Brennan Armstrong just good enough in Virginia’s win over Georgia Tech

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ATLANTA – Brennan Armstrong helped Virginia overcome a difficult start in the first quarter to account for 349 yards of total offense and help the Cavaliers snap a three-game skid with a 16-9 victory over Georgia Tech on Thursday night.

In a matchup of the two lowest-scoring teams in the ACC, Virginia (3-4, 1-3) avoided an 0-4 start in conference play for the first time since 2014. The Cavaliers stopped a five-game losing streak on the road.

Georgia Tech (3-4, 2-2) had won two straight for the first time since it had a four-game streak four years ago and was trying to move above .500 at the latest point in a season since 2018.

Though Virginia’s offense hardly looked spectacular, Armstrong did enough to keep the team moving while the defense stalled Georgia Tech throughout the second half. Nick Jackson and Chico Bennett Jr., a transfer from Georgia Tech, led the way with a combined eight solo stops and had four of the team’s eight sacks.

Jackson had a big sack on the Georgia Tech’s next-to-last possession to force a fourth down and drop the Jackets back to the 48 with 1:52 remaining. Fentrell Cypress II broke up a fourth-down pass in Virginia territory.

Armstrong was 20 of 35 passing for 255 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions. He ran 13 times for 94 yards and a score.

With quarterback Jeff Sims starting the game for Georgia Tech but sidelined in the second quarter because of an apparent left knee injury, Zach Gibson took over and led the offense to the Virginia 1. The Jackets couldn’t get any farther, and Gavin Stewart kicked a 35-yard field goal that cut the lead to 13-9 at halftime.

Gibson lost a fumble at the Georgia Tech 5 in the third quarter, but the Yellow Jackets’ defense held when Lavel Davis dropped a touchdown pass in the left corner of the end zone, and the Cavaliers settled for a 28-yard field by Will Bettridge that padded the lead to 16-9.

Dontayvion Wicks caught a 44-yard TD pass, weaving through several defenders down the left sideline to put the Cavaliers up 13-6 midway through the second when Bettridge missed the extra point. Armstrong broke Matt Schaub’s school record with his 57th career TD pass.

Beginning the game ranked 110th in turnovers, Virginia lost a fumble on its first possession that was recovered by LaMiles Brooks at the Georgia Tech 39. The Jackets drove to the 8 before Sims was intercepted in the end zone by Coen King.


Virginia: A week after allowing six sacks in a 34-17 loss to Louisville, the Cavaliers kept Armstrong clean in the pocket. Even so, the Cavaliers barely resemble the stout unit that led the ACC in total offense last year at 514.4 yards per game and finished fourth in scoring at 34.6 points per game. Armstrong was the leader in total offense, averaging 427.3 yards per game, but Virginia entered Thursday ranked 10th in total offense and 13th in scoring.

Georgia Tech: Fell short after being favored to beat an FBS team for the first time in 10 games. The Jackets were going for their first three-game winning streak since 2018. Instead they have to be concerned about the health of Sims, who watched the second half in street clothes. Key dropped to 2-1 and failed to become the first Georgia Tech coach since Bud Carson in 1967 to win his first three games.


Virginia: Hosts Miami on Oct. 29.

Georgia Tech: At Florida State on Oct. 29.

Alabama suspends freshman defensive back after drug arrest

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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Alabama freshman defensive back Tony Mitchell has been suspended from the team following his arrest on a drug charge.

Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban said Monday after the first practice of spring that Mitchell was suspended from the team “and all team activities until we gather more information about the situation and what his legal circumstance is.”

The Holmes County Sheriff’s Office arrested Mitchell and another man, Christophere Lewis, last week on a charge of possession of marijuana with the intent to sell or deliver, according to a post on the department’s Facebook page. Lewis also was charged with carrying a concealed gun without a permit.

“Everybody’s got an opportunity to make choices and decisions,” Saban said. “There’s no such thing as being in the wrong place at the wrong time. You’ve gotta be responsible for who you’re with, who you’re around and what you do, who you associate yourself with and the situations that you put yourself in. It is what it is, but there is cause and effect when you make choices and decisions that put you in bad situations.”

Mitchell, who is from Alabaster, Alabama, was a five-star prospect rated the 34th-best player and No. 3 safety in the 247Composite rankings.

Mitchell was driving the vehicle during a traffic stop. After deputies smelled marijuana, Mitchell picked up a baggie of marijuana from the passenger floorboard, according to the department’s Facebook post.

Sheriff’s deputies found “an additional significant amount of marijuana, a set of scales, a loaded handgun between the passenger seat and center console, and a large amount of cash,” according to the department’s Facebook post.

Missouri linebacker Chad Bailey suspended after arrest

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COLUMBIA, Mo. — Missouri linebacker Chad Bailey was suspended from the team after he was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated, the team said.

The 23-year-old, who was a team captain last season, was booked at about 2:45 a.m. and released after posting $500 bond, according to online records from the Boone County Sheriff’s Office.

“We are aware of the situation involving Chad Bailey,” Missouri coach Eli Drinkwitz said in a statement to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “He’s been suspended according to Department of Athletics policy. We have high expectations for all of our student-athletes, on and off the field, and we will follow all departmental and campus policies.”

Bailey was Mizzou’s third-leading tackler with 57 stops last season. He started all 11 games he played, missing two with an injury. He’ll be a sixth-year senior this fall after opting to return for his final year of eligibility, the Post-Dispatch reported.

The Missouri student-athlete handbook says any athlete who is arrested must serve a minimum one-week suspension.

Bailey was pulled over at about 1 a.m. not far from the Columbia campus for an expired license plate and lane violation, a police statement said. Bailey told the officer he had consumed alcohol and then performed poorly on a field sobriety test, the Post-Dispatch reported.