ATLANTA — Last season’s Tech-Clemson matchup didn't fall in the favor of the Jackets, but this year, with a new coach and new attitude, the home team is hoping to turn things around and pull the upset on the road.

Former Peach County linebacker Jaquez Jackson will be sacking and tackling this year as a key contributor on the Atlanta-based university’s defense. The true freshman saw action in all 13 games and he's ready to make his mark on the big stage come kickoff. 

Jackson explains, “I earned a lot of their respect last year because of some of the things I would do on the field. Just being accountable to myself and they welcome me with open arms as a leader. This year, I have a pretty big leadership role and they are allowing me to talk more. I kind of like being the quarterback of the defense and they're all for it."

On the other side of the field, wearing the purple-and-orange is Taylor County graduate Lyn-J Dixon. As a reserve running back, the freshman rushed for nearly 600 yards and 5 touchdowns, averaging a lofty 9 yards per carry. The national champion says he's excited to shine even brighter this season. 

Dixon says, “Coach always preaches to us that everybody is at our heads now. We're really not taking anything for granted and we push each other every day at practice and we work hard every day. I'm very excited this season because now I'm getting more touches. I can prove to the world what I can do and put on a show.”

Kickoff between Georgia Tech and Clemson is Thursday night at 7:30 p.m.

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