Our columnist Mark Bradley gives his take on the game.
1. The name’s Attaochu, as in “ouch.” Defensive end Jeremiah Attaochu had three solo tackles and a sack, which was a better showing than the famous South Carolina defender Jadeveon Clowney had against North Carolina. But Attaochu also drew two holding penalties, one of which negated what would have been an 82-yard touchdown pass at a time when the Tar Heels led 20-14. Said Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson: “Jeremiah turned it up another notch.” Appraised of this, Attaochu said: “I had it turned up the whole game.”
2. B-back David Sims still hasn’t rushed for 100 yards in a Tech game, but these 99 more than sufficed. Sims ran hard and low, running through Tar Heels and supplying the Jackets with the sort of up-the-middle bursts unseen since Anthony Allen left for the NFL after the 2010 season. Five of his 17 carries yielded first downs; two more brought touchdowns. His inside pounding helped clear the perimeter for A-back Robert Godhigh, who shaded Sims for top rushing honors by a measly yard. “It is what it is,” a smiling Sims said afterward, noting that his career best seems to have settled in at 99 (previously achieved against USC in the Sun Bowl).
3. Vad Lee had a learning moment. The sophomore and first-year starter had trouble getting going. He fumbled a snap in the first half and missed the end of Tech’s first touchdown drive because of a hit that he said “took the wind out of me.” He would fumble twice more, Tech recovering both, and his 55 rushing yards came grudgingly. The precise pass Lee threw to Darren Waller for Tech’s second touchdown 30 seconds before halftime was the first of his two highlights, the second being the 10-yard keeper around left end on third-and-10 with 1:34 remaining that enabled the Yellow Jackets to run out the game.
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.