Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Stay off the Mountain and Out of The Valley. Instead, Walk the Middle Path

Tech seriously revamped the defense after the Miami game. Since then the defense has played better, but erratically. They turned in three very good performances against UNC, VPI, and UVA, and three poor performances against Mississippi State, FSU, and Vandy. What's going on, is it the coaching or the players? Below are two lists showing the points per drive Georgia Tech has allowed per quarter. By showing the points in relation to the number of drives we somewhat isolate the effect Tech's time crunching offense has on the other teams performance. First we look at the three good performances, and second we look at Tech's bad performances


Over all a pretty even performance. UNC scored a meaningless touchdown in the fourth, but the real damage was done by Virginia Poly in the second half. The Hokies happen to be a very good offensive team and hit a rhythm late in the game, but it was too little too late. Georgia Tech, with a very good effort on defense, held the Hokies to to 8 points less than their season average.

Now to the bad games.

Mississippi State, FSU, Vandy

A much more erratic performance, but look at the third quarter. Clearly the coaching staff is doing enough with "in game" adjustments to stall the opposing offense for a quarter and give the offense an opportunity to take control of the game, but why the radical discrepancy in first half, and particularly first quarter, performance? The coaching staff isn't installing new defensive schemes during half time.

When asked what changes he made during half time of the Vanderbilt game, Defensive Coordinator Dave Wommack said that he made none. The coaching staff simply got in some faces and challenged the players to play better. Tech's defense wasn't on the field much during the third quarter thanks to long drives by the offense, but when they were on the field they forced stops and turnovers. The effort and focus were better. Tech was victimized by big plays against Vandy, and big plays are often the result of lapses in focus.

Tech only returned two starters to their starting front seven this year. That much turnover will create uneven performances, but it's getting too late in the season for that to still be an excuse. The defensive units need to focus from whistle to whistle if this team is going to avoid slip ups against Wake Forest and Duke.

1 comment:

  1. Regardless of the outcome, this has been one heck of a year. A couple good recruits to fill holes in the defense and figuring out what schemes work for our talents will go great lengths. The sky is the limit for this program!!!