Wednesday, July 23, 2014
ACC's lunchtime links
By Andrea Adelson
Georgia Tech has had some major roster turnover this offseason, adding more fuel to the fire surrounding coach Paul Johnson.
On Monday, the school announced backups Anthony Autry, Travin Henry and Darius Commissiong had been kicked off the team for rules violations. Since last season ended, Georgia Tech has lost more non-senior players from its roster than any other team in the ACC.
Ken Sugiura of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution goes over the complete list of departures:
- Defensive lineman Justin Akins (left team)
- Receiver Anthony Autry (dismissed)
- Offensive lineman Morgan Bailey (transfer)
- Defensive end Darius Commissiong (dismissed)
- B-back Travis Custis (transfer, academic issues)
- Defensive end Jabari Hunt-Days (academically ineligible)
- Quarterback Ty Griffin (transfer)
- Defensive end Travin Henry (dismissed)
- Jimmie Kitchen (expected to transfer after suspension)
- Quarterback Vad Lee (transfer)
- Defensive lineman Kevin Robbins (transfer)
- Offensive tackle Chase Roberts (medical)
- Defensive lineman Anthony Williams (scholarship not renewed)
That is quite a list, though only Hunt-Days and Lee were starters last season. Still, it is very unusual to see this much roster turnover on a team with a returning head coach. So why have so many players either gotten themselves into trouble or decided to leave? Does this have to do with Johnson or something else?
Johnson did not shed much light into the turnover during the ACC Kickoff, saying there is a consistency to the way he expects the program to run. Some players adhere to standards. Some don't.
Turnover is always expected, but not like this. Johnson has had to defend himself for months now, but that has gone deeper than just the roster changes. There is a growing segment of the Georgia Tech fan base that has become disenchanted with him, his style of play and efforts on the recruiting trail. Johnson criticized all the negativity in Atlanta while he was in Greensboro, N.C., pointing at his overall and conference records while at Tech.
Still, it is alarming to see so many players gone.
The Jackets may not be done losing players, either. Autry's younger brother, Myles, signed with Georgia Tech in February but has been unable to enroll because of NCAA Clearinghouse issues.
Myles Autry, an ESPN 300 player, told the AJC he was indeed reconsidering the Jackets. He was the highest-rated player in the 2014 Georgia Tech class, so losing him would be yet another blow.
Here's a look at other headlines across the ACC: