Friday, September 14, 2007

Week 3 Preview, Part II: A Divergent Pair of Conference Showdowns

VIRGINIA at NORTH CAROLINA
Saturday, Sept. 15, 2007, 12pm ET - Kenan Stadium, Chapel Hill, NC
Series Record:
North Carolina leads 55-42-4; UVA won last year's meeting 23-0
Stat Watch: 6...UNC freshman QB TJ Yates' national rank in passing efficiency
Quick Overview: Despite sitting at just 1-1, the Heels are a rejuvenated program, thanks to an injection of actual coaching competence and the play of TJ Yates. Sure, the defense got torched by ECU last week, but the Heel offense went toe-to-toe with them and had a chance to win if not for a blocked FG. Meanwhile, UVA looks downright depressing, coming off a sloppy home win with Duke. The defense appears to be dazed from the Wyoming beatdown, and the QB situation remains up for grabs.
Prediction: UNC appears to be a more disciplined team, and they're at home. Al Groh's likely final trip to Chapel Hill results in increased surliness. North Carolina 28, Virginia 20

BOSTON COLLEGE at GEORGIA TECH
Saturday, Sept. 15, 2007, 8pm ET - Bobby Dodd Stadium, Atlanta, GA
Series Record: Georgia Tech leads 4-1; BC won the last meeting 41-31 in 1998
Stat Watch: 0...the number of times the Yellow Jackets have turned the ball over this season
Bonus Stat Watch: 11...the number of times the Eagles' defense has forced a turnover this season
Quick Overview: Sure, everyone is saying that this is likely a preview of December's ACC title game, and everyone could very well be right, but let's not let that take away from the matchup we have at hand. Jeff Jagodzinski couldn't have picked a more difficult ACC road opener, as the Jackets appear to be a machine hitting on all cylinders right now. Tech has the ACC's leading offense and defense as well as having the 2nd best turnover margin. The Eagles have the 2nd best offense, best turnover margin but have been pushed around on defense, despite that sick Bonus Stat above. The key matchups on Saturday appear to be Tech's Taylor Bennett vs. the pick-happy BC secondary, and Matt Ryan vs. the overwhelming pressure he'll see from all angles of the Jacket defense.
Prediction: Georgia Tech is the more complete team right now, and it's in Atlanta. Georgia Tech 31, Boston College 21

The remaining five game previews will be here in just a moment...

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to say great job on this blog. I just found it about two weeks ago and it has become regular required reading. Keep it up...

Marcus said...

Thanks...'preciate it.

Brian Addison Bucher said...

Nah, Groh will pull a Bowden and can his son. The biggest problem, afterall, has been a total lack of offense...

Marcus said...

Brian...perhaps, but comments I've seen from the elder Groh indicate that he doesn't think Mike is the problem.

Even so, if he does can his son, how much more time will that buy him? One year? If that's the case, it probably wouldn't be worth it to fire his own flesh and blood.