Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
Virginia hits the road again for a Super Bowl Sunday matchup against the 1-6 Yellow Jackets. Georgia Tech has underperformed to date against a tough ACC slate, but their tough defense and UVA's past road struggles mean this one is nothing that the 5-2 Cavaliers could look past.
Time: 3:00 p.m.
Date: February 3, 2013
Place: McCamish Pavilion
Radio: Virginia Sports Radio Network
Spread: Virginia -2; Pomeroy: UVA 52-51 (55%)
Last Meeting: UVA 70-38 last season in Atlanta
The Hoos look to extend their winning streak to 5 games, when the travel to Atlanta for a pre-Super Bowl matinee.
UVA dominated Georgia Tech last season in the teams' only meeting, extending Tony Bennett's record against the Yellow Jackets to 4-0.
This season, the Yellow Jackets are off to a meek 1-6 ACC start, but don't be fooled - they are 83rd in KenPom's rankings. Of their 6 ACC losses, just one was of the "baffling" variety, an overtime home defeat at the hands of the Hokies. The remaining 5, at home against Miami and on the road at NC State, Duke, UNC, and Clemson, just reflect a brutal start to the schedule.
Georgia Tech is an interesting matchup - they boast the 4th best defense in the ACC and 17th in the nation, based on KenPom's efficiency rankings. On the other hand, their 229th rated offense is by far the worst in the conference. The Yellow Jackets don't shoot well and also fail to get to the free-throw line. They should struggle to score against Tony Bennett's Pack Line defense, which has always proved a difficult matchup for Georgia Tech's poor-shooting offense.
If Virginia smothers GT on defense, as expected, and makes shots (that's the hard part), the Hoos will escape with an ugly win. If the shots don't fall, it may be an ugly loss. Overall, this game has a good chance of being ugly in some fashion.
Tip-off for the biggest game of the day is at 3 PM, and it will be televised on ESPNU. Note that this will NOT be available on ESPN3, so get to your local sports bar or call up your friends if you are ESPNU-deprived.