Groh acknowledges preliminary talks

Al Groh said he has had preliminary conversations with Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson about becoming the Yellow Jackets’ next defensive coordinator. However, he said that a report that a deal is close to being completed  isn’t accurate because talks are still in the early stages.

Out of respect for Johnson, as well as some other teams that have contacted him, Groh declined to provide any more details.

He did however, praise the work Johnson has done in his two seasons at Tech.

“They’ve got that program winning in a hurry,” Groh said. “As a fan or as an opposing coach,  if winning impresses you you have to be impressed with what Paul has done there.”

Groh, 65, said he would have no problems at all becoming a defensive coordinator after spending the last 10 seasons as a head coach, including the last nine at Virginia where he went 59-53.

“Never been any ego in my career,” Groh said. ” What I like is challenges and I like winning.”

Tech’s previous defensive coordinator, Dave Wommack, was let go after just two seasons because Johnson said he didn’t see the improvement he had hoped to see in the last 11/2 years.

The Jackets gave up an average of 24.8 points and 360.3 yards per game last season.

Groh said he has no timetable for his next position, other than he looks forward to coaching somewhere in the 2010 season.

As for concerns that he doesn’t need to coach because of his age (65) and the $4-plus million dollar buyout he received from Virginia, Groh quickly said “Ive got a lot of energy and a lot to prove. I love competition. Some people have said I have every reason to say enough is enough. I have every reason to say I’m looking forward to a lot more.”

Groh observed a Tech practice in December as a part of what he said was his own personal tour of a few bowl teams that intriqued him. He declined to name the other teams he visited, other than to thank them for hosting him.

Wherever he coaches next, Groh said he would use a 3-4 defensive scheme, which he learned from Bill Parcells.

“[It's] what I’ve learned, and I’ve learned it from some very good people,” Groh said. “I’m certain they are going into the NFL Hall of Fame. Had an opportunity to build some ideas from there.

“It’s a pretty varied package that we’ve been able to implement.”

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Follow coverage of Tech’s search for a defensive coordinator on facebook at: http://bit.ly/5glhwK and at twitter at http://twitter.com/ajcgatech

51 comments Add your comment

dexter

January 10th, 2010
9:56 pm

Top Knotch

January 10th, 2010
10:02 pm

if Groh is hired that is fine….as for the juniors…I remember all the hype about Calvin Johnson leaving his junior year and a higher draft choice.. honestly it turned out Calvin could have used another year at GT..and everyone knows it…so I hope these kids are understanding how these agents exaggerate their importance of going now..keep in mind guys they are dying to get their hands on some of that money and do not care whether the decision is the right one or not.

I wish I was smart enough to go to UGA but Mc'adezz will do fine

January 10th, 2010
10:09 pm

I so think 60-39 head to head record with rival and 8 out of the last nine is a such a better choice than 4 national titles 16 conference championships. It just seems such a cut and dry choice. It ’s all about how many times we have beaten our rival not championships that make a storied program…

Timmy

January 10th, 2010
10:11 pm

Sorry top knotch, but Calvin leaving early is as much a no-brainer as Eric Berry leaving Tennessee early. You go to college to prepare yourself for your career and that’s what he did. He ended up the #2 pick and has done very well. He is just unfortunate to be stuck with a horrible franchse.

AlabamaRamblinwreck

January 10th, 2010
10:17 pm

Another year at Tech will not match a multi-million dollar contract like Calvin got!! I am a Tech grad, and I wish I had made even 1/2 million in one year!! As long as Groh decides he is all in or all out, I will be very satisfied with that situation.

Go Jackets!!

jts1207

January 10th, 2010
10:19 pm

Top knotch what are you talking about? Calvin had 0 business staying his senior year. He was a talent you might see every 20 years. The juniors leaving this year are good but Calvin was on a different level.

virginia jacket

January 10th, 2010
10:23 pm

How about the jackets have a Fiesta on Jan 8, 2011. Or, at worst another Orangebowl repeat in 2011 if the stars don’t align themselves properly. In any case, throw a Groh on top 11-3 and you get another win ‘tween the hedges 11/27/2010. Maybe the jackets pitch a shutout in the dawghouse. Its only up from here as the rich get richer. THWG!

Hairy Dawg

January 10th, 2010
10:23 pm

Enter your comments here

Tokyo jacket

January 10th, 2010
10:28 pm

Top Knotch, no no no. You don’t give up $35M guaranteed for any reason. If you’re smart, you probably don’t give up $5M guaranteed.

“I wish I was smart” you’re a ritard. Navy has gone 11-1 in rivalry games over the past six years. They’re not storied. They were storied when they won championships.

About Groh, I hope we land him. Parcells wants him as the LB coach in Miami though. He would be a huge upgrade. At age 65 he loves his players and his players love him. That helps when recruiting. It also gels nicely with our team chemistry and our recruiting techniques of late. He’s not a very good CEO, but one hell of an X’s and O’s guy. CPJ is proving, that by talking to Groh, that HE is in fact a good CEO. Go jackets, sting em!

Hairy Dawg

January 10th, 2010
10:28 pm

You stinky Yech nerdies is second fiddles to getting grampa retreads for a DC. Us Dawgs is getting Smart because he is the hotest DC and he wonts to come home to Athens for Dawgs. Haha! 30 – 24! We rules the state and we won the Sugar Bowls. Nerdie pestky bugs cant get win in Pranges in over 50 years since the wimp out to leave SEC where the big boy speed plays and smashes the mouths.

Tokyo jacket

January 10th, 2010
10:30 pm

Can you imagine Barnes in the middle with Peters and Cross on either side with AT Barnes and Dieke coming at you from the end? That’s freaky scary!

Hairy Dawg

January 10th, 2010
10:31 pm

I typoed. Oranges.

[...] III: Groh told our Doug Roberson that reports that his deal is close to being done is not accurate. An excerpt: Al Groh said he has had preliminary conversations with Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson [...]

StingerSplash

January 10th, 2010
10:40 pm

Barnes still has a long, long way to go. Guy his size has to be able to at least occupy two blockers on each play and rarely did that. He also made few plays and was taken out of plays far too many times. He needs to improve greatly.
Physically, he’d be a great fit at the nose in a 3-4. But he has a lot of work to do.

Always a Jacket

January 10th, 2010
10:51 pm

Let’s get the deal done! Need to land a few prospects, gear ‘em up for Spring ball, and have ‘em ready for September.

Ramblinwreck

January 10th, 2010
11:00 pm

Ugay fans are so stupid. You mutts really think smart will be in athens any longer than 2 years if he even comes to ugay? He is the hottest name in the south and will be a HC withn 2 years, BANK ON IT. Then what?? I doubt he even makes the lateral move for the same position and bama has every penny to match any offer. He would go from a NC title team to a team not even ranked! You guys bump your gums on the blogs but were not even ranked for 1st time since 96. Thats pathetic considering you recruit a top 5 class every season! I wonder if ugay will even crack the top 25 to start the year? Have fun with a freshman at qb, he will get his lunch eaten in the mighty sec! ugay wins 6 games next year and muttville will see a record amount of arrets in 2010!!

THWG

Dave

January 10th, 2010
11:11 pm

Don’t really expect it, but maybe the 3 juniors announce they are all coming back for another title run. Groh would be an excellent choice, but there are others out there is it doesn’t work out.

Hairy Dawg

January 10th, 2010
11:20 pm

You Yechie nerds is the dumbos for rooting for second rating schools runing the gimmickey offenses that people figured out long agos. Bugs is goning to get smashed in mouths by Dawgs and real speed of SEC. The ACC deserves the wimpies like cry babys T-blows.

Hairy Dawg Is A Fake

January 10th, 2010
11:24 pm

Hariy Dawg is an imposter so please ignore. He’s just trying to stir the pot. There will be plenty of real Dawg fans talking garbage soon enough without fake ones.

Hairy Dawg

January 10th, 2010
11:27 pm

BS, and everyone knowes better.

Hairy Dawg Is A Fake

January 10th, 2010
11:28 pm

That’s right Hairy Dawg, as you said “everyone knowes[sic] better” than to believe you are a real Dawg fan.

Hairy Dawg

January 10th, 2010
11:32 pm

Now your twisting of the words. You must be a Lame Kiffin man for them sorry Vols.

Upstate Jacket

January 10th, 2010
11:55 pm

Calvin shouldn’t have left??? Not only did he get a huge contract, he led the league in TD receptions and put up over 1200 yds his second season in the league (for an 0-16 team). Injuries, bad QB play, and a terrible franchise have limited his production this, his third, year.

Shane

January 11th, 2010
12:01 am

30-24 HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

superDawg

January 11th, 2010
1:08 am

gt reset your gps idaho has moved to nerdville.

jadams

January 11th, 2010
2:27 am

Is a 3-4 really the best option? Where are you going too find these linebackers? We started this year playing 2 lbs now were gonna start this year with 4. im just not sure. In this d you also need a large man to anchor at DT, who is that going to be? Maybe it will work but i think whoever we hire should look at what they have before impementing any scheme. i have found the best coches can adapt to talent.

dogcrap

January 11th, 2010
8:11 am

Hey hairy assed mutt (aka hairy dawg). Your grammar is so typical of the redneck trailer park you represent. you just suck and have nothing to do with ugag.

BobinBuford

January 11th, 2010
8:17 am

Ramblinwreck:

Rivals.com preseason top 25 for next year:

GT: 14

UGA: Not on list

Again, why would Kirby Smart want to go to that train wreck?

superDawg

January 11th, 2010
8:22 am

Wake up nerds 30-24.crying again stinger.

Jim Mora Jr

January 11th, 2010
8:27 am

Hey, I’ll be DC for UGAY. I like working for unranked football programs!

THWG

January 11th, 2010
8:29 am

I have to say, I agree with these astute dog fans. I’d much rather beat my rival and play in a bowl in shreveport, finishing the year unranked, than lose to my rival, win my conference, play in a BCS bowl and finish ranked 13.

waa, waa, waa…I’m crying so hard i just don’t think I can go on.

BobinBuford

January 11th, 2010
8:32 am

superDawg:

We wake up with GT ranked 14 to start the year, and UGA unranked.

I see that UGA has gone with the Florida/Alabama OOC schedule next year. Replaced Okie State and Ariz State with Louisiana Lafayette and Idaho State.

Dooley's Cardiologist

January 11th, 2010
8:41 am

This is how you hire a DC. You get out there and talk to the guy you want, and get him. UGA is turning into the JOKE of college football. Next year will be even worse when they have to fire whatever high school head coach comes in as DC. It’s time for Tech to show you how to run a state.

rainman

January 11th, 2010
9:00 am

I’m a big fan of the 3-4 in the NFL, but I’m not sure it would be the best defense for Tech. It’s hard to recruit year in and year out the right kind of players to fit this system. We know you need a massive NT (Tech does have a couple possibilities here with Barnes 6-7,341 and Lanier 6-4,334), but the DE’s (hybrid DT/DE) and the OLB’s (hybrid DE/OLB) are harder to find consistently.
Right now, after going over the roster, it seems like Tech is best suited for the 4-3.

Dawg Hater

January 11th, 2010
9:23 am

Groh is 65—how many young kids want to play for him ? We need a younger coach.

collegeballfan

January 11th, 2010
9:33 am

Couple of thoughts.

The 2009 NFL minimum salary for a rookie was $310,000. It will go up in 2010. How many of you guys made $310,000. in your first job out of college? How many of you guys make that much now? Of course you leave for the NFL!

Leaving is not something recommended by agents. Curran & Jones at UGA & the 4 guys at GT do not have agents. These guys get info from the NFL like all Juniors. Plus at GT, Johnson has a close relationship with the Falcon’s Smith and they get additional info through that network. And Richt probably has similar relationships with NFL people.

As an aside, I am not GT graduate (West Georgia & UT) but you guys who keep calling the GT grads “nerds” need to realize that in the world of intelligent thinkers, “nerd” is a compliment. Only dummies consider it an insult.

Bottom line, go get the money while you can.

fortebuna

January 11th, 2010
9:56 am

Having fallowed Tech for more than 50 years, I’m not for a Groh hire. I’ve looked at his 9 year record at UVA and it’s nothing to write home to mother about. Even when he defeated Tech his D’s were not rated hi. Was it his coaching, his players, or his assistants I sure don’t know since I was not at his practices at UVA. But it’s for sure his record while not abysmal at UVA again it was not something to write home about.

Alabama Jack

January 11th, 2010
10:14 am

Whatever our guys decide is fine with me. Just hope its the best for them. People tend to forget that the most a college player can play is 4 years, so if they leave a year earlier and its the right thing for them, have at it.

Re: the Al Groh hire – hey CPJ is 20-7 in two years, program is 13th this year and pre-season 13th next year. He can hire Homer Simpson if that will help the program.

I say, let him run the program. After all, the mutts are busy running —– their mouths.

TB

January 11th, 2010
10:29 am

Okay, if the knock against the TO is that recruiting suffers because kids can’t take it to the NFL, then why would the 3-4 under Groh – which IS successful in the NFL – be a knock against getting good players here?

Not Disappointed

January 11th, 2010
10:31 am

Al Groh will recruit well. He could be a great asset.

Ramblin Wreck!

Hairy Dawg

January 11th, 2010
10:41 am

Who caring if I lives in trailers. I root for dawgs and follow them to winning games. You techie nerds live on the streets in midtown and in the projects.

dogcrap

January 11th, 2010
11:13 am

Hey HD, I think you need to get back to the trailer park in a hurry. Your sister just went in heat and is hot for you. You know you can’t do any better anyhow, so why not???

HungryDawg

January 11th, 2010
11:18 am

Seems like a weird hire for a DC. At best The Gobbler gets 5 years out of him, putting him at 70 years old.

ReGgIe BaLla!!!

January 11th, 2010
11:20 am

y0 hAiRy DaWgZ,

CaNz I bEe StAyInG aT y0 CrIb sUmTiMeZ? MaH mAmA kIcKz mEe OuTz aGInN!?!!?

Hairy Dawg

January 11th, 2010
11:21 am

Go Dawgs! Nerdie Bugs Stinks! Go Dawgs!

dawgfan

January 11th, 2010
12:35 pm

Tech’s pursuit of Groh signals to me that Johnson is not serious about defense and is content with ACC titles and getting beat like a drum OOC. I’m sure Groh will have a wonderful gameplan to stop UNC, Duke, UVA, and Wake Forest, but come OOC time it will be same ole same ole. Despite all the AJC hype to the contrary, I really don’t think Johnson is all that intersted in taking this program to the next level. He’s content with talking a big game on radio talk shows, throwing assistant coaches under the bus when his wonderful offense completely breaks down, and winning the worst BCS conference in the land. And why not? Look how far its gotten him. You idiots are ready to name your high school stadium after him.

Al Groh? Hysterical. A second rate DC for a second rate program in a second rate league. Simply hysterical.

JacketFan

January 11th, 2010
12:35 pm

Heather Dinich reporting that all three – Dwyer, Morgan and Burnett – are leaving for the NFL. Sad. At least Nesbitt will be in for another year.

Go Jackets!
THWG!

He Gone!

January 11th, 2010
12:49 pm

ESPN reports….Georgia Tech S Morgan Burnett will enter the next NFL Draft

Hairy Dawg

January 11th, 2010
4:01 pm

Haha! 30-24! Techie bugs lose again.

Bugs goning to have to hire grampa Grohs while Dawgs get top DC for SEC champs winning over Vols Felans, Gaytors, and Bama Scums.

Hairy Dawg

January 12th, 2010
12:49 am

Haha! Now sorry yechie bugs cant even gets gramps pa Groh. He’s is goning to Maimi to go fish with Tuna Parcells. Haha! Techies is getting stunk with leftover fishbait.