Entering ACC play, the Georgia Tech basketball team is the worst team in the conference.
Entering Friday night, there was only one ACC team that was not above a .500 record, that team is the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. The Jackets will open up their ACC conference slate on Saturday afternoon taking on Notre Dame, the Jackets who are 6-6 will take on the Irish who 10-3 entering the final weekend of 2017.
The only teams in the ACC that don’t have double-digit victories entering Saturday to go along with Georgia Tech are Wake Forest (7-5) and Pittsburgh (8-5). The Demon Deacons like the Jackets have gotten off to an extremely disappointing start this season while the Panthers who were expected to be one of the worst major conference teams in the country have defied expectations so far. The Jackets performance under Josh Pastner in year two of his tenure is disheartening to say the least.
The last month of the season has been extremely difficult for the Yellow Jackets dropping five of seven games in December. Three of those losses were to Grambling, Wofford, and Wright State. Their only victories came against Florida A&M and Coppin State. Combined the two programs are 1-28 this season, outside of their two December victories, the Jackets best victory this season was on a buzzer beater against Northwestern.
When it comes to dissecting the Jackets struggles, multiple reasons could be pointed out. Some would say it was their lack of a strong veteran and leadership presence, others would point out injuries and suspension. Both are true and are just two reasons the Jackets have struggled this season but while they may not be as physically gifted as their opponents, a lot of the Jackets troubles have also come from mental lapses.
That being said, the Jackets biggest issue this season is their offense which feels like deja vu from a year ago. Through 12 games, the Jackets are averaging 62.7 points per game which ranks 309th in the country. Their season high this season is 81 points which came in an 85-81 loss to Wright State. The offense is also averaging over 13 turnovers per game which is lower than a season blow but are still extremely costing when considering other offensive struggles.
Defensively, the Jackets are still among the best in the country allowing less than 65 points per game. However, their low offensive outputs make even the strongest defensive efforts barely enough, their 52-51 win over Northwestern in November proved that.
In reality, the Jackets most likely are not going to make a drastic turnaround once they enter ACC play. They simply are not a sound team fundamentally on offense and still make mental mistakes that have cost them multiple games. They’ll get better but the Jackets surpassing their 21 win total from a year ago seems highly improbable entering Saturday.