Georgia Tech Week 7 Preview: BYU Cougars


Sep 26, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets quarterback Vad Lee (2) throws a pass in the first half against the Virginia Tech Hokies at Bobby Dodd Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

In week seven, Georgia Tech is looking to get back to its winning ways after consecutive losses to Miami and Virginia Tech, respectively. The Yellow Jackets are going to travel out west to Brigham Young University, where they will try and remove the doubt that has built up over the past two weeks.

Jackets Offense vs. BYU Defense

For a team that probably isn’t that great, BYU actually brings a pretty solid defense to the table. They only allow 16.8 points per game, good for the 17th best defensive unit in the nation. Those numbers probably aren’t indicative of their actual talent level, however, simply because of the competition they have faced this year.

However, the Yellow Jackets haven’t exactly been dominant on the offensive side of ball as of late.

Tech still needs to show that there is something in the tank with the passing game, or else BYU will eventually get a hold on Vad Lee’s mediocre triple-option run offense. Lee is going to need to step up Saturday, throw for some yards (can we get a touchdown?) and most importantly, limit the turnovers. That last point has hurt him quite a bit of late.

On the whole, the Yellow Jacket offense has been a bit of a mess. The team is still sporting the 7th-best rushing offense in the country (averaging 300 yards per game on the ground), but that 116th-ranked passing offense (125 yards per game) is certainly a drawback, and if Vad Lee struggles again, he could see bench splinters.

Jackets Defense vs. BYU Offense

The Georgia Tech defensive line is going to have some fun containing BYU quarterback, Taysum Hill. He is more of a running QB than a thrower (less than 50% passing this year), but in his past two games, Hill has taken a step forward in that department.

BYU uses a more run-heavy offense, but there’s a solid chance that it will be more balanced this week as Hill gets a longer leash to work with. Last week against Utah State, he threw the ball 31 times and picked up 278 yards and three touchdowns. He only completed on 17 of his passes, but he can clearly create some things with his arm, and his completion percentage has risen to the 60% range in the past two contests.

However, the team still rushed the ball 50 times during that game, and considering Georgia Tech has a better defense than Utah State (ummm…..), the Jackets should be able to limit a lot of the damage. In the backfield, Jamaal Williams leads the way (Hill is the leading overall rusher) with over 450 yards in 5 games. He hasn’t found the end zone this season, but that isn’t indicative of his talent level.

Overall, the Tech defense is still playing very well, with the notable exception of Miami, and even with that hiccup, the unit still ranks 25th nationally in points against. BYU’s offense is a unique one, but Tech has the talent edge.


This can’t be considered a “must-win” for Georgia Tech, simply because it’s not a conference match-up. However, it would go a long way into smoothing out morale in Atlanta if the team could get an impressive road win, and this provides that opportunity.

Stay tuned for post-game coverage, and a live game thread that will open on Saturday morning.