The Georgia Tech men’s basketball season is coming to a disastrous end as the Jackets were dominated by Virginia 81-51 on Wednesday night.
On Wednesday night, the Georgia Tech basketball team took on the No.2 Virginia Cavaliers in Charlottesville. The Jackets entered the game losers of 9 of their last 10 games and needed to show some life against the Cavaliers. The Yellow Jackets did the exact opposite as they were flat out dominated by the Cavaliers from start to finish en route to an 81-51 loss.
The loss was the worst of the Jackets conference play this season and showed that once again the Jackets are more than just a “stud” player away from being an NCAA Tournament team as head coach Josh Pastner allured to a few weeks ago. The Jackets over the course of their ACC schedule have simply been outmatched in almost all their conference games. In fact, out of their 12 ACC conference losses this season, the Jackets have lost 11 by double-digits.
Three of Georgia Tech’s four conference wins are not anything to brag about either as Wake Forest, Notre Dame, and Pittsburgh are all in the bottom part of the conference standings along with the Yellow Jackets. Their 73-59 win over Syracuse, on the other hand, was a quality victory but since then, it’s been downhill for the Jackets and it could put Josh Pastner on the hot seat entering next season.
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For the Jackets, the last two games of their regular season are against Boston College and North Carolina State. The Eagles are 5-10 in conference play entering Sunday’s matchup while North Carolina State currently sits at 8-7 in conference play but 20-8 overall. Neither game will be easy for the Yellow Jackets and if they lose both, it will mark the second straight season the Jackets have regressed from the season prior. Here are each of the Jackets’ last five records;
- 2014-15: 12-19 (3-15) – Brian Gregory
- 2015-16: 21-15 (8-10) – Brian Gregory
- 2016-17: 21-15 (8-10) – Josh Pastner
- 2017-18: 13-19 (6-12) – Josh Pastner
- 2018-19: 12-17 (4-12) – Josh Pastner
Off the records, it’s easy to make the statement that the only season that Pastner has been successful at Tech was the season that he got to have Brian Gregory’s players including Ban Lammers, Tadric Jackson, and Quinton Stephens. In his two seasons using mostly players, he’s recruited to Tech, Pastner is 25-36 with a 10-22 record in conference play.
Next season will be the fourth season for Josh Pastner at Georgia Tech. The former Memphis head coach signed a seven-year deal with the university with the idea by year seven, the Jackets would be in the NCAA Tournament. While a lot can happen in four years, it’s right now safe to say that the Jackets making the tournament anytime in the next four years seems like a long shot.
The Jackets under Pastner have struggled with scoring, consistently having some of the worst offenses in the country. While that goes well beyond Pastner and dates back to the Brian Gregory years, Pastner has done very little to change that. This season, the Jackets are averaging 64.7 points per game which is a full point lower than what it was a season ago, and three points lower than the Jackets 2016-17 average.
Additionally, the Jackets struggles when it comes to recruiting, have been frustrating for fans as well. While the Jackets are doing well with getting top recruits on campus, they have yet been able to close the door with a true game-changing talent. To make things worse, the Jackets only recruit right now in the 2019 recruiting class David Didenko is not even starting for his JUCO program in Florida.
It’s simple, the Jackets except on defense has shown very little progression under Josh Pastner and at some point, the Jackets will need to make that progress. If the Jackets don’t make any type of progression, athletic director Todd Stansbury will have a potentially difficult decision to make about Pastner’s future with the program.
With that, it’s safe to say if it was the decision of Georgia Tech fans, Josh Pastner would already be on the hot seat. The lack of progression from the program and the simplicity that the program appears to be backtracking has left fans annoyed and starving for a winning product on the court. Is that Todd Stansbury’s feelings on the situation? We’ll never know but Stansbury must be at least a bit concerned about the program going forward.