Daily Archives: December 17, 2011

Smart move

Kirby Smart, who was thought to be the leading contender to land the Southern Miss head coaching job, interviewed with the school and then withdrew his name from consideration.  Speaking of consideration, I wonder if this had something to do with his decision:

… Fedora earned $685,000 in base pay at Southern Miss in 2011, with incentives that had the potential to push his compensation above $1 million. Smart earns $850,000 as the Crimson Tide’s highest-paid assistant coach.

As for the speculation that Smart is waiting for an SEC slot to open, well, it takes two to tango.

… He was reportedly a candidate for coaching vacancies at Ole Miss and Texas A&M, but sources told ESPN.com that Smart never had contact with either school.

Then again, maybe Kirby’s just waiting for Mark Richt to take the offer from Penn State.

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Filed under SEC Football

Gettin’ buttah on special teams

The primary goals of the last two seasons were to fix turnover margin and opponents’ third-down conversion rates.  Mission accomplished on both.  So it’s good to hear Richt turn his focus to the largest open sore of this season, special teams play (or lack thereof):

“First of all, we know we have got to get better. It’s two things in my opinion that it could be – either what we are doing schematically or its who do we have on those teams. I guess it could be a third thing – are they actually doing what we are asking them to do. In all those areas we must improve. I think there’s going to be a high sense of urgency on our special teams to become more than just decent. We need to become really good. That’s one of the biggest things is that we try to become one of the top teams in the league and the country in special teams play. There will be some very heavy discussions about it.We’ll probably do more special teams work in the spring than we’ve done in the past.[Emphasis added.]  We knew we had a great punter, great kicker, holder, snapper and all that kind of thing, but we also knew we had some youth on some of those teams. We lost (Akeem) Dent, (Darryl) Gamble, (Demarcus) Dobbs – I’m trying to think of some of the other guys that were on some of these guys that were on that punt team – they were guys that could protect, escape and run and tackle a guy in the open field. We lost a batch of those guys and we were a little shy on linebacker depth and all that kind of thing, so we just have to keep recruiting those kinds of guys. If we got to put a bunch of starters on defense on some specials or starters at wide receiver or whatever you got to do – tailback. I don’t care what position, we got to get the best guys out there and understand how crucial it is.”

I agree that personnel was some of the problem.  But kickoff coverage missed Belin’s attention this season, no question about it.  There’s a lot Richt has to look at if this team is to make the next level in 2012.  The good news is that his recent track record at addressing shortcomings makes this promising.

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Filed under Georgia Football

Loose lips sink ‘ships.

This comment from Mark Richt shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone.

“There’s been some that have just come out and said ‘I’d like my son to go to Georgia, but I’m not sure what is going on’ maybe in the summer or after the second game of the year. So there were some people that would just come out and say that, and there were others that maybe through the high school coach would say ‘coach, if everything was set he would have done it a month ago.’ You hear some of that type of conversation going on…”

You get the sense from Richt that he’s confident the program will close well with this year’s recruits.  Of course, when you keep hearing the coach’s name come up in connection with every job opening in the country…

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Filed under Georgia Football, Recruiting