Georgia Tech (1-0) at Duke (2-0)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, September 14, 3:30 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Wallace Wade Stadium (33,941) -- Durham, North Carolina.
Television: ESPNU. Home Record: Georgia Tech 1-0, Duke 1-0. Away Record:
Georgia Tech 0-0, Duke 1-0. Neutral Record: Georgia Tech 0-0, Duke 0-0.
Conference Record: Georgia Tech 0-0, Duke 0-0. Series Record: Georgia Tech
GAME NOTES: The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets look to continue their recent
dominance of the Duke Blue Devils when the two teams open their respective
Atlantic Coast Conference schedules at Wallace Wade Stadium.
Georgia Tech has won each of the last nine meetings to take a 49-30-1 edge in
the head-to-head series.
If Duke hopes to snap that slide, it will have to do so without quarterback
Anthony Boone, who is out indefinitely with a broken collarbone that he
suffered in the second quarter of Saturday's 28-14 win over Memphis. Still,
the Blue Devils are off to a 2-0 start for the first time since 1998 and will
have plenty of confidence entering this matchup. Beginning this week, they'll
play four straight in Durham.
Georgia Tech was idle this past week. The Yellow Jackets set an ACC record for
largest margin of victory in their season-opening, 70-0 win over Elon.
They return 15 starters and 54 letterwinners from last year's team that won
the ACC Coastal Division and beat USC in the Hyundai Sun Bowl.
The Yellow Jackets set quite a few offensive records in their win over Elon.
Among them were most players to score a touchdown (nine), highest percentage
of third-down conversions (.869; 8-of-9), and largest lead after three
quarters (63 points). Sophomore Vad Lee made his first career start and
completed 7-of-11 passes for 189 yards and two touchdowns, while he also ran
for 49 yards and a score. Although it was only one game against a FCS
opponent, Lee's 267.96 passing efficiency currently tops the nation. That is a
notable stat considering the Yellow Jackets have rushed for more yards than
any FBS team since 2008. Of course, the flexbone offense still managed to
churn out 368 yards (7.4 ypc) and six TDs on the ground against Elon and the
team enters the season's third week ranked third nationally in rushing offense
Georgia Tech's shutout win was its first since 2008 which, coincidentally,
came against Duke (27-0). Tyler Marcordes and Chris Milton both scored on long
interception returns, as the Yellow Jackets set a school record for most
interception return yards in a game (173). Tech recovered a fumble on the
game's second play from scrimmage, and minutes later the Yellow Jackets
blocked a punt. Those big plays in the early going helped set the tone, and
the Phoenix were never able to get anything going offensively. Elon made only
one trip inside the red zone for the game. Brandon Watts paced the Tech
defense with nine tackles, while Quayshawn Nealy chipped in with eight stops
and a pass breakup.
The good news for Duke is that Boone will not need surgery to repair his
broken collarbone, although no timetable has been set for his return. All-
purpose specialist Brandon Connette will get the start this week after taking
over in the second quarter against Memphis and throwing for 198 yards (14-
of-21) and a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns. The Blue Devils are down to
freshman Parker Boehme as the backup. While Connette was able to spread the
ball around, he also showed a solid chemistry with big-play wideout Jamison
Crowder, who finished with a game-high 140 yards on 11 catches. All told, the
Blue Devils racked up 25 first downs and 470 yards of total offense against
Memphis, as they converted 10-of-18 third downs and came away with touchdowns
on both of their trips inside the red zone.
Like Georgia Tech, the Blue Devils also pitched a shutout in their season
opener as they knocked off NC Central by a 45-0 margin two weekends ago. They
followed that up with another strong defensive showing at Memphis this past
weekend. In that game, they held the Tigers to only 12 first downs and 237
total yards from scrimmage. Memphis converted only 2-of-13 third downs and was
0-for-4 on fourth down, as Duke won the time-of-possession battle by nearly 10
minutes. The Blue Devils yielded only one yard in the second quarter and they
held Memphis without a first down from the first quarter to the midway point
of the third. They also recovered a pair of fumbles on the day. Kelby Brown
and David Helton shared team-high honors with seven tackles apiece.
Georgia Tech has had the upper hand in this series of late, but Duke looks
like a different team this year, particularly on defense. Lee was solid in his
first start but could struggle to replicate that success in a tough road
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Duke 27, Georgia Tech 24
09/11 10:34:17 ET
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