Johnson: ‘You want fans that care’

Some of the more interesting answers from Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson at his Monday post-practice interview:

On Tech converting most of its takeaways into points:

“It’s possessions, because what happens is every time that you turn the ball over, you lose a chance to score. It’ a possession. We had done a pretty good job of that for most of the year and then Saturday, we turn it over on two plays on a hitch pass, we turn it over on the first play or the second play on an option, you turn it over on the first play of a drive with 8 minutes (left) with a deflection for an interception, and that’s all chances that you don’t have to score. It takes away your chances. So on the flipside, when you get one on defense it gives you another possession, another chance to score. That’s why they were so big in the game. And then we killed our possession in the second half with a penalties to start the second half. End up 2nd and 25.”

On if he had put his finger on an explanation for Tech’s lack of energy Saturday:

“No. If I knew… It’s disappointing and it’s unacceptable and I think our guys know it’s unacceptable. You move forward. Like I said, you’re not going to get anywhere looking backwards. Quit moping, quit pouting, and let’s go play.”

On special-teams play being improved:

“Except fumbling the kick, except getting a penalty, except both times they punted, we take over on the 4 and the 12, but other than that, it was great. But it was the lesser of the evils.”

On the success MTSU had throwing quick outs by blocking cornerbacks:

“We had some guys who were supposed to be buzzing the flats who weren’t buzzing the flats. I think they played good. Should we have lost the game? No, but we did.”

On if he’d received any encouraging e-mails or phone calls from colleagues or friends:

“Not really. Last time I looked, we were 2-3, not 0-97. I would think most people wouldn’t even be thinking about it. But, clearly, you guys are. I get e-mails every week whether we win or lose, and most of them are telling me what I need to do, whether we win or lose.”

On everybody having an opinion:

“But that’s part of it. You want fans that care. If they didn’t care, they wouldn’t be very good fans. We’re disappointed, too. I promise you. Nobody’s more disappointed than I am. But I certainly haven’t given up. It’s not like oh, shoot, the season’s lost. We’ve still got a lot to play.”

On Morgan Bailey’s play in the second half:

“He moved some people around. He’s got great ability. Hopefully, he can stay out and have a good week of practice and we can play him. I’ve said from the jump, the kid’s got great ability. If he can just stay healthy, he’ll really help us.”

In case you missed it…

Johnson to team: Stop pouting

Fitting MTSU loss into Tech history

After debacle, Tech braces for Clemson

Ken Sugiura, Georgia Tech blog

254 comments Add your comment

Tech is a joke

October 2nd, 2012
4:53 pm

CPJ cannot recruit. Tech lost to MTSU!!! MTSU??? Pathetic!

The team quit. It’s up to the coaching staff to get the team ready to play!!

Here’s hoping CPJ stays just to see more sorry football from a pathetic team!!

Delbert D.

October 2nd, 2012
4:56 pm

@T-Man – It’s all in the spelling. They can do that, they can do almost anything.

Mike Franklin

October 2nd, 2012
5:00 pm

Delbert D. – Not sure who you are talking about right off the top… but, no. Florida born but Georgia grown. Living today about 10 miles from another SEC school, Auburn.


October 2nd, 2012
5:03 pm

October 2nd, 2012
2:39 pm

Hire Mike Bobo. He develops QBs like mad. He recruits Georgia well and it would be a dagger in the heart of UGA recruiting and QB development. Tech doesn’t have the money to pay a big-time coach to come in. They need to look at an assistant coach on the rise.

I doubt DRad can do anything about CPJ this year because of the tight pocketbook, but if he can, he needs to look to a cheaper solution that will pay long-term dividends. Maybe Bobo wouldn’t come, but there are other high profile assistants who deserve a look. Why not Kirby Smart? Or Manny Diaz? Don’t tell me that GT isn’t a great gig. The job is in the heart of the most recruiting rich state in the country (per capita) and has a storied tradition and decent facilities.

The truth is, is that guys like Kirby Smart, Manny Diaz can’t wait on a job like USCe since Spurrier will retire in the next 2 or so yrs., or they can wait on Arky that has shown the willingness to pay $3.0MM per yr. for the right HC.

Guys that have worked to get “SEC experience” on their resume will wait on SEC jobs or will work at FSU (ala Jimbo Fisher), but they won’t come to GT.

GT’s best bet is to go looking in the Big12, maybe the Offensive Asst. for Holgerson at Wva. or the top Offensive Asst. at Okie St., maybe since they have already gone up to $2.6MM for CPJ maybe a HC like Briles at Baylor will come to GT.

Briles has found a way for his Offense to keep on producing despite losing a once-in-a-generation talent like RG-III, but if you hired Briles, he would have to agree to get help from the AD in bringing in a Top DC since his Defenses at Baylor have been woeful.

The only question is whether or not a crappy AD like DRad has the connections to help any new GT HC find a great DC.

The SEC is the Holy Grail of CFB, and a school like GT won’t get guys that have their sights set on coaching in the SEC, Clemson or FSU might get them, but GT won’t.

Another problem that GT faces is that the school is CHEAP, despite all the grandiose talk of wealthy Alums, none of that money finds its way to the Athl. Dept., the other 7 or so Assts. outside of the HC & the coordinators are woefully underpaid in comparison to SEC schools, therefore we won’t get top-flight position coaches that are also great Recruiters.

Basically when it comes to CFB, “the GT Alumni base is all hat and no cattle”.

Other alumni bases put their money where their mouth is, but GT alums don’t.


October 2nd, 2012
5:04 pm

should be CAN WAIT on a job like USCe


October 2nd, 2012
5:04 pm

Wow, Coach Paul Johnson is in denial or crazy one, if his team was flat it was because of his coaching or noncoaching. Is coaching is outdated and his DC Al Groh is outdated, they need to go, Johnson needs to be coaching in DII, he can never get the good players to come to TECH with the TO, I know Tech has won with the I-set and the pro set (small set back with Reggie Ball at QB) but we can do much better, DRad, don’t let Paul Johnson be your last job option, make a move before the recruits Tech does have go somewere else for a real coach.


October 2nd, 2012
5:14 pm

P. Johnson is silly, of course any coach would want fans that care, but they(the fans) also want and coach who is for real and a team that is winning, plus when the team has given up on his “I Master, I know everything and I don’t listen to anyone act”


October 2nd, 2012
5:19 pm

He wants fans to CARE—BS, johnon wants to be left alone and not bothered by any fan, alum, or anyone else that CARES about GT…. This blithering imbecile needs to be taken out behind the wood shed just like his team was Saturday and have some CARE beat into his cankerous hide—— This guy CARES about nothing but himself and that fat paycheck….. %^&# johnson

Delbert D.

October 2nd, 2012
5:20 pm

Mike Franklin – Good. That was another guy, a friend of mine from awhile ago.


October 2nd, 2012
5:22 pm

Buzzing on the flats, give me a break!
No. 35 was more like splat on the windshield
On second thought he missed so badly on three plays in a row that could even find the windshield

Delbert D.

October 2nd, 2012
5:31 pm

Freshman mistakes, they can kill ya.

TechApp fan

October 2nd, 2012
5:39 pm

I’m disappointed. MT was supposed to be a game that TW would start and quickly rest and VL would get some meaningful game experience. Since that did not happen and Clem is next, might not happen for a few weeks.

Question for Tech now concerns the ability or the desire to tackle.

Sure wanted to see what Lee can do and see if PJ will utilize the non option (whatever that is) for Lee.

Big Jim

October 2nd, 2012
6:04 pm

Delbert…you cannot seriously be using a 1 off PASS play to a 2 star slow full back up the middle as defense that this stupid offense works! You are simply making yourself look foolish.

Sure there are one offs all over the place. How many times did that play work against MTSU, VT, Miami? I can show you 385 Fullback dive, Tevin up the middle plays for 6 inches that did NOT work.

All I am saying is if you cannot keep a defense honest and on their toes guessing, they will eat us up at the line of scrimmage all day long. Ex – Every Bowl game, 16 of the last 20 (real games)

And yes GStein, 9 in the box IS a game plan against the silly slopsion. And it DOES get stopped MOST of the time short of the end zone. Toss out the cupcakes and our record over the past 3 yrs is well well under .500.

And yes again…to “pass block” effectively in a game, I suggest do it in practice! To rush the “passer” effectively, also would do it in practice…just sayin’

Oh, BTW, I have been sitting in that stadium since there was an asphalt track around it….

Pete Van Weirdd

October 2nd, 2012
6:18 pm

Punch em in the face, go fry some bigger fish, don’t bother me, I am a genius

Delbert D.

October 2nd, 2012
6:21 pm

@ Big Jim – I have no idea what you are talking about. Something my imposter posted earlier, I guess.

CPJs thinks TW INT was a "deflection"

October 2nd, 2012
6:24 pm

[...] thinks TW INT was a "deflection" Johnson: ‘You want fans that care’ | Georgia Tech "you turn it over on the first play of a drive with 8 minutes (left) with a deflection for an [...]

Delbert D.

October 2nd, 2012
6:26 pm

The TD to Laskey, I see it now. Taylor King shares your view on chuckoliver dot net.


October 2nd, 2012
6:55 pm

CPJ shouild have been fired after saturday! I don’t understand why our fan base and athletic board is so so patient with our coaches. CPJ needs to pack his bags and go back to Navy. CPJ if your reading this,please do the GT nation a favor and LEAVE !


October 2nd, 2012
7:49 pm

@ wne No tech fan wants a U.G.A coach or x should know this by now.T.H.W.G.


October 2nd, 2012
7:52 pm

Its not that they dont want us ,we dont wont them.

Go Jackets

October 2nd, 2012
8:20 pm

@Supersize….for all ur enthusiasm for CPJ, whichj I dont share, there are many of us that have seen and heard this toon many times before. In order for the Tech brass to do something, we have to STAY AWAY. It took empty seats and Kennesaw State to get rid of CPH. I dont see Johnson’s recruiting getting any better, in fact, its getting worse. His decision making regarding defensive hires is suspect at best, and his demeanor turns ppl away. I am firmly convinced he will be gone after NEXT year. They gave Gailey 6 (ugh)years, they will give Turkey Neck 6 too.


October 2nd, 2012
8:55 pm

Don’t worry , Paul. It’s just like you said after the Miami game….it just wasn’t meant to be.


October 2nd, 2012
9:33 pm

Only empty seats will end this madness.

Mailed back gt football tickets tickets today, return receipt please D Rad.

See you in 2017 as poor management will not let the regime change till then and its just not our time to win with a violent, suicidal coach who makes remarks degrading a large successful corporation with Tech CEO and the physically and mentally challenged. Yes the r word is degrading.

In the mean time I will enjoy many more live music festivals and travel (not to Atlanta) than I could have wasting money on this lame product.

Not representative of Tech.

Good luck to all of you, especially the student athletes.

Georgia Tech Grad 1987

1 4 GT

October 2nd, 2012
9:38 pm

It is great to see sanity returning to the GT blogs. We were all mad, disappointed & stunned after the MTSU game. Pretty normal reaction, I’d say. I had been thinking about a post to try & rouse folks out of their doldrums, but I am glad to see it’s not needed. I will say this. For those saying they won’t go the remaining games=SHAME! Let’s get our John Brown hind parts down to BDS @ HGF & don’t do like I did in the 2nd half. Get up & cheer, yell & make yourself hoarse. And if you have made plans to go to Clemons this weekend….GO….WEAR YOUR GT COLORS….WITH PRIDE….win, lose or draw….show Clemons GT does not “QUIT”!!!!!!!!!! GOOOOO JACKETS THWGeorgie


October 2nd, 2012
9:38 pm

Oh and that new indoor practice field is nice, but did it make us better?

1 4 GT

October 2nd, 2012
9:39 pm

All Georgie leg humping, butt sniffing, stone licking trolls can smack on my John Brown hind parts.

1 4 GT

October 2nd, 2012
9:42 pm

greta=not representative of GT


October 2nd, 2012
9:44 pm

Most tech grads live out of state/country and there are too may quality entertainment products available, especially when the football team does not win consistently, in Atlanta.

Simple supply/demand economics. The next spent dollar will seek highest value. Especially discretionary dollars seeking entertainment.

Hows the sand your heads are in?

1 4 GT

October 2nd, 2012
9:45 pm

IMNTBHO…..all any fan has the “right” to expect from their team. To be competitive! To put itself in a position to win at the end the game! To compete for the conference championship! To actually be the champion every now & again! To be competitive against their #1 rival & beat said rival every now & again! Maybe be “lucky” enough to even be in the mix for the MNC every now & again & maybe actually upset the applecart & win it! If the fan’s team can just be competitive, all of the rest will fall in place. Like any business, it was not created to give us a job. No college/institution was created to give us a sports team to cheer for….that is supposed to secondary. Do we want/expect more? Do we want/expect to win like Alabama? Many fans answer those questions yes. Will they get their wish? Not likely. Enjoy your team’s successes & hurt for their losses. And live with both. And always have pride in your”s & their achievements. Wear your colors proudly. Selah.


October 2nd, 2012
9:46 pm

And the violent, suicidal, degrading (per his own words) coach is?



October 2nd, 2012
10:10 pm

manic depressive?

Sorry, almost seemed like a test.


Sorry, maybe it’s just you.


Oh, the irony.

It’s a game, get over yourself greta dude. How about…Go Jackets! Beat Clemson!

[...] Johnson: ‘You want fans that care’ [...]


October 2nd, 2012
10:43 pm

To put things into perspective:

CPJ – $2.75mill
Frank Beamer – $2.65mill
Bill Snyder – $2.1mill
Chris Peterson – $2mill
Dan Holgorsen – $1.75 mill
Kyle Whittingham – $1.5mill
Gus Malzhan – $800k

Yea, DRad looks like a real genius now.


October 3rd, 2012
12:37 am

We need to do more passing. CPJ is not going anywhere anytime soon. We still have to pay for Hewitt. We don’t have the money that the SEC schools have to throw around.

Buzz 2011

October 3rd, 2012
5:48 am

@sammydawg… Spurrier is looking for Dawgs and his team will
beat those Hot Dawgs by 20 points. I can’t wait to see the Dawg
meltdown. How long since the Dogs beat a ranked team, 4 years?
Can you play Brooklyn,NY again this year?

Old Dog

October 3rd, 2012
6:22 am

Hey T-man, wtf is cirriculum? I’d like a refill on my root beer, please. To Hell witrh Tek, today,tomorrow and every other day! Cirriculum, now that’s funny. Tek grads my ass.


October 3rd, 2012
6:51 am

The defense is confused and it’s time to cure the confusion. Retire Al Groh.

Admiral Obvious

October 3rd, 2012
6:58 am

Looks like PJ is throwing Groh under the bus. Next is the players. Please Please sign PJ to a Life Time Contract.

tired from all the frustrations of being a yellow jacket

October 3rd, 2012
6:58 am

Good gosh, give up on the notion of Vad lee saving us-the kid seems to be lost when he is out there. Like him or not tevin is the best in the bag. The players have taken a hike-their spirit is gone and I don’t know if Coach Johnson can get them back-the onus is on the players to be men and act like real men and athletes. All were recruited and signed because they were athletes, The difference between 3 and 4/5 star atheletes is one component and it is EFFORT and hard work. these players on Tech-(not all) are cry babies and losers-and it kills me to say that. you take Orwin Smith-definitely the most skilled athlete on the field for Tech-every time he runs a play, he is asking to be taken out of the game and limping, holding his wrist or some other temporary pain. it is sickening! For me I am backing Coach johnson all the way. he has forgotten more about football and winning than most any coach we could get to take over the program. same for Coach Groh. Both are winners and the team needs to put it all on the line for them.

Give him a chance!!!

October 3rd, 2012
7:33 am

Give him a chance Paul Johnson is a offensive coaching geniuses. M.T.S.U. spanking the tech mights .


Todd Gurely & Keith Marshall Here.

October 3rd, 2012
7:36 am

We can’t wait to rack up 200 yards on that cheese cloth defense. That’s 200 yards apiece.

Caleb King

October 3rd, 2012
8:16 am

Sammy Dawg, Go lick your butt and cheer for the Clarke County Prison!!!!!!!

Caleb King

October 3rd, 2012
8:19 am

I got me one them good educations from Jawga!! I majored in Housing!!!!!!!


October 3rd, 2012
8:37 am

@Supersize – appreciate your comments Sir, you’re obviously a true college football fan and I appreciate the good sportsmanship as well.

I feel Coach Johnson is a great coach and an excellent fit for Tech for many reasons. People who continue to harp on the offense – how many yards and points do you need to validate that it works, seriously? I am frustrated by his learning curve stepping up – or bringing the program up to – the level desired by Tech fans. I think he hurts himself when he’s flippant and doesn’t relate to the average GT fan, he needs to show more understanding and address the issues raised.

I think most of us want a tough, disciplined team that plays smart, with passion and has a fighting chance each game. 7-4 and 8-3 winning when you should, surprising a few people and winning over UGA once every 4-5 years would make most of us pretty proud. Some consistent quality with signs of growth and improvement. So don’t fire him, but he needs to feel and understand the depth of our frustration with these continued mediocre results and act to improve – or he will need to move on at some point.

IMHO, the fundamental issue is recruiting the right kids, better athletes. Not necessarily a strength he had to develop at Navy and Div II schools. You are correct in every coach has a game where they kids don’t play to their potential. Our issue is the talent of our kids is not at a level we can overcome the lack of intensity or focus and the margin of error is sooo thin. Better players can rely on their innate ability to get them through some challenging games and still win. We can’t play less than our absolute best or we’ll lose.

The second issue is a lack, maybe perceived, of focus and commitment to a solid, fundamentally sound defense. Take the time to find a defensive mind that can take our players and maximize the results then spend the money to hire him. Think of the results over Johnsons 4+ years if we’d only had a slightly better defense each year! There’s a reason it’s not better after 4 years and that’s the quality of athletes recruited and the commitment to building it, again IMHO. Al does need to retire, nice guy no perceivable impact or improvement.

In any case, things can only get better! Go Jackets!


October 3rd, 2012
8:44 am

you just need one more point than the other guy…

GT is a 4th rate High School Team

October 3rd, 2012
9:06 am

GT will never rise from these ashes.


October 3rd, 2012
9:13 am

I started as a Tech fan in the Bobby Dodd era . Getting the most from smart players and hustle , UGA always had the best talent but Tech got there share of wins . Paul and co. are hard headed and not coached up’ I think his days are numbered .


October 3rd, 2012
9:18 am

blah blah blah. This guy talks more crap that I’ve ever seen. Acknowledging you have a problem is the first step to correcting it. In 5 years, this ego-maniac head-case can’t even admit he and his staff are failing. His goal is clearly the process of instructing “idiot” players to do what his genius directs, else they’ll fail. His goal is not to bring winning championship calibur Div I football to GT. He has GOT to go. It will not get any better.


October 3rd, 2012
9:46 am

Reply to mutt:

You have not considered all of my post. One of the main reasons Tech does not have a large alumni fan base is due to many of its students coming from all over the world and from all States in America. Georgia Institute of Technology is one of the best technical schools in the world. It draws a wide range of students from everywhere. When they graduate, most of them return to their home States or countries. They are nor easily available for football games, and many could care less about football.

Therefore, you are comparing apples and oranges when you compare other schools that still draw fans even though they lose often. Their students normally come from their home State and States adjacent to them. It is different from the likes of GT which has to have a large sidewalk fan base which wins consistently.

When Bobby Dodd was winning consistently sidewalk fans from all over Georgia and the surrounding States became Tech fans. Probably, most of them are dead by now, or too old to attend the games. I am sure GT has not drawn a huge gathering of sidewalk fans in the recent past with our Mediocre brand of football.

I would wager money that a coach like the one at Boise State could win big at Tech, because he is able to take lesser talent and beat the big boys. This is how Dodd did it, but it takes a special kind of coach who uses his talent in a system each year that stresses the strength of players he has on hand. It is also foolish to thing a pro defensive coordinator can have the same results in college that he had in the pros. He does not have the same material he had in the pros. It would take a defensive coordinator who could use and change a system from year to year to match the individual talents of each player.


October 3rd, 2012
4:07 pm


I don’t know where you got your figures about Tech enrollees, but you’re way off. Tech has about 82% of its students from Georgia, and 80% of those students come from Gwinnett, Cobb, Dekalb and Fulton counties (in that order). This information is public record and is available on the GT website in the “2011 Fact Book.” Most Tech grads are not only from the metro area, they stay there. UGA, by comparison has 84% from Georgia, again with about 68% of those students coming from those same counties. Tech has a lower percentage of out-of-state students than UGA, as well as out-of-region students than UGA. Tech does have a higher percentage of foreign students than UGA (8% to UGA’s 6%), but most are grad students for both institutions and don’t really factor in to this discussion anyway. Tech fans are notoriously non-plussed in their support of all the athletic teams. You participate in blogs and sound like you support the teams come hell or high water; don’t make excuses for those who do not.

I agree with you that the reason UGA fills Sanford Stadium on Saturdays is because they put a quality product on the field that fans want to see. The reasonTech does not fill Bobby Dodd is because they don’t do the same thing. Furthermore, Tech gets very little support from non-students and alumni…despite what some people believe, that’s a bad thing. We need money from non-students and alumni supporting the Institution. Again, unless you are producing a product people want to buy, they simply won’t do it.