Greg McGarity demands excellence, gosh darn it.

I can’t help but cringe every time I see Georgia’s athletic director has taken the time to speak with the AJ-C.

This interview with Seth Emerson isn’t nearly as bad as McGarity’s now infamous Q&A with Mark Bradley last year about the football program, but it’s not exactly revelatory, either.  He discusses with Seth his hope that the athletic programs at Georgia will strive to do better in the Director’s Cup rankings, where Georgia has been on a steady slide for years.  He doesn’t offer much of a game plan for that, though.

On the other hand – and I know some of you who don’t want to hear it will accuse me of beating on a certain deceased animal again – McGarity does say something that illustrates one issue I have with the management of the athletic department.

For all the angst that some Georgia fans over their most high-profile teams, they haven’t been the problem: The football team’s No. 9 ranking was worth 69 points towards the Director’s Cup standings, and the men’s basketball team’s NCAA tournament appearance earned 25 points.

Elsewhere, the strength of Georgia’s athletics now rests with swimming and diving, men’s tennis, men’s golf and track and field. What do they have in common? Coaching longevity: Men’s tennis’ Manny Diaz (28 years), swimming and diving’s Jack Bauerle (36 years for the women and 32 for the men), men’s golf’s Chris Haack (19 years) and track and field’s Wayne Norton (15 years).

Meanwhile, much of the rest of the program has seen tinkering in an effort to improve. There have been six coaching changes out of 15 varsity sports head coaches since McGarity took over. The jury is still out on each of the new hires, including baseball (Scott Stricklin has had two losing seasons), gymnastics (Danna Durante has made the final six twice but not claimed a national title yet) and women’s basketball (Joni Crenshaw replaced the retired Andy Landers this year).

“You look at the sports that have been consistently successful here, those coaches have been here a long time,” McGarity said. “They have a tradition that has been established over a number of years.”

Or to put it another way, none of the coaches McGarity has hired are pulling their weight.  But I’m sure he’ll do a righteous job finding Mark Richt’s replacement one day.  That’s the Georgia Way, innit?

25 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

25 responses to “Greg McGarity demands excellence, gosh darn it.

  1. “Just the Facts, Ma’am”

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  2. Excellent starts at the top.

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  3. HVL Dawg

    Golf, Tennis, Swimming and Diving. The great country club sports!

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  4. DawgPhan

    I demand greatness from all of you, not me so much.

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  5. UGA85

    Just having the same person in place for a long period of time guarantees nothing. It has to be the right person. Not making a change because a program fears change, or just worships “stability”, can lead to stagnation, lack of motivation, and outdated schemes. I am glad that some of our coaches can win championships and compete nationally. They should be rewarded. Those that cannot should be replaced. UGA has too many resources to be second best.

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  6. No One Knows You're a Dawg

    I think the change in attitude with regard to spending for the football program comes from the realization by McGarity that if the football team has a bad season he, and not Richt, is the one most likely to be fired.

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  7. UFTimmy

    Would you rather have Foley? He can pick the hell out of a woman’s gymnastics coach, but seems to have trouble finding the mark on football coaches.

    McElwain and White will go a long way towards deciding Foley’s legacy, and I’m not sure how comfortable with that he should be.

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    • Dog in Fla

      “Would you rather have Foley?”

      If Jeremy leaves, will you take Greg back?

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      • Mayor

        He found Urban and 2 BCSNCs, didn’t he? If you are asking would I trade McGarity straight up for Foley, the answer is “in a New York minute!”

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        • UFTimmy

          There’s some speculation that Foley didn’t really bring in Meyer, that our president, Machen did, as he was the president at Utah previously.

          Even if he did, he also brought in Zook, who had no head coaching experience, and then made the exact same mistake with Muschamp.

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          • Dog in Fla

            otoh Foley also hired an excellent baseball coach and kept Billy D. on board much longer than most thought possible but how can anyone overcome the temptations offered by Oklahoma City

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        • Dog in Fla

          No, I’m asking if Jeremy leaves, will Florida take Greg back. I certainly don’t expect a straight-up trade. No way Jeremy would put up with the Georgia Way

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    • UGA85

      UF has one of the most successful athletic programs in the NCAA. Foley has done a great job. He did bring in Meyer, I think, and maybe Donovan as well. If he makes a mistake, he corrects it. If Mcgarity can prove to be half as successful as Foley at bringing in championship coaches, I (for one)would be happy.

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      • Mayor

        Under Foley FU football won 2 BCSNCs and a third MNC while SOS was there, plus the national titles in basketball. Some minor sports national titles, too, I think. I seem to recall FU has won the SEC all-sports trophy multiple times and the NCAA all-sports trophy, too. I’m operating from memory here. The Gators field competitive teams regularly in every sport. Got to give the devil his due–Foley is a good AD.

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  8. The Georgia Way

    Pfft.

    Who cares about winning on the field? We skimmed $44,212,208 of athletic funds into the UGA Foundation in two years.

    Show me another program who has accomplished that!

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    • HVL Dawg

      That’s right. You people need to rethink what winning is, because at my house, cash is king.

      You can’t spend scoreboard victories. You spend money! And if you think money doesn’t matter, try living without it.

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  9. Nate Dawg

    Meanwhile, as flarda looks poised to win a natty in baseball- damn, they win every game by double digits, can someone closer to the scoop tell me what gives w UGA baseball? Admittedly not a close follower, but I would be, if they were bettah..

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