One problem with airing your management style in the press is that you invite the disgruntled essentially to fight fire with fire. Enter Mark Schlabach:
Over the next few weeks, Richt and Georgia athletics director Greg McGarity will meet to discuss the future of the program. Richt’s supporters want UGA to invest in its football program like other SEC schools are doing, according to multiple people close to the situation.
Earlier this month, UGA offensive coordinator Mike Bobo left to become Colorado State’s head coach. With Bobo directing the offense, Georgia set a school single-season record for scoring in 2014, despite playing much of the season without star tailback Todd Gurley, receivers Malcolm Mitchell and Justin Scott-Wesley and while playing with a first-year quarterback, Hutson Mason.
Despite the results, Bobo, a former Georgia quarterback, wasn’t among the highest-paid coordinators in the country, making $525,000 annually (he’d received a $240,000 raise in 2013 to make his compensation more competitive). Bobo was only the 40th-highest paid assistant in the country, according to a recent survey of salaries by USA Today.
During the past couple of months, Georgia’s assistants have openly politicked for an indoor practice facility, as well as a renovated locker room and recruiting suite at Sanford Stadium. Georgia’s locker room at Sanford Stadium still has cinder-block walls and probably has had only a few coats of paint since Herschel Walker played there in the early 1980s. Without those improvements, Richt’s supporters say, he can’t be reasonably expected to compete with other SEC schools.
The reference to cinder-block walls is an especially nice touch, don’t you think? Well played, “Richt’s supporters”.
What McGarity – and McGarity’s bosses – need to realize is that the side with the poorer PR skills isn’t likely to win the sale of the story. And I think we all know which side that is.
That doesn’t mean ultimately that Richt can’t go, of course. It just means that the school won’t come out looking good doing it. And if Richt isn’t dismissed and the program continues to plateau, as the flaws and complaints continue to aired in public, whom do you think will get the bulk of the blame for that?
As I keep saying, what a mess.