Georgia Tech will continue to search for consistency when it concludes the nonconference portion of its schedule by hosting Alabama State on Saturday in Atlanta.
The Yellow Jackets (6-4) were trounced 75-59 in their ACC opener against North Carolina on Dec. 10. That disappointing loss came four days after they had beaten rival Georgia 79-77.
Alabama State (1-8) has dropped two straight, most recently a 71-63 loss to North Alabama on Dec. 7. The Hornets have played a challenging schedule that includes losses to Southern California, Pepperdine, Pitt and Duquesne.
This will be the third meeting between the teams. Georgia Tech won both previous games — 74-37 on Nov. 19, 2004, and 75-41 on Dec. 17, 2012.
The Yellow Jackets have struggled on the perimeter, where the graduation losses of Michael Devoe and Jordan Usher hurt the most. Georgia Tech is shooting just 30.3 percent on 3-pointers, with Miles Kelly the leader at 37.7 percent. Kelly leads the team with 13.6 points per game.
“We are a really good 3-point shooting team, based on the fall scrimmages,” coach Josh Pastner said. “We just have not shot the 3-ball well enough, to the level that I thought we would, and we are due to do that.”
Georgia Tech may be without Ja’von Franklin (groin) and Deivon Smith (ankle). Franklin leads the team in rebounds per game (6.5) and averages 8.3 points. Smith averages 9.1 points and a team-leading 3.5 assists.
Alabama State’s schedule is made more challenging because 12 of its 13 nonconference games are away from home.
“Can you imagine that?” coach Tony Madlock said. “But that’s part of HBCU life. It’s part of it. We understand what it is. I think if we can continue to compete, hopefully we can get something out of this.”
The Hornets are led by Isaiah Range (13.6 points, 3.6 rebounds) and TJ Madlock (12.2 points, 5.6 rebounds), the son of the head coach. Jordan O’Neal is tied for the team lead with 5.6 rebounds and has eight blocked shots.
–Field Level Media