Short takes on Georgia Tech’s miracle win over Florida State

Georgia Tech’s Lance Austin runs for a touchdown after Florida State Seminoles place kicker Roberto Aguayo’s field goal was blocked at the end of the fourth quarter at Bobby Dodd Stadium on Saturday. The Yellow Jackets won 22-16. (Hyosub Shin/hshin@ajc.com)

Georgia Tech's Lance Austin runs for a touchdown after Florida State Seminoles place kicker Roberto Aguayo's field goal was blocked at the end of the fourth quarter at Bobby Dodd Stadium on Saturday. The Yellow Jackets won 22-16. (Hyosub Shin/hshin@ajc.com)

Georgia Tech’s Lance Austin runs for a touchdown after Florida State Seminoles place kicker Roberto Aguayo’s field goal was blocked at the end of the fourth quarter at Bobby Dodd Stadium on Saturday. The Yellow Jackets won 22-16. (Hyosub Shin/hshin@ajc.com)

To read the full column on Georgia Tech’s 22-16 win over Florida State, click this link on MyAJC.com.

Below are my three “short takes” on the game.

1. AN ENDING FROM FANTASYLAND: I won’t say the way Georgia Tech beat Florida State was once in a lifetime because it’s already twice in the three seasons this has happened. In the famous “Kick Six” play, Auburn’s Chris Davis returned a missed 57-yard field goal 100 yards to give the Tigers a win over Alabama. Tech’s Lance Austin nearly mirrored that moment against Florida State. After the Jackets’ Patrick Gamble blocked a potential game-winning, 56-yard field goal by FSU’s Roberto Aguayo, Austin picked up the ball and returned it 78 yards to give the Jackets the win as time expired. The stands emptied as fans poured onto the field. Austin later described the moment as “kind of surreal.” It also was a great moment for the twins, Lance and Lawrence Austin, who’ve dedicated this season to their late grandmother.

2. IT’S ONLY 1 WIN BUT: Tech coach Paul Johnson has his detractors, despite a largely successful tenure at Tech. Obviously, what has happened this season has been manna for the critics. Five consecutive losses not only submarined the Jackets’ conference title hopes, they all but killed the Jackets’ chances to even go to a bowl game. (Even with the win, Tech is only 3-5 and therefore can’t go worse than 3-1 against Virginia (road), Virginia Tech, Miami (road) and Georgia to become bowl eligible.) But I’ll repeat what I’ve written and said often: From the day Johnson arrived, he made players and the Tech community feel they had a chance to win big games and have great moments. That happened again Saturday. And by the way: Johnson is now 3-2 against Florida State, with two narrow losses coming in ACC championship games (21-15 in 2012 and 37-35 last year)

3. HELLO, DEFENSE: WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN? Florida State entered the game having scored 59, 34, 14, 24, 29 and 41 points in its first six games. Georgia Tech entered having allowed 36.5 inn its four straight ACC losses to Duke, North Carolina, Clemson and Pittsburgh. So among the things nobody figured would happen was this: The Jackets’ defense allowing only 16 points, of which 10 were set up by Justin Thomas interceptions (the drives were 17 and 2 yards). Take those out and Florida State’s offense failed to have a legitimate touchdown drive and had only two scoring possessions that led to field goals (drives of 66 and 54 yards). “I’m really proud of our defense,” Johnson said. “We played the run so much better.” The Seminoles finished with only 280 yards in total offense, including 70 rushing.

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Reader Comments 0

185 comments
Jacket53
Jacket53

As Lance broke Seminole Nations Heart, Jimbo was seen singing "OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHHHHHHH, No,NNNNNNNNNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO, OH, NNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!

Seminole War Chant, for the slow to decipher.

TOJacket
TOJacket

Hey TideDawg....................30-24 sport...........We run this State.

DawginLex
DawginLex

@TOJacket  BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


12 OUT OF 14 TIMES WE OWNED YOU


2 FLUKE WINS


WE OWN TECH AND DON'T YOU EVER FORGET IT

TOJacket
TOJacket

@DawginLex @TOJacket Drop by again sometime DIL..........maybe y'all mutts will win this year and all my old (coward) dawg posters will return.....if you don't like us running the State.....don't lose to us..........30-24.......We OWN this State Skippy.

DawginLex
DawginLex

Nebraska should have thrown the checkbook at Johnson and gone back to the roots of running the TO/Wishbone.


The guy they hired is horrible.

GTBob
GTBob

Maybe you shouldn't declare a team dead in the middle of the season Jeff. I told you we still had some fight left.

TideDawg
TideDawg

It's sad to see that PJ has changed the entire GT fan base mentality to accepting losing, and hoping to upset a better team during the season.


It's amusing to read comments from GT fans that they don't buy into that big time football philosophy, they are only interested in academics. If that were true they wouldn't go crazy over upsetting a better team. Tech fans have been brainwashed by PJ. Losing is acceptable if they can upset somebody. The cry at Tech "We beat FSU" will fade if FSU loses a couple more games and most likely they will.


Congratulations to the Tech players, a good bunch of kids that try hard.

TideDawg
TideDawg

@dawg fan @TideDawg  It's healthy until you can find someone better. Stepping into the twilight zone with a new coach is going to be tough.


Spurrier set the table, O'Leary has followed and I think Richt is the next to make a change. The only change I want to see Richt make is to get tougher on players and coaches that appear to be accepting mediocrity.


It's very unsettling to watch a Pruitt coached defense that can't tackle.

dawg fan
dawg fan

@TideDawg "It's healthy until you can find someone better."


LOL.  This is a lame cop out.  No one can predict the future and guarantee you anything with a new coach.  Duh.  You're using this as a shield for your hero and it's pathetic.  You Richt fans don't have a leg to stand on anymore.  All you do is make excuses and play on everyone's fears with this "twighlight zone" nonsense.  The burden isn't on me to "find someone better."  I can rattle off 10 coaches right now who  have more coaching ability in their butt crack than Richt will have in his entire life and you'll just dismiss it because I don't have a time machine to prove I'm right.  That's a cowardly COP OUT.  The burden is on you Richt fans to prove to us that your hero is going to stop choking and finally win something. 


"The only change I want to see Richt make is to get tougher on players and coaches that appear to be accepting mediocrity."


And after 15 years of not doing that what makes you think it will magically start happening now?  I'd like to see Richt get tougher too.  Duh.  Everybody wants that.  I just live in reality and know it's never going to happen.  The choke artist has been our coach for 15 freaking years.  If it hasn't happened by now why in the world will it?


It's very unsettling watching poser fans throw the players and assistants under the bus to make excuses for their hero, who is a total choke artist and a joke.  Yeah, that's a real healthy perspective. 

dawg fan
dawg fan

@TideDawg  That first sentence doesn't sound all that different from our Disney Dawg fans.  I think both Tech and UGA have become a little too enamored with their respective head coaches over the years. 


It's not a healthy perspective. 

GTBob
GTBob

@TideDawg Should we be upset that we beat FSU? Im confused.

TideDawg
TideDawg

@dawg fan @TideDawg  I didn't see a valid recommendation for correcting what you obviously see as needed change. I'm not a hero worshipper of Richt. I want the Dawgs to be in the hunt every year. Seldom does a team that plays a tough schedule go undefeated nowadays, but losing to an inferior team doesn't cut it.


Do I think Richt can coach them into a National Championship game? Not likely, but when you're adamantly anti Richt, you need to toss out some names that will better  serve  your convictions. Many seem to know the problems but few know the solution.

dawg fan
dawg fan

@TideDawg  There is no "solution."  I don't know what universe you live in but life does not work like that.  You demand guarantees because you know no one can give you any.  It's a cop out.  Plain and simple.  You may not be a hero worshipper of Richt but you sure are working hard to cover for his underachieving choke artist arse.


You want names?  Fine, here ya go: 


Kyle Whittingham

Kirby Smart

Art Briles

Gary Patterson

David Shaw


All, other than Kirby, continue to do more with less while Richt continues to do absolutely NOTHING with more.  But again, what difference will this make to you?  You'll just say I can't guarantee you anything.  You'll continue to play on everyone's fears about an uncertain future to cover for Mark Richt.  Meanwhile, we'll continue to win absolutely NOTHING under our choke artist coach.  You want guarantees well there is your freaking guarantee.  I guarantee you that we are going absolutely no where with Richt.  I don't need a crystal ball or a time machine to tell you that.


I've got a solid 10 years of Mark Richt Football backing me up on this.  Class dismissed. 

DawginLex
DawginLex

@dawg fan @TideDawg  Mormon

Unproven-see Muschamp

Ain't leaving

Ain't leaving

Overrated-schedule is awful. Lost to NW


If Richt does leave, which he is not, my first call is to David Cutcliffe. He coaches Eason and calls plays. Richt should actually do this next year himself and send Schotty packing.

Have Cutcliffe beg Pruitt and Rocker to stay to keep the young defense talent flowing in. Give Cutcliffe a five year gig and set up an exit strategy with Pruitt taking over.

FreddieBlassie
FreddieBlassie

You are foolish TidyBoy. First, Tech runs this state till Georgie canines change that. See the records of the teams to whom Tech has lost. Injuries have been frequent and severe for this team. I'm proud of these guys, pencil neck.

dawg fan
dawg fan

LOL Techies.  This game was no validation of CPJ.  You won because of your defense and a great special teams play at the end of the game.  Oh, and the small fact that FSU was an overrated fraud. 


Fun win but don't get carried away. 

dawg fan
dawg fan

@PaulinNH I think anyone with a brain would admit that FSU was severely overrated.  Don't get your panties in a bunch Techie. 

dawg fan
dawg fan

@GTBob I must have missed the part where I said they were an awful team.  I said they were overrated.   

dawg fan
dawg fan

@GTBob Sure he was.  You're looking down the barrel of your second losing season on his watch, something that never happened on Gailey's watch.  He has an abysmal bowl record and an abysmal record against Georgia. 


You CPJ loving Techies should get together with the Richt fans to dream up ways to pump up mediocre coaches and make excuses for them.  Join forces. 

GTBob
GTBob

@dawg fan How many times did Gailey play 5 ranked teams in the first 8 games of the season? Do you think a Gailey led team would have beaten FSU this past weekend? Gailey got fired for a reason. CPJ just recently started a new contract extension for a reason.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@dawg fan

How can you be "overrated" when you've won 35 of 37 games and a NC?

Duh!

PaulinNH
PaulinNH

@dawg fan 

Beating an "overrated fraud" sure as heck is better than losing to one - like UT

GTBob
GTBob

@dawg fan It was the 2nd game they have lost in their last 37 games. They sure do win a lot for such an awful team.

DawginLex
DawginLex

Congrats to Tech


I hate Jimbo Fisher and his arrogant ways. Thumbing his nose up at everyone while playing a rapist and thief at QB.


I was actually pulling for Tech Saturday night


Great win and awesome ending

Will10
Will10

People are so quick to jump on the fire CPJ train, I was even on that for a bit. But this year really was the perfect storm of disaster from mounting injuries especially 7 at the A-Back position, a very young team with walk on freshman, and a non stop tough schedule. Now for the returning seniors, on the D they showed up this weekend, the O is still struggling. Still not sure whats going on with JT, but its still obvious that some of these freshman are getting confused and JT is trying to force something. Thats on CPJ, but again these kids are getting better. 

If people still want CPJ gone, thats fine, but I have yet to see or hear of any coach right now that we could afford to bring on that could do better for Tech. Tech is very unique when it come to recruiting and classes, we are never going to get the top prospects here

TideDawg
TideDawg

@Will10  Not getting better recruits is definitely a problem with PJ's offense and no 5 star recruit wants to come in and play in a run oriented offense. Wide receivers don't want to come to Tech and block. No quality coach wants to come in and start with PJ's hand picked  recruits suited to his offense.  There are some good coaches out there that are winning with teams not normally known for winning. PJ's idea of a good season is to schedule 4-5 cupcakes and try to knock off a couple of good teams, go to a bowl game and make Tech fans happy. That's OK if that's what you want and expect.


No coach is copying PJ's unstoppable offense. Wonder why??

Will10
Will10

@GTBob @TideDawg Exactly, Last year to me proved the CPJs system can work and the team can compete at a top 10 level. What the disgruntled fans want is that same result year in and out. Its understandable that people want the team to be a Top 10 spotlight, but before CPJ it had been a while. This year was supposed to continue where we left off, but again we had a perfect storm of disaster. 

Again also if the fans that are upset want a better coach throw out some names on ones that you think could get better results at GT and could recruit better. 

Will10
Will10

@TideDawg @Will10

And are people so quick to forget how many injured players we have as well as the freshman that came on in August? I'm just saying that this year is almost forgivable with those circumstances. This would be a totally different story if we were 3-5 with and easier schedule and a healthy team 

GTBob
GTBob

@TideDawg GT has never had a 5 star recruit in the history of the program. That must be CPJs fault, right? Also, our wide receiver recruiting has actually been pretty decent. Just had a kid pick us over Florida last week.

GeorgeJetsen
GeorgeJetsen

If Johnson was worth his salt he'd have beaten FSU in the ACC title game last year. Yesterday's win was meaningless to GT's season and this talk here about it being a catalyst to something bigger is foolish.

bigmacondawg
bigmacondawg

I'm already hearing rumors Miami is looking at Johnson.  They've got plenty of money, golf year round and a much easier job.  Looks like this may be the last year for the triple option on the flats.

SupersizeThatOrder-mutt
SupersizeThatOrder-mutt

@bigmacondawg 

WHATEVER, Birmingham Jacket.  Johnson has already said he's not interested in going anywhere.  And how could it be an easier job when he would have to start from scratch teaching and recruiting for his offense.  Also, he has very little use for the football factory mentality that would be obvious in Miami.  Academics and overall success in life for his players mean more to him than an "easy job".  Troll on, bubba

TOJacket
TOJacket

@bigmacondawg They don't run the State down there BJ.........man that FSU kick 6 win really tossed a stool in your pool huh?.......LOL

Wreck13
Wreck13

Tech had the ball almost 10 game minutes more than FSU and that was a great way to play the game.

TideDawg
TideDawg

@Wreck13  I don't think time of possession made the headlines in those 5 losses.

SeminoleDale
SeminoleDale

Can't wait till November, Go Dawgs, Go Noles!

GTBee
GTBee

GT fans calm down. Great win but don't get too excited until we string 2 or 3 in a row. I know that will be hard for you since most of you went overboard after our season last year and thought we had become an elite program.

GTBee
GTBee

We took a timeout and threw an Interception to your team for a next play TD. Largely their own enemy? You're right but that would be GT not FS-Who. Yet we still won.

SeminoleDale
SeminoleDale

@GTBee When was the last time GT even played for any kind of national championship, had a heisman? We're 33-2 in the ACC over the last 3 years. Gosh, you guys got lucky, and you're fans are the worst. I am hoping UGA and believe they will smash GT. GT only beats UGA once every 8 years no matter what UGA team shows up and you know that's the truth.

SeminoleDale
SeminoleDale

@GTBee  Paul Johnson is 1-2 vs Jimbo, and 0-2 when it really matters. He is 2-0 versus the worst Bobby Bowden teams of his era 2009, easily the worst Bowden team i remember. 


Clemson is going to the playoffs and they are going to win the whole thing, they'll smoke the Luckeyes. 


Ga Tech is not going to a bowl and will get smashed by UGA, which typically happens, GT beats them once every 8 years.