Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at Pittsburgh Panthers preview


After dropping games to Duke and North Carolina the past two weeks, the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets find themselves in fourth place in the Coastal Division, preparing for the first place Pittsburgh Panthers. The Panthers come into this as one of the top defensive teams in the nation statistically, but so far their schedule has been a bit on the light side.

Opponent: Pittsburgh Panthers

Time/TV: 3:30 pm ET, ESPNU

Georgia Tech Offense vs. Pittsburgh Defense

The Yellow Jackets have the No. 30 total offense in the nation coming into this game, while the Panthers are a stout No. 4 in total defense. The most points the Panthers have allowed this season came in week three when Pitt beat FIU 42-25.

Like I mentioned above though, Pitt hasn’t faced the toughest schedule. Georgia Tech will easily be the best offensive team that the Panthers have played and this game will show us if this Pitt D is legit, or just benefitting from scheduling. Still, it’s hard to discount a team that has held opponents to just 112.1 rushing yards per game and 168.3 yards through the air per game.

In addition to being the top offense Pitt has seen, the Jackets of course run the triple-option. It’s impossible to tell how teams will handle that, but this year’s rendition of the flexbone has been impressive week in and week out. The fewest points the team has scored under the lead of Justin Thomas is 27 against Virginia Tech.

Georgia Tech Defense vs. Pittsburgh Offense

While Pitt’s defense has been at the top of the table this season, their offensive game has been middle-of-the-pack. Earlier this week, Paul Johnson talked about the threats of running back James Connor and Tyler Boyd, but the unit as a whole doesn’t exactly strike fear into opposing defensive coordinators.

The Panthers are actually one of the worst teams in the country when it comes to putting the ball in the air. They average 155.7 passing yards per game, which is 116th in the nation. The team has thrown for just nine touchdowns, which is one less than Georgia Tech — never something to boast about. Pitt QB Chad Voytik is completing 58.8 percent of his passes and has thrown six interceptions.

On the ground, it’s an entirely different story. The Panthers run the ball more than twice as much as they pass and are 19th in the country with 239 rushing yards per game, while Connor is currently the top back in the ACC with 959 rushing yards. He’s averaging 5.6 yards per carry and has found the endzone 11 times.

At this point the Jackets have the No. 73 total defense in the country, allowing 415.6 yards per game and 6.37 yards per play. Those numbers shout mediocre at best.


Just looking at the numbers, it might look like Pitt has the advantage in this one thanks to a top-5 defense. After taking a closer look though, it’s obvious that the Panthers have taken advantage of a bit of a fluffy schedule. The Panthers bring next to no passing game, and that should make life easier for a Tech defense that has struggled.

I’ll go out on a limb and say the Jackets get back on track this weekend with a win in Pittsburgh.

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