Can Wake Forest Demon Deacons Keep Georgia Tech Winless in the ACC?

The ACC and SEC BlogSenior Analyst IJanuary 31, 2009

Wake Forest, fresh off its win over No. 1 Duke, travels to Atlanta to take on the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, who are looking for their first ACC win of the season. The teams have split their last five meetings, with Tech going 4-1 at home.

Wake Forest 17-1 overall, 4-1 ACC, 5-0 (away)
Georgia Tech 9-10 overall, 0-6 ACC, 7-5 (home)

Keys to the Game:
1. Turnovers
Georgia Tech is averaging a shade under 20 turnovers per game in ACC play. Wake is not extremely careful with the ball, either, coughing it up 15 times a contest. The Jackets have to have under 15 turnovers to have a shot in this game and they have to do that in ACC play.

2. Bench Production

Both teams rely heavily on their starters, especially Georgia Tech. Paul Hewitt's five starters all average in double figures, but the subs behind those players are merely minutes eaters on the offensive end of the floor. Wake's top three reserves average just 13 points per game, as the Deacons depend on Jeff Teague who delivers 21 points per game. Any additional bench production will be a huge boost to that team.

3. Come Out Swinging

In Wake's only loss this season, Virginia Tech jumped on Dino Gaudio's club early, getting out to a 10-point lead at halftime. The Yellow Jackets have to get hot early, especially from outside to have a chance to pull off the upset.

Prediction
Nothing so far this season has shown me that Georgia Tech can pull off this kind of upset. Wake Forest has been to No. 1 and lost to an underdog in the next game already this season. Now they have beaten a No. 1 of their own. I think they learned from that Virginia Tech game and will not let it happen again.
Wake Forest wins by 10-16 points

Other ACC Games This Weekend:
Boston College over Virginia Tech
Tough game to figure out here. BC has been on a mini hot streak as of late while Virginia Tech is coming off a home loss to Clemson. The Hokies have been great against the top teams and average against the middle teams this season. I’ll take BC at home.

Miami over Maryland
A game pitting two teams that are suffering through losing streaks as of late in Miami and Maryland. The pressure is starting to mount against Gary Williams in College Park. I’ll take Miami in a close road win.

Duke over Virginia

The Blue Devils cannot be happy about losing their first game as No. 1 on Wednesday. I don’t think UVA has a chance.

Season: 9-9 SU through 1/30

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