CHARLOTTE, N.C. — During the recent Atlantic Coast Conference football media day, it was difficult to find a more enthusiastic coach than Georgia Tech’s Geoff Collins.
Then again, those who followed him the previous two years when he was head coach at Temple knew about Collins’ boundless energy and enthusiasm.
Collins realized that, in a professional sports town like Philadelphia, he had to do anything possible to promote his program.
Now he is in a much more college football-crazed area in Atlanta, but the need to promote is just as much.
And whether it is on social media, or doing media interviews, Collins is non-stop in his effort to showcase Georgia Tech in a positive light.
“If I don’t wake up every single day caring about our brand and trying to get our brand message out there, why would anybody else care about our brand and Georgia Tech football,” Collins said in an interview with The Inquirer following all his media obligations at ACC football media day. "So every day me and the coaching staff want to promote the logo and brand so recruits see it, the fan base sees it and gets excited about the possibilities of what the Georgia Tech program is going to be.”
Collins, who grew up in the Atlanta area, says being home has been special. Since he has been named coach, he has attended the Super Bowl and the MLS championship, both staged in Atlanta. He has gone to the Masters Tournament.
And no matter where he has been, Collins is always ready to fire out tweets, with the overall goal of promoting Georgia Tech.
He has also not been afraid to disclose his affinity for Waffle House, which has earned him plenty of social media attention.
“There is not a Waffle House within an hour of Philadelphia,” he said during his news conference with ACC media. “When I got back down to Atlanta, the first nine days on the job, by 5 a.m. I was in a Waffle House.”
Collins, who says he has great memories of Temple, faces an even bigger challenge in taking over at Georgia Tech then he did when he earned his first head coaching job at Temple.
At Temple, the Owls were still talented. In his two seasons Temple went 15-11, although Collins didn’t coach the bowl loss last year to Duke after taking the Georgia Tech job.
Georgia Tech is coming off a 7-6 record and lost to Minnesota in the Quick Lane Bowl, but Collins has scrapped the triple option offense under former coach Paul Johnson. Former Temple offensive coordinator Dave Patenaude, who has the same title at Georgia Tech, is running a spread offense.
Not only are the offenses different, but the personalities are also. Johnson wasn’t the type of football coach who would be tweeting from Waffle House at 5 a.m. He was much more reserved compared to Collins, but then again so is just about anybody else.
“Our first team meeting all of us were wondering what was going on,” said Georgia Tech linebacker David Curry. “He (Collins) had all this crazy energy and enthusiasm and he said this is the most dull you will ever see me.”
And Collins, 48, has kept his word.
“Whether it is 4 a.m. or 11 at night, he is running around and chest bumping everybody,” Curry said. “It is a joy to be with him.”"
Collins said his eventual goal is to have Georgia Tech be a Top 10 team, which seems a long way from happening, but don’t tell him that.
And to make things worse, Clemson has to open its season with a Thursday night Aug. 29 game at defending national champion Clemson.
Georgia Tech, which visits Temple on Sept. 28, will likely be picked near the bottom of the ACC Coastal Division, while many feel Clemson has the ability to defend its national title.
Collins doesn’t care.