Deep Georgia Tech looks to return to top of ACC
ATLANTA (AP) — Coach Paul Johnson said Georgia Tech has so much depth that he's yet to decide on starters at several positions.
The Yellow Jackets still have more than two weeks before the season begins Sept. 3 at Virginia Tech, but with two more Atlantic Coast Conference games on the calendar next month, Johnson wants the jobs filled soon.
"I think we've got good depth, probably the most we've had there, too," he said. "In my mind, we're at least two deep at every position. It all works on staying healthy. You lose two guys at the same position and that depth goes like that."
Georgia Tech went a combined 14-12 over the last two years, and 2011 was Johnson's toughest yet in five seasons with the Jackets.
Before the season began, the ACC stripped the school of its '09 league championship after the NCAA placed the Jackets on four years of probation.
Last season the Jackets won six straight games before losing four of their last six. They closed with a third straight loss to Georgia and a seventh consecutive bowl loss — this time to Utah in the Sun Bowl.
Senior quarterback Tevin Washington said the team has let go of last year's disappointment. The goal this season is to win the ACC.
"I feel like being a competitor, when you set a goal and don't reach that goal," Washington said, "it's like I'm back to the drawing board and I've got to get to that goal."
Washington held off Synjyn Days and Vad Lee to retain his job after a productive spring overseeing Johnson's triple-option offense. The other spots to fill are at A-back opposite starter Orwin Smith, at B-back and both receiver spots.
Incumbent B-back David Sims and top reserve Charles Perkins are trying to recover from injuries and have left a chance for Zach Laskey to take the job. At the other A-back spot, Robert Godhigh and Deon Hill are the top candidates. B.J. Bostic is playing behind Smith, who will attempt to become the fifth player in school history with 4,000 all-purpose career yards.
With Stephen Hill and Tyler Melton having departed, candidates for the receiving jobs are Jeff Greene, Chris Jackson, Jeremy Moore and Darren Waller — none of whom has caught a pass in a game.
The offensive line, led by left guard Omoregie Uzzi and center Jay Finch, has its starters set. Johnson has given Finch more leeway to make calls once the defensive front sets before the snap.
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