I haven't made my NCAA football picks yet for the weekend. They'll be posted tomorrow. But there's a game that's close to my heart tonight in Atlanta between ACC Coastal Division rivals Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech. There's no doubt that Tech will emerge victorious, but the question is which one. The visiting Hokies have had pretty good success against Paul Johnson's triple option offense in the past, thanks mostly to Bud Foster's defensive schemes and a secondary that can take away the downfield passing option even though they need to keep seven or eight players in the box to defense the run. With the exception of the first half of last week's game against Marshall, Virginia Tech has exhibited a shut down defense, even against top-ranked Alabama.
The big issue for the Hokies is on the offensive side of the ball, specifically quarterback Logan Thomas. His passing has been erratic and his decision making suspect. Despite his incredible physical skills, he's failed to progress at all since his breakout sophomore season. He played terribly against Marshall, missing pass after pass, finally eking out the game with his legs and his size. But tonight, the Hokies can't afford to give the Yellow Jackets a lot of possessions, so he needs to find a way to keep his defense off the field with short passes that keep the chains moving and the clock ticking. Frankly, from what I've seen this season, I'm not overly confident of his ability to accomplish that.
All of that being said, I like the Hokies to pull what most would consider an upset tonight. I think they'll deny the run with their front seven and their always talented secondary will make enough plays to deny Georgia Tech a consistent passing game. My prediction? Virginia Tech 23 Georgia Tech 20.