Open mobile menu

Georgia Tech Travels to Face No. 13/12 Virginia

THE FLATS – Riding a five-game winning streak, Georgia Tech returns to the court Saturday for an 8 p.m. ACC road contest against No. 13/12 Virginia at John Paul Jones Arena in Charlottesville, Va., the second of two contests Tech faces against top-25 teams this week.

The Yellow Jackets (7-3, 3-1 ACC) got the better of the first such contest Wednesday night, an 83-65 homecourt win over No. 20/22 Clemson following a 17-day pause in their schedule. Tech has won seven of its last eight games following an 0-2 start to the season, including homecourt wins over North Carolina (72-67) and Wake Forest (70-54) in its last two games before the shutdown. Tech has been efficient offensively in its ACC games, averaging 71.5 points while hitting 51 percent from the floor and 42.1 percent from three-point range while turning the ball over just 12.3 times per game.

The Cavaliers (9-2, 5-0 ACC), also on a five-game winning streak, have come alive offensively in their last two games with an 80-68 victory over Notre Dame at home and an 85-50 rout of Clemson on the road. Virginia has won its five ACC games by an average of 15.4 points, permitting only 57 points a game, and has been even more efficient on offense, hitting 52,2 percent from the floor, 40.2 percent from three-point range and 78.4 percent from the foul line, with only 6.6 turnovers per game.

Saturday’s game will be televised nationally on the ACC Network and will be streamed live on the ESPN app. Radio coverage is provided by the Georgia Tech Sports Network by Learfield IMG College, with flagship station WCNN-Radio (680 AM, 93.7 FM) in Atlanta. The Tech broadcast can be heard on SiriusXM Ch. 371 (internet Ch. 971) and the TuneIn app.

Senior guard Jose Alvarado talks with the media Tuesday.

THE TIPOFF

  • Longest layoff – Wednesday’s game will be Georgia Tech’s first in 17 days (16 days off), ending the longest in-season break in program history. The Yellow Jackets once before went 16 days between games, during the 1982-83 season, which was an extended holiday break.
  • Changing stripes – A win over Clemson would be Georgia Tech’s third in a row in the series, which would be the first time that has happened since the Yellow Jackets won five straight over the Tigers spanning the 2002-03 through 2004-05 seasons.
  • Brown-out – The Yellow Jackets have won five of the last 11 meetings with Clemson (a sixth win was vacated by the NCAA Committee on Infractions), which follows a 10-game skid in the series .
  • Jose can you see – Senior guard Jose Alvarado was named ACC Player of the Week Jan. 4 after averaging 22.5 points in leading the Yellow Jackets to a pair of ACC victories in its most recent games against North Carolina and Wake Forest. Alvarado also averaged 5.5 rebounds and 4.5 assists in the two games, while hitting 17-of-24 from the floor, 3-of-7 from three-point range and 8-of-10 from the foul line.
  • Making their points – Tech leads the ACC in scoring average (80.11 points per game), an average bolstered by a 123-120, four-overtime loss to Georgia State in its season opener. However, the Jackets scored 77 in regulation of that game, and have scored more than 70 points in eight games this season, including 97 against Delaware State, a high for a regulation game under Pastner.
  • Balance – Three Tech starters are averaging in double figure points for the season, with Jordan Usher and Bubba Parham just under double digits at 9.7 ppg.
  • Dynamic duo – Michael Devoe and Jose Alvarado are averaging 19.3 and 17.3 points per game in ACC games, ranking No. 3 and 6, respectively. They have shot 56.3 percent from the floor combined (40-of-71) and 42.4 percent (14-of-33) from three-point range. The Jackets are 4-1 this season when both player score in double digits, including both ACC wins.
  • Triple threat – Jose Alvarado, Michael Devoe and Bubba Parham have hit 29-of-64 collectively (45.3 percent) from three-point in Tech’s last four games, and are 19-of-44 (43.2 percent) against the ACC.
  • Top of the heap – Three of the four highest scoring games by individuals in the ACC this season belong to Georgia Tech players – Moses Wright (31 points) vs. Georgia State and Jose Alvarado (29 points each vs. Georgia State and Delaware State).
  • Small ball – Tech moved 6-9 senior Moses Wright, who has played the “4” position most of his career, into the “5” spot and started 5-10 senior Bubba Parham beginning with the Dec. 6 win over Kentucky. The re-alignment has worked as the Jackets have shot 49.3 percent from the floor, hit 8.3 three-point field goals per game (36.5 percent), turned the ball over just 73 times and forced 115 in its last seven games. Tech also has assisted on 63 percent of its field goals in that stretch.
  • Size doesn’t matter – Since going to its small starting lineup, Tech has seen only six of its shots blocked after having 13 swatted away in its first two games. At the time of Tech’s meetings with them, Kentucky ranked No. 4, Nebraska No. 28, FSU No. 1 and North Carolina No. 8 in average height, according to KenPom.com. The Jackets rank No. 283.
  • Ball security – The Jackets rank No. 4 in the ACC and No. 36 nationally in assist/turnover ratio (1.35), and they rank No. 3 in the ACC and No. 28 nationally in turnover margin (plus-3.9). Only three ACC teams have turned the ball over fewer times per game than has Tech (12.2) in all games, and Tech has forced the most average turnovers in conference games. Six of Tech’s top seven scorers have positive assist/turnover ratios.
  • Minutemen – Tech has three of the top 10 players in the ACC in average minutes played (Jose Alvarado, Moses Wright, Michael Devoe), while Bubba Parham ranks inside the top 20.
  • Prospecting for gold – Tech and Clemson have just one common opponent to date – Florida State. Tech lost to the Seminoles, 74-61, on Dec. 15 in Tallahassee. The Tigers scored a 77-67 home win over the Noles on Dec. 29.
  • Dean x 7 – Tech placed seven members of its team on the fall semester Dean’s List, a high for one semester for the program – seniors Jose Alvarado, Shaheed Medlock and Malachi Rice, and sophomores Niko Broadway, Rodney Howard, Jehloni James and Kyle Sturdivant.

Head coach Josh Pastner speaks with the media Friday.

SERIES VS. VIRGINIA

Virginia has won 14 of the last 16 meetings to move ahead 43-40 in the all-time series, which dates back to 1947 … The Cavaliers have won the last six games in the series, including a 63-58 win in Atlanta in the teams’ only regular-season meeting in 2019-20 … Tech is just 1-8 at John Paul Jones Arena and has lost on its last seven trips to Charlottesville … Since Tech joined the ACC, the Yellow Jackets are 38-42 against Virginia … Tech has averaged 53.7 points per game in 15 meetings against Bennett’s Virginia teams, failing to reach 50 points in five of those games. Tech’s high of 75 came in the very first meeting in 2010 … Tech and Virginia have played to overtime seven times since the 1983-84 season, including a 72-71 triple-overtime win for Tech in Atlanta on Jan. 23, 1984, and an 88-85 double-overtime triumph for Virginia in Charlottesville on Jan. 22, 1995.

TEAM TRENDS

  • Four of Tech’s starters are averaging in double figures in scoring for the season, only Bubba Parham below that mark at 8.8 points per game. Four or more Yellow Jackets have reached double figures in five games this season, at least three in all games except Wake Forest, in which only Jose Alvarado and Michael Devoe hit double digits.
  • Tech has turned the ball over just 12.0 times per game this season, most impressively Moses Wright who has just 14 turnovers in more than 357 minutes of action, and Bubba Parham, who has only six in 317 minutes. The Yellow Jackets are plus-55 in that category this season, ranking No. 2 in the ACC. Tech was minus-78 last year and ranked 14th.
  • In ACC games, Tech ranks No. 2 at plus-5 (12.3 turnovers per game vs. 17.3 per game forced).
  • Tech played its most efficient offensive game of the season against Clemson, posting a 132.7 rating (1.327 points per possession) with an effective field goal percentage of 72.2.
  • Tech made great strides in its offensive efficiency during the latter part of last season and continues to progress, ranking No. 44 nationally at 110.9, its highest ranking under Josh Pastner. The Jackets have managed to exceed one point per possession in nine of 10 games this season (Tech reached that benchmark 11 times in 2019-20). Only Florida State held Tech under that mark (94.8) this season.
  • According to KenPom.com, Tech ranks No. 4 in the nation in experience (average 2.55 years per player) and No. 10 in minutes continuity (75.7 percent), a measure of playing minutes from 2019-20 carrying over to 2020-21.
  • Two fouls in the first half? No problem. Georgia Tech ranked No. 1 in the nation, according to KenPom.com, in 2-foul participation, a measure of percentage of available minutes played by players with two fouls (68.7 percent for Tech). It is currently No. 7 at 67.2 percent. The Jackets led the nation in this category in 2018-19, were fourth in 2017-18 and 35th in 2016-17.

Michael Devoe, after making six three-point field goals and scoring 22 points against Clemson, is the ACC’s top scorer in conference games. (photo by Danny Karnik)

 

Alexander-Tharpe Fund

The Alexander-Tharpe Fund is the fundraising arm of Georgia Tech athletics, providing scholarship, operations and facilities support for Georgia Tech’s 400-plus student-athletes. Be a part of developing Georgia Tech’s Everyday Champions and helping the Yellow Jackets compete for championships at the highest levels of college athletics by supporting the A-T Fund’s Annual Athletic Scholarship Fund, which directly provides scholarships for Georgia Tech student-athletes, and the Support The Swarm Fund, created to give fans an opportunity to help Georgia Tech athletics maintain its recent momentum through the financial challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic! To learn more about supporting the Yellow Jackets, visit atfund.org

ABOUT GEORGIA TECH MEN’S BASKETBALL

Georgia Tech’s men’s basketball team is in its fifth season under head coach Josh Pastner, having finished fifth in the ACC in 2019-20, the program’s highest finish since 2005. Tech has been a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference since 1979, won three ACC Championships (1985, 1990, 1993), played in the NCAA Tournament 16 times and played in two Final Fours (1990, 2004). Connect with Georgia Tech Men’s Basketball on social media by liking their Facebook Page, or following on Twitter (@GTMBB) and Instagram. For more information on Tech basketball, visit Ramblinwreck.com.

RELATED HEADLINES

March 1, 2021 Tech Hosts Duke for Senior Night

Yellow Jackets and Blue Devils tip at 8 p.m. Tuesday at McCamish Pavilion

Tech Hosts Duke for Senior Night
March 1, 2021 Moses Wright Named ACC Player of the Week

Tech senior had double-doubles in wins over Virginia Tech and Syracuse last week

Moses Wright Named ACC Player of the Week
Partner of Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Partner of Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Partner of Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Partner of Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Partner of Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Partner of Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Partner of Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Partner of Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Partner of Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets