Georgia Tech was named the AutoNation National Team of the Week by the Football Writers Association of America, while Lance Austin, Jamal Golden and Harrison Butker each garnered individual awards for their roles in the dramatic win over No. 9 Florida State Saturday at Bobby Dodd Stadium.
In what has been called the “Miracle on Techwood Drive” and one of the most exciting finishes of the college football season, Georgia Tech stunned previously-undefeated Florida State with a 78-yard return of a blocked field goal for a touchdown on the game’s final play for a 22-16 victory.
Patrick Gamble provided the block, Lance Austin the electrifying return, Jamal Golden chipped in a big game defensively and Butker booted three field goals as Georgia Tech snapped FSU’s 28-game winning streak in Atlantic Coast Conference games.
“What a great play by Lance to pick it up,” said head coach Paul Johnson, who improved to 3-0 in regular-season games versus FSU and 3-1 in home games versus top-10 ranked teams. “He got some key blocks and he made a couple guys miss. We were due. It was our turn. We’ve seen so many of these close ones like this go the other way, it’s good to finally be on the right end of one for a change.”
Austin, who was called into more significant action in Saturday’s game due to injury, was honored as the ACC’s Special Teams Player of the Week. Golden, who had a game-high nine tackles and an interception, received both Walter Camp National Defensive Player of the Week and ACC Defensive Back of the Week honors. Butker was 3-for-3 in field goals, including a career-long tying 53-yarder and a game-tying kick with 54 seconds left, was one of three named as a Lou Groza Kicker of the Week.
Golden spearheaded a defensive effort that limited the high-scoring Seminoles to just 70 yards rushing and 16 points (touchdown and three field goals). Golden’s interception in the end zone with 8:07 left in the fourth quarter – the first turnover this season by FSU’s offense – was a crucial stop that kept the Noles within striking distance.
Tech has blocked three kicks this season (two punts and a field goal) and the team’s 14 blocks since 2013 are the most in college football. The blocked kick returned for touchdown is believed to be the first play of its kind in modern school history.
It is the second straight week a Yellow Jacket has earned ACC weekly honors as freshman BB Marcus Marshall was named the ACC’s Rookie of the Week last week after rushing for 159 yards and two touchdowns in a last-second loss to Pitt on a 56-yard field goal.