ATLANTA -- Redshirt sophomore Tyler Marcordes made the most of his first start of the year at linebacker.
Marcordes, a 6-1, 200-pounder from Normal, Ill., made his presence felt early. On Alabama A&M's first possession, Marcordes came up with an interception, his second of the year. The takeaway led to Georgia Tech's second touchdown.
"The second play of the game the ball hits me," Marcordes said. "I was playing off the run and I see a shovel pass coming right at me."
Marcordes also forced a fumble in the second quarter, which was recovered and returned for a touchdown by Quayshawn Nealy. He also ended up with three tackles and 1.5 sacks.
"It was nice to get out there and make some plays," Marcordes said.
Marcordes had played in each of Tech's games this year and entered the game with 10 total tackles. He also had an interception against Elon in the season opener.
The special teams ace had one start a year ago and got the nod against Alabama A&M in place of Brandon Watts, who suffered a leg injury in the last game against Clemson. Watts had started 19 straight games.
"He's been our best player on special teams all year," coach Paul Johnson said. "And when he's had the chance to play, he's played well."
Sims moves up career list
David Sims continues to quietly compile some impressive rushing numbers at Georgia Tech.
The senior B-back ran for 111 yards on eight carries in Saturday's win over Alabama A&M and took another step up the all-time rushing list. On his third carry of the day, a 39-yard burst up the middle, Sims moved past William Bell and into 12th place on the school's all-time rushing list. Sims now has 2,114 career yards. Tevin Washington (2,225) is in 11th place.
The 111 yards is a career best for Sims and his second 100-yard effort over the last four games. He has rushed for a touchdown in the last four games and now has 11 this season, tying him for 14th place in school history for a single season.
The defense rests
The defensive starters sat out the second half. And some of the first-teamers drew limited action in the first half. Jeremiah Attaochu and Jemea Thomas were given extended time off the field to avoid the possibility of an injury.
As a result Attaochu had his three-game sack streak broken. He still needs four sacks to tie the school record of 31. The senior had only one tackle against A&M. Attaochu had only one tackle in the season opener against Elon, also an FCS school.
Thomas had one tackle and shared a tackle for a loss. He's had a partial tackle for a loss in three of the last four games.
Tech's leading tackler Saturday was Paul Davis, who had five tackles, one sack and a tackle for loss.
First half points
The 52 points Tech scored in the first half was the most in a half since 1950. The previous best was 45 in the first half against Samford in 2007. It marked Tech's biggest halftime lead in the modern era. Defensive back Jemea Thomas moved into fifth place with his 52nd career game. Linebacker Daniel Drummond was favoring his right leg as he was assisted off the field by trainers in the third quarter.