Al Groh came to Georgia Tech in 2009 saying he had a lot to prove. He was fired Monday after not proving nearly enough.
The Yellow Jackets are coming 47-31 loss against Clemson on Saturday, which marks the first time in school history that the team has allowed 40 points or more in three consecutive games. That pointed right toward Groh.
“There’s no question that Al knows defense,” coach Paul Johnson said at a Monday afternoon news conference. “I think he’s very knowledgeable, but the communication part wasn’t transcending to the field.”
Charles Kelly, the teams secondary coach, replaces Groh on an interim basis. David Walkosky, the special-teams coordinator will now coach the defensive line, shifting Andy McCollum to inside linebackers. Groh’s former position group, inside outside linebackers, will be coached by Joe Speed. Johnson will also contribute to the defense as well.
“The Institute has decided to go in a different direction, which I respect,” Groh said in a statement. “I appreciate all the help and input from (assistant defensive coaches) Charles Kelly, Joe Speed and Andy McCollum, and the effort of all the players,” Groh said. “I aimed to give the best that I had every day. It’s been an honor to be a part of the legacy of Georgia Tech football. I feel positive that this is a good time in life to move on to a new situation.”
Johnson came to his decision Monday after reviewing game footage from their loss to Clemson, he said, noting that there had been concern quite sometime.
“We had some issues from a ways back,” Johnson said. “I’d go back to the last games last year.”
On Saturday, Tech allowed 601 yards of offense to Clemson. Some of that was players in poor positions and some was poor tackling. Tech’s is 90th in total defense, 89th in scoring defense and 86yh in tackles for loss.
Before taking the job at Tech Groh coached nine seasons at the Virginia.