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Sportswriters pick Tech over Dogs in a shootout
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ATLANTA — Georgia Tech is the overwhelming favorite of the state’s media to beat Georgia for the second year in a row.
Ten of 11 sportswriters and columnists surveyed by The Associated Press picked the Yellow Jackets to win tonight’s game at Bobby Dodd Stadium.

The average of the predicted scores was Georgia Tech 40, Georgia 27.

Here are their picks and comments:

“A turnover-prone quarterback, an embattled head coach and a team sliding into mediocrity. Is this the 2006 Yellow Jackets or the 2009 Bulldogs? ... Georgia Tech 38, Georgia 27.” — Brent Holloway, The Times, Gainesville.

“The Bulldogs can’t stop the triple option and make too many mistakes to keep pace in a shootout. ... Georgia Tech 45, Georgia 27.” — Scott Michaux, The Augusta Chronicle.

“Despite having plenty of time to prepare, I can’t see the Georgia defense being able to stop Paul Johnson’s offense.
The Bulldogs can win by playing turnover- and penalty-free plus getting a little luck by Georgia Tech playing poorly but I don’t foresee that particular confluence. ... Georgia Tech 41, Georgia 27.” — David Jordan, The Brunswick News.

“Averaging more than 310 yards rushing per game this season, Georgia Tech’s offense has confounded opposing defenses all year. Although Georgia will trot out one of the best defensive lines the Yellow Jackets have faced, Tech’s spread option offense is bound for success once again this week. ... it should come as no surprise if the Jackets wear down the Bulldogs in the final two quarters. ... Georgia Tech 41, Georgia 28.” — Coley Harvey, The Macon Telegraph.

“Georgia will score enough to keep the game in doubt, but turnovers will lead to the Bulldogs’ ultimate demise. ... Georgia Tech 35, Georgia 31.” — Roger Clarkson, Athens Banner-Herald.

“Both teams should score enough to make this a shootout and a close game. However, Tech’s defense will come up with just enough stops when it need them, and Georgia’s offense won’t be able to totally eliminate the mistakes. Tech pulls away late. ... Georgia Tech 42, Georgia 28.” — David Friedlander, Gwinnett Daily Post.

“Not much has gone right for Georgia this season, and not much as gone wrong for Tech. That’s a recipe for an easy win for the Jackets this week. ... Georgia Tech 45, Georgia 31.” — David Hale, The Macon Telegraph.

“When emotions run high, discipline matters. The Yellow Jackets are among the most disciplined teams in the nation. Georgia, not so much. ... Georgia Tech 42, Georgia 31.” — Chuck Williams, Columbus Ledger-Enquirer.

“Tech is clicking on all cylinders. Joe Cox shouldn’t have been starting in the first place for Georgia, and play-calling on both sides of the ball is horrible. ... Georgia Tech 34, Georgia 13.” — Chris Stephens, The (Cartersville) Daily Tribune News.

“The Bulldogs have been waiting for an error-free game all season. It comes at just the right time. ... Georgia 41, Georgia Tech 38.” — Charles Odum, The Associated Press.

“I thought this game might be closer than expected — until Georgia turned the ball over four times in the second half of a stunning loss to Kentucky last weekend. With it goes any mental edge the Bulldogs might have had to make up for a disappointing season by upsetting their state rival. Look for a fairly tight first half, then Georgia Tech to pull away over the final two quarters with its potent triple-option offense and more disciplined team. ... Georgia Tech 35, Georgia 17. — Paul Newberry, The Associated Press.
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