After Todd Stansbury sends letter to Georgia Tech fans, reaction unfavorable

November 27, 2021 Atlanta - Georgia TechÕs athletic director Todd Stansbury comforts Georgia Tech's head coach Geoff Collins after Georgia defeated Georgia Tech in an NCAA college football game at Georgia Tech's Bobby Dodd Stadium in Atlanta on Saturday, November 27, 2021.  (Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)

Credit: HYOSUB SHIN / AJC

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November 27, 2021 Atlanta - Georgia TechÕs athletic director Todd Stansbury comforts Georgia Tech's head coach Geoff Collins after Georgia defeated Georgia Tech in an NCAA college football game at Georgia Tech's Bobby Dodd Stadium in Atlanta on Saturday, November 27, 2021. (Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)

Credit: HYOSUB SHIN / AJC

Credit: HYOSUB SHIN / AJC

With fan frustration peaking following the football team’s 3-9 season, Georgia Tech athletic director Todd Stansbury sent a letter to Yellow Jackets fans Monday acknowledging those feelings and committing to success in the future.

At least in the sphere of social media, many Tech fans did not receive it warmly on the heels of the Jackets’ third consecutive three-win season, which concluded with back-to-back shutout losses to No. 6 Notre Dame and No. 1 Georgia by a combined 100-0 score.

Stansbury’s letter reiterated much of coach Geoff Collins’ messaging about the season and coming offseason, namely that, while the losses to the Fighting Irish and Bulldogs were setbacks, the team had made progress this season. An excerpt from Stansbury’s letter, sent out via email:

“I’ve heard from many of you recently, most expressing frustration and disappointment with the 3-9 season. Everyone within our football program – including myself, Coach Collins and his staff – joins in your frustration and disappointment. I especially feel it as an alumnus and football letterwinner. Three wins does not meet the standards of Georgia Tech football.

“Our performance in the final two games of the season were especially disappointing and were a step back. However, progress was still apparent at many points during the course of the season, highlighted by the fact that we had the ball with a chance to win or tie the game in the fourth quarter of six of our losses. That does not make the final results any less frustrating or disappointing, but the margin for error has been shrunk significantly. We now need to close it.”

The letter went on to highlight Collins’ recruiting successes and investments in facilities, technology and staffing, as well as the completion of the Athletics Initiative 2020 capital campaign.

Stansbury wrote that “we knew from the beginning that this transition would require time and patience to build our program the right way,” citing as examples of the men’s basketball team and volleyball team of Jackets teams that succeeded when given time.

He added that he and Collins are working together to address problems – including the dismissal of assistant coaches Dave Patenaude, Nate Burton and Jeff Popovich – and that “we will do what we need to do for this program to be successful under Coach Collins’ leadership.”

Response on Twitter largely was unfavorable. It likely did not help that star running back Jahmyr Gibbs announced his decision to transfer about two hours before the letter was sent out. A sampling of reactions from Tech fans:

“The more I look at this letter, the more annoyed I get at the effective reiteration that GT fans just haven’t been looking for the so-called improvements this year. Most of us have watched for decades and/or played and can tell whether or not we are seeing improvement. We aren’t.”

“Got to throw in the close losses to three 6-6 teams, a 7-5 team, a MAC team coming off a winless season, and the weakest Clemson team in over a decade. Well done, Todd! I feel better already”

“How about an apology from said coach that we fans don’t see improvement because we don’t want to. Insulting those of us that put money in the program for improvement, isn’t exactly warming our hearts, or finding our pen to write a check. Do better.”

“I think I’m gonna hurl.”

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A letter from Georgia Tech athletic director Todd Stansbury to Yellow Jackets fans following the completion of the football team's 3-9 season, its third consecutive three-win season.

Credit: Georgia Tech Athletics

A letter from Georgia Tech athletic director Todd Stansbury to Yellow Jackets fans following the completion of the football team's  3-9 season, its third consecutive three-win season.

Credit: Georgia Tech Athletics

caption arrowCaption
A letter from Georgia Tech athletic director Todd Stansbury to Yellow Jackets fans following the completion of the football team's 3-9 season, its third consecutive three-win season.

Credit: Georgia Tech Athletics

Credit: Georgia Tech Athletics

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