Daily Archives: January 5, 2011

Just fall on it.

For the many of you who jumped the Georgia defenders in the Florida game who tried to pick up fumbles and in doing so failed to recover the ball, here’s the other side of that argument.

By the way, the same lot of you tend to forget what happened when Murray fumbled in that game – that’s right, a Florida defender picked up the ball and advanced it 15-20 yards.

Sometimes it’s just not your day no matter what.

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Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

A shocking break in tradition

Ladies and gentlemen, your new SEC football officiating coordinator is Steve Shaw, a proud graduate of the University of Alabama.

Somehow, this doesn’t sound nearly as impressive as Shaw probably thinks it is:

“I am humbled to follow in the footsteps of some great men in SEC officiating,” said Shaw.  “From the father of SEC officiating, George Gardner, to the modern day leaders of Bobby Gaston and Rogers Redding, I have had the opportunity to learn from the best and to be able to build from a solid foundation.”

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Filed under SEC Football

Reading the tea leaves at today’s Richt presser

If you were expecting a dramatic announcement this morning about big changes, you’re going to be disappointed.

That being said, there were two things of interest disclosed in Gentry Estes’ summary.

  • The turnout.“When Richt walked into a large team meeting room at the Butts-Mehre Building, he was greeted by television cameras, and a surprising number of dignitaries in attendance, such as UGA athletics director Greg McGarity, previous interim AD Frank Crumley, senior associate AD Carla Williams, compliance director Eric Baumgartner and other various athletics officials.” It’s news when the program goes through a stretch of sustained mediocrity.  It’s also a concern to the AD brass.  There’s a message being sent there, albeit subtly.
  • A reassignment of duties. Not the staff’s.  Richt’s.  “But perhaps the biggest change noted by Richt on Wednesday had to do with his own time. Without going into specifics, Richt made vague references to McGarity personally taking over certain aspects that had previously occupied his time.” It sure would be interesting to know whose idea this was and what McGarity was relieving Richt from.

The overall impression I get is that McGarity is more hands on and has some definite ideas about his head coach’s role in running the football program.  We’ll soon see how sound his instincts are.

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UPDATE: Marc Weiszer fills in some of the blanks.

… The biggest news was Richt talking about how “things are being put in place that are going to help free me up to spend more time doing the things that I love the most, which is study the game of football and be an expert and be on the cutting edge.”

First-year athletic director Greg McGarity has helped facilitate that.

“I’m just spending less time messing around with things that Greg wants to be able to help take off my plate from an administrative point of view,” Richt said.

–Richt said that director of player development John Eason, who handles practice schedules and works with academics, will take an even greater role with the academic side at the school. He said that former strength coach Dave Van Halanger will also help lighten the load for Richt.

Eason is a former Georgia receivers coach.

“By no means will I not be involved in academics, but a lot of the legwork that needed to be done in that area he’s going to be fully responsible for and that’s going to help,” Richt said.

Van Halanger will play a role in a “mentor program” to help players transition from high school to college and from college to work force. He will also oversee a team “unity council.”

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UPDATE #2: Jeff Schultz’ “what took Richt so long?” point is a fair one.  Mark Bradley would probably answer by observing that it’s because he’s no Paul Johnson.

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Filed under Georgia Football

Andy Staples, riding off into the sunset on his high horse

Talk about your false equivalences, dude.

… Thanks to the events of the past month, you’ve forfeited the right to the moral superiority you’ve enjoyed over the SEC. You can be as good as the SEC on the field, but the human beings in the Big Ten’s premier athletic department are no better than the human beings in the athletic departments at the football factories in the SEC. Yes, the SEC oversigns, and that’s highly unethical. Yes, SEC programs have players who commit NCAA violations, and that’s highly unethical.

Well guess what? Ohio State also has players who commit NCAA violations. Five of them played Tuesday, and Ohio State wouldn’t have won without them.

Five players sold memorabilia to a Columbus tattoo artist for cash and ink and got caught. For their crimes against the NCAA, they were suspended five games.

“Crimes”? Seriously?  Where is the NCAA prison located, exactly?

Anyway, there’s a big difference between what went on in Tatgate and the other bête noire Staples cites, oversigning.  The latter may be distasteful, but it doesn’t violate any NCAA rules.  Of course, we shouldn’t let that get in the way of painting a conference with as broad a brush as possible.  Or in pretending that this is the first time that questionable behavior has been tolerated – **cough**Maurice Clarett**cough** – at a Big Ten bastion like Ohio State.

Ah, but that righteous indignation feels sooooo good.

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Filed under Big Ten Football, Media Punditry/Foibles, SEC Football, The NCAA

Of Disney Dawgs and “cold blooded sausage makers”

I gotta admit this post over at Sports & Grits cracked me up.  It’s the latest attempt to put Dawgnation up on a psychoanalytical couch in trying times.  And as you might expect, pretty much everyone who disagrees with the author’s point of view is reduced to being a religious fanatic, a total wuss or an ego wanker.  Then there are the bold, the few who are the only rational supporters of the program:

… We are the people who are accepting of what is necessary to see the program in the National Title hunt every year. We want results not empty promises. We want wins not memories of how we almost did this or came real close to doing that.

Oh, hells yeah!  Who doesn’t want real victories instead of moral ones?

This debate has gone on in one form or fashion since the days of the pre-Rivals Vent.  Back then the sides were labeled beans and bashers, but it possessed the same “everybody who sees things differently from us is a dumbass” tone.  (Of course, back then after the ’97 Cocktail Party the beans took the side that Jim Donnan was a greater coaching genius than Steve Spurrier and stayed with it even after it became obviously and painfully apparent that he was no such thing, so maybe one side had a point.)

Anyway, it’s a fun read for the most part, although I wouldn’t break our fan base down in that way.  I’d go with two groups:  those who are absolutely certain they know the best course of action for the program to take going forward and those who are frustrated by the recent turn of events and simply hope that Greg McGarity knows what he’s doing.  Count me in the latter, but in any event, this seems like a good time for a reader poll.

As always, comments are welcome.

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Filed under Georgia Football

Strategery corner

Two excellent posts worth your time and attention:

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Filed under Strategery And Mechanics