In Jeremiah Attaochu, Groh brings classic OLB to Tech

Georgia Tech landed on Sunday what can only be described as the prototypical outside linebacker for a 3-4 defense. And for that the Yellow Jackets have new defensive coordinator Al Groh to thank.

Jeremiah Attaochu is a 6-foot-3, 223-pound linebacker that played with his hand on the ground at Archbishop Carroll High in Washington D.C. But he’ll be asked to do much more besides stand up in Groh’s defense, which he committed to being a part of the next four years.

“I got to know him while Coach Groh he was at Virginia,” said Attaochu, reached by phone in D.C. Sunday not long after returning from his official visit with the Yellow Jackets. “He’s known for his defense and coaching outside linebackers all over the league. I was a defensive end in high school but he felt like I was the right guy to be an outside linebacker. He has three things in his criteria for an outside linebacker: It’s being able to beat a tight end, being able to rush the passer and being functional in space. That’s how he puts it.

“So he basically told me what my role was and that’s the kind of relationship I have with Coach Groh. He’s a smart coach and he knows how to put his players in good positions. I feel good about him and I feel good about the school.”

And Georgia Tech feels good about Attaochu. The three-star prospect, who also considered Illinois, Maryland and Kansas State, was one of two prospects who committed to the Yellow Jackets on official visits this weekend. Phenix City, Ala., running back Deon Hill also committed to Tech Sunday morning. That gives them 16 commitments.

Attaochu said Tech earned his commitment during the visit.

“It was my last visit,” he said. “It wasn’t based on emotion. I tried to make it as much of a business decision as possible. It felt like the right fit for me as far as what I was looking for in a school, that balance of a good academic reputation and a good football program and a good coaching staff. That basically did it for me. And the environment was good, too.

“It was the only school I felt good about the whole combination of things. I mean, I prayed for it and I think God answered my prayers as far as going to a school that has everything I was looking for. Not perfect, just where everything was equally balanced.”

Despite the business nature of the trip, Attaochu said he did enjoy himself in Atlanta. He was hosted by junior Osahon Tongo.

“He told me all the practical things but he was also very frank with me,” Attaochu said. “Basically he told me it was hard work. He told me everything. I was very impressed with some of the dudes on the team and the school. Atlanta’s kind of different than D.C., in just a few small aspects, but I liked that. I liked the differences. Everything just kind of clicked basically.”

There was only one small uncertainty.

“The one thing I have to figure out is a major,” said Attaochu, who originally hoped to work in the media. “I know what I want as far as where I want to go. But there are some things I can do at Georgia Tech that might change my mind.”

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40 comments Add your comment


January 24th, 2010
6:25 pm

Im first because the yellow fuzz are too busy on the dawg sites.


January 24th, 2010
6:39 pm

This Attaochu kid runs all over the field making plays. He is very active and is a good fit for the new 3/4 defense at Tech. A very good pick up by Tech. Thank you Chip for all of your quick updates. Any news on Mike Thornton? Hopefully we can start to eliminate some of the trash comments on this post and just keep this about college football recruiting.

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Vick=Dog killing Thug

January 24th, 2010
6:59 pm

Sounds like that AhhhhChoooo kid is a big time player? Wonder why he wasn’t recruited by the big boys?


January 24th, 2010
7:03 pm

How many classic 3 star players are there, Chip?!! We know hyperbole when we see it!!


January 24th, 2010
7:11 pm

The vast majority of NFL players were 3 star or lower in high school.
The guys in the NFL are a lot better than when they left high school.
When you brag about “stars” you are really bragging about high school stuff. That is why with 9 straight top 10 recruiting classes UGA only has 2 conference championships to show for it. If number of stars mattered, UGA would have at least 2 BCS championships. But they do not.

Tokyo jacket

January 24th, 2010
7:13 pm

Cutty, you’re right. Video of this kid shows that his motor is always running and that he plants dudes squarely into the ground if they come his way or tracks them down if they run away. I think he’ll wind up having been underrated when it’s all done.

I think GT is about a year away from getting stars added to kid’s names, just because we’re recruiting them (a la UGA, UM, UF, USC, etc)

Yellow Fuzz

January 24th, 2010
7:19 pm


You’re First on a Tech blog!


Marty Funkhauser

January 24th, 2010
7:37 pm

Chip — Clearly, no one cares about the Dorks in the Hood and their crappy program, as evidenced by the 7 responses you have garnered thus far (of which only 5 appear to be from the Maggot faithful). What is the latest on a big recruiting weekend in Athens. Was any progress made in getting Whitaker on board?


January 24th, 2010
8:47 pm

Keep on barking dog fans, we know you’re scared.


January 24th, 2010
8:55 pm

Sometimes we tend to think the more stars you have translates on the field. But it is not always the case. The coaches have to do a better job at developing and getting the most out of these guys. I’m a true Dawg alumni and we have all these top 10 recruiting classes but no championships to show for it. Kind of like the Braves in the 90’s. Hope we can turn this around sooner rather than later.

Buzzed Driving

January 24th, 2010
8:58 pm

Cuttysark, if Thornton was interested in Tech, I don’t think he would have canceled his trip. If he was interested and he canceled, I’d consider him a flake and pass on him.

Chip, what’s up with the Clemson 4-star commit that said he was going to jump ship if a spot opened up for him at Tech?

What do Tech fans and UGA fans have in common?

January 24th, 2010
9:00 pm

They both love talking about Georgia Tech football.


January 24th, 2010
9:13 pm

Since God told him to go to Tech, how can this not work out?

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January 24th, 2010
9:53 pm


Good luck


January 24th, 2010
10:06 pm

Goldtimer…..if we were scared, it certainly wouldn’t be of you!!!! (please see Nov. 28th for reference)

Chip Towers

January 24th, 2010
10:08 pm

Buzzed Driving: Clemson was able to lock down Darius Robinson and talked him out of flipping. But still a long way to signing day! ;-) . . . Haven’t talked to Mike Thornton myself but do know that there were no new commitments to Kentucky out of the Stephenson contingent that went up there this weekend. . . .

Daddy Dawg: No hyperbole here, bud. Just reporting what happened at Tech this weekend. . . . Been working on Georgia, too, but nothing happened there. I’m not big on the ol’ “how’d-your-visit-go story.” Not news unless somebody commits or something.


January 24th, 2010
10:18 pm


January 24th, 2010
10:26 pm

Yep….A 3star running the 40 in the upper 4.’s and a 2 star that nobody has ever heard of….Neither is ranked anywhere with the better recruits….
This is how Groh is turning around the defensive program?…..Whatever….


January 24th, 2010
10:40 pm

Hi Tokyo Jacket. You can obviously see what this kid can do and that is with very little experience even playing the game to this point in his career. Don’t think for a moment that Al Groh would be chasing a kid that couldn’t play football. Ho knows what he has.

I find the whole “stars” rating system to be a bunch of nonsense. There was an interesting feature on the “Scout” site I saw earlier today going down the entire list of the 2006 “5″ Stars and how they ultimately panned out. Without adding up the total number of student/athletes who didn’t do much at all the next level, it appeared to be about 20% actually played and accomplished something during their college career. Notably Tim Tebow. The other 80% “5″ stars were not even hitting the field, or if they did, were nothing special.

So for all of the star gazers out there, good luck with your highly ranked classes. I’ll let the coaches evaluate talent the old fashioned way.


January 24th, 2010
10:44 pm

Buzzed Driving. Given that Mike Thornton is local and has probably been to campus for a junior camp or a game, an official visit isn’t necessarily that important as it would be if he was considering an out of state school. We will have to wait and see. If he comes to Tech great. If not, life will still go on and I wish him well at the school he elects to attend.


January 24th, 2010
10:59 pm

Great job Groh! Out defense will be vastly improved. I just don’t think that the players that left early will hurt us on offense or defense. We will only get better. Instead of the Orange Bowl, let’s shoot for the NCG.

And for you pitiful puppies…. maybe u’re attention should be towards that sewer you call Athens and try to avoid SHREVEPORT next year!

UGA Alum

January 24th, 2010
11:09 pm

Yellow Fuzz…I believe this is a COLLEGE recruiting blog. Not a Nerd recruiting blog. You really need to check yourself before you start cracking on CDAWG. Guess you should go back to reading UGA blogs…you are just another typical GT fan obsessed with the DAWGS!


January 24th, 2010
11:46 pm

You need to get back to it…reality that is…
You don’t think that the players you lost will hurt you? UGA won their bowl and made GT look pathetic…. there you have it….You guys are losing your best players on both sides of the ball…That couldn’t hurt, right…

Tokyo jacket

January 25th, 2010
12:00 am

Cutty, yeah, a lot of our recruits are like that this year. Some people with connections are actually saying this class could be as good, when all is said and done, as the 2007 class. Stars really don’t mean much, but they do too. A similar number of 2-, 3-, 4-, and 5-stars get drafted. But, there are progressively fewer of each, so the percentages are getting better. But that’s only draftees. About half of all 5-stars are out of college football or not on the field by their sophomore years. Then you get the 5-stars that are actually playing, then you get the ones that are playing better. So, yes, having 5-stars helps you out with a higher chance for a successful player.

In 2007 we signed Dwyer, Burnett, and Morgan – all 4-stars, all going to the NFL in April. UGA signed Houston, Irvin, Gray, Troupe, King, Curran, Ball, Anderson, Little and Sturdivant – all 4-stars, with only Curran going pro this year.

A lot of people, the recruiting services themselves included, have argued that there might be a bias in recruiting rankings. That bias is based on who is offering. Let’s not forget that these are pay services. These companies are in to make a profit. There are a lot more people at UGA tracking their recruits than at Georgia Tech (2 or 3 to 1 maybe). So, if it were your business, who would you evaluate more? I’m not saying they intentionally rank the players higher for the big schools, just that they do more research when a kid gets offered by FSU, UF, Bama, Ohio St, etc.

For example, Marcus Wright was a 2-star prospect out of Texas, but he was the state’s 5A player of the year with a 4.36 forty and 3,400 yards with 45 TDs…in his senior season. He got no offer from UT, Ok, TTech because he was short. CPJ offered him and we got him up to a 3-star.

Atlanta Jacket

January 25th, 2010
12:11 am

GT picked up two very good players with lots of potential this weekend. Heck of a class coming on board this year. I am excited about our future.


January 25th, 2010
12:30 am

Great Job Groh on this pickup at OLB. Thought we needed some good depth there. This 3-4 should help us out. Hopefully we will be strong 3 deep at all our positions. As for other recruits some strong ones seem to be available. Hopefully we will pick up some walkons as well. For whatever it’s worth the last two years we had something like 14 players rated 77 or better according to espn and 10 or 11 this year. This compares to 9 that are still on the team less the 3 going pro that were in Nesbitt, Jones, Dywer, Morgan, Burnett, etc..class. We only had 3 or so 5 years ago. We still need some D help and maybe a sure handed reciever.


January 25th, 2010
12:46 am

Ok, getting way ahead here but Gailey’s best recruiting season by far was 2007, the year after we won the Coastal division. Last year was MUCH better than 2006 and we’ll have a full recruiting class coming up. Go Jackets!


January 25th, 2010
2:21 am

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by ajc sports editor, Atlanta Peach Movers, Southern Pigskin, Online Recruitment, Coach and others. Coach said: In Jeremiah Attaochu, Groh brings classic OLB to Tech: I was a defensive end in high school but he felt like I was… [...]


January 25th, 2010
8:28 am

Meh. Yawn.. UGA-30. ACC Champs-24.


January 25th, 2010
10:06 am

Nice pickup. Good job Al. The defense will be much improved next year. I think we will surprise again and win the ACC. Nesbitt is a warrior.


January 25th, 2010
12:33 pm

Tokyo Jacket, well said. The stars are based more time than not strictly on who is recruiting kid, with a minor emphasis on his overall ability. I’ll go with a coaches impressions as they could give a flip about stars or rankings.

One of the best running backs in the country last year was a freshman at Pitt who went for 1,799 and about 30 touchdowns; Dion Lewis. All 3 stars of him from that hotbed of football Blairstown, New Jersey. At 5′ 7″, 180 he was better than any “5″ stars kid anywhere. He was only offered by Pitt at the last minute and was headed to either Miami of OHIO or TULANE. Now that is good old fashioned coach RECRUITING!


January 25th, 2010
2:10 pm

to all UGA fans that want to call people nerds. Why is it a bad thing that someone is smart??? you think you better bc your a dawg fan with no brains!!

J Gil Higgins

January 25th, 2010
4:13 pm

It doesn’t matter that he commited to Tech. It’s not going to matter when Alabama wins another national championship. Back-to-back titles! Roll Tide!


January 25th, 2010
6:14 pm

If u aint gOt no big starrs u aint NuTHIn!! DAwGs goonna kik ass nex year cUZ we RercrROOTin champs!! TheM TeK playerz goiN to Th NFL aint nuthin buT FAKE> THEY AInT NUTHIN!!!

Jeffery Daniels

January 25th, 2010
9:56 pm

Al Groh is a FREAKIN GENIUS. I have seen Attachoo play and he is a beast!

Samantha Bedingfield

January 25th, 2010
9:57 pm

Jeremiah is FINE! That boy is sexy

Coach D

January 25th, 2010
9:59 pm

We were scouting for him and did not get him. If Tech does not treat you right, you know you have back ups!

Jennifer Amaya

January 26th, 2010
4:43 am

I am a friend of Jeremiah and we’ve been classmates since freshman year.. I am so proud of him and I wish him the Best of Luck at GT.
I’m sure he’ll do great things… CONGRATS JEREMY!! :)