2008 Keys to the Game, Matchups to Watch and Game Prediction: Georgia Tech

ACC season opens for the Hokies with an important game against the other Tech
… Georgia Tech. The revamped Rambling Wreck won a huge game at Boston College
last week, and Virginia Tech’s young defense will have a stern test from former
Navy coach Paul Johnson’s multi-option offense. How will Bud Foster prepare his
inexperienced unit for the complexities of the spread option? Will the Hokie
offense be able to run on an impressive Georgia Tech front four? Lots of
questions going into this key game …

The battle of the Techs has been one of the most difficult to predict in the
ACC over the last few years. Both teams have unexpectedly blown out the other,
and each team appears to play well at the other’s home field, so this series has
become one of the more interesting new rivalries in the ACC. This year brings
many new questions as Georgia Tech has made dramatic changes in schemes on both
sides of the ball.

While Paul Johnson’s unique multi-option offense receives most of the press,
the Boston College game last week was won by the Yellow Jacket defense. The
Rambling Wreck held the Eagles to just 60 second half yards and recorded a huge
safety in the fourth quarter as Georgia Tech rallied for the win.

Ultra-aggressive Jon Tenuta has taken his zone blitz defense to Notre Dame,
and Dave Wommack brings a more conventional approach from Southern Miss. While
GT will still blitz, particularly from the field side, the pressure will come
mainly from one of the better front fours in the ACC to protect a very young
back seven.