Prep advantage: Tech
ATLANTA -- When Duke takes on Georgia Tech this week, the Blue Devils will be in the rare position of having seen the Yellow Jackets’ unique spread option offense more than most teams that face them.
Having played Army and Navy regularly — teams who run offenses similar to Georgia Tech’s — the Blue Devils could have more tape on defending the scheme than most other programs. Still, that may not be enough to give them the advantage this Saturday.
Because Duke has played the offense so often recently, the Yellow Jackets may be the one to benefit, Duke head coach David Cutcliffe said.
“The one thing, I don’t know if it helps or hurts, is that they get to see us on tape,” Cutcliffe said. “So there’s some familiarity on our part, but at the same time, they get some pretty good tape to study on us that they don’t normally get when they play other teams that don’t play Army and Navy regularly.”
While it may be interesting to see how the Yellow Jackets are able to attack the Blue Devils’ defense in comparison to what they do against others, that doesn’t mean Duke’s job automatically ends.
“Bottom line is, we’ve got to tackle well, we’ve got to be able to defend the field well,” Cutcliffe said. “When you play Georgia Tech, you can’t make mistakes, they’ll burn you, because they’ve got big-time athletes that can do that.”
Drummond not coming back — yet
Daniel Drummond, a Georgia Tech B-back who was suspended this season following a positive test for steroids, will not be rejoining the team just yet, Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson said Monday.
Following the test, the redshirt freshman was suspended this offseason for a calendar year, retroactive to last November’s results. That suspension was originally called a 10-game suspension, which meant that he would be able to return by this week’s game against Duke.
While Drummond told reporters Monday that he was eligible to play starting with this week’s game, he will continue to sit, Johnson said.
“It’s for a season,” Johnson said of the suspension. “The thing is, it says it’s for a (calendar) year, but the way we interpret it is it’s for a year.”
With the Yellow Jackets out of the running for any championships and not in dire need to add another B-back to the rotation, it only makes sense to continue to sit Drummond and get him ready for next season. He likely would have played on special teams, if he returned.
There also has been chatter that Drummond could make his return as a linebacker next season, but Drummond said he was unfamiliar with it. Coaches have yet to discuss such a move, he said.
When he returns, Drummond — who redshirted last fall — will be a redshirt sophomore.
Tech-UGA kickoff set
The ACC and SEC on Monday announced that Georgia Tech and Georgia will tee off at 7:45 p.m. next Saturday in Athens as part of the teams’ annual end-of-the-year rivalry game.
Action will be televised by ESPN.
Much will be on the line for the Yellow Jackets and Bulldogs, as, with a Georgia Tech loss this Saturday, both will enter the contest with 5-6 records and playing for bowl eligibility.
“I give him credit, he got us in some situations. We converted some third-downs and he gave us a chance.” –Johnson on Tevin Washington’s first career start at quarterback