NCAA Football: ACC Media Days

Jul 18, 2019; Charlotte, NC, USA; Georgia Tech linebacker David Curry addresses the media at the 2019 ACC Football Kickoff held at the Westin Hotel in Charlotte, NC. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

Buford’s David Curry has been voted one of Georgia Tech’s four permanent captains.

The football team also chose offensive lineman Jared Southers, tight end Tyler Davis and flex back Nathan Cottrell.

Curry leads the team with 81 tackles, 41 of them solo stops. He also has two sacks, four tackles for loss, one interception, one breakup, one hurry, one forced fumble and one recovered fumble.

Southers and Davis are both graduate transfers who are playing their first — and only — season at Georgia Tech, Cottrell is a fifth-year senior and Curry is a redshirt junior.

“It’s really cool that two guys who came in as grad transfers were voted by their peers at permanent captains,” Tech head coach Geoff Collins said. “It’s no secret that there were only six seniors that we inherited, and then brought in two, and the impact those guys have made has been really special and it has meant a lot to me.”

QB Graham aims for consistency

Which James Graham will show up to start at quarterback this week for Georgia Tech: the focused or unfocused version?

Both have been on display over the last month. When Graham has been focused and prepared, as he was against Miami and Virginia, the results have been good. When Graham shows up less-than-focused and prepared, the results have been disastrous.

Graham, a redshirt freshman from Fitzgerald, said this week he’s learned his lesson and will be on point for Thursday’s nationally televised game against North Carolina State.

“I just want to get better and lock in those small details and fix everything I didn’t do well last week, have a better mindset and put that last game behind me,” Graham said.

After engineering the win over Miami, he regressed against Pittsburgh to the point where he was yanked after the first half. Graham did re-enter that game when backup Lucas Johnson was injured on a play at the goal line.

The good Graham returned when the team lost a tough game at Virginia. Graham threw for 229 yards and two touchdowns in his best effort of the season. But last week Graham struggled against the Virginia Tech pressure, threw a pair of interceptions, and was lifted in favor of freshman Jordan Yates in the third quarter.

“I just wasn’t locked in,” Graham said. “I didn’t prepare myself like I did the week before. I wasn’t executing the plays that were called. I just wasn’t in the game.”

Graham is an affable young man who wants to improve. That’s been evident from the time he showed up on campus last year to this season, when he has worked his way into a starting role. He’s always had the strongest arm among the quarterbacks — evidenced by his 59-yard pass completion against Virginia — and is becoming more adept on short throws.

“For any quarterback, any time you can get a clean look, set your feet and throw it, you’ve got a better chance,” offensive coordinator Dave Patenaude said. “James threw the ball well across the board (against Virginia). He was on target, made good throws and knew where he wanted to go with the ball.”

Patenaude also applauded Graham’s willingness to throw the ball away rather than force a throw, even though the aggressive approach cost him an interception last week against Virginia Tech.

“I got greedy on that one interception,” Graham said. “I’m going to learn from that, spend time in the lab and learn from my mistakes.”

Graham has thrown for 995 yards and eight touchdowns this season. A year ago, TaQuon Marshall led the option-based team with 900 passing yards and the team threw for 1,089 yards.

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