- Associated Press - Monday, December 2, 2013

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) - Nobody led tiny Wake Forest to more wins than Jim Grobe.

But when the losses started to pile up, the veteran coach figured it was time to give someone else a chance.

Grobe announced his resignation Monday after 13 years coaching the Demon Deacons, saying the move is “something that’s been in my head now for a couple of years.

“This is not a knee-jerk reaction,” Grobe said. “These last couple years, the losses that we’ve had … start to beat you up a little bit. I got to the point where I just felt like we were working as hard as we possibly could, and we weren’t getting it done.”

The 61-year-old Grobe has a career record of 110-115-1 in a combined 19 years at Wake Forest and Ohio. He was 77-82 with the Demon Deacons and shares the program record for coaching victories with D.C. “Peahead” Walker.

“This is a sad day for Wake Forest football,” athletic director Ron Wellman said.

Grobe said he told Wellman during their regular Monday morning meeting that he was resigning. The coach said nobody tried to talk him out of his decision, and when asked if the decision caught him by surprise, Wellman said “not totally.”

“When Jim makes a decision, it’s final,” Wellman said. “There was no wavering at all. He had made his mind up, and I felt that that would be disrespectful to him if I tried to talk him out of doing something that he obviously does not want to continue doing _ at this point, anyway.”

The unquestioned highlight of Grobe’s career came in 2006. He was named the AP national coach of the year after leading Wake Forest to its first Atlantic Coast Conference championship since 1970, winning a school-record 11 victories and earning a berth in the Orange Bowl.

That was the second of his five bowl games with the school, and the first of three straight from 2006-08 _ the only time the Demon Deacons have reached the postseason in three consecutive years.

But it was tough to sustain that level of success at a school that has the smallest enrollment of any member of one of the six major BCS conferences.

Since winning the 2008 EagleBank Bowl, the Demon Deacons were a combined 23-38 and 14-28 in ACC play.

“I’ve never thought about another job, really. I’ve turned some down in the past,” Grobe said. “But these last couple of years … have just been all-consuming, just trying to find a way to win football games.

“I haven’t thought anything about (another job). I guess I need to start.”

The Demon Deacons capped off their fifth straight losing season last weekend with a 23-21 defeat at Vanderbilt. Wake Forest (4-8, 2-6) ended the season with five losses in a row.

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