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Tech Hokies vs. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Pick.
Virginia Tech Hokies (6-2) +2, o/u 41 at Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (5-3), 7:30 pm Eastern Thursday, ESPN
by Zman of Predictem.com
A couple of ACC Coastal Division rivals hook up when the Virginia Tech Hokies visit Dixie to take on the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Thursday night at Bobby Dodd Stadium in Atlanta.
Virginia Tech is coming off a really tough loss last Thursday, falling to Boston College at home 14-10. The Hokies had stuffed BC all night long, and led 10-0 with three minutes to go in the game. But they allowed the Eagles to score, then couldn’t recover an on-sides kick, and then, rushing only three, let QB Matt Ryan scramble and find an open receiver in the back of the end zone for the winning score with 11 seconds remaining.
So V Tech is now 3-1 and in second place in the ACC Coastal, a half-game back of division-leading Virginia.
Georgia Tech beat Army 34-20 12 days ago, and had last weekend off. So the Yellow Jackets are 2-3 and in fourth place in the Coastal Division.
The Hokies are 2-5 against the spread on the season, but 2-1 both straight up and ATS on the road.
Georgia Tech is 3-3-1 vs. the number this season, 3-1 SU and 1-1-1 against the spread at home.
In last season’s meeting between these two teams, the Ramblin’ Wreck jumped out to a 21-0 first-quarter lead and later scored two TDs on fumble recovery/returns on their way to a 38-27 upset win in Blacksburg. G Tech also outrushed Virginia Tech that day 149-42.
This season the Hokies are outscoring opponents on average 26-16 and outrushing foes 119-90, but are getting outgained on average 304-295.
Georgia Tech is outscoring opponents 28-16, outgaining them 391-288 and outrushing them 219-87.
The V Tech QB situation is a bit unsettled at the moment. Sean Glennon began the season as the starter, but was replaced by freshman Tyrod Taylor. But Taylor missed last week’s game with an ankle injury, so Thursday’s starter may not be decided until game-time.
On the other side of this match-up, Jackets junior QB Taylor Bennett has completed 51% of his passes this season for a 2/3 TD/INT ratio in G Tech’s ground-oriented attack.
These two teams have played two common opponents so far this year. Both teams lost to Boston College, the Jackets by a 24-10 tally in week 3 and the Hokies by that 14-10 score last Thursday, and both teams have beaten Clemson, Georgia Tech by a 13-3 score in week 5 and Virginia Tech by a 41-23 tally in week 6.
The Wreck’s running game will be missing two key ingredients Thursday night, as RBs Tashard Choice and Rashaun Grant are battling wheel-related injuries and are not expected to play.
The Sagarin PREDICTOR ratings at USAToday.com rank the Hokies 40th at 77.9, the Jackets 39th at 78.3.
The o/u is 3-4 in Virginia Tech games this season, which are averaging 42 points per, and 2-4-1 in G Tech games, which are averaging 44 points.
Georgia Tech opened as two-point home chalk for Thursday’s game, with a total of 42. The Jackets have been bet up a half-point and more at most sportsbooks, while the total has dropped a point or so. Also, G Tech is listed at right around -145 on the moneyline, with the Hokies getting around +125 as road dogs.