Georgia Tech will have to better on defense to rise from the mediocrity of the past three seasons, when the Yellow Jackets were a combined 21-19 on the heels of a championship year in 2009.
In a three-game losing streak last season, Georgia Tech allowed totals of 609, 510 and 601 yards and 42, 49 and 47 points consecutively to Miami, Middle Tennessee State and Clemson. That prompted the midseason firing of defensive coordinator Al Groh.
New coordinator Ted Roof has focused on making everything easier. His 4-3 scheme is meeting with approval from defenders who struggled in Groh's NFL-styled 3-4.
"It's a lot simpler for people to comprehend," said senior cornerback Louis Young, one of eight defensive starters returning for the Yellow Jackets. "We're not thinking as much; we're just going out and playing."
As head coach Paul Johnson said, "It's not rocket science when you're playing a 4-3."
Junior linebacker Quayshawn Nealy agreed. "Everybody is more free. It's definitely going to come down to defense and how we play. We're looking forward to turning people's heads."