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GSU students react to VanGorder leaving
GSU - Desmond
James Desmond - photo by Luke Martin/staff
Students at Georgia Southern had varying reactions to the news of head football coach Brian VanGorder's departure on Wednesday.
    James Desmond, a sophomore from Alpharetta, wasn't disappointed to see VanGorder leave.
    "I'm kind of glad to see him go," he said. "He didn't seem to care about the program he was running, which was evident by him leaving so abruptly."
    Georgia Southern Athletics Director Sam Baker announced Tuesday night that VanGorder had left the school after one year to become the linebackers coach for the NFL's Atlanta Falcons.
    Prior to coming to Georgia Southern, VanGorder was the linebackers coach for the Jacksonville Jaguars.
    Chelsea Backer said she didn't follow the football team very closely, but she was disappointed VanGorder wasn't going to be back.
    "It's kind of upsetting that he quit on us after a losing season," she said.
    Brad Wesley hadn't heard the news of VanGorder's departure and was shocked he was leaving.    
    "I figured he'd stick around for at least two years," he said. "That's kind of the normal deadline for making a transition."
    Wesley said he was disappointed that VanGorder would leave, especially after the school "forked out all that money" to hire him, but he understands why VanGorder would go.
    "He has to do what's best for him," he said.
    Sammy White, a sophomore from Macon, said he was "shocked" when he heard the news.
    He said it may be beneficial, in the long run, for Georgia Southern that VanGorder is leaving because the season last year wasn't very good.
    He said that some of the other people he talked to on campus were glad to see him leaving.
    Not all students on campus, however, were interested in the big sports news on campus.
    Macayla Lindsey said she "didn't really care" about VanGorder leaving.
    "I'm not really into Georgia Southern football," she said.
    Meanwhile, on the popular Georgia Southern message board, fans were frustrated at the timing of the departure, just weeks before national signing day for high school recruits.
    VanGorder's tenure appeared to divide a lot of posters on the Internet site, with some upset with him for changing traditions such as riding on the yellow buses and changing the offense while others urged fans to give him time to get his system in place before judging him.
    However, on Tuesday and Wednesday, fans seemed to be unified in their disdain for the VanGorder. In fact, one person started a thread entitled "VanGorder finally unites the fans" in which he said it took a year, "but VanGorder finally united Eagle Nation. They are now solidly against him."
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