2011 Predictions & Game Story
Week 6 - Maryland at Georgia Tech
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Oct. 8 at Georgia Tech 21 … Maryland 16
CFN Analysis: It might not have been the most dominant of performances by Georgia Tech standards, but it was effective getting up 21-3 after three quarters. The problem was the finish. The ground game is built to own the fourth quarter and put a game away, and it didn’t as Maryland was able to come back and make it interesting. The Yellow Jackets were able to hang on with a decent day from the ground game that held on to the ball for over 35 minutes, and QB Tevin Washington, despite completing just 6-of-19 passes, was good on the ground. Tech showed it could win when everything wasn’t clicking at a high level, but 6-0 is 6-0 going into road games at Virginia and Miami.
And now, on top of all the other problems, the Terps have a quarterback controversy. Danny O’Brien’s brilliant performance against Miami seems like it was ten years ago, and after completing just 1-of-6 passes, the offense had to go a different route. The problem was that C.J. Brown was worse, completing 4-of-17 passes for 36 yards with a pick, while running for 124 yards and a 77-yard score. The offense made it interesting late and the defense came up with a strong game against the high-powered Yellow Jackets, but going forward, if the offense can’t find more consistency and more pop, it’s going to get ugly fast with Clemson and Florida State coming up.
(AP) ATLANTA -- Tevin Washington ran for 120 yards and two touchdowns and No. 13 Georgia Tech's least impressive offensive showing of the season was enough to beat Maryland 21-16 on Saturday.
Georgia Tech led 21-3 before holding off the Terrapins' fourth-quarter comeback.
Georgia Tech (6-0 overall, 3-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) matched its wins total from 2010, when it finished 6-7. The Yellow Jackets averaged almost 52 points in their first five wins and began the day ranked first in the nation in rushing and second in scoring.
Quarterback C.J. Brown, who replaced starter Danny O'Brien, had a 77-yard touchdown run early in the fourth quarter for Maryland (2-3, 1-1). Davin Meggett, who had 86 yards rushing, scored from the 1 with 7:33 remaining to cut the lead to 21-16.
But Maryland was stopped on a fourth-and-8 play from its 46 on Brown's incomplete pass with 2:31 remaining, ending its comeback bid.
Brown was 4-of-17 passing for 36 yards and an interception. He had nine carries for 124 yards.
O'Brien was replaced after completing only 1 of 6 passes for 17 yards and an interception.
Washington had scoring runs of 7 yards in the first quarter and 3 yards in the third. Orwin Smith had a 10-yard scoring run in the second quarter.
Maryland's only points in the first three quarters were Nick Ferrara's 30-yard field goal at the end of a 14-play drive on the Terrapins' first possession.
Washington was Georgia Tech's leading rusher, but he struggled as a passer as he completed only 6 of 19 passes for 114 yards and an interception.
Maryland is left with a possible quarterback controversy. Coach Randy Edsall pulled O'Brien after the sophomore's second-quarter interception, his sixth of the year.
Brown took over and remained in the game after he was picked off by Rod Sweeting in the end zone in the third quarter.
Georgia Tech led 14-3 at halftime but wasted two second-quarter chances to stretch the lead.
Linebacker Quayshawn Nealy, making only his second career start, intercepted a pass from O'Brien to give the Yellow Jackets the ball at Maryland's 28. A false-start penalty helped stall the drive after one first down, and Justin Moore was wide left on a 34-yard field goal attempt.
Maryland turned to Brown on its next possession.
Maryland left guard Andrew Gonnella was taken off the field in an ambulance after suffering an apparent left leg injury in the fourth quarter.
With most Maryland players standing or kneeling on the field, the game was delayed for about 15 minutes as medical personnel from each team worked in a circle around Gonnella. A cart was first driven on the field but then left as the ambulance followed.
Maryland (2-2) at Georgia Tech (5-0) Oct. 8, 12:00, ESPNU
Here’s The Deal … Georgia Tech continues to roll through its first-half schedule, crushing NC State away from home, 45-35, in a game that was far more lopsided than the final score indicated; the Yellow Jackets led by four touchdowns with 10 minutes to go before allowing three inconsequential scores. They’ll be heavily-favored over the next two games, a crucial staging period before tackling the heart of the schedule at the end of the month.
Maryland got back on the winning track, but needed a visit from Towson to do so. The Terrapins are still in the process of trying to regroup from consecutive losses to West Virginia and Temple that rebooted expectations for head coach Randy Edsall’s first season in College Park. It’s been a tough few weeks all around for the Terps, which had to cringe when alum and ex-coach Ralph Friedgen publicly stated that he’d burned his degree his degree from Maryland.
Why Maryland Might Win: To have any shot of pulling off the upset at Bobby Dodd Stadium, the Terps will have to find a way to fire up the offense. They’ll be squaring off with an inconsistent Georgia Tech D that’s given up at least 21 points to all five opponents. Maryland will counter with the passing of Danny O’Brien, who stabilized somewhat last week against Towson, and the running of talented veteran Davin Meggett. Edsall will also look to mix in some of Justus Pickett, the rookie running back who impressively turned 14 carries into 82 yards and a score last week.
Why Georgia Tech Might Win: Paul Johnson’s offense is absolutely cooking, with no let-up in sight. The Yellow Jackets rank No. 2 nationally in scoring and total offense, churning out an FBS-best 378 yards a game on the ground. And true to its identity, the attack has options. Nine different players have rushed for scores, led by big-play A-back Orwin Smith. The junior has been combustible this fall, averaging over 18 yards on his 34 touches. With QB Tevin Washington sprinkling in a handful of timely tosses, most to electrifying WR Stephen Hill, opposing defenses have been left vulnerable and helpless against Georgia tech so far this fall.
What To Watch Out For: The Maryland offensive line has played rather well through four games, allowing just three sacks to make O’Brien’s slow start even more mystifying. The Terps blockers will face a stiff challenge this weekend from the attacking pass rush of Georgia Tech. While not exactly stout, the Yellow Jackets front wall gets off the snap quickly, and can cause mayhem in the other team’s backfield. Maryland’s biggest concern will be containing LB Jeremiah Attaochu, a hard-charging defender off the edge who had a three-sack game versus North Carolina two weeks ago.
What Will Happen: There’s no sign of slowing down for the Ramblin’ Wreck, which is still hitting its stride on offense. Maryland doesn’t have the personnel to slow down the Georgia Tech ground game, or the firepower within its own offense to keep pace in a high-scoring affair. As they’ve done throughout the first half of 2011, the Yellow Jackets will jump out quickly behind its plethora of playmakers, only tapping on the brakes when the Terrapins are no longer within striking distance. Shortly after halftime, they’ll have built an insurmountable cushion en route to an unexpected 6-0 start.
CFN Prediction: Georgia Tech 42 … Maryland 21
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Georgia Tech -14 O/U: 63.5
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