in shaping a new recipe, we can first look towards "ingredients" that have worked in the past.  PJ's current efforts at success are the definition of Insanity.

Woofer
Woofer

Ga. Southern will put on a clinic of how to run the triple option.  They will thoroughly destroy the NERDS and embarrass Fish Fry at his own game.  Can't wait!

BehindEnemyLines
BehindEnemyLines

It's a CPJ team ... virtually all games loom as "losable", certainly more than 6 of them.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

The fact that MB is putting out a column on if our HC can win 8 games vs. that cupcake schedule going into YEAR SEVEN tells me that Pajamas isn't the right man to lead GT FB.


He should have been fired after 2012 when he lost 7 games, last year was 6 losses and he still wasn't fired.


After 25 losses in 4 years many GT fans are asking themselves, "what does it take to get an over-paid, under-performing HC fired at GT"?

DON1938
DON1938

@Honest and Frank Of course Vad was suppose to be the best thing since Eli and Peyton.  Check the comments on the Tech blog on spring training and pre season.  Plus after running the "diamond" in one (?) early game he was suppose to be Mr. It. as a Tech QB.  Sometime it just don't work that way when toe meets leather. 

SupersizeThatOrder-mutt
SupersizeThatOrder-mutt

@OkieDawg I think we'll pass.  We only accept educated people who live in non-movable structures and don't carry a spittoon cup with them everywhere they go.

SupersizeThatOrder-mutt
SupersizeThatOrder-mutt

@POAD2013Nevermind.....I just saw it.  No Tulane game, huh?  Damn, I hope we can find a replacement and not another FCS school.

TechTroll13
TechTroll13

Cutcliff had a 21 point lead at the half in the Chick Fil A Bowl  and lost

- he was Coach of the Year

James Franklin had a 28 point lead at the half in their bowl game and it was tied at the start of the 4th quarter - he got a promotion to Penn State.

Losing leads happens all the time.

VirgilSeagle
VirgilSeagle

@TechTroll13 Different world back then.  Dodd and his guys would play golf the day before a game back in the pre Bear Bryant era.

Yellerbug
Yellerbug

@HarveyPooka Concur. You have defined the minimum level of success for 2014 although a 7-5 record and a victory over UGA...even with a bowl loss would probably be acceptable as well.

Hookedonshortpasses
Hookedonshortpasses

@Quackmeyer ...so you hate change, quack...confuses you.  How old was Michelangelo 

when he painted the Sistine ceiling?

But, I agree with you, do not want GO'L back  

SupersizeThatOrder-mutt
SupersizeThatOrder-mutt

@manwithplanGeorge O'Leary looks like death warmed over.  Like Quakcmeyer said, he is only moments away from commuting from the Senior Center, if not the graveyard

POAD2013
POAD2013

@Woofer you want to bet your Pinto and Doublewide on that WOOFER?

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeBanning His salary is 30th in the country and his staff is 40th. I'm not sure how you can say he is overpaid. You do realize that we aren't getting a good coach for less than we pay him right? What we will get when he is fired is a fairly modest coaching hire because we have no money to pay a new coach and no good coach is going to want to come here to clean up the mess that will be left.

VirgilSeagle
VirgilSeagle

@wreckmaniac I don't know where you get that UGA accepts 4-5 loses per year. Richt will be long gone with another season like 2013 injuries or not.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@TechTroll13 

Cutcliffe won 10 games last season and Franklin won the Bowl game where he lost the lead.

Also Franklin led Vandy to 3 straight bowl games and had back-to-back 9 win seasons playing in the SEC east.

Put GT  & Pajamas in the SEC east and see what you get.

There is a reason that NFL teams and programs like Texas and Penn St. were after Franklin.

Do you think that a Texas-type program or an NFL team would ever pursue CPJ?

D-Sheets
D-Sheets

@TechTroll13

Also, in 2008 the pre-season #1 team in CFB led a team who ran a "high school offense" by 16 at halftime (28-12).  The "high-school O" team steamrolled the pre-season #1 26-0 in the 3rd quarter in route to a 45-42 win.  


ChopChamps, do you need me to tell you who the participants were in this game? 

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@GTBob @MikeBanning 

Hell!

GT can find a $1.5MM per year HC to go 7-6.

Honestly speaking there are probably guys on these blogs that can go 7-6, if you give us the same budget for Assts. and the same support staff.

7-6 records and 25 losses in 4 years can be accomplished by anyone, it doesn't take a $2.7MM per year HC to lose 25 games in 4 years.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@GTBob @MikeBanning 

How can you DEFEND a HC that you just said will "leave a mess" for the next HC to clean up?


After admitting that CPJ will leave a mess, explain WHY you are defending him?


James Franklin left Vandy for PSU, and the Vandy fans aren't saying that he left a mess behind.


If you are that sure that Pajamas will leave a mess behind, then the sooner we get rid of CPJ,  the better.

DON1938
DON1938

@GTBob @MikeBanning Becoming a respectable team and WINNING bigger bowl games would provide more money to increase coaching salaries.  I think we can get a better coach for less money; not a name brand coach but a better coach and recruiter.  Even CPJ said Tech can compete on a national level when  he was hired and academics would not be a hindrance.  What mess  are you talking about.  I thought everything was just great winning 6 or 7 games in this watered down conference.

GeorgeStein
GeorgeStein

@GTBob No good coach should want to come to Tech, where we don't support the team and have a fan base that only counts wins if they come in games in which we severely undermanned.   Why would a great coach come to a school like Tech were he'll lose his first two games against UGA and have fans want him fired for the next three or four years, upon which he will be fired?

TechTroll13
TechTroll13

Both of those guys are quality coaches even though Cutcliff lost to Tech on the way to those 10 wins.

My point was leads are lost ALL the time.  Was it KC and Andy Reid that lost a 20+ point lead in the 3rd quarter in the playoffs to the Colts. 

To single out CPJ for the game with the mutts as if it never happens, is wrong.  It happens a lot.

D-Sheets
D-Sheets

@MikeBanning

By the time we played UGA they were a 2-loss team with MANY FLAWS AND MANY INJURIES.

--------------------

Make it up as you go.  "typical move by Mike Banning (a.k.a. WnE)" 


Stafford:  24-39, 407yds 5tds

Moreno: 94 rush 1td, 74 rec

Massaquoi: 11rec, 180yds 3tds

AJ Green: 4rec, 64yds 1td


And I remember the poor tackling by UGA's defenders, Rennie Curren included. 


Tell me again, genius, who were all those injured players? 


MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@D-Sheets 

By the time we played UGA they were a 2-loss team with MANY FLAWS AND MANY INJURIES.

Identifying UGA as the the pre-season #1 team after 11 weeks of actual games distorts things to make CPJ look better than he really is.

Typical move by the CPJ apologists!

bigGTfan
bigGTfan

@MikeBanning @GTBob The fact that no coach since O'Leary has a better record than either Gailey or Johnson should tell you that our problem is getting talented players (the 1-8 that make a difference) to come to Tech.  Top BCS schools have rosters with 35-70% of players 4 & 5-star rated.  Tech has NEVER accomplished that and never will with the same set of majors offered today.  We are a niche school with unique limitations in BCS football.  Our upside is maybe a game or 2 per year (8-9 wins) with an occasional over-achieving year of 10-11 wins - regardless of coach, scheme, or salary.  You may believe we can win 10-11 consistently but there is no evidence of that being done by any GT coach at any time in our history.  What would you do differently?

IhateCPJ
IhateCPJ

@GTBob Accept the GD fact that mikebanning has a point! Quit making up excuses for this mess CPJ has created. I honestly believe if CPJ didn't have such a piss poor attitude he would have already been giving an extension. Guys looks at this bigger picture here. CPJ is here to make his money and retire. He doesn't care about our fan base! He lays low all year long. Never has anything positive to say in the offseason.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeBanning @GTBob There are plenty of coaches who couldn't accomplish it. You must not know much about GTs history if you think any coach could come in here and win 7 games without blinking. And no, we aren't getting a decent coach for 1.5 million. I doubt we could get a decent coordinator to take the GT position if we are offering that much. They would be making less than then coach's at Navy, Uconn, and South Florida.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeBanning @GTBob Like George said, it won't be a mess for CPJ, it will be a mess for someone coming in behind him with no use for the players who remain.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@GeorgeStein @MikeBanning S

So what you are saying is that Pajamas is creating artificial job security by his poor recruiting and running an out-dated system that no one else other than Service Academies use.

In summary CPJ's own INCOMPETENCE has artificially extended his tenure as GT 's HC.

Crap like that can only happen at a 2nd rate CFB program like GT that doesn't really care about CFB, yet talks a big game about their CFB program.

GeorgeStein
GeorgeStein

@MikeBanning Because the next coach won't run the same system as Johnson.   Why are you yelling?

VirgilSeagle
VirgilSeagle

@GTBob@DON1938@MikeBanning Two words: Division Two.

forexbomb
forexbomb

@DON1938 @GeorgeStein It does...  I have NO idea what or how many cups of coffee Stein has consumed...  These arguments from GTBob and Stein are almost funny, if they were not so ABSURD.

ARobky
ARobky

Biggtfan that is probably true, but maybe at least we catch lightning in a bottle from time to time. Gailey's tenure was marred by two words: Reggie and Ball. Just a decent qb and we probably play in a couple big bowl games. With this current system and lack of any talent of consequence is just doesn't "feel" like that can happen anymore. I'm probably contradicting myself but it seems a change would at least rekindle some hope.

bigGTfan
bigGTfan

@ARobky The GT fan base felt this way in Gailey's final years. We went in a completely different direction with CPJ and the results are similar.  It is the INSTITUTE that determines success on the field.  Gailey never found a good QB, Johnson has struggled with getting playmakers.  The scheme isn't the issue. If you go back to a pro-style team, you go head-to-head with UGA, UM, et al with less talent - same results as now.  The only thing we haven't tried is a non-traditional aerial attack (Mike Leach-ish).

DON1938
DON1938

@GTBob @DON1938 @GeorgeStein I want to make sure I understand this.  Are you telling me GT got the same share of revenue from the BCS national championship game as FSU.

GTBob
GTBob

@DON1938 @GeorgeStein Bowl funds are split evenly among all of the conference members. There is no extra money for bowl participants, although the ACC does help out with unsold tickets for some of the schools. As far as television and bowl money go, FSU and GT make exactly the same. FSU does bring in more revenue than GT though just from more ticket sales and probably much better brand sales.

GTBob
GTBob

@gt-40 @GTBob @DON1938 @MikeBanning The difference in a 5 win season and a 6 win season is enormous. Every loss below 6 makes it much much worse. A 4 win season and we are looking at 30k in attendance at best and almost zero national exposure. There is a huge difference in being considered an average team vs one of the worst teams in the conference.

ARobky
ARobky

Yes it will be ugly for a few years, but I'm willing to accept that in order to get the program out of this mediocrity and beat some teams of consequence.

gt-40
gt-40

@GTBob@DON1938@MikeBanning


Bob, how much worse really is last years 6-6 team compared to a rebuilding team that wins only 5, I mean I hear what you are saying, but that  more or less is a difference with out a distinction...

DON1938
DON1938

@GeorgeStein So operating at a deficit with a 90% attendance figure and splitting bowl receipts seems like a no win situation.  Let's give it up altogether.  No reason to ride this horse.

DON1938
DON1938

@GeorgeStein @DON1938 I would question the 90% attendance figure but I don't know what the actual paid attendance was.  I thought the participating team in bowl games got a larger share and the remainder was divided among the other conference members.  I also thought prestigious winning team reaped a lot more money via increased contributions to such things as the AT fund.  What you are saying, I think, is FSU is no better off financially than Tech??  Or not much better off because of stadium capacity.

DON1938
DON1938

@GeorgeStein @DON1938 I hate to admit this, especially to you, I guess I just don't understand.  I always thought winning on the national stage would increase revenue, ticket sales and all the other perks associated with being a winner.

GeorgeStein
GeorgeStein

@DON1938 Are you saying that being on the national stage, competing in the former BCS bowls, national publicity, increased ticket sales would not make a difference??


Yes.   Why is this difficult to understand?

DON1938
DON1938

@GeorgeStein @DON1938 Are you saying that being on the national stage, competing in the former BCS bowls, national publicity, increased ticket sales would not make a difference??  If so, what the hell are we spending good money on??  To be also rans?  And brag about academics??  If that is the case, then we don't need a football team.  If  I'm rooting for engineers then I would choose MIT or Cal Tech.

GTBob
GTBob

@DON1938 @GTBob @MikeBanning The mess im talking about is the team that the new coach is going to have to rebuild. Sorry, we are built to be an option team with cut blocking linemen, tons of a-backs, no QB on the team actually suited for a traditional offense. It is going to take several years and recruiting cycles to rebuild that and we are looking at 4-5 win seasons during the transition. We have to have a fan base that will be patient with the new coach as he tries to improve things. Im not sure our fan base is even capable of it. They will want the new coach fired immediately when he never had much of a chance. 


Any coach who comes here will know what they are getting into. A massive rebuilding project with some of the toughest restrictions in the country and a fan base with unrealistic expectations. On top of that they probably won't get paid very well.

GeorgeStein
GeorgeStein

@DON1938 @DON1938  Winning bowl games has no effect at all on the amount of money Tech makes.   Hell, even going to a bowl game has no bearing on the amount of money Tech collects.


And every coach says that.  Was he supposed tell us he has no shot? 

GTBob
GTBob

@GeorgeStein @GTBob Thats true GeorgeStein. I can't figure out why any decent coach would take the GT job after CPJ is fired. Hey, come here and make an average salary, deal with a miserable unrealistic fan base and have a 90% chance of getting fired in the first 4-5 years, assuming you can't figure out how to beat our in-state rival that has 10x the talent you have. Sounds great.