The text of the email sent by Georgia Tech athletic director Todd Stansbury to donors and football season-ticket holders on Thursday, a regular communication sent out from the athletic department’s fund-raising arm:
Dear Georgia Tech Family,
One of the things that makes Georgia Tech so special to me is the passion of our students, alumni and fans. I’m appreciative of the passion that thousands of you display through your support of our athletics program and our student-athletes, who work so hard to be Everyday Champions. I also truly appreciate the passion expressed in the emails and tweets that I receive from the Georgia Tech family – even as of late, when some of them haven’t been very much fun to read.
Like many of you, I’m frustrated and disappointed in how this year’s football season has started. I was in that locker room after Saturday’s game and can tell you this with 100-percent certainty – NO ONE is more frustrated with our 1-3 start than the men who coach our team and the young men on the team.
First, let me say that I remain in total support of our student-athletes and coaching staff and believe that they are fully committed and capable of success this season.
Secondly, let me acknowledge that no one associated with our program – coaches, players, athletics staff, students, alumni or fans – is satisfied with being 1-3 or with the prospect of not going to postseason.
However, with all due respect, I truly feel that many of the emails and social media posts that I’ve seen as of late are counterproductive to meeting the high expectations that we all have for our program. To meet those expectations, there are no shortcuts and it is not going to be cheap.
To consistently meet those expectations, we must acknowledge that we have slowly fallen behind our competition in terms of the resources needed to assist our student-athletes and coaches when they line up week-in and week-out against programs that have those resources. We are located in the toughest neighborhood in the country for college football – three of last year's four College Football Playoff participants are within a three-hour drive of our campus and eight of the last nine national champions are within a 250-mile radius.
With your help, we have begun to address those needs. Recent investments (new locker room, upgraded nutrition center and training table, partnership with adidas, addition of three quality-control analysts, doubling our recruiting staff and creation of a recruiting-focused lobby to our football headquarters) show that Georgia Tech is serious about our football program.
Those investments have paid some immediate dividends and will continue to do so as time goes on, but there is still more to do. The $125 million that we’re in the process of raising as part of Athletics Initiative 2020 is the price of admission to give our student-athletes and coaches the same resources that others in our neighborhood enjoy.
Therefore, I urge our incredible and passionate fans to support this program in ways that can help us attain the resources needed to assist our football student-athletes and coaches:
- buy tickets, starting with Saturday’s Heroes Day game against Bowling Green;
- donate to the Athletics Initiative 2020;
- use your platforms to support Georgia Tech, our student-athletes and our initiatives, and urge others to do the same.
Coach Johnson is a fighter and he has proven time and again that he can mold a group of young men that can fight above their weight class. I am confident that he and his team have a lot of fight left in them, to go along with a lot of ability and a lot of football still left to play.
However, as a Georgia Tech football letterwinner, alum and athletics director, I’m also frustrated by always having to fight above our weight class. We can all see how hard it is to do on a year-in and year-out basis. I need all of our Georgia Tech Family to rally together behind this team and our athletics program, as well as decide if we’re all willing to do what’s necessary to put us in the same weight class as those we compete against on a regular basis.
Hope to see you on Saturday at Bobby Dodd!
Together We Swarm,
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.