Georgia Tech welcomed back one of its own to join the coaching staff. Ted Roof decided to leave Penn State, where his defense and his team, had a very successful year after all the off the field distractions. The fact that he had so much success and wanted to return to Atlanta made it even more special. Why you ask? Because Ted Roof is a Georgia Tech man. He is an alumni, a football star and a member of the dreaded "Black Shirts" defense. His hiring is a big deal.
People will look at his rather awful Head Coaching resume and think that this wasn't a good decision and I think that is short sighted. All you have to do is see what he has been able to do with the defenses he has led.
A brief review, for those of you who hate to read full length columns. You know who you are:
2000 - GT: Nominated for the Broyles Award for the Nation's Top Coordinator
2000 - GT: Defense was 12th in the Nation
2002 - Duke: Defense went from 9th to 5th in ACC
*While Head Coach at Duke, Defense was Top 30 Nationally in Tackles Behind the Line of Scrimmage
2008 - Louisville: Top 25 in Tackles for Loss and Sacks
2011 - Auburn: National Champions
2012 - Penn State: Top Defense in Big Ten
At first glance, Roof has indeed bounced around a bit and that is because when you are really good at what you do, people take notice. They come to your door and offer you sweet jobs. If I was Roof, I would be doing the exact same thing. The one thing that never changed though, is Roof's love for Georgia Tech. He often made comments about returning and coaching. And now he has his chance and I think that Tech is far better for it.
A trademark of a Ted Roof defense is intensity and aggression. He has shown a pattern of taking middle of the road defensive units (Louisville) and making them good. He is not so focused on system or specific techniques. In the Al Groh era, it was all about the system and specific techniques. Players got lost, blew assignments and spent more time looking for help from the coaches than looking at the offense.
Roof is going to change that. We don't know for certain if he will shift to the 4-3 or stay with a modified 3-4. My guess is that they won't stray far from the 3-4 due to the fact that Tech is not deep with linemen. Tech has been recruiting linebackers for a while so that they can be deep at those four positions but the linemen have suffered some. If the shift is made, a focus on linemen will be critical.
Penn State did play a good deal of 3-4 so Roof has the luxury of picking and choosing how he wants to address each situation.
My only request is that Ted Roof do all he can to unleash the aggression that the Tech defense has been lacking. For several years now, the defense has backpedaled and ran from side to side. This year, I want to see more blitzing and more devastation.
Ok, I know this is an Auburn video but I think it gives some good insight.