Hey everyone. Let's continue our look at Auburn's new staff of coaches. Today's winner is defensive coordinator Ted Roof Rusted, who is an interesting dude. I really enjoyed talking with him before
Auburn officials instituted the more restrictive interview policies.TERRENCE EDWIN "TED" ROOF JR.Age:
45 (born 12/11/63)College:
B.A. from Georgia Tech (management), 1987Playing career:
Spent four seasons as a linebacker at Georgia Tech. My esteemed colleague, Phillip Marshall, says Roof was "one hell of a player."Coaching career:
•Auburn, defensive coordinator (current)
•Minnesota, defensive coordinator (2008)
•Louisville, linebackers (2008, left after a short stay)
•Duke, head coach (2003-07)
•Duke, defensive coordinator (2002)
•Georgia Tech, defensive coordinator (1999-2001)
•Georgia Tech, linebackers (1998)
•Western Carolina, defensive coordinator (1997)
•UMass, linebackers (1994-96)
•Duke, linebackers (1990-93)
•West Georgia, linebackers (1989)
•Alabama, graduate assistant (1987-88)Mentor:
Bill CurryPrevious Auburn experience:
None, though he played against Auburn in 1984, 85 and 86. Tech went 1-2 in those games.Coaching philosophy:
Let's start here -- Ted Roof isn't the most popular guy around. He was tabbed as an up-and-comer during his days as an assistant at Georgia Tech, then completely flopped as Duke's head coach during a forgettable five-season run. Winning at Duke is tough. Those problems presented Roof with the first insurmountable challenge of his career. He couldn't fix the problem and it all fell on his head.
He actually took a job as linebackers
coach at Louisville (a substantial drop in pay and profile) before catching on with the nation's worst defense at Minnesota a few weeks later. At this point, I filed Roof away as failed head coach never to be heard from again
He regained some national relevance at Minnesota, though, by taking an awful defense and making it average in a matter of months. He succeeded by taking tons of risks. He didn't have the athletes to bang with the Ohio States and Penn States, so Roof concocted a series of awkward sets and coverages that gave the Gophers a strategic advantage. Minnesota's resurgence wasn't serendipity; Roof fixed a lot of problems.
Now armed with a comparable supply of talent, Roof will settle in as a base 4-3 guy. He took some risks at Duke and many risks at Minnesota. I believe he will be surprisingly conservative at Auburn. Roof feels like Auburn has enough talent to bang with the big teams in the SEC and he plans to do that. At the heart of Roof's vision is a stable defense. I expect his defenses to operate like Paul Rhoads' ... and not Will Muschamp's.Personality profile:
Roof is blustery at times, particularly on the field. He doesn't do the crazy yelling we saw from Will Muschamp. Still, Roof is more assertive than Paul Rhoads. He can't deal with lack of effort.
Away from the field, Roof strikes me as a loner. I usually see him working by himself. I can't imagine him being a major recruiting element as some have suggested. He's not hip. He's not going to be hip.
He hasn't told me this, but my sense after talking with him is that he's getting back to basics himself. The Duke debacle affected him deeply. The Minnesota thing was (and always was going to be) a short-term destination. His goal was to catch on at a big school and redevelop the old-school defenses that worked well for him at Tech.
He's savoring his revival. He's hungry.