Perceptions, Georgia Tech and Occam’s Razor

Gosh, Paul Johnson’s right – if you don’t count the top of the SEC (which holds down the first three slots in the BCS standings, last time I looked), compared to the ACC, the conference is nothing special.

“Personally, I think the conference thing is way overblown. How are you going to evaluate? Are you looking at the top two teams in the conference or are you going to take the conference as a whole? There’s four SEC-ACC games Saturday. Let’s see what happens. Who’s favored in the Clemson-South Carolina game? Who’s favored in the Florida-Florida State game? Wake-Vandy? I don’t know. But you see what I mean? Now, if we’re just talking about Alabama and LSU, that’s different.”

Johnson makes a point. While you can make a case that the SEC is the nation’s superior conference, the strength at the top – and certainly five consecutive BCS titles – exaggerates the differences between conferences from top to bottom…

This is truly silly stuff coming from both Johnson and Schultz (who should know better).  Like it or not, Alabama, Arkansas and LSU all get to cash the checks they receive from the SEC office, just like Ole Miss does.  Do either of the two really want to make a case that any of those three programs wouldn’t rip the ACC a new one, if that’s where any of ’em played for a season?  And does it occur to Johnson or Schultz that a reason the bottom of the SEC looks weaker this year might be because of the havoc the top three have wreaked against it?

Now I get what this really boils down to is Johnson’s insistence that Georgia doesn’t present a special challenge because Tech’s seen other good programs and other good players this season.  But here’s the thing:  if it’s not about the toughness of the two conferences, if it’s not about overall talent or special players and if it’s not about annual distractions (there was only one NCAA inquiry, right?), then how has Tech lost two games to the weakest teams Mark Richt has fielded in his tenure at Georgia?  It couldn’t be coaching, could it?


Filed under ACC Football, Georgia Football, Georgia Tech Football, Media Punditry/Foibles, SEC Football

57 responses to “Perceptions, Georgia Tech and Occam’s Razor

  1. Dboy

    Let Tech put some combination of Alab, LSU, UF, Auburn, Tenn, USC, Ark & +/- Okl st / Boise St etc on their schedule year in and year out and lets see what he thinks of the conference / an SEC schedule after a few seasons. GT would be a bottom feeder. What a tard (similar to a retard, minus dignity of the re). P Johnson guy talks too much for a football coach.

  2. Spike

    If any of these boobs, and I include CPJ and Schultz, think the SEC is not the dominate football conference then they are blind fools and are denying the undenyable.

    • ScoutDawg

      Oh, they know, but they will NEVER admit it.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        If you lop off the top teams in the SEC (and I include the SEC East Champion UGA and runner-up South Carolina) and then compare the rest of the SEC to the entire ACC the ACC still loses. This year’s lower level SEC schools like Auburn, Mississippi State,Florida,UT, Vandy, UK still kick the asses of most of the ACC schools. If this year’s Auburn team, for example, had played a full ACC schedule the Aubies would have only lost maybe 2 conference games. How can Schultz even keep his job? The guy is a moron.

        • ScooBoo

          If you count a newspaper subscription to every Tech prof and admin, plus setting a couple of paper boxes up on campus, it’s probably the AJC’s single largest sales outlet. The real question is…….does Schultz still have to get his knees dirt……..never mind.

  3. charlottedawg

    Broken record talking point alert: i’ve said it before and i’ll say it again : georgia has won the same number of bcs bowl games as tech’s entire conference: two. uga has also done something that the acc has never done, received an at large bcs bowl bid. I’ll need a fact check but the acc has also never beaten a top 5 team in I want to say the last 5 years. If you truly look into the numbers the acc is head and shoulders below not only the sec in football but pretty much every aq conference including the big east. It’s pretty embarassing.

    • gastr1

      The most damning thing about the ACC, IMO, is your last point, which speaks to the fact that the ACC NEVER has a team worthy of the top 5. NEVER. The effort to discount the top end of the conference is something every conference would like to do…Hey, if you discount that the top team in C-USA is never a top 20 team (>coughcough<) and just compare the middling teams, SMU and East Carolina look pretty good next to Vanderbilt and Mississppi State. Woah, look, same thing in the Big East–I bet Pittsburgh could take half them (bottom) teams in the SEC!! Yeah!

      But it's how your top teams do that defines the quality of your conference, and this has always been the case. End of discussion. Sorry, ACC, but you still suck in football even with Flarda State, the U, Clempson, and Gobblers.

  4. Mr. Tu

    If Paul Johnson’s point is that UGA nd GT are on a level playing field, then I am all for what he is saying. However, he needs to sell that to his own people first. If he can rid us all of that tired excuse, maybe we won’t have to hear about admissions standards, calculus, and other whiny BS after we beat their ass every year.

    • Cojones

      Don’t any of you think that he is just whistlin’ through the graveyard? Let him convince his players that we aren’t anything special coming from a not-so-special conference. Psychologically they won’t prepare for any big hits and the first time they feel most any D player we have, then the impression is made. Encourage the man to downplay us until game time, but I happen to think that his players can read and understand the BS he is spouting. They will get ready despite what he is saying to lull us into complacency and will try to bring it and will if we aren’t ready. Fear the idiot until the game is over. Then buy a few billboards near campus , post the score and one of his quotes. Certainly there is a Dawg in Atlanta who can take care of that little piece of business. Right?

      • ChicagoDawg

        Downplaying? No, he is just pandering to the maggot faithful who get an erection from the vicarious thrill they get from Moobs’ tough guy talk. They love the CPJ as a ‘bad ass’ image they have assigned to him and by connection, to themselves. Any opportunity to slag off UGA as okay, but no better than Clemson or fill in the blank gets them titillated.

  5. DawgVegas

    It couldn’t POSSIBLY be coaching. He never calls the wrong play or makes a bad decision. He’s a genius!! A GENIUS I tells ya! Any failure is the players fault (although recruiting is overrated). They just didn’t execute properly or aren’t talented enough.

    No one ever figures out how to defend that system he runs…until they do.

  6. charlottedawg

    I also love Tech logic which states: if i conveniently remove all of the data points that don’t support my narrative / hypothesis, my narrative / hypothesis holds true.

  7. Dante

    Clemson, Free Shoes, and Wake are #2, #4 (tie), and #4 (tie) respectively in their ACC conference records. Scar, Florida, and Vandy are #5, #7, and #8 in their respective SEC conference records. I don’t think their best beating our worst really proves anything. That’s like the Big East trumpeting conference bowl wins when (with the exception or the Orange Bowl) they’re always playing down against lesser opponents in other conferences.

    • Doug

      Exactly. If Paul Johnson wants to talk about top-to-bottom depth, then by all means, let’s talk about it.

      Clemson < LSU
      VaTech < Alabama
      Virginia < Arkansas
      GaTech ?? UGA (don't want to jinx it, but y'all know where I stand on this)
      FSU Tennessee
      UNC = Vandy
      BC <<< Missy St.
      MD = Kentucky
      Duke = Ole Miss (though if they played, my money'd be on Cutcliffe for the revenge factor alone)

      So at best, the ACC wins three or four of those battles. And their top three would get blasted off the field by our top three.

  8. No One Knows You're a Dawg

    The flagship station of the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets is ripping Paul Johnson this morning for being such a prickly jerk. Truly quality entertainment.

    • Will (the other one)

      That I wish I’d tuned into (ever since Pollack left I keep forgetting 790 is there, which sucked this morning because 680 was forcing the craptacular Mike & Mike on its listeners.)


    The case could be made that the lower half of the SEC is a little weak this year. With Tn and FL suffering coaching changes, with SC’s injury sit and with UGA’s immaturity at some positions, with it is NOT a typical year. But to point to this year’s class and say the conference is “nothing special” is a blatent distortion of the whole picture. Check out the National Championship list for , say , the last decade. Dboy is absolutley right, Paul Johnson is an ahole who “talks way to much for a coach”. Here’s betting he’d jump on a coaching job at any SEC program. By the way….I think Vandy could have been ACC champs this year. Maybe they should jump..Swap conferences with NC or NC State.

  10. Greg

    South Carolina has won the last 2 and 3 of the last 5 over Clemson. They would certainly be favored if not for the Lattimore injury. Historically, Clemson has gotten the best of SC, but they’ve been dominated by other SEC teams, including UGA.

    Florida had beaten FSU 6 straight prior to last years game. Florida has a 13 game advantage in the series.

    Not that anyone really cares, but Vandy actually has a 7-6 series advantage over Wake. Wake has win the last three meetings…an ACC point of pride.

    • gastr1

      Yet, Wake Forest is not really analogous to Vandy in terms of conference success…not even close. Wake Forest is a top-tier program in that bastion of amazingness up the road.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        In reality Wake was the conference doormat for the ACC forever. It has only been since Al Groh showed up that Wake has gained respectability as a program in the ACC or anywhere for that matter.

  11. goalinestalker

    Your right Paul Johnson the the SEC is a little top heavy. My question is how did an underachieving Dawg team work the 09 ACC Champs? I’ll hang up and listen…

    • dawgy45

      Georgia did not play the ’09 ACC champs. We did play and beat tech though.

      • Puffdawg

        Nice. Back when Tech was stripped of their title for cheating again, somebody on here made a comment to the effect of, “So does this mean UGA can no longer claim our 2009 ACC Championship.”

      • goalinestalker

        It was a play on words. When we played them we beat them in 09. Point is Paul Johnson needs to pipe down about the SEC.

  12. Puffdawg

    First of all, the SEC has 5 teams in the top 13. FIVE.

    “And does it occur to Johnson or Schultz that a reason the bottom of the SEC looks weaker this year might be because of the havoc the top three have wreaked against them?”

    So, to your point Bluto, Johnson and Schultz should probably consider the bottom of the SEC looking like it does because of the havoc wreaked by the top 5.

    • +1 Great point about SEC having 5 very strong teams in the top 13. Plus the five consecutive BCS titles don’t hurt either. We will have 6 consecutive after this year. Hell another conference doesn’t appear to be able to put a team in the BCS championship at all.

  13. Keese

    Is there such a thing as an anti-homer, because good ‘ol Schultz for Brains would be it

  14. CarolinaDawg

    Paraphrase: “Besides the top three teams in the country, the SEC looks a lot like the ACC…”

    ….and if my aunt had a pair of nuts, she’d be my uncle.

  15. dawgy45

    Well according to the pool I’m in the spreads are as follows:
    South Carolina -4.5
    Florida +1.5
    Vandy -1.5

    Oh and the other matchup he didn’t bother to mention…UGA -6.5.

    Since he asked…

  16. D.N. Nation

    Ooh! I want to play this game, too!

    “The fact that they have national championships and have won a lot of games exaggerates how much better UNC basketball is than Georgia.”

    Good argument, me!

    Also, I like how Schultz mentions Trek’s NCAA investigation, seeing how his paper didn’t find it worth reporting on in the FIRST place.

  17. Come on guys, put down the Red and Black colored glasses…. way back in 1990 we lost to Clempson and Trek. And in 1996 we lost to Virginia in a bowl game. ACC teams give Georgia fits.

  18. Hogbody Spradlin

    “if you don’t count the top of the SEC ” Right. And if Mrs. Lincoln doesn’t count that little disruption, she had a great time at Ford’s Theatre.
    Or, if you ignore the elephants in the room (unintentional pun), the ACC is equal to the SEC.

  19. ThatDawg'llBiteYou

    Loved the last comment on CPJ article: ” Harry Potter bobble-head day this Saturday” at pre-historic grant field; also, heard you could were #29 UGA jersey and park/sit anywhere you wanted!

  20. Scott

    I am really worried about our players not caring enough about this GT game now that UGA is in the SEC title game but has no shot for a national title. Now that the pressure is off, will we have the motivation?

  21. Hogbody Spradlin

    Scott, based on experience back to 1975, there’s no need to worry about the players or coaches being motivated to play Tech. Conversely, no matter how bad Tech is, we get their best effort of the year, like South Carolina.
    1976 was close to a let down. We were ranked 4th, SEC champs, and Sugar Bowl bound. We needed a late Alan Leavitt field goal to win 13-10 over a mediocre Pepper Rogers team. Other than that, I cannot recall a significant, surprising Tech upset. Okay maybe 2008, but that was on Willie.

    There’s enough Tech hatred in the Georgia boys, and enough ghosts around the campus, that it’s almost genetic to hate Tech.

    • Scott

      Man you’re old! hahah. I don’t recall the 76 game, but I vividly remember being way down at halftime in 1978 and storming back only to have Drew Hill return a kickoff for a TD. I was 11 at the time. I remember us winning 29-28 at the end, but can’t recall how.

      Worst football memory. I was in the stands at GT for the Jasper Sanks fumble and loss 51-48 under Donnan.

      • Scott

        wow, just found it on youtube. So that was the Amp Arnold play I’ve heard so much about.

      • 81Dog

        we were down 20-0 IN THE FIRST QUARTER. Tech came out smoking, but good triumphed over evil in the end. Dawg bless Amp Arnold, Buck Belue, and Matt Simon. Pepper Rodgers went from wily genius in the first quarter to unacceptable loser by the end of the game. He had to sue Tech after they finally fired him in order to get the cheap SOBs to pay him what his contract clearly said they owed him. You can look it up. I hope Fish Fry comes to the same end soon; in fact, I expect it.

    • Chopdawg

      ’84 game…maybe

  22. Always Someone Else's Fault

    ACC: Does any other conference manage to generate the exact same story-line year after year? VTech loses one early, then runs the table, then gets drilled in a bowl game. GTech demonstrates the ability to beat anyone in the country and lose to anyone in the country. FSU, Clemson and Miami behave like programs filled with 4 and 5 star recruits who can’t believe they actually have to put in some work to beat good teams. UVa, Maryland, UNC, and NC State are either rising to or descending from an 8-5 high water mark. BC and Wake manage to stay competitive, and to those who point out they’ve both made BCS games… do they ever achieve that in the B12, B10, or P-12, much less the SEC? Duke’s Duke – a team that can get a coach at Alabama fired for leading by 7 in the 3rd quarter in Tuscaloosa.

    When was the last time the ACC fielded a great team?

  23. RedD

    CPJ is a great coach, look at his win %, top 12 in nation. All games against Tech have been close since CPJ got there. This game is scary and could go either way.

  24. Voice of Reason

    Stating that the ACC is a superior conference, or that the two are equal, because Clemson is favored over SC and Florida St. is favored over Florida is like arguing that the SEC is superior this year because Alabama and LSU would beat Virginia and NC State (even then, which two point spreads do you think would be higher?).

    The way one evaluates a conference’s strength is success across the table. This strength of the SEC is perfectly illustrated be the SEC’s mediocre-at-the-least bowl record, which is grossly deflated because each SEC team consistently plays a team ranked two, three, or even four places higher within their own conferences.

    Let’s take a look at the SEC and ACC across the board:

    1. #1 LSU vs. #6 VA Tech
    2. #2 Alabama vs. #18 Clemson
    3. #3 Arkansas vs. #25 GA Tech
    4. #13 Georgia vs. #24 Virginia
    5. #14 South Carolina vs. Florida St.
    6. #24 Auburn vs. Wake Forest
    7. Flordia vs. NC State
    8. Vanderbilt vs. Miami
    9. Mississippi State vs. UNC
    10. Tennessee vs. Boston College
    11. Kentucky vs. Duke
    12. Ole Miss vs. Maryland

    I’d love to see these played out

  25. Macallanlover

    Are you guys serious? You really are going to debate something as dumb as a question about which conference is the best between the SEc and the ACC? Maybe old Nerdy Paul is a genius after all, he has made you all look ridiculous. When have we ever argued something so moronic? He probably has our team laughing so hard they aren’t focusing.

  26. Biggus Rickus

    You’re right. It’s an absurd argument, but if some fool makes it you might as well respond. Though all you have to do is point out that we’re only two years removed from two middling SEC teams (SC and Georgia) knocking off their title game participants in the final game of the season.