What can Tech’s offense do in year 3?

GREENSBORO, N.C. — Two years ago, the media asked…and asked…Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson if his option offense would work in a BCS conference.

He laughed it off nine times: the Yellow Jackets went 9-4 and tied for the Coastal Division lead.

Last year, the media asked…and asked…Johnson if teams would now be able to catch up to his option offense after having seen it the year before.

His response: people have seen it for more than 20 years and it’s worked fine. The Yellow Jackets went on to win the ACC.

This year, the only question Johnson was asked about his offense was what’s going to be the media’s hook.

“”Y’all will have to come up with something else,” Johnson said with a smile.

It would seem hard to top the 11wins, 33.8 points and 422.1 yards per game that Tech averaged last season.

If any of the players or coaches in the conference doubted the spread-based option in the past, they were saying all the right things at the ACC’s media days.

Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe, who said he always thought the offense would work, said Johnson may be the best ever at orchestrating the attack.

Even though the team lost B-back Jonathan Dwyer, the ACC player’s of the year in 2008, and Demaryius Thomas, who was the first wide receiver taken in the NFL draft this year, Grobe said the Yellow Jackets won’t slow down in year 3. The teams will play Oct. 2 in Winston-Salem.

“The personnel doesn’t matter, it’s the scheme that gets you,” Grobe said. “No matter what coaches know about stopping it, you can’t give everything you know to the players.”

The Deacons had some success against the Yellow Jackets last year. Despite giving up 463 yards, Wake forced Tech to overtime, where the Jackets won 30-27.

Grobe said that’s the perfect example of the difficulty in facing such a unique offense.

“We still weren’t good enough,” he said. “We had schemes that helped us, but we weren’t good enough. Let me put it this way: if you don’t have a good scheme, you’ll get blown out. If you have a good scheme, you might be competitive.

“They’re just a machine.”

At last year’s media day, former Virginia Tech safety Kam Chancellor said he thought he picked up something while watching film that tipped off what quarterback Joshua Nesbitt was going to do on each play. The Jackets rolled up 360 yards in offense and defeated the Hokies 28-23 at Bobby Dodd Stadium. This year, defensive end John Graves said he had nothing but respect for the what Yellow Jackets did last year, and what they could do this year. The teams will play Nov. 4 in Blacksburg.

“It’s a crazy offense that gets more difficult every year,” he said. “They won the ACC last year. Coach Johnson, he’s going to have another year with all those great athletes.”

Those great athletes are what Duke coach David Cutcliffe will keep fueling the spread-option armada, which he said is the same for almost any offense. Tech posted 519 yards in a 49-10 win last year. They will play Nov. 20 this season at Bobby Dodd.

“There’s no offense with magic,” he said. “No magic dust with a pro-style offense, or a spread or a wishbone. They are all sound.

“Georgia Tech will continue to have success as long as he continues to recruit good players.”

Johnson was coy when asked what he expects from his offense this year. He said he thinks the offensive line will play better, the B-backs and wide receivers are deeper and that Nesbitt has another year under his belt. The combination should make the offense better.

But as he’s fond of saying, he added, “we could play better but not win as many games.”

Clemson safety DeAndre McDaniel faced Johnson and the offense twice last season, losing both times, including in the ACC championship game. His Tigers will get to host the Jackets on Oct. 23. He doesn’t expect to see anything different than what he saw last season, when the Jackets rolled up close to 900 yards.

“Paul Johnson is a great coach,” he said. “He walks around without a playbook. That’s his offense.”

325 comments Add your comment

Mr. Magoo

July 27th, 2010
8:54 am

Ready for a great season!! Can’t wait! Go Jackets!!

THWG!!

WHAT

July 27th, 2010
8:55 am

its funny, one coach says its the scheme not the personnel (Grobe), the other says there is no magic dust its all in the personnel (Cutcliffe). Talk about confusion on what it is, how it works, all they both know is they lose.

Al benny

July 27th, 2010
8:55 am

Best coach in football today. Imagine what he could do with all the 4 and 5 star atheletes that UGA has!!

Kenan Hobajabu

July 27th, 2010
8:57 am

First? Can it be?

ThirtyPointsToYourTwentyFour

July 27th, 2010
8:58 am

One thing Willard Martini did right was shut the perfect option down in 2009, thanks to great play by Reshad Jones coupled with 339 rushing yards from Caleb King and Washaun Ealey.

bjohndawg

July 27th, 2010
9:07 am

I think the Jackets will be in the thick of it.The running game is the bread and butter, dont see that dropping off. If the defense is there(should be the biggest concern and must improve) and a little better passing game, big things and Johnson is still a genius.
If not….then its FSU or Miami win the crown.

Jacket Backer

July 27th, 2010
9:15 am

Can’t wait until Sept 4!!

Go Jackets!!

Robert Hall

July 27th, 2010
9:40 am

Beat the crap out of a woman and only receive a 1 game suspension, what a joke!

mountain_jim

July 27th, 2010
9:40 am

Well this GT alum still wishes he would develop better pass-blocking and a better passing game.

The last 2 bowl games show what a big Dline, talented defense with time to prepare can do to this one-sided offense. You need a competant passing game to go all the way, and GT has not had it last 2 years and I would be surprised if they do this year. The just throw it up and let Thomas come down with it option is not available now. Can our QB read defenses and throw accurately? I doubt it, particularly not the way this offense gets his shoulders and arms so beat up every play.

AMG

July 27th, 2010
9:45 am

Al Benny, Imagine what he is going to do with all the 5 and 4 star athletes that are going to sign with Tech, We have no less than 16 considering Tech this year, I would say we end up with at least 5. Next year we could end up with 10 or more. Stay tuned GT fans this machine is just starting to roll and pick up speed, the best is still to come.

GTJuggernaut

July 27th, 2010
9:48 am

Yeah, 3021, your 4 and 5 star recruits shut down our 3 and 4 star recruits pretty good. Congrats. We still averaged over 5 yards per play, and had a chance to win on the last drive of the game if not for an unfortunate drop by the WR picked first in this year’s NFL draft that would have given us a first down inside your 35. Our run defense let us down in that game unfortunately, but you beat us no doubt. You better be sure that you mutts have your chinstrap on tight cuz its payback time. Should be a good contest come Nov 27.

William Casey

July 27th, 2010
9:50 am

THIRTY POINTS TO…: High point of your guys season. Congrats.

kingster

July 27th, 2010
10:07 am

WOW, almost another season is here, I say to myself, whats going on with the recruits (GT is not getting the cream of the crop) well I am ashamed of myself, Paul Johnson is going on this 3red season and all he has done is win and put up great stats, now I am happy with what we got, I am a huge GT fan, most of my family are Bulldog fans, I trip when I see 4 and 5 stars sign with Bama, Auburn, Florida, UGA, Tennessee and Clemson, but I must admit we keep on winning, thats because of Paul Johnson, Thank you Coach Johnson for being straight and true. Kids don’t realize how important it is to get a great education and play for a clean program, the title Student Athlete is really what it all means, lost in all of this is the gliz and glamor of the pretty schools. Paul Johnson, keep doing what u r doing and before anybody realize we will have National Championship and maybe , just maybe some of those 4 and 5 stars kids who want a great education and a wonderful coach will come to TECH.

Stinger

July 27th, 2010
10:14 am

I actually feel sorry for the Dawgs in November. Paul Johnson will torch them to the tune of 50+ points this year. You heard it here first. ( We will hang A half Dollar or more on the mutts sorry defense )

Richard

July 27th, 2010
10:23 am

PJ is going to have to establish more of a passing threat to get to elite status. Also, as we learned against Miami, Georgia and Iowa, the offensive and defensive lines have to improve. It’s that simple.

RambleOn84

July 27th, 2010
10:30 am

Glad you mentioned Kam Chancellor. That guy shot off his mouth and ended up looking like a punk as he got embarrassed all day…I hope we take it to VPISU again; their coaching staff is once again acting acting like a bunch of babies trying to make cut blocking illegal.

Funny how they didn’t complain about it in 2008 when they beat us, right?

BigTimeTechFan

July 27th, 2010
10:31 am

Even if offense falls off 8 points (33 point to 25) a game that’s still a pretty good offense.
Key is defense, will Groh make the difference, schedule is a lot harder this year, Clemson, UNC, Va Tech, UGA on the road.
I agree with CPJ, If team is the same as last year, record may not be as good. Tech will have to be a dominating team to win Coastal.

RambleOn84

July 27th, 2010
10:32 am

The scheme itself is not magic. The key is the guy calling the plays and making the adjustments.

Paul Johnson has proven to be a master strategist by making excellent adjustments…he has done more with less than any other coach in the country over the last two seasons.

As our lines get better, we won’t struggle as much against opposing teams with dominant lines.

hi

July 27th, 2010
11:50 am

Old dawg

July 27th, 2010
11:52 am

It isn’t accurate to invision what CPJ could do with UGA athletes. The systems recruit to meet their needs. His abilities with his recruits, or the Gailey recruits for that matter, is without question. Personnell needs for his option are totally different than our needs for the pro set or I. He has that option down to a fine art, and any second guessing based upon other schools personnell is irrellavent. Good luck until November. Go dawgs.

hello

July 27th, 2010
11:52 am

GT will roll to another 10 win season…9 at the worst. Our road schedule is very tough but PJ will win some he was not supposed too. We should go undefeated at home…Miami and NC State could put scares in us but I think we handle them.

Finishing 3rd, not going to happen

July 27th, 2010
11:56 am

what is different about this year’s conference compared to last year, the opponents aren’t saying they have it (gt offense) figured out. They are keeping quiet.

to the dog poops, you are given two mulligans, bamaless and lsuless and you still won’t get it done. But just keeping your kids out of jail and findihg an AD who isn’t weaving all over the road with red panties between his legs would be a step up.

Navigator

July 27th, 2010
12:13 pm

The triple option didn’t go away because it didn’t work, it went away when the scholarships dropped and Oklahoma, Texas and a few others couldn’t get enough quality athletes to make it work. Remember there were multiple National Championships using the triple option, and if you have enough athletes, you can win with it now. Florida was running something similar to the triple when they won two National Championships, and given another Tebow type, they may win more. However, most triple option coaches don’t understand the necessity to also throw and having more than one QB to run it. If you beat up a QB all game, then late in the game the throwing becomes erratic and we saw that last year. PJohnson needs two to avoid that mistake again.

hello

July 27th, 2010
12:16 pm

Its funny how fast people forget the domination by Nebraska during the mid 1990s…they ran the option. They lost 7 straight bowl games and everyone thought the same thing as Nebraska dominated the big 8 but failed to win in the post season…starting in 1995 they won 3 out of the next 4 national championships. The rhetoric spread by people is quite funny….I would like to know what Osbourne thinks about PJ’s offense.

Jack G.

July 27th, 2010
12:16 pm

Everyone knows we can run. If only we could PASS.

hello

July 27th, 2010
12:17 pm

Jack G.

July 27th, 2010
12:18 pm

And play DEFENSE. Hope Groh improves the D.

reality

July 27th, 2010
12:21 pm

The offense will be fine. It’s defense that wins Championships…just look at Bama. If our defense improves, it could be a special season. Go Jackets!!

SILLY UGA FANS

July 27th, 2010
12:23 pm

I really want to see Nesbitt have a huge year. The kid deserves some serious protection from the o-line so he can show that he can pass the ball. Looking forward to Sept. and would like to see good ole fashion hate with two undefeated teams.

#1Stunna

July 27th, 2010
12:30 pm

Wow, not very many participants on this blog…hmm. Just thought I’d come over to see what kind of activity takes place on the Jackets blogs. GO DAWGS!!!

Mike Lum

July 27th, 2010
12:35 pm

I wish Nesbitt wouldn’t throw a single pass this year. Tech would be better off. They’ll win, but win ugly. No blowouts, even with an improved defense.

And this is at least the third straight year Tech has changed jersey styles. Each time they’ve gotten uglier and uglier. The new ones for this year are the worst. Russell Athletics doesn’t have a clue.

POAD

July 27th, 2010
12:37 pm

I just worry a lil about the Clemson, VT, and Miami game strech. Will be fun to watch Nesbitt throw the ball more this year.

HugoStiglitz

July 27th, 2010
12:41 pm

The offense will do what it always does. Run over people. Its not going to get any easier to stop with CPJ calling the plays. Then at some point we will have a moderately bad game where we only get 200 yards and 14 points and all of the haters will claim that the offense doesnt work.

BuzzKill

July 27th, 2010
12:42 pm

Reporter:

“Coach, whats your assessment of Dabo?”

CPJ:

“Dont know much. Just hate when I get it stuck on the bottom of my shoe.”

Manufans2

July 27th, 2010
12:43 pm

Im gonna take a step outside the box..yes CPJ is definitely a HOF coach and probably the best at the spread option and clutch playcalling but for me it all goes back to the QB. CPJ does everything up to when the ball is snapped..then its up to Nesbitt to read the D..make a split second decision on the dive up the middle..if he keeps it then there’s another split second decision on whether to run it or pitch to the back! Those decisions dictate the game in my book! side note: Im not sure how many remember the first snap of the Iowa game…Dwyer was off to the end zone without one person touching him..called back for illegal motion or some crap..or loss came down to that play so we need the entire O-line clicking on all cylinders every game because there is alot of movement in our set-up!!

BuzzKill

July 27th, 2010
12:45 pm

Reporter:

“Uh, Coach Johnson, another question, sir.
When you travel to Athens, what do you think of Sanford.”

CPJ: “Its the finest landfill ever constructed in this State.”

JW

July 27th, 2010
12:55 pm

Mike,

where did you see the jackets’ new uni’s?

Marietta

July 27th, 2010
12:57 pm

Nesbitt is my hero

JW

July 27th, 2010
1:00 pm

Mike, never mind, I saw them…

Someone please tell D Rad we hate Russell and MY GOD, why can’t we get some Nike Uniforms? Addidas? Reebok?? ANYTHING but Russell!

WoodyGT

July 27th, 2010
1:02 pm

i emailed the athletic dept and this is what they had to say about the uni’s :
Thank you for the email. Our contract with Russell is for 8 more seasons and this years uniform provides only a minor change from previous versions. I will be sure to pass along your comments regarding the uniforms and your suggestion to settle on a style. I am glad you liked last years uniforms, they had a good style to them as did the uniforms in the Orange bowl. I can assure you these were not just decided on a month before the season….they were just shown publicly at this time.

WoodyGT

July 27th, 2010
1:03 pm

basically they dont know what theyre doing

GT76

July 27th, 2010
1:18 pm

The offense will do what it has done as long as Paul Johnson is the coach. IT IS THE DEFENSE THAT WILL CONSISTENTLY WIN CHAMPIONSHIPS!

I know Coach Groh won’t likely be there 5 years from now but I expect Coach Johnson will. I also expect Groh to teach, teach, teach, the 3-4 defense and mentor the next guy and get Tech’s defense to elite status.

JW

July 27th, 2010
1:22 pm

woody

pls give me the email address to the athletic dept – I am going to send an email once a week and request that they end that contract earlier

I would personally commit to purchasing 5 GT football and baseball jerseys if GT would sign with a Nike/Reebok/Adidas.

I know there is a licensing issue, but my goodness, do we really want Russell representing the GT brand as we are on the national stage?

GT for life

July 27th, 2010
1:32 pm

one game at a time

GT sucks!

July 27th, 2010
1:33 pm

No way GT’s offense does what it did last year. You guys seem to forget that the rules have changed this year regarding Scum Johnson’s cheap and dirty chop blocks. In fact, for referee training, they have almost exclusively watched GT’s games from the last two years. In talking to an ACC ref I personally know, he estimated that 1 of every 5 snaps GT’s offense took last year would be a 15 yard penalty this year. I’d say it’s safe to say that GT is going to be in a world of hurt this year. Hell, you bees might be wishing to see chan gailey back in ATL.

supersize that order, mutt

July 27th, 2010
1:33 pm

Is there a link for seeing the new uni’s?

GT for life

July 27th, 2010
1:34 pm

GT76 you got that right-defense

GT for life

July 27th, 2010
1:36 pm

tell Beamer to get off this blog

supersize that order, mutt

July 27th, 2010
1:36 pm

sucks, I’m sure you are personal friends with an ACC ref….just like I am personal friends with Angelina Jolie. As far as the blocks go, there is a BIG BIG difference between a CUT block, which is what Tech legally does, and a CHOP block, which is illegal. You and your imaginary friend need to read the rule books. Don’t you think that after 20+ years of running this offense, that both CPJ AND the officials have learned what’s right and what’s wrong?

Vick=Dog killing thug

July 27th, 2010
1:41 pm

The GT QB (forget his name) has a bad ankle? Right ? Any news on his status ?