The heat is on.

Two things about this hard-hitting blog series which amuse me: first, the sense of vindication (“Last season, I put Richt on the Hot Seat and Georgia fans let me hear it. However, the Bulldogs struggled…”) and second, the company Mark Richt finds himself there (“So far we’ve highlighted Washington State’s Paul Wulff, New Mexico’s Mike Locksley and UCLA’s Rick Neuheisel.”)

On the first point, good on him to anticipate last season’s decline, although I’d be more impressed if the Sentinel had managed to call the Green suspension in advance.

As for Murschel’s Gang of Four, well, let’s look at them with some perspective, shall we?  Here are the records of the four men at their current schools:

  • Mark Richt, 96-34
  • Paul Wolff, 5-32
  • Mike Locksley, 2-22
  • Rich Neuheisel, 15-22

One of those records is not like the others.  Neuheisel is the only coach on the list besides Richt who’s led his current program to a winning season.  Put it this way – Richt had more wins in his worst season than Wolff and Locksley have in their careers as D-1 head coaches.  Or put another way, if either Washington State or New Mexico matched Georgia’s disastrous 2010 win total this season, that would probably be sufficient cause to pull Wolff or Locksley off the hot seat.

None of which is to deny that Richt isn’t facing some significant pressure this season.  It’s just good to keep in mind sometimes that expectations can be a bitch.

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14 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Media Punditry/Foibles

14 responses to “The heat is on.

  1. AthensHomerDawg

    “Since going 11-2 in 2007, the team has been on a decline finishing 10-3, 8-5, and 6-7″ Matt Murchell

    “Since going 13-1 in 2002,the team has been on a decline finishing 11-3, 10-2,10-3,9-4 …..” AHD There I can be just as ridiculous. So often I read posts that Richt has slipped the last 4 years. it’s not been four years imho. Motivating 18 year old athletes, many with different life experiences and values is not easy. Being the HC requires a good chemistry with the assistant coaches. Maybe CMR got too tied to his staff. The chemistry that was an asset became a liability. Didn’t Mack Brown have his team in the NC game one year and couldn’t get a bowl game the next? Since going 13-1 in 2009 Texas went 5-7 in 2010. That’s a decline. I don’t think the earlier AD helped CMR much. Greg McGarity will see to it that CMR has every advantage and tool that is practical and ethical. CMR is here till his contract expires and McGarity will evaluate him them so all the hot seat talk be damned!

  2. McGarity is too shrewd to do something like fire Mark Richt without a better alternative in mind. As I scour the landscape of college football, I fail to see a better alternative. Richt may be under some pressure, but barring total collapse this year, I don’t suspect his job is in jeopardy.

    If a coach is on the hot seat and has his worst season as your coach, wouldn’t you expect him to be dismissed? If Richt was on the hot seat last year, why would Georgia keep him after a 6-7 season? Methinks he wasn’t on the hot seat. So, nice “prediction” Murschel. Spot on there.

    • Irwin R. Fletcher

      This is the point…he wasn’t on the hot seat last season. Almost by definition, if the Sentinnel had been right about his ‘hot seat’ in 2010, he would have been released.

      However, the fact that he has to put Richt back on his hot seat list this year underscores the fact that he was wrong last season.

      I’m so excited about all of the Richt ‘hot seat’ stories that we are going to be able to read in the next few months. My assumption is that the 2011 season is going to be framed, if it hasn’t already, as do or die for Richt.

      Whatever….I know there is a loud and vocal minority out there who think that the game has passed Richt by, but the preseason story I’m looking forward to is the Bulldawg Nation rallying around someone who has been a great man, a great coach, and a bunch of kids who want to win the SEC.

    • Dooms Day Dawg

      As fans we can specculate on possible coaches to replace CMR and argue one is more proven than the next. But the buck stops with McGarity, not Bulldog Joe on the intertubes. Has we seen a decline in the program? The answer is yes. Does CMR deserve to be back this season? McGarity says yes, I say no. If the 2011 version of the Dawgs struggle again, CMR should be let go, no questions asked. Who could we find to do better? That is not up to us to answer, that is a McGarity question. If you continue to bet on a horse that finishes 3rd, 4th, or 5th out of 6 horses, you are simply wasting your money. That is what we are doing with CMR as head coach of our program.

    • I agree. Count me as a Richt & a Dawg Supporter.

  3. It’s not that Richt isn’t feeling some heat — he is, and deserves to. It’s just that most of the national pundits predicting doom and gloom for him are making such spectacularly dumb arguments in support of that.

  4. Irwin R. Fletcher

    Also…I love the fact that this offseason, Richt has been able to ‘develop quarterback Aaron Murray.’ What the heck does that even mean?

    For as bad as it was in 2010, the Dawgs finished 2 games out of first in the SEC East while playing and losing 3 SEC games without their best player.

    You want to put the shine back on the program…beat Boise and South Carolina to open the season and ride the momentum and press through a favorable schedule. This feels like 2007 to me….2006 was maybe 2 or 3 plays from being 6-7 instead of 9-4…and went on a 0-6 streak in the SEC East that almost went to 0-7 at Vandy….

    I’ve got higher expectations…I think this team can dominate a weak SEC East.

  5. will

    its funny that Richt was supposedly on the hot seat last year, yet went 6-7 and retained his job. doesn’t that mean he wasn’t on a hot seat last year at all, for if he was he would have been fired.

    am I missing something, or does his first point make him look completely retarded?

  6. Cojones

    If you’ve already compared the SEC East as weak, what will that say of a “weak” schedule? Not in the SEC if you are playing Ole Miss, Miss. St and Aub.. They would be in your “strong” SEC West. And our schedule would be “strong”.

    I think that the “weak” and “strong” labels sway as the season goes along. QBs and teams change and grow (or deteriorate) as the season progresses. Does anyone know how these teams will rank by the 4th game? I say you don’t know and speculation using the old saws given by the media in their premature rankings is folly. If we survive the first two games with starting players intact then (and only then) will we feel that our schedule is perceived weak and we won’t yet know about how East and West teams will play out. If most teams are ranked nationally in the SEC (as many were last year) then our schedule will be perceived as strong. The point is that ranking teams and prospects before the season starts is more of a reach than discussing a fine coach’s future as if you are gurus of coaching talent. The proof of my point here is that with a few individual plays going the other way, this would have been no conversation or article. And to qualify thoughts with “That is not up to us to answer,that is a McGarity question” to express that the writer thinks it is a done deal on Richt’s future is ..well, ludicrous. Not knowing the writer, I would say that any clever little Techie could craft a seemingly concerned fan reply any time he wanted to stir his finger in the fan pot.

    Don’t we (including me) need to realize that so many pundits are making their bones by pulling our chain that we don’t need to consume ourselves in defense of Richt? These jerks are after the fan base by writing nonsense when the kneejerk button has been prepared. Instead of reprinting every article with the name “Georgia” or “Dawgs” in it, why don’t we discuss the demise of our rivals in and out of state? Why don’t we research the pundit’s forecasting ability and eat that writer up for being on his own personal hot seat by rabble-rousing the Dawg fans? Don’t discuss what he wrote about UGA business, but discuss everything else he has written that is stupid.

  7. I just hope he does not continue and stop with the belief that scoring more points have no relevance even with a sure win. I think players like to see their offense score big all the time and not just by one point. I think this is moral booster to young players, right or wrong.

  8. Jim

    We will know by the end of week 2. Lose both or lose one and play lazy in either and he’s done at the end of the year. Whether we like it or not kirby smart will be hired

    Its not just the declining record, but the way the team looks and acts both on and off the field that has made his seat hot.

  9. Bob

    Whether Richt goes or not, I don’t think there is any way Kirby Smart is the next UGA coach. He burned LOTS of bridges last year with his actions. And lots of folks in the Administration have not forgotten. You can forget Smart ever coming to the Classic City unless Michael Adams is gone too.