More bubble time for Georgia, Tech

Georgia Tech Brian Gregory has more to shout about lately. (Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

Georgia Tech Brian Gregory has more to shout about lately. (Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

There is living in a bubble – a condition I am increasingly in favor of with every election cycle, every commercial for “Chrisley Knows Best,” every time my fillings are knocked loose by a neighboring car with its speakers set on stun. Then pile on all the other assorted contemporary noise that assaults us.

Find me a bubble in which to escape – at full salary – and I happily will climb in and curl up.

Then there is living on the bubble. This is an uncomfortable state of standing astride a thin film of possibility. It’s always precarious. It’s always a balancing act, between hope and elimination. And more often than not, the bubble always seems to go, “Pop!” leaving you sprawled and sore.

This is a familiar condition if you are a fan of, well, just about any sport, college or pro, currently played within a 75 mile radius of Philips Arena.

In particular now there are the men’s basketball programs at Georgia and Georgia Tech.

Both are entering their conference tournaments having teased their constituency with some fine work lately. Tech has won five of its last six. Georgia is on a three-game SEC win streak. The only problem being all the dreary basketball that preceded this sunny trend.

So, taken together, the Bulldogs and Yellow Jackets are a combined 18-18 within their conferences, the very selfie of mediocrity. Tech’s RPI – however that magical number is derived – is 70. Georgia’s 72. Yes, right on the cliff’s edge where borderline teams argue for a spot in the NCAA tournament’s field of 68.

Both Georgia and Tech are capable of making much-needed runs in their conference tournaments to shore up their big tournament arguments. I am a big believer in the power of seniors at this time of year, and older, experienced leadership is the single blessing these teams have to count upon.

Or they may crap out in the first game. Neither scenario would be a total shock. And that is the very definition of life on the bubble.

Whether or not either/both/neither slide into the NCAAs – and my thought is that Tech has a better chance of getting in than Georgia (yes, despite that 14-point loss to the Dogs in December, another lifetime ago) – at least here it is March and we at least get to wonder for another few days.

Even getting to the bubble, playing better at the end than the beginning, is a victory of sorts. Enough, in particular, to save Brian Gregory’s job at Tech? I think so, but no one really consults me.

Fans of these programs deserve better than the uncertain condition that faces them today. But they are used to it, having so much experience surfing the delicate surface of the bubble.

Reader Comments 0

10 comments
Peachs
Peachs

Football and basketball consist of parity, in this generation. It is a crap shoot, at best, mediocrity from top to bottom.  

RunnerKirk
RunnerKirk

Unless Tech wins the ACC Tourney (which isn't going to happen), thinking they are on the bubble of making it is sheer fantasy.  They came in 11th out of 15 teams in the conference (including Louisville) and had a sub-500 conference record.  Only if you think the ACC is going to get nine or ten bids would they make it, and the ACC isn't going to get 9 or 10 bids.


Hunt, Mitchell, Smith, Jacobs and White all gone next year, and hardly a banner recruiting class coming in, this year is likely to be better than next, and that is a chilling thought.

LOGS1973
LOGS1973

@RunnerKirk Sorry runner.. Tech has beaten strong ACC competition and will beat more..Remember, every ACC game is tough and the SEC furnishes no such competition. Gregory has recruited well and GT may very well win 23 games in 2017. GT may also win the ACC tournament.. You would like that wouldn't you?

Iluvnutella
Iluvnutella

@LOGS1973 @RunnerKirk  never finished above .500 in conference. Finished in bottom 2 or 3 last 3 years. Dude is gone after his contract is up next year.

swimfin2
swimfin2

No chance at ncaa unless they win the acc tourney. And BG is done. Should have been a lock to make the ncaa this year. How long has it been anyway? 7 years?

Iluvnutella
Iluvnutella

@swimfin2  My guess is they let him finish out his current contract (1 more year) then they let him walk.

FrankieB
FrankieB

Why does Tech have a better shot than UGA? I'm a Tech fan but it seems like realistically we'd both have to win our conference tournaments to make it, and obviously winning the SEC tournament would be easier than the ACC one.

LOGS1973
LOGS1973

@FrankieB Tech has played much better teams and beaten two top 20 teams. The dogs beat Ole Miss, auburn, Alabama.. understand now? Better tested

by better teams.

RBR
RBR

how can this recent surge be enough to save Gregory's job?  This is a team with 5 seniors who were expected to win, but they didn't for the majority of the season.  Bringing in transfers, Tech will be worse off next season than it was during Gregory's first season on the flats, so I'm not convinced the program is in a better position for success than when he came in. We can't judge on character, because frankly, the NCAA selection committee nor the media judges on character...only wins, and Gregory hasn't done much of that since his arrival.  Applaud the effort and his character, but I do want to win just a little more.