If you had any doubts about how the new CFP would affect coaches politicking for their teams, look no further than Paul Johnson – Paul Johnson! – fresh off a banner year on the Flats that, according to some, saved his job.
Johnson is no stranger to pro-SEC chatter. Atlanta is the de facto heart of the conference, as the league plays its title game in the Georgia Dome, only three miles from Tech’s campus. Johnson still feels like he is fighting an uphill battle for his program’s perception. It’s easy to see why SEC wins can taste a little sweeter.
“There’s always pride,” Johnson says. “We’re stuck in the middle of it, and truthfully, you get tired of hearing about it. It’s a fixed game. You watch the polls this year, in preseason they’ll have 10 teams ranked again. I saw where one of the teams that is ranked in the preseason top 20, we’ve won more SEC games than they have. And we’re in the other league. And then what happens is you get them ranked in the top 10, when they beat each other, they don’t ever fall out.”
Well, that shouldn’t be the genius’ concern this season.
After all, this team just won 11 games and plays in the very winnable Coastal division. Duke, the only other Coastal foe to win more than four ACC games in ‘14, loses five starters on both sides of the ball.