Ted Roof explains decision to coach from field, not box

Georgia Tech defensive coordinator Ted Roof coached Saturday’s season opener against Boston College from the field, the first time he has been on the field for a game since the 2013 season, his first back at Tech.

Roof said he had made the decision to return to the field, where he has typically called plays, before the season began.

“Just felt like I wanted to do it,” he said. “So I did it.”

During warmups prior to the Syracuse game in 2013, Roof said the idea occurred to him to coach the game from the coaching box above the field. (Perhaps not coincidentally, the Jackets had lost the three previous games, to Virginia Tech, Miami and BYU.) He asked coach Paul Johnson his thoughts, and Johnson said that whatever he wanted to do was fine.

“So I did and we shut ’em out and I said, ‘Well, maybe I’ll just stay up here,’” Roof said. “So there’s really not rhyme or reason to it, but I wanted to be down on the field.”

As it turned out, he would have ended up there regardless in Saturday’s game. Roof stationed cornerbacks coach Joe Speed and graduate assistants Kevin Reddy and Rick Lyster as his spotters in the coaching box, but in the second half, the headsets malfunctioned, so they also came down to the field since they were unable to communicate from the box.

Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.

Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.