Georgia Tech safety A.J. Gray was credited with six tackles in the Yellow Jackets’ loss to Pittsburgh, tying his season and career high. It was the result of Pitt playing a lot of the game on the perimeter and being more determined to make plays, he said Monday.
Gray said that, in reviewing game video, safeties coach Andy McCollum told him not to assume that someone else was going to make a play, but to go make it himself.
“So that’s what I did,” he said. “That’s what I’m going to continue to do because that’ll make me more effective, more useful on the team.”
Gray has not played poorly through the first six games of the season, but has not been a dynamic contributor, either. He made a considerable impression as a freshman last season and in spring practice, to the point that coach Paul Johnson predicted prior to the preseason that Gray had the opportunity to be “one of the all-time great players at Georgia Tech.”
Through six games, Gray has 23 tackles, tied for fourth on the team. He does not have any interceptions, forced fumbles or pass breakups, the sort of impact plays that the Tech defense has needed this season.
“He’s doing some good things,” defensive coordinator Ted Roof said. “We’re all making mistkaes and he’s doing some of both. I think he’s working at it and he’s getting better. It’s just a continual process and a continual grind to get better.”