As Georgia Tech Sits On The NCAA Bubble, Paul Hewitt Feels No Pressure

The ACC and SEC BlogSenior Analyst IFebruary 14, 2010

ATLANTA - JANUARY 09:  Head coach Paul Hewitt of the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets against the Duke Blue Devils at Alexander Memorial Coliseum on January 9, 2010 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Georgia Tech lost another basketball game Saturday night to fall to 5-6 in the ACC and is now squarely on the NCAA bubble. This is a team with three McDonald's All-Americans (four Parade All-Americans), including two of which are projected NBA first round draft picks next year.

Yet with all these expectations and potential unfulfilled, Georgia Tech head coach Paul Hewitt feels no pressure.

Hewitt's contract is essentially a lifetime contract with a six year rollover agreement each year he is employed on April 15. To get rid of the 10 year Yellow Jacket coach, Georgia Tech would have to pay a buyout of at least $9 million. (Full Contract )

This is on top of the buyout being paid for former football coach Chan Gailey, who has landed two NFL jobs since his dismissal two years ago, and numerous other athletic facility expenditures.

Now while this season may not be over, it probably feels that way in Atlanta. Even if the Yellow Jackets make the Tournament, history suggests they won't get very far.

Outside of the 2004 run, Georgia Tech has just one NCAA Tournament win in 10 seasons. A NCAA Tournament this season with just one win would hardly suffice the frustrated fan base after missing the last two.

Despite all of this perceived talent, Georgia Tech now sits eighth in the ACC standings with five conference games to go. You can already chalk two of those games up as losses as they are road contests with Maryland and Clemson. Ga. Tech is 6-32 in ACC road games over the last four-plus years under Hewitt.

Last year, Georgia Tech was a paltry 2-14 in league play. It's win total matched the number of McDonald's All-Americans on their squad. But there was hope for the future with the arrival of four very talented freshman including many people's player of the year Derrick Favors.

Favors was the MVP of the McDonald's All-American game a year ago and would likely have been a top-five pick last year if not for the new rule requiring players to spend one year beyond high school before entering the NBA Draft.

Likely gone after this year, Favors is averaging just 11 points and 8 rebounds per game. Compare that to DeMarcus Cousins who is averaging 15 points and 10 rebounds at Kentucky and doing it in four less minutes per game.

2007 provides a similar course where two NBA first round picks were able to lead Tech all the way to a 10 seed and a first round loss.

Watching that first round game led ESPN's Bill Simmons to coin the phrase "clogged toilet" offense watching the Yellow Jackets try to score.

For good measure, Billy Packer described Ga. Tech as directionless. Sadly, not much has changed since that 2007 loss to UNLV.

Ever since 2004, Georgia Tech has underachieved under Paul Hewitt. Ironically, Hewitt signed his new contract just days after that Championship Game run. Even with the 2004 season, Hewitt is just 65-90 in ACC action.

I know Paul Hewitt is a competitive guy who wants to win, but would you feel pressure if the worst that could happen in your job was a $9 million check to go away?