He’s not going anywhere.

Rodney Garner decides he prefers Athens over Knoxville.

“Certainly I’m flattered and am sincerely appreciative of the interest shown by Tennessee,” said Garner.  “But in the final analysis the positives at Georgia were the determining factors.  My heart is coaching on the defensive side of the ball.  I enjoy working with Coach Richt and the rest of the staff and our family loves being a part of the Athens community.  And we have some really good defensive linemen returning next year along with some outstanding newcomers.  Our family felt that we wanted to continue with the goals we had set when Coach Richt came in December of 2000 of helping build the Georgia program.”

If you listen carefully, that’s the sound of coaches’ salary dominoes clicking in the background.

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UPDATE: Elsewhere in the SEC, the insanity continues, as Auburn has just hired Trooper Taylor away from Okie State.  Taylor was making the same amount at OSU as Curtis Luper, so I presume that means the Tigers will pay their running backs coach and their wide receivers coach $400K per year each.

I guess this makes Trooper Taylor an inspiration to all those kids across the land who wear their baseball caps backwards.

And Mike Gundy has to replace almost half of his staff at this point (remember, he lost his DC to Toledo as the new head coach there).

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UPDATE #2: Further adventures in whoredom.  Chip Towers has some entertaining quotes from Garner about the situation, but this one is awesome:

Rodney mulled the offer [ed.:  to be an assistant coach on offense] before telling UT he’d decided his heart was on the defensive side of the ball. He said the Vols countered by offering him the D-line position. Ed Orgeron, who had already been named recruiting coordinator and D-line coach, was going to coach LBs instead.

Rodney said it was never about the money or titles. He said the lure was to work alongside UT defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin. “That was a major attraction, wanting to just be a sponge and soak up all the knowledge I could from a great defensive coordinator.”

Two things strike me here.  First, if the lure was to have the opportunity to work with Monte Kiffin, why was Garner entertaining an offer to go back to UT to be on the offensive side of the ball in the first place?  Second, all this talk about what a great d-line coach Orgeron is – that just gets tossed over the side by the Vol staff at the first opportunity.  If there’s any question at this point about what Orgeron is being paid for, that should answer it loudly.

Oh, and snide comment time – is Rodney insinuating that he’s already soaked up everything he can from Willie Martinez, or that WM isn’t a great defensive coordinator?

One lesson to take from this (and the Searels’ decision to stay, for that matter) is that none of us should underestimate the respect and loyalty that Richt engenders from his staff.

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18 Comments

Filed under Don't Mess With Lane Kiffin, Georgia Football

18 responses to “He’s not going anywhere.

  1. RedCrake

    Its a Christmas Miracle!!!

  2. Mark

    Another Festivus Miracle

  3. Heyberto

    If you read on, he really says the reason he stayed was Richt. Just goes to show you can’t buy respect and admiration. Way to go Rodney.

  4. Will Q

    http://tennessee.rivals.com/content.asp?CID=896604

    Sounds like he didn’t know they were wanting him to work offense when he initially interviewed with them. That makes sense; has he worked with anything but defense since he’s been at UGA?

    I also snickered at the (I’m assuming) inadvertant jab at Martinez.

  5. NebraskaDawg

    $5 bucks says we’re sitting here next year at this time talking about the same thing.

  6. The $400K for Trooper is just an estimate, as he will be paid $50/chestbump.

  7. cd, +1.

    That’s some real money you’re talking about there. ;)

  8. Dawg93

    crimson_daddy – VERY nice.

  9. Ally

    Either way, I think its pretty incredible what he turned down: almost double the salary, working with Monte, and it sounds like he had his pick of Title/Status with the offer to dump down Coach O. Pretty impressive.

    Also, wonder what Coach O is thinking after reading that? And did Kiffin & Co. bother to tell him he would be getting demoted to bring on Garner?

    And did anybody listen to the press conference on Rivals? Towards the end a reporter asks CMR what he thought a/b Lane Kiffin’s recent jab that “Georgia has fallen asleep recently on keeping recruits in-state” and he had intentions of taking advantage of that.

    Wow, he’s fast approaching Spurrier-like doucheness.

  10. Does anybody else sense that we now have douchey lines coming from UF and now, amazingly, from UT? I didn’t think anyone could approach the Cryer for downright A-hattery but looks like we have a race now folks!

  11. drunk dawg

    I don’t think it was a jab at Willie but I wish it had been.

    • I don’t think it was a jab at Willie but I wish it had been.

      From these comments in the AB-H, it clearly wasn’t a jab.

      “They didn’t have to promise me titles to stay here,” said Garner, who already holds the title of assistant head coach. “They didn’t have to promise me money to stay here. I’m not interested in a co-defensive coordinator or anything like that. We have one defensive coordinator. That’s Willie Martinez. … Willie has taken an unbelievable amount of blame for the defense, but there’s three other coaches that coach on defense. We all share in the defense.

      ” …We’ve played good defense under coach Martinez in the past and we’re going to play great defense under coach Martinez going forward in the future,” he continued. “We’re team players. I believe in Willie and what Willie is doing.”

  12. Gene,

    Kiffin is bringing a knife to a gunfight if he’s challenging Mr. 1% of 1% to a douche-bag contest.

  13. Julie

    I think what was not said, but that we will surely learn about later, is the satisfaction RG is going to get from seeing Damon’s signature on the bottom of that fat new contract.

  14. Wolfman

    Keep in mind that the same loyalty that allowed Willie Martinez to keep his job is the same loyalty that keeps the other coaches here.

  15. JDog

    I was thinking the same thing as Wolfman. Richt’s defense of WM has got to be a positive influence on the other coaches. It’s a double-edged sword, but commitment to your staff can be more than just stubbornness.

  16. JDog

    Oh, one thing I have wondered though–Garner is D-line coach and recruiting coordinator. And we’ve had a pretty piss poor D-line this year. How much of that is his doing? I mean, he’s obviously coached some great players, but did he give his all this year?

    • Garner coaches the tackles; Fabris coaches the defensive ends. I’s argue that Garner got more production out of his group than Fabris did out of his. And that was without Jeff Owens for the whole season.