As for Tech, the implications are unclear, as college football plans to play a season during the coronavirus pandemic kill at first glance on a daily basis. The SEC’s decision garnered more attention on Wednesday night after the ACC seemed to put this on the SEC by approving its schedule model for 10 games plus a non-conference game. The format has left room for the league’s four teams with SEC state rivals – Clemson (South Carolina), Florida (Florida), Louisville (Kentucky) and Tech – to continue their series this year.
But the SEC, which appears to have been on schedule only for a conference long before the ACC maneuver, held a course.
“While it is certainly disappointing for our student-athletes, coaches and fans that we will not have the annual football match against Georgia this year, I also understand and respect the SEC̵
7;s decision,” said Athletic Technical Director Todd Stansbury. “We hope to finalize our opponent for non-conferences for the 2020 season in the near future and look forward to meeting Georgia again in 2021.”
“I am disappointed that our players will not have the opportunity to play our rival game this season, but they respect the SEC’s decision,” coach Jeff Collins said in a statement.
It is also possible that the season will certainly not be played at all. The plans that the conferences draw up are nothing more than plans. The season may be canceled in the coming weeks if teams begin pre-season practice and realize that the pandemic cannot be prevented from spreading to campuses and in locker rooms and practical fields.
Tech has two other home games without a conference scheduled for next season – Central Florida and Gardner-Webb. Jackets may decide to play either one game, or cancel, or try to move the other game to another year, with the previous option being potentially expensive.
With 10 scheduled games against ACC opponents, including Notre Dame, who will play as a full member of the league this year, Tech can choose an opponent with less competition at FCS Gardner-Webb. (The Knights finished 10-3 last season and were listed as a pre-season opponent in the Top 25.)
Or it is possible that Stansbury and Collins will choose to leave UCF and Gardner-Webb and play an opponent in a country like Georgia State, Georgia Southern, Mercer or Kennesaw State. Or the ACC could follow the SEC’s lead and choose not to play non-conference games, although Stansbury’s statement indicates that it has no such intention.
Jared Benko, whose team is a short game, as Ole Miss was supposed to play, is waiting for the Sun Belt conference to decide how he will structure his season.
“I would like to play for Georgia Tech and Georgia every year,” Benko told AJC. “Especially Georgia Tech, since we were in Atlanta, because the last time we played there (2016), we had a huge crowd. We have a lot of fans upstairs. We think it will be a great game. “
As for the 10 ACC games Tech will play, the strength of the Jackets conference schedule is more difficult than most, as the Jackets are scheduled to play both Clemson and Notre Dame, which would be almost any the best choice for two to win an ACC in this most unusual season. The jackets are one of six that will play both the Tigers and the Irish wrestlers, although they both win at home.
The jackets avoid North Carolina, most likely a pre-season team in the Top 25 with returning Sam Howell and Virginia Tech, who were 8-5 last season and return an experienced roster. If the season is played, this will be the first time that the jackets have not played Tar Tarels since 1979.
According to the average score of Sagarin’s opponents at the end of last season, Boston College has the most difficult schedule in the league. The Eagles’ 10 ACC opponents had an average score of 49.1, including Clemson, Notre Dame, North Carolina and Virginia Tech.
Wake Forest is in second place with 49.8. The remaining 13 were collected between 55.8 and 61.5. The technology is fifth on 56.4.
The schedule is certainly easier, as there is no Georgia.
“I’ll miss him,” Anderson said. “I will certainly do so.”