The Miami Hurricanes will travel north to Atlanta to take on the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at Bobby Dodd Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Both teams are looking to get a vital conference win this weekend and elevate themselves into the AP Top 25 rankings.
With Virginia Tech suffering an upset loss at Pittsburgh last weekend, the ACC Coastal division is wide open for both Miami and Georgia Tech to capitalize on.
So, which team will earn its second conference win of 2012 on Saturday afternoon?
Here is everything you need to know for Week 4's ACC clash between Miami and Georgia Tech.
Where: Bobby Dodd Stadium, Atlanta, GA
When: Saturday, September 22 at 3 p.m. ET
Watch: ESPN GamePlan
Listen: WQAM 560 (Miami), WQXI 790 (Atlanta)
Live Streaming: ESPN3.com
Betting Line: Georgia Tech (-13.5), according to Covers.com.
The top storyline heading into Saturday's matchup is which team, Miami or Georgia Tech, will step up and earn a crucial win in the ACC Coastal division after ACC favorite Virginia Tech was exposed on the road at Pittsburgh last weekend.
The Hurricanes are atop the division with a 1-0 ACC mark while the Yellow Jackets are right behind at 1-1 in the conference. Georgia Tech needs this win more though as the home team, and having already lost to the Hokies in its season opener.
Who May Not Play for Miami (FL)
*According to USA Today
WR Allen Hurns (Concussion), questionable for Saturday
DB Vaughn Telemaque (Knee), questionable for Saturday
LB Denzel Perryman (Leg), questionable for Saturday
DB Andrew Swasey (Leg), questionable for Saturday
DL Curtis Porter (Appendix), questionable for Saturday
LB Ramon Buchanan (Knee), out for season
LB Raphael Kirby (Leg), out indefinitely
Who May Not Play for Georgia Tech
*According to USA Today
RB Charles Perkins (Undisclosed), questionable for Saturday
QB David Sims (Shin), questionable for Saturday
OL Morgan Bailey (Ankle), questionable for Saturday
S Fred Holton (Foot), questionable for Saturday
LB Daniel Drummond (Ankle), questionable for Saturday
Neither team is ranked coming into this weekend's game, but Georgia Tech is at least receiving votes after reeling off two mighty wins over Presbyterian and Virginia at home. The Yellow Jackets throttled the Cavaliers in Atlanta last Saturday, winning by 36.
Miami is coming off a win over Bethune-Cookman, but will need an impressive victory over Georgia Tech on the road in Week 4 to prove it belongs in the Top 25 after being routed by Kansas State on the road two weeks ago.
What They're Saying
The Miami Hurricanes are preparing to play their third road game in four games overall this Saturday at Georgia Tech. After a big win over Bethune-Cookman, Miami coach Al Golden was quick to express the benefit of a noon kickoff heading into a tough ACC matchup (via The Miami Herald's Susan Miller Degnan):
"This is huge for our team in general, and really for us to regroup, because we have to go back on the road again. I don’t know how many teams are doing that, but we are. And so this was important for our guys to regroup, get some rest and allow the coaches to get in and get going on Georgia Tech."
Miami will play five of its last eight games in 2012 at home after it faces Georgia Tech on Saturday.
Georgia Tech offensive lineman Will Jackson is very alert of the fact that Miami has taken the last three meetings with the Yellow Jackets on the gridiron (via The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's Ken Sugiura):
"We like to say we’re taking it one game at a time, but we definitely kind of have a chip on our shoulder, knowing that we haven’t had much success on any side of the ball the past few times we’ve played [the Hurricanes]."
The Hurricanes defeated the Yellow Jackets 24-7 in South Beach last season.
Miami (FL) Player to Watch
Hurricanes freshman running back Duke Johnson has played phenomenal football to start the 2012 season. The 5'9" back has rushed for 248 yards and four touchdowns on just 27 carries in three games.
Johnson averaged a ridiculous 19.3 yards per carry against Boston College on the road in Miami's season opener three weeks ago. His speed as a smaller running back sets him apart from most ball carriers in college football today.
Georgia Tech Player to Watch
Georgia Tech senior quarterback Tevin Washington is the Yellow Jackets' leader on offense. Washington runs head coach Paul Johnson's tripe option scheme to perfection, and his numbers prove it.
Washington has thrown for 382 yards and three touchdowns this season, while rushing for another 253 yards and four scores. He is completing more than 67 percent of his passes and averaging 6.5 yards per carry coming into Saturday.
The most important matchup in this weekend's ACC showdown in Atlanta is an obvious one: Georgia Tech's rushing attack versus Miami's run stoppers. The edge will lie with the Yellow Jackets in this matchup.
Georgia Tech is averaging 374 rushing yards per game and has scored 14 touchdowns on the ground thus far in 2012. Look for the Miami defense to become drained and holes to open up for the Georgia Tech's rushers late in the game.
On the Hot Seat
Miami's 2011 season under head coach Al Golden was the definition of mediocre. The Hurricanes went 6-6 in Golden's first season, winning just three ACC games all year. Golden's 'Canes are 1-0 in conference play so far in 2012, winning at Boston College, but were embarrassed in their most recent road game at Kansas State.
The Wildcats defeated Miami by 39 points two weeks ago, setting up a pivotal matchup with Georgia Tech that may either make or break Miami's season. Golden will be on the hot seat on Saturday as a loss will send the Hurricanes to 2-2 and 1-1 in the conference with No. 11 Notre Dame and No. 4 Florida State still left on the schedule.
The Yellow Jackets have lost three straight games to the Hurricanes. But that streak will come to an end on Saturday afternoon at Bobby Dodd Stadium. Georgia Tech's third-ranked rushing attack will keep the Miami defense on the field for far too long, exposing them for a big play or two at some point late in the game.
Georgia Tech 21, Miami (FL) 17
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