Atlanta, GA (Sports Network) – Josh Nesbitt ran for 130 yards and three touchdowns, as the 16th-ranked Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets opened the 2010 season by trouncing South Carolina State, 41-10, at Bobby Dodd Stadium.
Roddy Jones added a pair of scores on the ground for the Yellow Jackets (1-0), who are the reigning ACC champions.
“I thought it was a very typical first game,” said Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson. “It wasn’t always crisp and pretty but we found a way to win the game. I think you have to give South Carolina State credit. I thought their kids played hard, they showed up, and even when they got down they continued to fight.”
Malcolm Long completed 11-of-25 passes for 94 yards and ran for South Carolina State’s lone touchdown. The Bulldogs (0-1) are the two-time defending MEAC champions.
Georgia Tech got the ball to begin the game and wasted little getting on the scoreboard. An unsuccessful on-side kick gave the Yellow Jackets excellent field position, starting at the Bulldogs’ 42-yard-line.
“We didn’t really want to go onside. It was supposed to be a squib kick, and our kicker didn’t have the best of days,” said Bulldogs head coach Buddy Pough.
South Carolina State forced Georgia Tech into a 4th-and-3 situation at the 35, and the Yellow Jackets converted as Nesbitt took the ball all the way to the end zone to give his team the early lead.
The Bulldogs picked up points on their first offensive series of the season, with Blake Erickson capping a 17-play drive by drilling a 28-yard field goal.
Georgia Tech’s next drive extended into the second quarter, and Nesbitt scored from a yard out. The Yellow Jackets led 13-3 after the extra point was blocked.
South Carolina State came up empty on its next series when Erickson missed a 42-yard field goal attempt.
The Yellow Jackets then marched 74 yards in nine plays, and a one-yard plunge by Jones made it 20-3 with 4:46 remaining before halftime.
Georgia Tech was forced to punt on its first series of the second half, but the Bulldogs’ Lennel Elmore fumbled during the return. Quentin Sims recovered the ball for Georgia Tech at South Carolina State’s 21-yard-line.
The Yellow Jackets capitalized in four plays as Nesbitt dashed 14 yards into the end zone for a 24-point cushion.
Following a South Carolina State punt, Georgia Tech moved 44 yards in three plays, aided by a personal foul infraction, and Jones scampered 15 yards to increase the lead to 34-3.
A one-yard TD run by Long cut the Bulldogs’ deficit to 34-10 with 2 1/2 minutes left in the third quarter.
The Yellow Jackets added a touchdown on Tevin Washington’s 10-yard run with 4:50 remaining in the game.
This was the first-ever meeting between the schools…Nesbitt was 1-of-6 passing for eight yards and one interception…Asheton Jordon rushed for 129 yards on 18 carries for South Carolina State…Georgia Tech outgained the Bulldogs, 384-272.