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November 21, 2005

Georgia Tech focused after win



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ATLANTA - Georgia Tech doesn't want to spend too much time celebrating its big win over then-No. 3 Miami this weekend.

With next Saturday's game against Georgia looming, Yellow Jackets quarterback Reggie Ball stressed that though the 14-10 win at Miami on Saturday made their season more successful, they're focusing on their remaining games.

"We have 24 hours of respect, then we are on to UGA," Ball said. "It's a great win. I'm not trying to downplay it at all. But the season is not over. You have to keep on pushing."

Miami was favored by 19 points but Tech's defense controlled the game, holding the Hurricanes to only 30 yards rushing.

It was the 24th time in 47 games under defensive coordinator Jon Tenuta that Georgia Tech (7-3 overall, 5-3 Atlantic Coast Conference) held an opponent under 100 yards rushing.

"He's very passionate about the game and about the players," Tech coach Chan Gailey said of Tenuta on Sunday. "He believes in all the good things the game has to offer. He's a very intense person, and coaches that way. He's very prepared for every situation."

Tech held Miami to 237 total yards. Only Connecticut, held to 196 yards, had fewer yards against Tech this season. Miami was 1-for-14 on third-down conversions.

"It was an outstanding performance by the whole defense, and it took the whole defense to stop a team like Miami," Gailey said. "All of them ended up with winning grades."

The Yellow Jackets sacked Miami quarterback Kyle Wright seven times. Philip Wheeler and KaMichael Hall each had two sacks.

"Sacks are drive killers and third-down defense was the key for us," Gailey said. "I can't say enough about the defensive performance."

The win moved Georgia Tech back into The Associated Press Top 25 Sunday at No. 20, and dropped Miami to 10th. Georgia is No. 13.

It was Tech's first win over a top-three team since beating No. 1 Virginia in 1990.

Gailey said it was significant that his team could win at Miami without top tailback P.J. Daniels (bruised sternum) and top offensive tackle Brad Honeycutt (knee).

"To me, it's real big," Gailey said. "It tells us that we can go into the game and still be somewhat successful without everybody being there. In the years past that could not have happened."

Gailey said Honeycutt is doubtful and Daniels is questionable for the Georgia game.

Tech took its second road win over a ranked opponent this season, following a season-opening win at then-No. 16 Auburn.

The Yellow Jackets followed the win over Auburn by beating North Carolina and Connecticut. After rising as high as No. 15 in the Top 25, Tech then lost back-to-back games to Virginia Tech and North Carolina State to fall out of the poll. It was back at No. 24 for a week before losing at Virginia on Nov. 12.

With the Georgia game and a bowl game remaining, Tech already has matched it win total from each of the last three seasons under Gailey. Five ACC wins is a high mark under Gailey.

For more coverage of the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, check out JacketsOnline.com.


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