The Good Word

TO: Fans, Friends, and Supporters of Georgia Tech Athletics

FROM: Dan Radakovich, Georgia Tech Director of Athletics

Greetings Georgia Tech fans. I am away from the city for a couple of days participating in the winter meeting of Atlantic Coast Conference Athletic Directors and Faculty Athletic Representatives. As has been the norm in recent months, I’m sure there will be much discussion on conference alignment, television and scheduling, among other topics of the day.

I did want to get this message off to our fans today to congratulate Coach Paul Johnson and his staff for an outstanding Signing Day Wednesday. Having had the opportunity to meet these young prospects during the recruiting process, I can tell you they are an outstanding group of student-athletes. I agree with Coach Johnson that they will be a fun and exciting group to be around, and they fit the model we look for here at Tech. I have included the list of our 17 signees with their bios here.

Rules Compliance a Top Priority
You may have also seen in the news the unfortunate separation from one of our assistant football coaches who had been involved in impermissible text messaging to prospective student-athletes, a violation of NCAA rules. We continue to take positive steps to bolster our compliance staff and monitoring systems at Georgia Tech. It is very difficult to understand why an employee would violate these rules with regard to text messaging after our ongoing focus to educate our personnel on NCAA rules and regulations. Actions of this type simply are not acceptable in our athletic program. It is important to note, that in this instance, we discovered this problem internally, informed the NCAA immediately and took immediate action which ultimately resulted in the coach tendering his resignation. I commend Coach Johnson for his steadfast action in this case in recommending to me that this employee be removed from the staff. I have directed our compliance staff to continue to review the text and phone records of all of our coaches on an ongoing basis, as is the mandate and expectation of Georgia Tech and the NCAA.

Season Ticket Renewals
Football season ticket holders should have received an online 2012 renewal form within the last week with the good news that season tickets this year are at least $101 less than in 2011, depending on your classification. We have had a number of renewals coming in already and hope to have the complete 2012 football schedule as released by the ACC very soon. Shortly after the schedule is released, we will be mailing a printed brochure that speaks to all aspects of the 2012 season.

Friday Night on the Flats
I hope you saw our new idea in April called “Friday Night on the Flats.” Our annual T-Day game will become a T-Night game as we play on Friday night, April 20th, under the lights at Bobby Dodd Stadium. Mark your calendars as it will be a night filled with family fun including a fireworks display and much more. We’ll have more details regarding this fun springtime event in the coming weeks.

Upcoming Hoops Action
I want to make you aware of our upcoming basketball games here in Atlanta. MaChelle Joseph’s team takes on NC State tonight and Maryland on Monday night at the Arena at Gwinnett Center. Both games tip off at 7 p.m. Our ladies are on pace toward their sixth straight run into post-season play, but still have plenty to do as they begin the last month of regular season play.

Brian Gregory’s team needs your support and attendance as they keep battling in ACC play. There is no quit in this team and they are working and preparing for two straight home appearances in the next week. The Jackets host Boston College Saturday at 1 p.m. and welcome NC State next Thursday at 7 p.m. Both games are at Philips Arena.

Endowment Dinner a Treasure
Last Monday night, I joined a couple hundred student-athletes and endowed scholarship donors for our annual get-together. These scholarship donors are certainly the lifeblood of our program and are providing countless opportunities to young people who may not otherwise have a chance to attend this prestigious Institute and compete at the highest level of intercollegiate athletics. At the event the donors and student-athletes enjoy dinner together and mingle throughout the evening. I am so proud of women’s basketball’s Sasha Goodlett, football’s Isaiah Johnson and head swimming coach Courtney Hart for their heartfelt comments in thanking our gracious scholarship donors. And a special thanks to endowed scholarship donor Diane Griffin for her emotional words to the group. This is always a night that makes us all happy to be a part of the Georgia Tech family.

Men’s Tennis Has String of Home Matches Coming Up
Georgia Tech’s men’s tennis team, ranked No. 22 in the nation this week, has three home matches in the next week at the Bill Moore Tennis Center, hosting South Carolina Saturday at 1 p.m., Georgia State next Wednesday at 2:30 p.m., and William & Mary Thursday, also at 2:30 p.m. Admission to all these matches is free. Tech has the nation’s No. 9 singles player in senior Kevin King, while King and junior Juan Spir play together as the naiton’s No. 2 doubles team.

Baseball Preparing For Opener
Danny Hall’s ninth-ranked baseball team is busy preparing for its 2012 season, and the opportunity to defend the ACC regular-season title. The Jackets opened practice January 27th and the season begins February 17th at Winthrop. There are great deals on season tickets, for a home schedule that includes marquee ACC match-ups versus Clemson, Florida State, Miami. Call 1-888-TECH-TIX or visit RamblinWreck.com/tickets for more details.

Softball Hits The Road
The Georgia Tech softball team will begin their 2012 season on the road in Tempe, Ariz. at the Kajikawa Classic on the campus of the reigning National Champions, Arizona State. The Yellow Jackets will start their season off with some tough competition when they take on Pac-12 schools in Oregon State and No. 8/8 Arizona, Cal Poly, San Diego State and finishing with a tough Big-12 opponent in No. 20/21 Nebraska. Make sure to keep up with RamblinWreck.com for all the updates on the Jackets as they begin their season.

Tech Track Heads to Virginia Tech, Samford
The Georgia Tech track and field teams will keep the competition rolling when they make the drive up to Blacksburg, Va. For the Virginia Tech Elite Meet on Feb. 3 and 4 and then head right back out to Samford University for the Samford Invite in Alabama the following weekend. Both the men’s and women’s team has shown a lot of promise in the start to their season, proving themselves against some tough SEC competition in Lexington, Ky. in their first two meets.

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