ESPN’s power index has UGA No. 12, Tech No. 47

Todd Gurley scores the winner in double OT versus Tech. (Jason Getz/AJC)

Todd Gurley scores the winner in double OT versus Tech. (Jason Getz/AJC)

Todd Gurley scores the winner in double OT versus Tech. (Jason Getz/AJC)

Todd Gurley scores the winner in double OT versus Tech. (Jason Getz/AJC)

Yesterday we examined Football Outsiders’ early evaluation of the 2014 Atlanta Falcons. Today we check a different set of numbers — ESPN’s preseason football power index.

As you might know, the Worldwide Leader has been counting down its imagined 16-team college football playoff, and some among you will have noted that Georgia made the field. But not for long. The Bulldogs were eliminated at the first cut. The “playoff” is now down to its final four: Alabama, Auburn, Florida State and Oregon. Not coincidentally, those teams top ESPN’s power index.

Georgia starts the season — or at least the preseason — at No. 12, just behind South Carolina, Texas A&M and Baylor but just ahead of Southern Cal, LSU and Clemson. The Bulldogs are the fifth highest-rated team in the SEC. But the rankings don’t stop there. Nosiree.

ESPN’s index places Georgia Tech 47th nationally, or eighth in the ACC behind FSU, Clemson, North Carolina, Miami, Virginia Tech, Pittsburgh and Duke. (But ahead of Louisville, which is No. 50.)

Oh, and if you’re wondering about Georgia State: The Panthers are ranked 127th, or next-to-last in FBS behind New Mexico State. Georgia Southern, making its jump up from FCS, is rated 125th.

Here let me say that, as much as I enjoy reading almost any form of advanced analytics, I wonder about the validity of such numbers regarding college sports, which by definition see greater turnover year over year than the pros do. (There’s also a smaller body of work for the holdover players.) I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t put Texas A&M, which just lost three Round 1 NFL draftees, ahead of Georgia. But I’m neither especially analytic or advanced.

Which brings us to this: Memorial Day is almost here, which means the annual long-range college football predictions will be forthcoming this weekend. Last year I picked Georgia to go 11-1 and overshot badly; I picked Tech to go 8-4 and missed by a game. I will endeavor to do better this time.

Reader Comments 0

674 comments
gatechclassof95
gatechclassof95

What a joke.  47th?  Really.

I hope Johnson is gone after this season.

Buzz-Off
Buzz-Off

@POAD,

I know you are trying to be funny as always, but you missed the mark on this one. Check his background and you will see that murderer is an honor grad from the North Avenue Trade School. The reason he is wearing a Dawg shirt is he doesn't want to wear the "GT" in prison out of fear of becoming another prisoner's "boy toy"!!! Just wanted to keep you informed.

Dewnsav
Dewnsav

that poll holds as much water as a Eric Holder investigation into the IRS scandal...go dogs

bigmacondawg
bigmacondawg

I wonder which team runs this state? Tech is getting real good looks like.

MaybeMaybeNot
MaybeMaybeNot

This time every year the Puppy Doggie fans talk about championships and going undefeated........then reality sets in sometime in early September.

drydirtroad
drydirtroad

well 47th is not Heisman Dodd enough for Georgia Tech fb national ranking standards; there is no passing game with Heisman Dodd, only running, and it isn't any good anymore b/c teams are practicing against it; time for a new hc, I'm sure next year is PJ's last, Joe Hamilton is the logical go to guy; if Pat Sullivan won the Heisman, Hamilton should have also: Heisman Dodd needs a shotgun b/c Georgia and Ole Miss ran it with equal fb records and completely bowled Heisman Dodd off the field with proof the shotgun is superior to the triple option; it's a painful struggle watching Heisman Dodd play now for a Heisman Dodd grad such as me, watching games on tv such as the shotgun clinic Russell and NC State put on at BD right in front of PJ's eyes

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

Going into YEAR SEVEN at GT and CPJ has our FB Program at the lofty pre-season ranking of #47!

Yet many of CPJ's  ardent supporters actually believe that CPJ has GT FB headed in the right direction.

POAD2014
POAD2014

@gatechclassof95 not going to happen with the Schedule Tech has in 15 unless Tech only wins4 or fewer games.

Who you want to replace Johnson with that can do better and Tech can afford?

POAD2014
POAD2014

@Buzz-Off He is not wearing any shirt in prison. they get prison uniforms not street clothes.

Where do you see Brooks attended TECH?

POAD The Richard Head
POAD The Richard Head

@POAD2014 - I have no life. I did not go to tech or UGA because I have no edumacation. I live with my mommy and have no life. I hate the bulldogs because they beat up on my poor lil yeller jackets in football every year. I act as if I know everything about football even though I was too much of a wuss and did not play, ever, because to didn't want to get hurt.

Dawg350
Dawg350

Wow! Thanks for letting us know twinkle toes.

C-Kirk
C-Kirk

@Barves_Loss_Agian Everybody know pretty much what happened and why it happened but that doesn't excuse the end result. I have lost all respect for Florida State and Fisher and it amazes me that Recruits can just overlook things.

GloryBetweenTheHedges
GloryBetweenTheHedges

@MaybeMaybeNot Actually that argument may of worked like a decade or so ago. Many UGA fans today are more realistic. The poll numbers above show that. 

MikeS777
MikeS777

@MikeBanning Agreed, but there's nothing that can be done unless someone wants to write a multi million dollar check to the athletic department.  Johnson is going to coach out his contract.  I just can't get over how many people defend his program.  Chan Gailey gets booed running a more competitive program against tougher competition, but Paul Johnson seems to just get a pass on everything including a consistent number of disgusting losses.

I'm sorry but getting blown out by MTSU and BYU (twice) is just not acceptable.   BYU blew out Texas, and it shook up whole coaching staff including finally leading to Mack Brown's exit.  Chan gets booed for losing close games to top 10 UGA squads.  Johnson loses close games to 6 and 7 win UGA teams, then blows a 21 pt lead to an 8 win team playing without most of its offense and one of the worst defenses in UGA history.  Yet it doesnt seem to resonate.  Its almost like the Tech fan base has mostly gone dormant.


GTBob
GTBob

@MikeBanning Its not really a ranking. Its basically a mediocre attempt to create a scientific rating system. If you believe that we are really #47 then you also believe that Vandy, the team that you praise all the time is #69 and will be far worse than GT and Kentucky this year.

gatechclassof95
gatechclassof95

Disagree.  Bobinski won't defer a year just because 2015 is a difficult schedule.  Logic dictates that if Johnson only wins 6 or 7 games this year, he won't meet that mark next year.  Enough is enough.

POAD2014
POAD2014

@ Richard Head I have a Job. I chose a different college because of what I wanted in a college that neither Tech or UGa offered. My mom Died 18 months ago. I don't hate UGa but I do dislike many UGa fans and most of those didn't attend UGa or even go to the games. I played all through high school and actually played in College in the ONLY Full Contact Intramural League in the USA and that was a risk of injury I assure you. So you were WRONG on every stupid point you attempted to make. Go Foxtrot Company.

Dawg350
Dawg350

Poad the Richard head

I hope you stay around for a while.lol

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 It doesnt resonate because it is all hogwash. Chan never won anything at GT. He never beat UGA, he never won a conference title, and he only had one season with more than 7 wins. I don't care who you are playing against, if you never do anything then you are going to lose your job. CPJ isn't getting a pass right now. He is getting plenty of heat and he deserves it for the most part. People still have some hope with CPJ though. They have some memory of decent years with him as the head coach. Nobody had any hope left with Chan.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@MikeS777

They haven't gone dormant.

Those that support CPJ have too much pride and hubris to admit they were wrong way back in Dec. 2007 when CPJ was first hired.

Chan's only weakness was recruiting and developing a QB, instead of replacing Chan with a HC that had a good track record with QBs, we blew the whole thing up to bring in CPJ's gimmicky offense and it has been downhill ever since CPJ's hand-picked recruits started playing more.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@GTBob

You can split hairs all you want, the bottom line is that GT FB is expected to end the season as the 47th best team in CFB, it is a type of pre-season ranking.

Vandy is expected to be down since they lost their HC, top-WR, and their starting QB, among other losses.

Based on the way we played vs. Ole Miss in the Bowl Game  and based on our final ranking in 2013, a pre-season ranking of #47 is pretty fair to GT FB and it might be a little high IMO.

gatechclassof95
gatechclassof95

Wait until they run the article about the huge number of unsold season tickets this year.  PJ is gone if he goes 7-5.  Enough is enough.

Completely agree about getting back the kind of roster O'Leary had.  I'd take Butch Davis or Bobby Petrino, and this team won't miss a beat!

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@GTBob

re:

Personally, I think our next coach is probably a dead man walking either way.

==========================

Why do you think the next GT HC is a "dead man walking"?

It is because CPJ's recruiting has been so poor that the next HC will take a decade to recruit his way out of CPJ's recruiting mistakes?

Explain WHY the next GT HC is a dead man walking.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeBanning You can call it delaying the inevitable all you want. Its not really true. Plus delaying it has actual benefits in this case. For one, we probably won't win more than 4 games in 2015 with a new coach. That will be a hit to recruiting and the fan base right out of the gate, plus it digs the new coach in an unnecessary hole. Personally, I think our next coach is probably a dead man walking either way.

Two, it gives us financial flexibility. Our basketball program is probably the next on Bobinski's radar if we have another year similar to this year. I doubt he wants to fire the basketball and football coaches at the same time. We would still be paying Hewitt, then paying Gregory, and CPJ, and the new BB coach, and the new FB coach. Im not sure if you noticed, but we aren't really made of money. 

Three, CPJ isn't really doing bad enough that an immediate change must happen. I just saw a stat on ESPN. Since 2009 CPJ is 4th in the ACC in wins against Power 5 conference opponents. As much as you want to pretend the sky is falling, it isnt, and most GT fans are not pulling out their pitchforks yet. It will take a really bad year for CPJ to get fired.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@GTBob

If you bring Pajamas back for the 2015 season, you are only delaying the inevitable.

Also, you are only putting more of CPJ's recruits on the roster which will only delay GT FB getting back to the talent level we were at when GOL was the HC.

Bringing CPJ back for an 8th season serves NO USEFUL PURPOSE at all, it  simply keeps our next HC from getting "his guys" on the roster and simply slows GT's reemergence as a FB Program.

If you're not gonna keep Pajamas around for 2016, you might as well not have him around for 2015 too.

Time to get new blood on the sidelines in charge of GT FB.

POAD2014
POAD2014

@gatechclassof95 yes because a QB learning a new system in 15 will really rack up the wins. Tech has a better shot in 15 with Johnson than without him.

GTBob
GTBob

@gatechclassof95 Logic doesn't dictate that at all. The schedule in 2015 is absolutely a consideration. We won't play Notre Dame or FSU again for several years after that. It would be nice to be somewhat competitive against them. Plus it gives another year to lessen the blow from his contract. If CPJ wins 7 he isn't going anywhere. If he wins 6 he probably isn't going anywhere. Less than 6 there is a chance.

POAD The Richard Head
POAD The Richard Head

@POAD2014  - RIIIIIIGHT. I'm such a loser. My story changes every time I feel the need to make something up to make myself look good. I'm such a lliar about everything I say and it makes it hard to remember what i said yesterday.  MOMMMMMIEEEEE

POAD2014
POAD2014

@Dawg350 You would because he like yourself don't know what you are talking about 95% of the time.

Another perfect example of 350dog not knowing about football.

Bob

some of those games are on the road and y'all are not to good on the road......don't sleep on Tulane....they are tough at home. Pitt will kill y'all at home.

How do you know Tulane is tough at home? It will be their first ever HOME game. That GED is doing you a great deal of good.

http://tulane.edu/news/newwave/120911_stadium_announced.cfm

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 Except UGA in 2008, UNC in 2009, USC in 2012, etc. I love how you want to claim UGA as the great option defenders. We are averaging over 30 points and 400+ yards a game against them. Man, I wish we could go back to the Chan days when we never scored more than 17 points against UGA.

MikeS777
MikeS777

@GTBob @MikeS777 You also don't hand him the keys to the city just because he barely beats a UGA team that had a defense that was only eclipsed in futility by last years D coached by Grantham.

I dont hate CPJ, but I knew this was a short term success deal.  There was no way to convince me he could recruit the level of athletes needed to sustain that success, or the fact that other teams like UGA and Va Tech wouldn't catch on to defending the option.

No matter what CPJ says, the option is not going to fool an athletic defense ready for it.  That's why he has never beaten a single good team that had more than a week to prepare for him.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 You can't wait 5 years to give a coach a raise if he is off to a good start. Just because you have always hated CPJ doesnt mean we should have treated him differently than any other coach.

MikeS777
MikeS777

@drydirtroad @MikeS777 They may have wanted to, but they would have owed him something like 7 or 8 million dollars in a buyout.  Thats the real problem.  I think a move would have been made by now, but they just can't afford it.  They signed Johnson to that big contract extension after he beat UGA in 2008.  They didn't wait to see what he could do with his own recruits.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 The team he faced in 2006 was a 7 win team when we played them. Similar to this years UGA team. Im not sure why you want to give him so much credit for losing to slightly higher ranked UGA teams anyways. He was still losing. If he went 0-12 against a tough schedule every year would you build a statue for him?

MikeS777
MikeS777

@GTBob @MikeS777 And that "worst team in the Chan Gailey era" was better than 3 of the UGA teams Johnson has lost to.  Convenient to say that when Gailey never had to face 6 and 7 win UGA teams.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 The best team we had in the Chan Gailey era couldn't beat the worst team UGA had in the Chan Galiey era. I don't think there is any chance that Chan would have ever beaten UGA, no matter what they were ranked.

MikeS777
MikeS777

@GTBob @MikeS777 By "nobody" you mean people who just saw "we blew the UGA game again."  Never mind the fact that those were top 10 SEC championship caliber UGA teams.  Johnson's only shot at a team like that was 2012.  It was 45-3 in the 3rd quarter.  Then there's the matter of the fact we haven't seen a defense since Tenuta left.

Chan Gailey's tenure at Tech is the post child for "don't know what you've got 'til it's gone."

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeBanning That is your opinion. One that most actual GT fans do not share.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 That UGA team played Auburn well but they weren't very good. The Kentucky game was the week before the Auburn game. Its not like it was early in the season. We were a touchdown favorite in Athens with maybe the greatest WR in football history on our team and we put up a measly 12 points in a pretty embarrassing loss. Follow that up with an even more embarrassing showing against Wake Forest and you aren't going to have a happy fan base. Sorry. As much as you loved Chan Gailey, he wasn't a very good coach.

MikeS777
MikeS777

@GTBob @MikeS777 That UGA team had also just blown out a top 5 Auburn team, played National Champion Florida down to the wire, and then went on to beat a ranked Va Tech team in the bowl game.  They lost to Vandy and Kentucky while Stafford was learning how not to throw to the other team as a freshman.  Funny how 2007 rates as "dismal" when that's been the average type of season for Paul Johnson since Gailey's players left.

Maybe you dont miss Gailey, but people who want to see real football instead of "hey maybe they wont remember how to play against the option this week" feel like they have been in football limbo for 7 years.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 When you are finally having what looks to be a promising season and then you lose to UGA after they had lost to Vandy and Kentucky, and then you play an embarrassing game against Wake Forest and then lose the bowl game to top it off you can't really expect the fans to be happy. He followed that up with a pretty dismal 2007 season and it was time for him to go. We aren't missing anything with him being gone. At least when CPJ has good years they are actual good years.

MikeS777
MikeS777

@MikeBanning @GTBob Yeah granted the Wake game was not a good way to lose, but that was in the ACC Championship game.  Legit too, not "hey Miami doesnt want to play, so anyone want this FSU matchup?"  Tech hadn't been that close to the ACC title in a decade.  It was another clear sign of the program moving up, and it helped get that great 2007 recruiting class that Johnson had all his success with.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeBanning We didn't lose just because of the QB. We had a team with no depth that couldn't really compete in tough games. Sounds oddly familiar to what we have now.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@GTBob

We all know about the Wake game, we had a horrible QB, that was our  ONLY issue that year.

Simply find a  new HC that is good with QBs, you don't blow the entire thing up and run a gimmicky Service Academy Offense.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 I am still waiting for evidence that the 2008 class was projected in the top 20. It wasn't even close to that from my recollection. We didn't have that many guys decommit. There were certainly a few but not like the fantasy you are spewing. Even if he brought in the #1 class im not sure he had any idea how to win football games with them. The 2006 team was one of the more talented teams in GT history. He couldn't score a TD against Wake Forest with them.

MikeS777
MikeS777

@MikeBanning 100% agreed.  I've been saying the same thing since they hired Johnson.  Dont go blow the whole thing up.  Build on it.  Find a guy who could develop those QBs better and get more consistent production on the field.

Chan's 2008 class was projected top 20 by the end of the 2007 season, so he was headed for a second great recruiting class in a row.  He had clearly gotten the recruiting turned in the right direction.  Now it was just a matter of coaching it up on the field.  So they hire Johnson, and recruits like Sean Renfree ran for the hills.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeBanning Most of the teams we play also had massive personnel losses. We trade BYU for Tulane who I don't see us losing to. I expect the defense to be better than last year, and I expect the QB to not look like a scared puppy all year. That isn't overly optimistic.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@GTBob @MikeBanning

So you expect GT FB to end up 10-15 ranking spots BETTER than we were in 2013, after massive personnel losses on both sides of the ball?

You are awfully optimistic.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeBanning Somewhere around 30-35th. Maybe one of those teams in the also receiving votes category.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@GTBob

Fine!

At the END of next season, where do YOU expect GT FB to  be ranked?

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeBanning ESPN came out with a human preseason poll as well. It had Michigan St ranked 6th going into next year. This meaningless index system has them 24th and doesn't think they will be nearly as good as UNC. The rankings are all based on subjective numbers given to different categories all combined together in a nice ball of uselessness.

POAD2014
POAD2014

@Dawg350 How the HELL do you know Tulane is Tough at HOME? This will be their FIRST EVER HOME GAME.

KeepOnSmilingWetWillie
KeepOnSmilingWetWillie

Frank kind of layed the ground works for a great year in 2015 but no so great in 2014. I believe this will be his last year and he will retire on his own. No push.

Dawg350
Dawg350

Bucky

Buckeyes 1 is your kind of man. Lol

Dawg350
Dawg350

Bucky

I don't but I know you do.

drydirtroad
drydirtroad

@GTBob @drydirtroad big deal, they sure came up with a team when Russell was qb, and the clinic instruction for PJ just didn't sink in; we might have become their patsy after that BD clinic, we haven't played them since; they played one of the finest games I've ever seen played during that game; and the Georgia and Ole Miss games last year were also finely played against us

GTBob
GTBob

@drydirtroad Do people really not remember that NC State went 3-9 last year without a single ACC win and got blown out by Wake Forest and Syracuse?

GTBob
GTBob

@Dawg350 Pitt could beat us, but ill believe it when I see it. They lost one of the best defensive players in college football who gave us absolute fits last year, and a really good starting QB. They were literally one of the worst rushing teams in college football last year on top of that. It won't be an easy game but I don't think we will lose to them.

drydirtroad
drydirtroad

@GTBob @Dawg350 after the whippin' State put on us at BD when Russell was their qb, State could beat us at any time, so could BYU, Clemson, Miami, and it's not pleasant expecting to already lose to certain teams; even Ga Southern could whip us

Dawg350
Dawg350

Bob

Cause y'all suck is that clear enough.....some of those games are on the road and y'all are not to good on the road......don't sleep on Tulane....they are tough at home. Pitt will kill y'all at home.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeBanning Of course there is, but if both teams are terrible then I wouldn't call it a 100% sure victory for either one of them.

GTBob
GTBob

@DawginLex VT is not a sure loss. There is actually a good chance they are terrible this year. The rest I pretty much agree with. I see us as a 7-8 win team this year with a decent chance at 9 wins.

DawginLex
DawginLex

@Dawg350  UGA-loss

Clemson-Loss

VA Tech-Loss


The rest are tossups


Tech has UNC's number. Duke had its best year ever and Tech mauled them. Miami usually beats GT but they seriously suck now


I still say 7-5 or 8-4 at best

GTBob
GTBob

@Dawg350 Why are we going to lose to UNC, Pitt, NC State and Tulane? Im rather shocked you left Duke off the list. Duke still can't get any respect. Even from UGA fans trying to troll GT fans.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

@Dawg350

Except for Tulane anything could happen in those other 7 games.

Don't forget we'll be missing 10-11 guys for the first 2 games and our DL  has taken hits from RS-Fr. transferring, and from JHD's academic woes, plus losses of Srs. from last year.

Back-ups on Defense that could not be trusted AT ALL last season will  be forced to play a lot of snaps this season, that doesn't bode well for GT FB in 2014.

Dawg350
Dawg350

UGA, Tulane, Clemson, NC state,North Carolina, Virginia Tech, Miami, Pittsburgh,

GTBob
GTBob

@Dawg350 Interesting logical prediction. Who are the 8 teams we are going to lose to?