It’s year six of the Josh Pastner era at Georgia Tech, and things in Atlanta are interesting and have reached a boiling point heading into the new season. On one side of the aisle, you have a group of Yellow Jacket fans who think the program has gone nowhere under Coach Pastner. Then on the other side of it, you have a group of more rational fans who see last year’s NCAA Tournament appearance as a building block for the future. Either way, Georgia Tech comes into the 2021-2022 season riding high after making the NCAA Tournament last season and, the Yellow Jackets return all but two of those starters from last season.
In all honesty, the unknown surrounding this program could very well be the missing piece that Coach Pastner needs to take this team to the next level this season.
But before we dive into the likelihood of Georgia Tech making a run this season, we first have to take a look at the team the Yellow Jackets will put on the floor this season.
In the frontcourt, Georgia Tech will turn Rodney Howard, a junior from Michigan. Howard is a 6’10” bruiser who Yellow Jacket and College Basketball fans are excited to see just how far he has developed since last season. Truthfully, Coach Pastner will count on Rodney Howard to be the next man up after losing Moses Wright from last season. Helping Rodney Howard out down low will be a guy by the name of Khalid Moore. Moore was the third man in the talented frontcourt lineup last season for the Yellow Jackets.
In the backcourt, Georgia Tech will be looking to replace All-ACC guard Jose Alvarado who averaged 15.2 points per game last season and an absurd 37.5 minutes per game, which means Yellow Jacket fans have no idea what to expect from this position. Like every other program in College Basketball, Georgia Tech went and purged the transfer portal during the off-season, adding Deivon Smith from Mississippi State. Smith is expected to compete with Kyle Sturdivant for the starting point guard position. However, the biggest storyline to follow this season in this Georgia Tech backcourt will be the position battle at the wing spot between two veterans in Michael Devoe and Jordan Usher. Both Devoe and Usher are expected to be main leaders for Coach Pastner and this Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets basketball team.
Overall, the 2021-2022 season for Georgia Tech has the potential to either be one of the most memorable in school history or the one that goes down in the history books as the one that gets Coach Pastner the boot out of Atlanta. I see a situation where Georgia Tech stuns the entire College Basketball world and finishes within the top half of the ACC and wins a game or two in the NCAA Tournament, which would save Coach Pastner, and it’ll have the folks in Atlanta a buzz for Georgia Tech Basketball once again. After all, Georgia Tech has one of the best backcourts in the ACC, and with the right amount of chemistry, Yellow Jacket basketball could be back to competing for an ACC Championship.
Either way, you look at it, Georgia Tech is defending ACC Tournament Champions and, Coach Pastner and the Yellow Jackets are hungry for more. The rest of the College Basketball world might not take this team seriously, but you better bury them early because Coach Pastner has been building for this moment at Georgia Tech for five years.