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Saturday, November 10, 2012
GT wins shootout in Chapel Hill

By Heather Dinich

No, this isn't the Big 12. It wasn't USC and Oregon. It was, however, a shootout.

North Carolina's defense had the bye week to prepare for Georgia Tech's spread option offense and it didn't matter one bit. Paul Johnson blew that theory -- and UNC's defense -- out of the stadium in a 68-50 road win. If Miami loses another game, and Georgia Tech beats Duke, the Jackets will win the division. Since the bye week, Georgia Tech has won three of four games.

Georgia Tech ran the ball 67 times. Vad Lee took over at quarterback and completed 6 of 10 passes for 169 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He also ran for 112 yards and two touchdowns. The teams combined for 1,085 total yards and 51 first downs.

The Jackets haven't folded, despite a three-game losing streak that dropped them to 2-4 heading into the bye. A win against Duke next weekend would make Georgia Tech become bowl-eligible. Anything can still happen in the Coastal Division, but Georgia Tech's win coupled with Miami's loss makes next weekend's game in Atlanta one of the most important games Duke's program will have played since 1994, the last time the program was bowl-eligible.

If Georgia Tech's offense picks up where it left off today, though, Duke's defense will be in trouble.