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Jackets Close Season With Loss to No. 1 Georgia

THE FLATSJordan Mason ran for 59 yards and caught three passes for 24 yards, but Georgia Tech football dropped a 45-0 decision to undefeated and No. 1-ranked Georgia on Saturday afternoon at Bobby Dodd Stadium.

Playing without starting quarterback Jeff Sims for the sixth time this season, Georgia Tech also lost the nation’s leader in all-purpose yardage Jahmyr Gibbs due to injury early in Saturday’s game against Georgia, which featured college football’s top-ranked defense coming into the contest (allowing just 7.5 and 236.0 yards per game).

In addition to Mason, Dontae Smith also ran for 59 yards for the injury-depleted Yellow Jackets, who totaled 134 yards on the ground before deducting 36 yards on three Georgia sacks. Mason and Smith became the first pair of teammates to run for as many as 50 yards apiece against Georgia this season. In fact, coming into the game, only two players had rushed for more than Mason’s and Smith’s 59 yards against the Bulldogs all season — UAB’s DeWayne McBride (61) and Florida’s Dameon Pierce (69).

However, despite the valiant offensive effort, which also included not turning the ball over against a unit that had forced 16 turnovers in its first 11 games of the season, the Yellow Jackets couldn’t find paydirt for the second-straight week against a top-10 opponent.

Tech also turned in a strong effort on the defensive side of the ball, eliminating many of the coverage and tackling breakdowns that had plagued it throughout its rough second half of the season. But high-powered Georgia, which came in with the nation’s No. 7-ranked scoring offense (40.3 ppg) methodically marched to six touchdowns, including a pair of extraordinary TD catches by freshman tight end Brock Bowers (77 and 9 yards). Like on offense, the Yellow Jackets were also decimated by injury on the defensive side of the ball, as the unit was missing five key contributors, including three in the secondary.

Defensive back Tre Swilling led the defensive effort with a career-high seven tackles, with defensive back Tariq Carpenter on his heels with six. Linebacker Quez Jackson, defensive end Jordan Domineck and defensive back Juanyeh Thomas all chipped in with five tackles apiece.

With his five tackles, Jackson finished the season with 103 stops, becoming the first Yellow Jacket to reach the century mark since P.J. Davis in 2014.

Jordan Mason ran for 59 yards against No. 1 Georgia’s top-ranked defense on Saturday. (Photo: Danny Karnik).

 

Postgame Notes

Team Notes

  • Georgia Tech (3-9) finished the season with six-consecutive losses after a 3-3 start.
  • No. 1 Georgia (12-0) completed an undefeated regular season. It will face Alabama in next Saturday’s Southeastern Conference championship game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
  • Georgia Tech fell to 41-69-5 in 115 all-time meetings versus Georgia. The Yellow Jackets have lost four-straight overall in the series (last win: 2016) and 11-straight at home (last win: 1999).
  • Georgia Tech fell to 2-10-1 all-time versus No. 1-ranked teams. The Yellow Jackets have not defeated a top-ranked opponent since their legendary 41-38 win at No. 1 Virginia on Nov. 3, 1990, which propelled the Jackets to their fourth national championship.

Individual Notes

  • RB Jahmyr Gibbs, who entered the game ranked No. 1 nationally in all-purpose yardage (163.8 ypg), had just four touches (for 3 yards) before leaving the game in the first half.
  • Gibbs finished the season with 1,805 all-purpose yards, good for second in Georgia Tech single-season history (record: 1,879 – Eddie Lee Ivery, 1978).
  • With five tackles for the day, LB Quez Jackson finished with 103 total tackles for the season, becoming the first Yellow Jacket since 2014 (P.J. Davis, 119) to reach the century mark defensively.
  • Georgia Tech was also without starting Fr. QB Jeff Sims, who missed his third-straight game to close the season due to injury. In all, Sims missed what amounted to six of Georgia Tech’s 12 games this season – full games vs. Kennesaw State (Sept. 11), No. 6 Clemson (Sept. 18), Boston College (Nov. 13), No. 6 Notre Dame (Nov. 20) and No. 1 Georgia (Nov. 26), as well as more than a half vs. Northern Illinois (Sept. 4) and just under a half vs. North Carolina (Sept. 25).
  • Other prominent Georgia Tech players unavailable for Saturday’s finale due to injury included Fr. DL Zeke Biggers, r-Sr. PK Brent Cimaglia, r-Sr. OL Kenny Cooper, So. TE Dylan Deveney, r-So. DB Jaylon King, r-Fr. OL Nick Pendley, r-Jr. WR Adonicas Sanders, r-Fr. DB Wesley Walker and r-Fr. DB Kenyatta Watson.
  • R-Jr. DB Tre Swilling had a career-high 7 tackles (prev.: 6 – 2X, last vs. Duke, Nov. 28, 2020).
Sr. DB Tariq Carpenter (with head coach Geoff Collins and athletic director Todd Stansbury) was honored prior to Saturday’s game as part of Georgia Tech’s Senior Day festivities.(Photo: Danny Karnik).

 

Multimedia

Georgia Tech Head Coach Geoff Collins Postgame Press Conference (Video)

Georgia Tech Head Coach Geoff Collins Postgame Press Conference (Audio)

Student-Athletes Postgame Press Conference (Video)

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