Reading the tea leaves on the Ball departure

Radi Nabulsi points out something about the timing of Tony Ball’s exit that I hadn’t considered.

Ball was named the running backs coach at Georgia on Feb. 14, 2006. After three seasons of coaching the tailbacks, he took over instructing the wide receivers at Georgia. He is leaving one day before his ninth anniversary. Ball had previously indicated he wanted to stay at least one more year at Georgia in order to receive better retirement benefits from the University.

When you’re in your mid-fifties, that is not a minor consideration.  And yet, he jumped.  So he must have really wanted out of Athens for some reason, right? Well…

Last month Virginia Tech boosters reached out to Ball to see if he would be interested in their open wide receivers coach position. He politely declined.

Maybe this is as simple as Les Miles making Ball an offer he couldn’t refuse. Maybe it’s something else.  I’ve got no idea.  But I’ll sure be curious to see the terms of his new contract.  Not to mention to see who his replacement is. Between the two, perhaps some of the blanks will get filled in.


Filed under Georgia Football

34 responses to “Reading the tea leaves on the Ball departure

  1. doofusdawg

    it was my post on the vault on 1-25.


  2. Jack Klompus

    Kind of smells similar to the Olividatti/Wilson exits if you ask me.


    • Jack Klompus

      Also, you never know when his official last day is. Perhaps because he worked up to Friday (or whenever he left) he was concisdered employed on the 14th. Frankly, I think that point is moot and that he got credit for all 9 years. Dude isn’t dumb.

      Why didn’t he get a pay raise when McClendon did and Sale got big numbers? Tony was encouraged to and ready to move on in my mind.


      • DawgByte

        I think you’ve applied hammer head to nail head. A two week notice would have easily covered the time period in question.
        This is not the first time Ball has attempted to leave the program. I think this is best for all parties concerned. It gives Coach Schotty an opportunity to hire his own guy. I have all the confidence in the world Brian will select a winner, both as a coach and recruiter.


  3. Scorpio Jones, III

    I know this is not nearly as melodramatic, but maybe the LSU offer includes enough deferred money to make up for losing the year at Georgia. I had an offer like that there one time myself…not that I was smart enough to take it.


  4. BrightOwl

    I think it probably has something to do with the OC change. Did Ball throw his name in the ring for the position, only to have it discounted? That’s not always an easy thing to get over, especially when you have nine seasons on the job and feel like you’ll never move up. Or maybe he’s just not a fan of Schottenheimer and doesn’t feel like things will be the same with a new immediate superior.

    Either way, I don’t have any ill feelings about his departure and I wish him all the luck in the world. (Right up to a certain point.)


  5. Dawg19

    My answer is I don’t have the first damn clue. Maybe he was an early riser and liked to pack in the morning. And maybe he didn’t have any friends. I’m an educated man, but I’m afraid I can’t speak intelligently about the travel habits of Tony Ball. What I do know is that he was set to leave the campus at 0600.


  6. JCDAWG83

    If Ball is in his 50s, a $100,000 a year raise is a big deal and that is probably the main reason he took the job. He probably realizes he is not going to be an OC at a big school, so he might as well get the money while he can.

    I wish him the best.


  7. Jonathan

    I think he was not happy he wasn’t considered for the OC job and left because he thought the move to LSU might continue his climb up the ladder. My 2 pennies.


  8. Miles is desperate to improve LSU’s craptastic offense. Georgia had one of the best offenses in the country last year, and Dawg WRs have long been thought of as being well coached. I’m sure Miles just threw a ton of money in Ball’s direction and it was too much to say no to.


  9. W Cobb Dawg

    Just thinking out loud, but recall Ball got a raise last year. Interviewing may have been seen as a scheme to extract yet another raise, and it backfired.

    I thought Ball was a very good, dependable coach. Keeping him would’ve helped stability on offense with the loss of CMB. Our best offense ever is unexpectedly undergoing a major change in assistant coaches. Is there anyone who thinks our O is going to pick up where we left off in 2014? These assistant replacements have plenty of potential to hurt us.

    Maybe Lilly takes over as WR coach, while keeping his TE responsibilities. Opening a job for… wait for it…a full time ST coach!


  10. Is there any reason to be worried about his departure? Our WR performance has been mediocre at best for a long time. I feel like we never even got the most out of AJ Green.

    It seems like CMR was ok with him leaving and is perhaps happy this gives Schotty a chance to hire one of his own choices for a key coaching position.

    And for Ball, this gives him a raise, maybe a chance to shine somewhere and turn that into another step up.


  11. Mike Cooley

    I thought Ball did a good job. I definitely don’t agree that our receivers have been mediocre at best.


  12. Ruffdawg

    might be missing something but in 2014, Conley was the only receiver Ball coached that finished in the top 100 in yards per catch or total yards receiving or touchdowns.

    It was one of the worst years for receivers I can remember. Just got no production, receivers never really got separation, despite ample talent such as Mitchell and Conley and Bennett.

    I don’t see how you can blame Hutson as he finished in the top 10 nationally in passer rating, and accuracy. Hutson was also the No 1 ranked SEC Qb in long passes accuracy according to the NFL website.


  13. Mike Cooley

    I think that had more to do with how run oriented we were last year.


  14. Juice

    I know I’m not the first to mention this but what about moving McClendon back to receivers and hiring TB away from Wisconsin?

    TB rose through the ranks like lightning and the word on the street is that he can flat recruit. Not to mention the contributions he could make to the SC program.