The Notre Dame football team will take on Georgia Tech during the 2021 season in a game that should be pretty lopsided in the Irish’s favor.
For a lot of people, Georgia Tech is the answer to a trivia question. “Which team did Rudy play against?” However, they actually have a fairly long history of playing Notre Dame football, at least compared to a lot of other ACC schools.
This goes back to when they left the SEC over rising scholarship limits and concerns that this would affect their academic standing. Initially, Georgia Tech had to go Independent, which led to a long series of games.
Today, they play consistently due to the ACC deal that Notre Dame has. Notre Dame has a 29-6-1 record against the Yellow Jackets, including a two-game win streak. Notre Dame’s biggest win over Georgia Tech came in 1977, by a score of 69-14.
The Yellow Jacket’s biggest win against the Irish came in 2007 (you remember Charlie Weis), by a score of 33-3. Last year, Notre Dame won 31-13 in Atlanta, and this game will be played in South Bend.
Things have been difficult at Georgia Tech for a few seasons now. They hired Paul Johnson from Navy over a decade ago to run the triple option. This was a decision based on balancing the playing field in a Power Five conference while maintaining high academic standards for admission.
For a while, it worked, as they went to seven straight bowls to open Johnson’s tenure, including two Orange Bowls and a conference championship game.
Then, the wheels came off a bit, going only 24-25 in his last four seasons at Georgia Tech before retiring. At this point, the Yellow Jackets had a decision to make. Do they hire another triple-option coach or do they decide to modernize?
They chose the latter and brought in Geoff Collins, an Atlanta native who had a successful stint as the Temple head coach. It was always going to be a slow process modernizing Georgia Tech, and Collins has done a good job embracing Atlanta and changing the culture of the program.
The wins haven’t followed yet, though, going 6-16 in two seasons.
Of course, that isn’t surprising and is even arguably better than can be expected. This is a roster, especially on offense, that had to be completely turned over. They’re young and trying to get the experience and strength to compete. Read between the lines and see how they’re taking steps on the field, even if not in the win column.
It’s doubtful, with games against Clemson, North Carolina, Miami, Notre Dame, and Georgia to name a few, that the wins come in 2021 either. Still, you can’t take a young and energetic team lightly.