As the coaches turn…

And here I was worried about a boring offseason.  I’ve gotten a few questions by e-mail and in person about what I think is coming.  Honestly, your guess is as good as mine in some ways, especially with regard to Belin, whose decision I gather came as a surprise (not that I blame him for taking the opportunity, as well as what is likely to be a big raise).

Anyway, a few thoughts:

  • All of those people who were mocking Richt a month or so ago for having a lightweight staff because none of his assistants were fielding job offers sound pretty stupid now.  With his move to Texas, Searels becomes the highest paid offensive line coach in college football.  Belin is probably looking at a $100K bump in annual salary and will of course be coaching on Sundays.  Not too shabby.
  • I feel fairly confident in saying that whomever Richt hires as Searels’ replacement, it won’t be Ralph Friedgen.  Forget the cost, forget that OL is a position that he hasn’t coached in a very long time and forget the problems with sorting out the pecking order between the Fridge and Bobo.  I don’t see it happening for two other reasons.  One, Friedgen is 64.  Two, he’s a poor recruiter.  Neither of those are attractive attributes to Richt right now.
  • If you’re looking for a list of OL coaching candidates, Chris Low’s is as good as any.  Plus, it sounds like he’s been talking to someone in the program.
  • Belin will be missed.  I thought he and Bobo were the two best position coaches on the staff last season.  And there’s no denying what a fantastic job he did coaching the kickoff coverage team – granted, Fabris was a low bar to hurdle, but Belin’s unit finished first in the conference.
  • That being said, it was some combination of Richt and Grantham that came up with Belin last year, so I’ll trust the track record there as they hunt for a replacement.  (Before you ask, Jancek was a BVG recommendation.)


UPDATE: Things may be coming to a head on the OL coach hire.



Filed under Georgia Football

33 responses to “As the coaches turn…

  1. The Original Cynical in Athens

    I mocked Coach Richt’s staff and do not feel stupid about it. These are the first two significant raises for Richt staffers. The only others who have left took lesser jobs or were forced out and took lateral jobs.

    I do think that it is good that those guys were given raises and better positions, and hope that Coach Richt uses this opportunity to bring in a couple more professional coaches from outside of the UGA circle.


    • Hackerdog

      You must have forgotten that Callaway left for a HC job and Van Gorder left for the NFL.

      As a frame of reference, exactly what rate of staff turnover would satisfy you in the future?


      • The Original Cynical in Athens

        If you seriously believe that Van Gorder and Calloway took immediately better jobs, then you and I will agree to disagree.

        Van Gorder has been the only coach here who would be considered a “rising star” outside of the program (unless you want to count the bizarro year of Kirby Smart handling RB’s).

        Remember who UF’s DC was when they won the ’96 title? UF in 2006 and ’08? UF’s OC in ’06 and ’08? Auburn’s OC this year? LSU’s DC in 2007. AU’s DC in ’04?

        While Meyer and Saban are great coaches, they have also surrounded themselves with phenomenal coaching talent, guys who are on the verge of becoming great head coaches themselves.

        Fingers crossed that an ACC school comes after Grantham or Bobo in the next couple of years to run a program, because that will mean that those coaches have proved themselves on the biggest stage. That is the kind of staff turnover that would satisfy me.


  2. Bulldog Joe

    Yes, the recruiting job is not yet finished. Need Jenkins and two assistants.

    Belin also did a very good job with our linebackers in the short time he was here. They along with Boykin were the bright spots in our defense.

    We will have a lot of new faces at this position, so this hire is as important as the OL position.


  3. TennesseeDawg

    I don’t see the Fridge as a good candidate either. Even though it won’t happen, and I don’t even know who it is, unload the truck on the Wisconsin OL coach. That line is impressive and they rarely get top recruited lineman up there. More likely a Will Friend or another young, energetic coach at a smaller program.


  4. Objective Bama Fan

    No offense, Georgia fans, but a really sought-after coach would be a little hesitant to come to Georgia now. The perceived notion that this coaching staff has only one year to right the ship would be a turnoff. It would be a hard decision to move his entire family to Athens for possibly only one year.


  5. JasonC

    I would actually rank my preferences in the order that Low listed the options, with Adkins probably being pretty far ahead of the others. Coach Mac may have the ties, but Texas’ running game was their weakness too often for me to want him in Athens.


  6. Tenn_Dawg

    Wasn’t Adkins on the UGA staff before under Donnon or Goff? I know he was on UT’s staff for a couple of years under the Fulmer regime. He was there during the year that UT only gave up two sacks with Ainge but I think their running game sucked that year. Is he really the best we can do? I did think I read somewhere that he was a pretty good recruiter though.

    Anyway who ever the guy is he and Richt need to call big Cyrus’s mom and arrange a visit to the new BM. Athens is better than T-Town and certainly Lee County plus he can get major playing time without being totally thrown to the wolves.


  7. Irishdawg

    “unload the truck on the Wisconsin OL coach. ”

    I said the same thing when Searels split. That Badger running game was impressive, and that O-line looked pretty fearsome.


  8. W Cobb Dawg

    I’ve also been a critic of CMR’s hires. When Bobo, McClendon, Van Halanger, Eason, etc. start getting offers – and leaving, then you can call me any name you prefer. Why should anyone be surprised when a truly qualified hire, like Belin, gets a better offer? Even CSS was a sought after OL coach before he ran into the train wreck which is our offensive approach, not to mention our sorry c&s program.


  9. Will Trane

    Here is a suggestion for the AD at UGA. Be prepared to pay coaches for a change. Forbes reported in the past few days how sound the finances were at UGA. Money talks. Coaches walk.
    Look UGA you have the best damn facilities in the country. Start paying these guys and gals. Coaching is tough…it is high risk…high risk comes with a cost. If you want a return on those other assets, be prepared to put some bucks in peoples pockets. It is business…Sonny!


  10. WFdawg

    All of this raises the question of who will take over Belin’s special teams duties. If they’ll be the responsibility of his replacement, then that means we’re looking for a guy who is an outstanding LB coach and an outstanding ST coach. Proficiency at just one won’t do (see John Fabris, DE coach). If they’ll be delegated among the current staff, then I’m not sure who inspires an enormous amount of confidence in me to get Belin-like results. What that guy did in a year was nothing short of outstanding.


  11. Tenn_Dawg

    That would probably be Will Friend the OL coach at UAB. Former Bama OL coach I think. I don’t know much about him. Is he considered a good coach?


  12. Tenn_Dawg

    I just looked up Will Friend. He was certainly a good player and it seems that he has coach up some kids at UAB. I do know that UAB had their way with UT this year and if their FG kicker does not miss 5 frigg’n FGs in the game then they would have won going away.

    What do you guys think of this supposed hire?

    Also..I know there was a guy (Travis…it think) coaching for the Saints that was a former Dawg and pretty good coach. Was he the one that got in trouble last year with the Feds? If not maybe he would be a good replacement for Belin.


  13. William

    I want someone to answer Tenn_Dawg about whether or not this is a good hire (assuming we pick up Friendly). I guess we can’t know too much in advance, but what kind of production has he gotten out his players as UAB? Is he an in your face type? I know Searles supposedly was too, but I think Searles lost his charges midway through the year. That’s why he had to bench some of them and play the Freshman, IMO.


  14. OldDawg55

    Maybe it will occur to some of you..just a little bit..that being professional coaches and having years of experience, CMR along with CTG will have some idea of what they want and need and have a fairly long list of candidates that they think they can entice to the Dawg program..duh! They damn sure aren’t getting their coaches off this or any other blog. Go Dawgs!


    • DawgVegas

      They’re not? Well day-um! I gotta stop making constructive suggestions if they’re not listening. I’ll just start complaining about our OC only averaging 30+ ppg.


  15. Cojones

    OldDawg55- Right on, brother.
    DawgVegas- Heard dat! I’ve seen a lot of positive Bobo remarks lately’ Figure the trolls have left us?