Day & Time: Saturday, November 18, 8:00 pm ET
Location: Bobby Dodd Stadium, Atlanta, Ga.
Line: The line has stayed steady since it opened with Georgia Tech favored by 6.5 points, according to DraftKings.
TV/Streaming: ACC Network, WatchESPN
Rivalry: 3-1, Georgia Tech
Current Streak: 1, Syracuse
First Meeting: The first meeting between these two teams didn’t come until 2001 when the programs faced off in the Kickoff Classic at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. It wasn’t a classic, with the then No. 10 Yellow Jackets winning a defensive battle 13-7. The lone touchdown for Syracuse came via a quarterback rush by some guy named Troy Nunes.
Last Meeting: Hey remember the 2020 season? This was Syracuse’s only win that year. Syracuse forced Georgia Tech quarterback Jeff Sims into four interceptions to help seal a 37-20 win, including the lateral touchdown between Ja’Had Cater and Trill Williams. Also of note, two future NFL running backs ran for over 100 yards in this game. Sean Tucker made his first start for Syracuse with 112 rushing yards. On the other side, Jahmyr Gibbs ran for 105 yards before heading to Alabama.
Head Coaches: Syracuse - Dino Babers (eighth year, 41-54) | Georgia Tech - Brent Key (first year, 9-9)
Coach Bio: Key was a four-year starter at Georgia Tech playing right guard. He immediately went into coaching after his college career, staying in Atlanta as a graduate assistant before getting his first full-time assistant job with Western Carolina. Key then moved to UCF to coach alongside George O’Leary, who Key played under at Georgia Tech. He stayed with the Knights for 10 years, working his way up the UCF coaching hierarchy. He was eventually named Assistant Head Coach in his final three seasons.
Key was fired from UCF after a messy 2015 season where the Knights went 0-12. He moved to Alabama to take over the offensive line coaching duties from Mario Cristobal. He stayed in Tuscaloosa for three years before returning to his alma mater Georgia Tech. Key immediately became assistant head coach, offensive line coach and run game coordinator for the Yellow Jackets. After Geoff Collins was fired four games into the 2022 season, Key took over as interim head coach and rallied Georgia Tech to a 4-4 record to close out the year. He was named permanent head coach of the Yellow Jackets a few days after the season ended.
Last Year: Collins was fired after starting the 2022 season 1-3, ending his Georgia Tech head coaching career with a 10-28 record. When Key took over, Georgia Tech immediately upset No. 24 Pitt in his first game in charge. A second upset win over No. 13 North Carolina moved Georgia Tech to within one win of bowl eligibility, but the Yellow Jackets couldn’t stop Georgia’s runaway freight train to back-to-back national championships.
Last Game: Powered by 260 rushing yards and a 21-point second quarter, Clemson easily swept aside Georgia Tech in Death Valley. The Tigers had 201 more total yards of offense than the Yellow Jackets.
“Fear Me, I’ve Killed Hundreds of Timelords”: Georgia Tech has the third-best rushing offense in the ACC, averaging 195.4 yards per game. A large part of that effort is due to Jamal Haynes, who is fifth in the conference with 768 rushing yards, 30 behind LeQuint Allen.
If Syracuse Wins: …So what do we do now?
If Syracuse Loses: Well the atmosphere in the JMA Wireless Dome will be quite interesting to behold next week.
Fun Fact: Syracuse had three 100-yard rushers last week, which was the first time that the Orange achieved that feat since 1997. Then-No. 16 Syracuse defeated Miami in the final game of the regular season 33-13 behind 136 rushing yards from Kyle McIntosh, 117 rushing yards from Dee Brown, and 100 rushing yards from Donovan McNabb.
Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for details.