You know, I feel like I’ve been remiss somewhat by not celebrating The Citadel’s epic win over Georgia Tech — okay, more like the Jackets’ epic loss — as much as I should here. So, allow me to make some amends by noting the historical track record of P5 teams that fell on their face against FCS foes. (HINT: It ain’t pretty.)
Between 1999 and 2018, a span of 20 seasons, there have been 36 power-conference teams that have lost to FCS opponents. Of the 36, 22 went on to win three games or fewer.
You don’t say. Tell us more.
Were Tech to follow suit, it would rate among the least successful in many years. Since the retirement of Bobby Dodd after the 1966 season, Tech has won three games or fewer seven times, five of those seasons occurring in the 1980’s.
At Georgia Tech, you can do that.
There is some hope for the most optimistic Tech fans. Of the 36 teams visited by FCS defeat, eight still managed to make bowl games in the same season. The shining model is Virginia Tech in 2010, which lost to James Madison (the Hokies were playing on short rest after losing to Boise State on Labor Day night) before going on to win the ACC and playing in the Orange Bowl. (Apologies to Jackets fans who would rather not look to Blacksburg, Va., for inspiration.)
However, it is interesting to note that the coaches of all eight of those teams were well into successful tenures at their schools (including Michigan’s Lloyd Carr, Virginia Tech’s Frank Beamer and Washington State’s Mike Leach) and most faced elite FCS opponents, suggesting the results were indeed blips. Tech’s situation does not include the former and does not appear to include the latter.
Good thing Geoff’s got that seven-year deal.