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Wake Forest's Jim Grobe resigns as head coach after seasons

Chuck Burton/Associated Press
Wake Forest head coach Jim Grobe was national coach of the year in 2006, when the Demon Deacons made the Orange Bowl.

Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe resigned Monday after 13 seasons at the school. He was 77-82 with Wake, including a 4-8 mark this season.

Grobe, 61, took Wake Forest to the Orange Bowl after the 2006 season, when he was named the national coach of the year. But this was Wake's fifth consecutive losing season, and the Demon Deacons went to just one bowl in that span, finishing 6-7 after a postseason loss in 2011.

"I really believe that at Wake Forest, some new leadership, some new ideas, some new direction maybe, maybe the ability to get some more support" is needed, Grobe said at the news conference announcing his decision.

Grobe also said he didn't know what his future held.

"Somebody asked, 'Do you want to keep coaching?' I think 'yes' would be the answer," he said.

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Athletic director Ron Wellman said Grobe's tenure "will go down as the greatest football period in Wake Forest history."

Grobe had been coach at Ohio for six seasons when Wellman hired him to coach the Demon Deacons after the 2000 season. Wake had gone to five bowls in its history when Grobe was hired, and he took them to five bowls himself.

His crowning achievement was the Orange Bowl following the 2006 season. Wake went 11-3 that season, including a 30-0 rout of Florida State in Tallahassee. Wake beat Georgia Tech 9-6 in the ACC championship game, then fell to Bobby Petrino-coached Louisville in the Orange Bowl.

The BCS era ends this season, and Wake's Orange Bowl visit undoubtedly is the most unlikely appearance by an automatic-qualifying conference team in the 16 seasons of the BCS. Connecticut's appearance in the Fiesta Bowl following the 2010 season would be second.

Wellman said there is no timetable to find a replacement. Among the potential candidates are Ball State's Pete Lembo, Bowling Green's Dave Clawson, Richmond's Danny Rocco and Middle Tennessee State coach Rick Stockstill.

Mike Huguenin can be reached at mike.huguenin@nfl.com. You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.

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