SB Nation is fortunate enough to have the good folks over at From the Rumble Seat to write about and bemoan the state of Georgia Tech football.
One of their staff writers, Josh Brundage, also is a purveyor of all the good places to get a cold beer, stiff drink, and generally have a good time in the Georgia Tech/Midtown area. So we sent over an electronic mail to this helluva engineer to get some A’s to our Q’s about Saturday’s game between Ole Miss and Georgia Tech plus some opinions on where you can eat, drink and be merry.
1.) How hot is Geoff Collins’ seat right now? Would a win against Ole Miss assure him of another season at this point?
For starters, a few of our biggest boosters gave an absolutely flames interview at the end of last season regarding his future. One of our boosters actually volunteered to pay his entire buyout to get rid of him, but our AD who hired him, is betting his career on Collins having success this year. There is no way either of them get retained without at least 6 wins and a bowl berth, no matter how crappy that bowl may be. It’s hard to see a world where we don’t have a new AD and head coach next year, especially with our schedule.
Vegas had Tech’s win total at 3.5 this season, and I would’ve bet a mortgage payment on the under if I were a gambler. We have one of the toughest schedules in all of football this season, and our best players and coaches left this last offseason. Collins is a deadman walking.
Most of us fans are torn between wanting Tech to play well and win, but also wanting Geoff Collins fired into the sun. It took until Week 2 of Year 4 of his tenure for him to get his 10th win here. As you’ll see by the GT fan attendance on Saturday, his tenure has been pretty abysmal and created a lot of fan apathy.
In addition to the on-field product, he’s pretty hostile towards the local media, threw Paul Johnson under the bus repeatedly for his struggles the first couple of years, and he has a penchant for blocking everyone who says anything negative on Twitter. This job is over his head, and it shows.
2.) It seemed like GT had some success running the ball against WCU. What would be your offensive game plan this week if you were the OC?
My gameplan would be to install the flexbone this week during practice so as to burn as much time of possession as possible running the triple option and limit Lane Kiffin to 7-8 offensive possessions for the game.
If we don’t do that, I would hope we live in the mid-range completions that gave Sims a lot of success against the vaunted Clemson defense. Tech couldn’t run the ball at all against Clemson, so I’ll be interested to see how much success they have on the ground against Ole Miss after last week’s success against WCU.
In short, Tech lost a game they were supposed to and won a game they were supposed to, and the offensive play calling looked pretty different for both. We don’t really know Tech’s strengths yet, and I think we will learn a lot about this team on Saturday.
3.) What was working for GT against Clemson?
The defense actually played pretty well and somehow got more pressure in that game than against WCU. It was a close game for 3 quarters, and the final score doesn’t show how well Tech hung with them for much of the game until the lack of depth caught up with them.
Like I mentioned previously, our offense found a lot of success in the mid-range passing game. Our offensive line isn’t great, but they did seem to give Sims enough time to find those shorter completions. Besides the opening-play interception, I don’t remember Tech attempting another deep ball in the game.
Tech runs a base 4-2-5 defense, but switches in and out of a 3-3-5 that they’ve had some success with against pass-happy teams. Again, the opponents Tech has played this year have been opposite sides of the spectrum, so this will very much be the “show me” game for Collins’ future as Tech’s HC as we still don’t know entirely what to make of the 2022 Yellow Jackets.
4.) What players could change the course of this game for Georgia Tech?
This might sound counterintuitive, but Ole Miss has more talent and is such a big favorite, that I think Georgia Tech’s hopes are entirely on Dart making several bad decisions. I don’t think the Tech offense can keep up in a shootout, and Ole Miss is going to score a bunch of points against our defense otherwise.
If the Tech defense can force Dart into an early pick to rattle him some and maintain defensive pressure, I think homefield advantage may come in handy, and we could have the makings of an upset. It will probably take a defensive or special teams touchdown for Tech to have a shot at an upset.
However, if Dart is sitting back there with time to throw and hitting open receivers, it will be a long day at Bobby Dodd for the Jackets.
5.) Transfer DE Jared Ivey has 1.5 sacks through two games for Ole Miss after departing Georgia Tech. What do you think the Rebels can expect from him on Saturday?
Knowing how things work here in Atlanta and Georgia Tech, he will probably have the game of his life… I don’t think there was any drama with him transferring - he, like a bunch of other players and coaches, were just leaving a sinking ship. I would expect a couple sacks and a forced fumble on Saturday from Ivey alone. He was definitely under-utilized in his time here.
6.) For Ole Miss fans traveling to Bobby Dodd, what advice would you give on going to a game there?
You were right to come to me for this. Eating and drinking in Atlanta, specifically Midtown, is one of my greatest pastimes.
The tailgate scene is very unique, as the Tech campus is shoehorned into Midtown, the densest part of Atlanta. Find yourself an open spot of grass and set up somewhere with a skyline view. If you’re buying local beer for your tailgate, 3 Taverns is my favorite brewery in the city, as well as a favorite of the writers on From the Rumble Seat.
If you’re feeling a little more rowdy, the 5th St bridge is also a fun tailgate scene.
Off of campus…
For starters, do not, under any circumstances, be misled into wasting a meal at The Varsity. Yes, it’s a famous, Atlanta staple, but it’s garbage, and no one who lives here actually eats there.
If you’re in that vicinity, craving a dive bar, and want some wings, let me direct you to another Atlanta staple, J.R. Crickets. Do not be alarmed by the armed guard out front - he’s merely the host.
If you have a car and are able to drive after tailgating and the game, The Local on Ponce has some of the best wings in the city. You should get wings while you’re here, if you haven’t caught on to that yet. In fact, here’s my Atlanta wing guide for your easy reference.
If you’re looking for more of a sitdown spot, Cypress St Pint and Plate is a stone’s throw from campus and is a perfect mix of dive bar and fun, vibey restaurant. Don’t miss their $3 house drafts. This place can also get rowdy and crowded on game days, but in a fun way.
One of my favorite spots in the entire city is on Ponce, and it’s a viet-cajun restaurant called Bon Ton. They also have an excellent cocktail program specializing in tiki drinks. It’s more expensive than a dive bar, but still not bad. If you’re looking for a unique, quirky Atlanta spot - this is for you. It’s almost always the first place I take visitors. There’s also an excellent brewery across the street with games indoors called Torched Hop.
There’s also a smattering of great bars on the Westside, on the opposite side of Midtown that includes Ormsbys, Monday Night Brewing, and everyone’s favorite late night dive, Northside Tavern.
If none of these tickle your fancy or you want to try a neighborhood not immediately adjacent to the stadium, hit me up on Twitter, and I’ll be happy to share some recs!