Earlier this week, the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets added a little name recognition to their coaching staff. Tuesday, head coach Paul Johnson welcomed former All-American quarterback and Heisman Finalist Joe Hamilton to the program’s coaching staff as a recruiting assistant.
This will mark the second stint for the former star at his alma mater. Hamilton was the Assistant Director of Player Personnel from 2007 to 2008. However, after being arrested on May 6, 2008 on DUI, hit and run, marijuana possession, and open container law violations by Georgia Tech Police, he was forced to resign from his post. Hamilton was re-hired on Tuesday literally five years to-the-day of his 2008 resignation acceptance by the school.
Joe Hamilton is one of the more recognizable names in the history of Georgia Tech football. He played for the Jackets from 1996-1999 and provided some of the more exciting moments in the history of the program. During his tenure in Atlanta, he set multiple ACC records for total offense (10,640 yards), touchdown passes (65), and total touchdowns (83).
His 1999 senior year, he won the Davey O’Brien Award, recognizing him as the best signal-caller in the country. Later that December, he finished runner-up to Ron Dayne in the Heisman Trophy voting.
His post-collegiate career was not so kind to him. Hamilton spent three years with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers organization, but seeing only a total of four downs in a regular season game before being relocated to Frankfurt in NFL Europe. Following that, he would bounce to a short stint in the Arena League with the Orlando Predators–leading the team to the Arena Bowl Championship, then it was back to the NFL with the Indianapolis Colts, and then back to Orlando once again before finishing up his playing career for good.
As far as recent coaching experience is concerned, Hamilton was hired at Georgia State in 2010 as a recruiting intern and eventually was promoted to running backs coach on a full-time basis in 2011.
Despite the past transgressions, it’s nice to see one of the more popular ACC names in recent years get another chance to provide a service to his alma mater.