After a lackluster first half, Georgia Tech cranked it up a notch at the beginning of the third quarter, when Jamal Golden returned USC’s 58-yard punt to the one-yard line. From there, Tevin Washington punched it in to extend their lead to 14-7.
Third quarter struggles continued all around for USC, something they have notoriously done all season. QB Max Wittek began to show his inexperience and nervousness, throwing telegraphed passes or errant ones altogether.
The Trojans and Yellow Jackets went tit for tat for a number of series without really moving the ball, but an untimely gaffe from Georgia Tech put some wind back in USC’s sails. The Trojans had just gone three-and-out and Kyle Negrete took the field. His punt made contact with a Georgia Tech player, and WR Nelson Agholor made the head-up play to go after the ball. He dove on it before getting rocked by a Yellow Jacket player, and the Trojans got to keep the ball in their possession.
It didn’t matter much, because USC went three-and-out on the following series.
The third quarter ended in abismal fashion, with Georgia Tech simply running out the clock.
Neither team has given an inspiring performance through three quarters, and there is little indication that the fourth quarter will be any different.
For USC to turn this in their favor, they need to find a way to get things clicking on offense. If they continue to go three-and-out, the Trojan defense will not have enough steam to continue to move Georgia Tech off the field.