This little tidbit reported by Marc Weiszer makes me wonder if there was some subtle writing on the wall that Rodney Garner chose to interpret in a way that made leaving for the Plains more attractive:
Richt said he has not made a decision on whether he’ll name someone as recruiting coordinator, a role that Garner had.
“I don’t even know if we’ll need to do that,” Richt said. “I’ll be debating and trying to decide what’s in the best interest of everything, but we’ve got our in-house recruiting team and a lot of those things are going to be taken care of, things that need to get done administratively.”
Georgia hired Daryl Jones to a newly created position of director of on-campus recruiting last May.
“Things were already starting to change when we brought Daryl in, and lightening Rodney’s load, basically,” Richt said. “It is a tough job for a guy to do that full-time and coach.”
That’s thoughtful. Except if you’re Garner, you don’t want the recruiting load lightened. Sure, he’s put more than his fair share of defensive linemen in the pros, but, the reality is that much of his worth as a college assistant stems from his prowess on the recruiting trail. Making him just another guy on the team isn’t necessarily in his best interest, and if Malzahn promised Garner that he’d retain primacy over Auburn’s recruiting process, perhaps that was enough to tip the scales.