Georgia Tech vs. Ole Miss Odds
Saturday September 16
7:30 pm Eastern Time
|Georgia Tech Odd|
-105o / -115u
|old miss Odd|
-105o / -115u
It’s time to take the measuring stick for Georgia Tech.
One year removed from a 42-point shutout loss at home at the hands of Ole Miss, the Yellow Jackets have a chance to see how much they’ve improved under head coach Brent Key.
It won’t be easy against a ranked Ole Miss team that has one of the best running backs in the country and is off to an undefeated start with a game in Tuscaloosa waiting in the wings.
Will the Yellow Jackets be the last ACC team to show superiority over the SEC, or will the Rebels buck that trend in 2023?
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
The Rebels’ victory over a Tulane team without Michael Pratt wasn’t as easy as most projected, but it was still a 17-point, cover victory.
One of the main reasons for the Rebels’ first-half struggles and a potential cause for concern in the immediate future was the injury to former All-Conference USA receiver Tre Harris.
The transfer receiver caught his fifth touchdown of the season on the game’s first drive before departing after the second possession. Ole Miss didn’t score a touchdown again until the third quarter.
Lane Kiffin described Harris’ injury as not long-term, but with an Alabama game on the line, there’s a slim chance Jaxson Dart will have his best receiver to throw against Georgia Tech.
Dayton Wade and Jordan Watkins are capable replacements, but more important than them will be the performance of Ole Miss’ offensive line. The Rebels allowed four sacks against Tulane and rank 103rd in the country with 14 tackles for loss allowed.
Worse yet, preseason first-team All-SEC Quinshon Judkins has hit a bit of a slump in his sophomore year, averaging just 3.5 yards per carry with a long run of 13 yards against two non-Power Five foes.
But if there was ever a week for that to change, it would be here against the Yellow Jackets, who rank 120th in rushing defense and allowed 316 rushing yards to the Rebels last year.
The defense has been a bit confusing for Ole Miss. The Rebels have struggled with explosive plays, allowing a 75-yard rushing touchdown against Mercer, which drew Kiffin’s ire toward new defensive coordinator Pete Golding, and a pair of longer receptions. 40-yarder against Tulane and backup quarterback Kai Horton.
Haynes King will be the best passer the Ole Miss defense has seen to date, so continuing to generate pressure is imperative. Only eight teams have more sacks than the Rebels this season, while Georgia Tech is tied for eighth in sacks allowed.
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How far has Georgia Tech come in one year?
The 42-0 demolition at home at the hands of Ole Miss in 2022 contributed to the firing of Geoff Collins two weeks later. Key was named the replacement and has coached the Yellow Jackets to a 5-5 record since (1-1 in 2023).
The biggest addition this offseason has been former Texas A&M quarterback King. King had a brilliant start to the season against Louisville, throwing for 313 yards and three touchdowns, but his interception and fumble led directly to 10 Louisville points in a five-point Cardinals victory.
King had help in the racing department thanks to a collective effort from the runners. Georgia Tech rushed for 268 yards against South Carolina State and 175 against Louisville.
The biggest X factor in this game will be Georgia Tech’s run defense. The Yellow Jackets rank 120th in run defense, allowing 211.5 yards per game. That includes 196 yards for an FCS team last week.
Georgia Tech wasn’t much better last season (189 yards per game) and lost two of its most productive tacklers in Ayinde Eley and Charlie Thomas. Reinforcements were brought in through the transfer portal, but they have yet to bear fruit.
Georgia Tech vs. Ole Miss
Analysis of confrontations
Toggle the dropdown menus below to hide or show how Georgia Tech and Ole Miss match up statistically:
Georgia Tech offense vs. Ole Miss defense
|Hasty success||18||Four. Five|
|Yards of line||14||29|
Ole Miss Offense vs. Georgia Tech Defense
|Yards of line||76||Sixty-five|
Pace of play/Other
|Approach to PFF||117||4|
|SP+ Special Equipment||81||fifty|
|Seconds per play||25.6 (51)||21.9 (10)|
|Rush rate||51.8% (94)||49.6% (93)|
Georgia Tech vs. Ole Miss
Bet selection and prediction
Against an SEC opponent, Harris’ absence would be a big problem. Against a porous Georgia Tech front seven, that won’t be the case.
Judkins hasn’t lived up to the expectations associated with being named to almost every preseason watch list, but this is the perfect game for the second-year running back. Judkins had 98 yards and two touchdowns splitting carries with Zach Evans a year ago against the Yellow Jackets, and he’s in for something of similar quality this time around.
King is still working on a new offense with first-year coordinator Buster Faulkner and has had a propensity for turning the ball over since his career with the Aggies.
The Rebels have a game against Alabama next week, but Georgia Tech’s run defense has been so bad that even Ole Miss’ backups should be effective when the team tries to slow things down.
Also, don’t forget that Dart’s backup is Spencer Sanders, who is more than capable of scoring points.
Georgia Tech has improved from a season ago, but the gap between these two programs is still at least three points, even in a sandwich spot for the Rebels.
Pick: Ole Miss -18 (Play up to 19.5)
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