College Football: Wake's Grobe says he isn't leaving

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 5, 2006

By Aaron Beard

Salisbury Post

WINSTON-SALEM — Jim Grobe sounds like he’s staying put at Wake Forest.

For the second consecutive week, the coach made it known that he has no interest in other jobs after leading the Demon Deacons through the most successful regular season in program history — which includes a surprising run to the ACC championship and a trip to the Orange Bowl.

It’s been speculated that Grobe could be a candidate for several openings, including the one at Alabama. But he sounded more interested in maintaining the Demon Deacons’ success next year instead of winning games elsewhere, while athletics director Ron Wellman said the school was “discussing” ways to enhance Grobe’s contract.

“I’m a Wake Forest guy,” Grobe said Tuesday. “All I can say is I have no interest. I am not after a job. I’m not looking for a job. I’m perfectly happy and satisfied at Wake Forest.”

The 15th-ranked Demon Deacons (11-2) are coming off a 9-6 win against Georgia Tech that clinched the school’s second ACC championship and first since 1970. Wake Forest will play No. 5 Louisville in the Orange Bowl to cap what is already the best season in the program’s 105-year history — a run that has raised Grobe’s national profile.

He is 37-34 in six seasons at Wake Forest, a small, private university that ranks among the smallest schools in Division I-A football with just more than 4,000 undergraduates. But after the Demon Deacons were picked to finish last in the ACC’s Atlantic Division, they broke the school’s season record of eight wins and made Grobe the first coach to take the program to two bowl games since they joined the league.

That came despite losing starting quarterback Benjamin Mauk and preseason all-ACC tailback Micah Andrews to season-ending injuries in the first month.

Grobe said rumors linking him to other coaching jobs led him to address his team last week, primarily to ease the younger players’ minds about his future.

“I’m perfectly happy at Wake Forest,” he said. “I think some people like having their names floated all over the place. I’ve been around long enough that it has no appeal for me. I couldn’t be happier. I’m not only happy with this football team and the staff and our families are happy, but I’m happy with where we’re headed.”