In 2018, Georgia Tech football will once again be back in Black(sburg) as the Jackets take on the Hokies in what is their second most important game of 2018.
This really shouldn’t come as a surprise but Georgia Tech football’s second biggest game of the season in terms of determining the Jackets fate is their showdown in Blacksburg against Virginia Tech. While we rank it second in our top five most important games, it could have easily been ranked as the most important.
An underrated rivalry, Georgia Tech vs Virginia Tech always provides exciting games year-after-year. Since the inception of the ACC Championship game, it’s been one of the biggest matchups every season for both programs and in 2018 it shouldn’t be any different.
Each of the last two seasons, the Yellow Jackets were able to come away with victories over the Hokies and in this upcoming season the Jackets will once again be in Blacksburg where they upset the Hokies 30-20 in 2016. Though this time there will be no Matthew Jordan to lead the Jackets to victory as TaQuon Marshall will have to get the job done, like he did a year ago at home.
Why it’s Important:
The game comes at a critical time in the Yellow Jackets schedule this season with it being the last game of October right before the Jackets last four game stretch of the season which includes a huge game against Miami (hint, hint).
One could argue that the winner of the game is in the driver seat for the ACC Coastal as the Jackets will face Miami, two weeks (November 10th) after their showdown against the Hokies. Virginia Tech and Miami will than face off in the following week. Ultimately, this trifecta of games will most likely determine the ACC Coastal this season.
The importance of the Virginia Tech game lies in the timing of the schedule as mentioned above but also in terms of what the Jackets face prior to the Hokies. Before the Jackets take on the Hokies, they’ll have two tougher ACC games against Clemson and Louisville. If the Yellow Jackets can split those two games, there is a great chance to enter this game with a 6-1 overall record and a conference record of 3-1.
That being said even with a victory, they would still need to take care of business outside their game against Miami with North Carolina and Virginia also on the schedule. Of course, none of this is a given, while the Jackets often play up to the level of teams more talented, they also often play down to their opponent and often get tripped up by doing so the past few seasons.
However, the importance of the Virginia Tech game can not be understated. Not only will it provide a chance to put the Jackets in the driver seat but it would also give them a chance to salvage a season if things go awry. With it being the eighth game on the season, it would give the Jackets a chance to make one last run to end the season to either strengthen their chances to make a bowl or potentially the ACC Coastal division title.
While none of the above is written in stone, the one thing that fans can be pretty confident in, is that the game will be exciting and should be a fun one to watch. But before facing the Hokies to end October, the Jackets will need to open up their season on September 1st against Alcorn State.