Report: Kelly leaving Tech for FSU

Georgia Tech’s search for a defensive coordinator took a left turn Monday. Interim defensive coordinator Charles Kelly, who was a candidate for the job after a strong finish this season, was hired by Florida State to coach linebackers, according to Rivals.com. Spokesmen for both schools could not confirm the move.

Kelly was receiving serious consideration for Tech’s coordinator position, which he took over six games into the past season after the firing of coordinator Al Groh. Coach Paul Johnson said Friday that he thought he would reach a conclusion in the next couple of weeks after he had met with candidates.

It is a considerable loss for Tech. Johnson planned to retain Kelly, one of the staff’s top coaches and recruiters, even if he weren’t made the full-time coordinator. The move makes something of a prophet of Johnson.

“This time of year, I’ve learned through the years you never know what’s going to happen,” Johnson said Friday. “You’re one phone call away from losing a guy or two or three guys. You just don’t know.”

Kelly joined the Tech staff in 2006 as special-teams coordinator, then switched to cornerbacks and then the secondary after Johnson’s hire after the 2007 season. He was the final remaining holdover from coach Chan Gailey’s staff.

As interim coordinator, Kelly closed the season emphatically. The Yellow Jackets held FSU scoreless in the second half of the ACC Championship game and then beat USC 21-7 in the Sun Bowl for their first bowl win after seven consecutive defeats.

Ken Sugiura, Georgia Tech blog

144 comments Add your comment

Flowery Branch Yellow Jacket

January 7th, 2013
7:34 pm

Here’s hoping this is only an unsubstantiated rumor.

Jacket Man

January 7th, 2013
7:36 pm

It happened last week and his office has already been cleaned out. FSU leaked the story before Kelly was ready…

Jacket Man

January 7th, 2013
7:37 pm

He wanted to tell all of his players personally.

South GA Jacket

January 7th, 2013
7:38 pm

I’m with you FB Yellow Jacket. Hope it’s just a rumor.

Tech93

January 7th, 2013
7:42 pm

Sounds like a done deal. It is a disappointment, but hopefully we can find the right guy. We don’t need to hire another “hopeful” or guy who is going to sell us on his 3 year plan to implement a 3-4 defense.

5150 UOAD

January 7th, 2013
7:46 pm

I guess he isn’t the GT DC

dagnabit

January 7th, 2013
7:51 pm

d1reality

January 7th, 2013
7:54 pm

Good luck coach Kelly, would have liked to see him stay, but it looks like a good opportunity for him.

If he was one of CPJ’s serious candidates for DC, I’m sure this wouldn’t be happening.

Nothing but upside for the new DC after the Groh mess in 2012. I expect some news soon.

dry dirt road

January 7th, 2013
8:00 pm

He probably could’nt handle veinless, effiminate “Buzz” wings w/o black lines/veins in them; he’s smart; “Buzz” art is for GT girls just like pink is for unis

GT sam

January 7th, 2013
8:00 pm

What about the rest of the defensive coaching staff

dry dirt road

January 7th, 2013
8:02 pm

such as who, the missing AD?

TVFan

January 7th, 2013
8:02 pm

CPJ’s seat is going to get warm over this. One month away from national signing day and you find a way to lose maybe your best assistant coach and recruiter. Very bad loss for Georgia Tech. Maybe there was something to Al Groh’s comments. CPJ better hit a home run on his next hire because he’s already had two strikes.

crackbaby

January 7th, 2013
8:03 pm

Ken – Who would Kelly replace @ FSU?

SportsRappority

January 7th, 2013
8:04 pm

Doesn’t this pave the way for Alabama LB coach Lance Thompson? Let’s say Thompson has been offered and accepted. But he’s not going to announce it until after the championship game. And Kelly doesn’t want it to look like he’s been demoted. So hours before the championship game, word gets out that Kelly is leaving for FSU. Then tomorrow morning, CPJ announces Lance Thompson as DC.

RambleOn84

January 7th, 2013
8:08 pm

Good for Coach Kelly. He obviously wasn’t going to get the DC job here, and Johnson is honest and straightforward enough to tell him this.

Coach knows this DC hire is a VERY important decision, and I expect we will get a great one. I like Bama’s Lance Thompson and Chris Rumph. Heck, I’d take any defensive guy from Alabama.

Jacket Man

January 7th, 2013
8:28 pm

Lance Thomson isn’t coming back; Van Gorter isn’t coming on board. Expect the first hire to be named before the first officials next week and the DC to be named before NSD.

Tech93

January 7th, 2013
9:00 pm

Jacket Man…have u heard of names that are being interviewed for DC?

Reality

January 7th, 2013
9:02 pm

I do not mean to sound negative at all towards FSU, but…

Won’t a DC position at GA Tech be more prestigeous and pay more and be a better career path than a LB coach at FSU?

GT Man

January 7th, 2013
9:03 pm

Cant blame Kelly; he needed to know something, if was him or an other. Why wait on PJ, hope he dosent get another Groh. Hope this time its a “young” coach that can relate with the kids and not forget what defense to call. Hope its someone that can stop a pass.

Tony

January 7th, 2013
9:08 pm

Ken instead of saying it is a report of what has happened why don’t you call the guy and ask him. Surely as wonderful a reporter as you his phone number would be in your file. This is a non-story like a lot of AJC crap until it is official. You guys must have a quota to meet on stories so you just throw stuff that you either don’t know is true or you know it is but then you have another when it is official. When it is official then report what has happened and leave the speculation to fiction writers. This may be true but you obviously don’t know..

AtWork

January 7th, 2013
9:13 pm

Tony grow up. If you don’t want to read this stuff…then don’t.

Thanks for the update Ken. Seems to be confirmed now from some of the pay sites. Do you know who he has interviewed? Likely candidates now that Kelly has been removed.

Unspecified injury sound like an ACL for Isiah. Hope he rebounds.

Go Jackets!

Butt Fly

January 7th, 2013
9:14 pm

He has my vote for the smartest man at GT!

Jacket Man

January 7th, 2013
9:16 pm

I can tell you who HASN’T interviewed, and that’s Lance Thompson, and he isn’t scheduled to. I CAN say that after tonight’s game, expect a coach to get interviewed rather quickly, but his name won’t be released, obviously.

doc

January 7th, 2013
9:17 pm

sorry folks this is not a god sign. kelly played the good trooper knowing he was heading for the hills as soon as he could it seems if not given the job outright he was essentially giving a an ojt interview.

it had better be good cpj.

reality, what it says is the condition of the tech program. kelly wasnt going to take a chance to be a position coach in a dead end job. he has shown what he can do as a coordinator in a way and he goes to a better program potentially even as a position coach. he knows more than anyone what the true climate it is to work in at the flats alluded to by groh. if it was good he would have stayed; as it was as a groh guy he is going the other way.

meanwhile alabama is “clinicing” the rest of the ncaa pretenders. love it as i hate notre dame more than alabama or uga. ;-)

ken love what you are doing here but there might be a deeper story if sought.

Dogkicker

January 7th, 2013
9:22 pm

Dogkicker

January 7th, 2013
9:22 pm

FJ10

January 7th, 2013
9:23 pm

Kelly must have known that after the past two games if CPJ wasn’t offering he wasn’t getting.

Uncle Mike

January 7th, 2013
9:30 pm

Lance Thompson WILL be the new DC!

Tech Forever

January 7th, 2013
9:33 pm

Jacket Man says Lance Thompson has not been interviewed…..and he’s correct, he hasn’t been per Coach Thompson to me. But that doesn’t mean Coach Thompson won’t be interviewed…..and it certainly doesn’t mean he’s not interested…..per Coach Thompson to me.

I’ll add that if Lance doesn’t come back to Tech it has nothing to do with Tech and everything to do with CPJ…..but that part is just MHO.

Tony

January 7th, 2013
9:33 pm

ATWork I am grown up. Ken himself states this has been reported and unconfirmed by both schools. Until Ken knows it has happened then it is a non-story and he is an Enquirer type reporter. These guys write things before they know the story just to get a reaction when there may not be anything to it. They need readership proof and need to write something so they make it up. All I’m asking he do is call Kelly and ask him then report what Kelly tells him. He may have and he may know so he gets 2 stories instead of 1. No he doesn’t know who has been interviewed or he would report who they are since he is a great reporter. And since this is still somewhat of a free country I read and commit on what I want. I don’t need you approval nor your smart ass comments about what I post. To borrow from you, “If you don’t want to read this stuff … then don’t.”

Tech Forever

January 7th, 2013
9:36 pm

I’ll add that I don’t know this for sure but I would not be surprised one bit if the LB Coach position pay at FSU every bit as high as the DC position at Tech.

steve brown

January 7th, 2013
9:36 pm

Kelly’s quick departure adds credence to Groh’s rant, does it not?

Rick James

January 7th, 2013
9:40 pm

@Reality

I do not mean to sound negative at all towards FSU, but…

Won’t a DC position at GA Tech be more prestigeous and pay more and be a better career path than a LB coach at FSU?
——————————————————————————————————————————-
Which coach has more job security? Paul Johnson at Tech or Jimbo Fisher at Florida St.? Maybe coach Kelly thinks its Fisher.

George Stein

January 7th, 2013
9:50 pm

Gotta love fans who think they know more than the coach whose job depends on the hire.

Supersize that order, mutt

January 7th, 2013
9:52 pm

@ steve,,,,,no, it doesn’t say anything about Groh’s rant. It says that he probably wasn’t going to get the DC position and wanted to leave while he was ahead. Nothing wrong with that, although I am sorry to see him go.

George Stein

January 7th, 2013
9:54 pm

No, Steve, it doesn’t. He could have left, too. Further, the source of this article also said Groh was offered the DC job Kansas but turned it down last year. Groh loses credibility with that fact, right?

Supersize that order, mutt

January 7th, 2013
9:56 pm

Tony, the rumor had been brought up by various bloggers all afternoon. Why shouldn’t Ken address it as best he could. So what if he hasn’t spoken to Kelly? Hell, Kelly probably hasn’t been available for interviews. Ken does an EXCELLENT job of providing us news and information. Get over it !!!

Oh That Guy

January 7th, 2013
9:57 pm

You guys are so funny, always trying to find the negative. Kelly leaving does not make what Groh said any more legitimate than if he had not. Kelly and Groh did not like each other. Kelly was the one who went to CPJ and started the divide with Groh. Kelly left for more money and because he was told he is not the DC choice. The new DC will come from Alabama’s coaching staff. Just what I have heard from some pretty close sources.

TOS reporting CCK to FSU - Page 2

January 7th, 2013
9:57 pm

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On the Outside Looking In.

January 7th, 2013
9:57 pm

Sounds like a Smart man! It off a sinking ship.

Oh That Guy

January 7th, 2013
9:58 pm

You guys are so funny, always trying to spin the negative. Kelly left for more money after he was told he is not the DC choice. Kelly is the one who started the divide with Groh. The next DC will be from Alabama’s staff per some pretty close sources.

Supersize that order, mutt

January 7th, 2013
9:59 pm

Since Kelly was so popular with the players, this may be a good thing. Who knows but the players might have revolted against a new guy if Kelly were still on the staff. This way, they may be disappointed, but they can’t begrudge the fact that Kelly got (supposedly) a higher paying job elsewhere

Oh That Guy

January 7th, 2013
10:01 pm

Everybody jumped on the Kelly bandwagon so fast they forgot about the BYU, UGA and UNC games. Sure he had a good bowl game against a back-up freshman QB. Tech has a ton of players coming back and the ACC loses a lot of star players as a whole. Tech will be fine next year.

FORMATION 4 SUCCESS

January 7th, 2013
10:05 pm

@Rick James. I would think so, but if it is true about CPJ being on the hot seat, Coach Kelly could be jobless after 2013. Tech has no money to waste so, CPJ will not be fired and Coach Kelly must have gotten wind that he would not get the Coordinator Job, so a move to FSU may prove to pay more than his current salary.

Tony

January 7th, 2013
10:06 pm

OK Super I’ll get over it. Let Ken start something about anything he apparently knows nothing about and everybody wants to take up for him. Apparently he can’t take up for his self or did he just write this and run. Maybe it has been on various bloggers all afternoon but I don’t have time or desire to follow all those type reports. That’s why I come to the AJC to get at least some idea about what is going on. Then all you get from the so called Tech reporter is a “report” something has happened.

But I’m over wanting to know what has actually happened. I just want a “report” about what may have happened.

Buzz Me

January 7th, 2013
10:09 pm

Bring back Giff Smith!

bob jones

January 7th, 2013
10:12 pm

hopefully thompson will bring some players from alabama with him

George Stein

January 7th, 2013
10:12 pm

Maybe you should ask for your money back, Tony.

Tony

January 7th, 2013
10:13 pm

Super most reporters say the subject wouldn’t answer the phone or was unavailable for comment if that was the case. I’m guessing he didn’t try as his deadline was approaching.

Supersize that order, mutt

January 7th, 2013
10:15 pm

Tony……name me a newspaper or publication in the entire country that offers what you are looking for. They ALL do it, and frankly, I see nothing wrong with it as long as rumors are reported as rumors with no miss-statement that they are facts. That of course, is not what is done in political campaigns, but Ken ALWAYS reports a rumor as a rumor and not a fact. I am fin with that