Say this for Tech: It made Florida State work clean to win

After 60 frenzied minutes, two points short. (Mike McCarn/AP photo)

After 60 frenzied minutes, two points short. (Mike McCarn/AP photo)

After 60 frenzied minutes, two points short. (Mike McCarn/AP photo)

Charlotte — These short takes are presented as a companion to the ACC championship game column, which can be found on myajc. Florida State beat Georgia Tech 37-35 and will surely make the College Football Playoff.

1. Even in losing, the Jackets made Florida State play its cleanest game of the season. The Seminoles made no turnovers and punted only twice. They gained 488 yards, and it wasn’t all Jameis Winston throwing. (Although he did complete 21 of 30 passes for 309 yards and three touchdowns.) Freshman back Dalvin Cook rushed for 177 yards and was named the game’s MVP, and his 10-yard burst inside the final minute sealed the game. And still FSU, even after intercepting a Justin Thomas pass with 3:22 remaining and a nine-point lead, could never quite shake the Jackets. Had Tech fielded an onside kick with 1:46 remaining, the ACC might well have a different champion.

2. The Tech defense slowed the Seminoles in the second half but never quite stopped them. Through its six-game winning streak, the Jackets had feasted on turnovers. Florida State made none. Winston, who’d thrown 17 interceptions in 12 regular-season games and four last week against Florida, delivered only one pass that Tech had a slight chance of snagging, and Cook’s surges lent the ‘Noles a balance that Tech couldn’t solve. Florida State punted on its first series and its next-to-last. In between it went touchdown, touchdown, touchdown, touchdown, field goal, field goal, field goal.

3. The Jackets scored 21 points on their first three possessions; they scored only seven on their next five. That was the difference. In such a game, holding serve was essential. Tech missed its turn near the end of the second quarter, enabling the Seminoles to take a 28-21 lead. The Jackets would eventually tie the game, but they’d never again lead. A failure on fourth-and-5 from the Tech 47 with 7:23 remaining — Justin Thomas overthrew Darren Waller, who ran a different route that the quarterback was expecting — led to the FSU field goal that made it a nine-point game.

Reader Comments 0

122 comments
ToeMeetsLeather
ToeMeetsLeather

Should have passed the ball on 3rd and 13 with four minutes left in the first half instead of the B-back run, and should have punted down by six at midfield with seven & a half left in the game, but other than that, I think we gave FSU our best shot. Especially considering we were without our fastest A-back and #1 play making wideout.


The Orange bowl will make for a nice New Year's eve. 

BSNBC
BSNBC

Johnson's ego lost this game!

EvanT
EvanT

Tech cannot stop a pass, other than the miracle in Athens. 

Ted Roof will do to Johnson what Nolan has done to Mike Smith, but this is Tech, where even though:


In the last 4 years Tech has been a non-factor in major college football ranks

In the last month Tech fans in huge numbers wanted Johnson gone

In the space of 8 days (ago) Tech had to hand back 3-4000 tickets to Georgia

Then, a last second forced pass by Mason is intercepted


The AJC columnists strangely become advocates for Johnson and relentlessly pressure the AD to extend Johnson's contract. The same guy Bradley says has no plan B.

Remember all of this in coming years.


420 bulldwag
420 bulldwag

could it be that big pharm was the real difference in the game?

when i saw the piece about winston's eyes i became mighty suspicious.

1.) most folks who know him talk about his lack of focus for the most part of this year.

2.) when you consider such acts... as accusation of rape..... shop lifting....  losing control jumping on a table and shouting.... my first thought is this kid has no control over his impulses
3.) awhile back i saw the tail end of a piece on him regarding some kind of odd ritual he does which kinda sounded like an ocd thing.
4.) his own father has gone on record as saying that fsu needed somebody to baby sit him 24 7. huh?

after considering the above... i have to wonder if he suffers from adhd.  people who suffer from that are often given amphetamines such as ritalin..... to gain focus and avoid bad impulses... and control ocd.

i also googled the ncaa and ritalin.  under certain circumstances it is possible that they ok'd the use of meds to help keep his head on straight.  meds that could also give him a huge edge in a game of this nature.  because adhd is a health issue he could be protected from this being common knowledge due to the laws that protect privacy.

while both teams played a good clean game .... call me suspicious!


R Tooty
R Tooty

The game was close and the effort was A+.  My only critizism was the fact the FSU receivers looked open all night long.  If we had a pass rush it would have made a lot of difference.  Still proud of you though.

tomkat1111
tomkat1111

Give credit to the FSU coach who had his players knowing what to do on the onside kick from Tech. They fell on the ball instead of standing around looking as the UGA players did,

doyojob
doyojob

Look at the stat lines on the game and you'll come to some definite realizations.  Tech had 0 turnovers and only 3 penalties for 20 yards.  Tech continued their NCAA best 50% 3rd down conversion rate. They got 330 on the ground and 134 in the air without their best playmaker.  Defensively they played an FSU team that had 0 turnovers and only 4 penalties for 45 yards with the Heisman winner playing his best.  Tech managed to shut FSU out of the end zone the entire second half.


I have not seen a Tech team look that well prepared and coached in a long time.  Both teams played this game at the highest level of execution.   FSU unquestionably played their best game of the year and had they not they would have been soundly beaten.


Tech opened a lot of eyes last night.  Johnson should not ever have to defend his offense.  In fact, other teams should be shuddering at the thought of Justin Thomas for the next two years.

Lee_CPA2
Lee_CPA2

Congrats to Tech on a great season (so far).  When you play one of the top four teams in the nation, you probably need a break to go your way in order to win (Interception, fumble recovery, on-side kick recovery).  You didn't get it.  That's the way things go.

One constructive criticism of Tech and CPJ has always been the lack of an effective passing game.  If Tech ever gets into a situation where they "have" to pass, they look like high schoolers.  The fourth and long miscommunication is a prime example.

????
????

If you waste time reading ANYTHING RuPaul or BigCrimson75 post your life has been lessened and your brain cells wasted.

KeepOnSmilingWetWillie
KeepOnSmilingWetWillie

Congrats to GT on a great year. #35 for FSU is a Hoss. FSU is a great football team. I know most don't like their QB but give them credit for being a great team.


Bama vs OSU and FSU vs Oregon....that will be the deal

TampGator1
TampGator1

I realize FSU is 13 and 0, but Baylor, TCU, and Ohio State seem to be better teams right now. But I must say, I am wondering how a very good offensive team and defensive team like Wisconsin can suddenly have neither.  Ohio State is good, but they are not that good.  They struggled vs. Indiana and Michigan the previous two weeks with their #2 QB.  I watched some of the game and Wisconsin sure look like they laid down in the B10 title game.  Ohio State's defense is just not that good.  Kind of a fishy outcome if you ask me.  We will see just how good Ohio State is because they will most likely be one of the 4 teams now that the Big 12 did not name Baylor the outright champ.  Stupid on the Big 12's part.  That decision will likely cause them to miss out on the playoffs. 

Armydawg
Armydawg

Tech got close but fell when the FSU coach did not ride to their rescue with some dumb a$$ call to pull them back from the brink.

RangeRover
RangeRover

The call not to punt on your own 45 yard line was stupid.  You essentially gave FSU the 9 point lead by them only having to get one first down for a field goal try.  The odds were a 1000-1 they do this and they did.  You punt the ball and make them earn 50-60 yards before the field goal attempt.

Anyone who disagrees is equally stupid.  

BillEidson
BillEidson

@BSNBC how can you say that....want to hear this explanation 

DawgNole
DawgNole

@420 bulldwag

Call you suspicious?

How 'bout we call you a sour-grapes loser--that clearly would be more appropriate.

Wrecker
Wrecker

@R Tooty Zero pass rush really mattered.  Our front 4 could not get off of blocks.  When we sent a linebacker, he threw underneath short.  When we brought multiple linebackers or d-backs, he beat us long.  It did not help any that Greene and O'Leary are phenomenal players.

khd713
khd713

@doyojob Tech had one interception, and the missed fourth down was the equivalent of another turnover, imo.

SupersizeThatOrder-mutt
SupersizeThatOrder-mutt

@Lee_CPA2 

You apparently forget Tech's last TD drive, in which most of the plays, if not all of them, were passes.  We HAD to pass then, and we sure didn't look like high schoolers doing it..

PaulinNH
PaulinNH

@Lee_CPA2 

Miscommunications between WR and QB occur on pass plays all the time.

When GT "had to pass" they completed 5 of 6 and in just over a minute drove from the GT 3 for a TD,

DawgNole
DawgNole

@OH-IO

Read and learn?!

tampongator1???!!!

Yeah, right--good luck with that.


Quackmeyer
Quackmeyer

@????  I guess I realized that too late.  But given time, my brain cells will come back.  Since I just started to read her comments this past week or so, I may have a shorter rehab than most!

DawgNole
DawgNole

@TampGator1: "I realize FSU is 13 and 0, but Baylor, TCU, and Ohio State seem to be better teams right now."

____________________

Another objective analysis from the sour-grapes gator loser.

OH-IO
OH-IO

@TampGator1


Our defense just help the Heisman runner up to 76 yards, one more than we held him to last year. 


You want to talk defense?


61-58 Baylor.


Joke

OH-IO
OH-IO

@TampGator1


Fishy?


Fishy?


Not that good?


No, the gator are "not that good".


As Urban said, push play. 

TampGator1
TampGator1

@Armydawg 


Still bitter, Armydawg?  Fire Richt.  Fire Bobo.  Fire Pruitt.  Fire everyone, including the waterboy and cheerleaders at Georgia. 

BillEidson
BillEidson

@RangeRover it all comes to execution.  Perfect play was called and the Safety bite on the fake.  I a 50 year old man could have walked into the end zone if I was as wide open as Waller.  JT threw short.  He will learn.  Have him for two more years.


Was and is the correct call. 

Mulk
Mulk

@RangeRover I disagree with you. Number 1 is you might make your first down. Two is that you can either stop them or not, but either way you will have more time left to do whatever - like score a TD and recover an on sides kick. Johnson has been down this road many times. See 18 seconds.....


TampGator1
TampGator1

@RangeRover 


Must be nice to be so smart.  Obviously, Johnson did not feel his defense could stop FSU and that his team could get the first down. He showed a lot of faith in them.  If the WR had not stopped running and therefore not confused his QB, Tech would have scored a TD on that 4th down play.  And what smart thing would you be posting now? 

????
????

@DawgNole Not true. We played good and FSU played good but Winston is an ODD Piece of work and you have to admit that.

doyojob
doyojob

@khd713 @doyojob  forgot about int and I agree about turnover on downs.  Still an extremely clean game played against a much more athletic team.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@OH-IO

Our defense just "help" the Heisman . . . .?

Still waiting.

Buschleaguer
Buschleaguer

@OH-IO @TampGator1

Bucky

OH-IO State making playoff would not be that fishy.

But if they get the match up in the ROSE Bowl that would smell like a dead fish..

BAMA vs Buckeyes in Sugar 

Oregon vs NOLES in ROSE.

But if the final four is gerrymandered to have PAC 12 vs B1G in Rose Bowl would be business as usual ,sell out to ESPN for TV ratings.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@OH-IO

The gator "are" not that good? LOL

Still waiting.

Buschleaguer
Buschleaguer

@TampGator1 @Armydawg

Nah,Don't fire CMR . Hope McGarrity will let CMR hire a personal assistant coach to watch the play clock and not let CMR call another stupid ,by the proverbial book time out to freeze a kicker with only 4 seconds on the play clock .,and keep your opponent who has no timeouts from having to rush the game tying 53 yd FG. Not any bitterness on my part ,but empathy for a veteran head coach who has special needs,making hard decisions when the game is on the line.

RangeRover
RangeRover

@????

Agreed.  Stupid, stupid call.

And I want to applaud you for getting this correct; many have labeled it a "squib kick," which is incorrect.

RangeRover
RangeRover

@TampGator1

Thank you, but I take the most comfort in knowing that with a masters in biomedical engineering, and the designer and developer of life saving and life preserving spinal, neuro and cardiothoracic implants, instruments and surgical navigation equipment, that I am simply smarter than you, you POS liberal, atheist "communications legend."

DawgNole
DawgNole

@???? @DawgNole

WHAT'S not true?

Both teams played well on offense.

Winston's off-field antics are an embarrassment to his school.

I've never said anything different.

You're barking up the wrong tree.

???? indeed.


OH-IO
OH-IO

@Buschleaguer @OH-IO @TampGator1


No. If we get in we'll be #4, IMO.


There is too much integrity in the Committee Room. We'll hear the details of a very deliberative process at 12:30. 

DawgNole
DawgNole

@RangeRover @TampGator1

Smarter than tg1?

Probably so, but that could also be said of most others on here. It's a very low bar you've set.

forexbomb
forexbomb

@OH-IO @Buschleaguer @TampGator1 Get ready for another BEATING... Ohio STATE is a joke, as is the Big 10...  Half the teams in the ACC and SEC could beat Ohio State..  Politics at its finest in getting OHIO STATE into the playoffs...