GREENSBORO, N.C. - Georgia Tech is four scholarships under its 85-player limit, giving coach Paul Johnson potential to offer scholarships to Penn State players considering transferring following the NCAA’s punishment for its involvement in the sexual abuse scandal involving former coach Jerry Sandusky.
The NCAA has granted immediate eligibility to Penn State players who leave the school to play elsewhere. That offer, on top of the program being docked a total of 40 scholarships and facing a four-year bowl ban, could lead to an exodus of talent out of State College, Pa. The 85-player limit, though, may not even matter. The Washington Post reported Monday morning that the NCAA is considering waiving scholarship limits for schools that accept Penn State transfers.
Broadly speaking, Tech faces multiple challenges and may not wade too deeply into the fray, or at all. First, the staff does not have a wealth of connections to Pennsylvania high schools and coaches, which have produced the vast majority of the Nittany Lions roster. Second, that also means the staff is less familiar with players considering transferring. As was the case with guard Thomas O’Reilly, who transferred to Tech from Auburn this summer after having picked Auburn over Tech out of high school, that two-way familiarity can be crucial.
Tech’s roster doesn’t include any players from Pennsylvania. Defensive coordinator Al Groh, from his days coaching at Virginia, has helped land three players from the Washington, D.C. area – cornerback Louis Young, linebacker Jeremiah Attaochu and defensive end Roderick Chungong. Among recruits committed for the 2013 signing class are a defensive end/linebacker and defensive tackle from Maryland and a quarterback from New Jersey.
Third, Johnson has sought to even out the size of signing classes, and accepting transfers could undermine that effort. For example, there are only 10 scholarship seniors on the roster. Johnson will be speaking Monday afternoon at ACC Media Days.