When cultures collide

Bruce Feldman reports on the heart of the matter:

On Thursday, sources told FOX Sports that Richt is dealing with lots of friction inside the Georgia football program, some of it stemming from the old guard Bulldog staff vs. the new guard regarding many of the changes in how the Dawgs program is run.

Many of these changes — from staffing moves to operational decisions to how the team gets ready for its games — were pushed for by second-year Georgia defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt, a Nick Saban disciple who came to Athens after helping leading Florida State to the national title following the 2013 season. Things have come to a head because the product on the field is struggling and there is frustration from all sides.

The Georgia Way is under siege.

Those of you jonesing for change might want to think about what Pruitt being run off from Athens means, regardless of Richt’s future.

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100 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

100 responses to “When cultures collide

  1. Dog in Fla

    but the execution was perfect

    Like

  2. Mayor

    If this is what it takes to end the “Georgia Way” as we have known it so be it. We’ll be a lot better off in the long run.

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    • What makes you think this is going to end it?

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      • Exactly. The Powers that be unleashed the Public Opinion war on the only person not being a ‘Yes-Man’. They don’t like him because he wants to change things. They don’t like change even if it would be for the better. That is insane to me. The Georgia Way is here to stay and “they” are seeing to that right now.

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        • Will (The Other One)

          But are the big money boosters really dumb enough to think Pruitt’s been the problem this season? Sale looks like a bad hire, but no one defensively has been as bad as the offense.

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          • I would hope not. Then again, I would also hope that they would do whatever it took to make Georgia a Championship Program…but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

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            • Will (The Other One)

              The darker way of reading that USA Today story is that McGarity wanted “change” and that change was getting rid of Pruitt, not Richt. That’s the worst-case scenario reading, by far.

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          • Kevin

            Pruitt pushed for his boy Sale, don’t forget that.

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      • The Dawg abides

        It’s obvious now that it is not going to end. We are seeing just how deep the ‘Georgia Way’ runs among the powers that be. At least now I can try to find some peace about it. Richt will be here next year. Pruitt won’t. At this point it really wouldn’t surprise me if the entire offensive staff is the same. We are who we thought we were, and will be for the foreseeable future.

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        • Mayor

          Good Night!!! If that’s the way it shakes out we’re totally screwed. Pruitt is the most competent coach we have. Maybe the only competent coach we have.

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      • Argondawg

        It is not going to end until Pruitt is let go. He is a cancer on this team. He should have been fired Wednesday. It’s not the Georgia way vs. Pruitt. It’s Pruitt vs. the world. After the crap he pulled Wednesday he is lucky he has all of his teeth. He will be gone next year if not next week. He has been an Ahole almost the whole time he has been here and the rumors for reasons he left Tallahassee are true. This is not a good dude. Wow at the crap that is coming from people who work in the building!!!!!

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  3. Grathams repl

    He’s one of the ones I want to stay.

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  4. Bulldog Joe

    Give Pruitt the interim head coach role after the Kentucky game and three games to show us if he is on the right track or blowing smoke.

    We already know where Richt falls short.

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    • Christ, are you not getting this? Pruitt’s gone, man. He’s not going to be interim anything at Georgia.

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      • Will (The Other One)

        Richt’s latest tweet suggests otherwise.

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        • Charles

          No it doesn’t. It suggests he’ll be around at least through Saturday. Beyond that…

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        • 3rdandGrantham

          He means gone at the end of the year. Pruitt totally burned his bridge with the UGA AD…less than a 2% chance he’s back next year in any capacity.

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          • Will (The Other One)

            If try, why keep Richt around? You really shouldn’t bring Schotty back (I mean even in that interview with Eason’s dad, they praised Richt, and didn’t mention much about Schotty), so if you’re bringing in new coaches on offense and defense anyway…why not make a clean sweep?

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        • @gatriguy

          Dude, he’s toast. It’s just a matter of when.

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      • TC5

        Why do you think he’s gone?

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      • DB

        Gone now or after the season?

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      • Bulldog Joe

        Senator, you give up too easily! As long as he’s still here, it ain’t over.

        Join the cause to finally end the sham that is The Georgia Way.

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      • Faulkner

        You know way more than I ever will about the goings on in the athletic department. However from my perspective, Pruitt is the only one I feel making any progress. If he is truly gone as you suggest, then I will be pissed and shocked at the same time. You can probably kiss this recruiting class goodbye as well.

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      • Correct, Senator. He’s gone. I’ve had this vibe that Pruitt thinks he can survive Richt’s exit (if it comes) and either stay on with the new HC or take over, and this is showing that’s a fantasy. Not only is he gone if Richt goes, but it’s being made clear he’s gone regardless.

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      • DugLite

        They should at least name the IPF in his honor. The Georgia Way. Sheesh……I hope they tell Pruitt they love him.

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      • ChilliDawg

        So how do you square this… “But multiple times, Pruitt said the main reason he’s now at Georgia was, “the guy sitting next to me right here,” referring to Richt. They’d first met when Pruitt was a high school assistant and brought over a couple of prospects from Ft. Payne High.

        “I said then that was somebody I wanted to work for if I ever got a chance,” Pruitt said.”?

        Are the tea leaves just being misread, because a couple of defensive players were suspended?

        Or is it more likely that Richt has had enough of this after 15 years and was planning to retire anyway? In which case, is Pruitt pushing to feather his own bed by setting a new direction prior to the end of the season. Timing could be everything.

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      • Bobby Bowden Syndrome

        yup, he is replacing kirby at bama.

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    • Dog in Fla

      Gosh darn it, Bulldog Joe, for CPJ it’s

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  5. B-rad

    If they run off Pruitt who has actually won NCs in the past 5 years before Richt, I think all hope is lost

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    • Charles

      So Pruitt gets credit for his national championships as a coordinator at FSU but Richt doesn’t?

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      • Will (The Other One)

        Richt won a NC at FSU in the past 5 years? No wonder he’s so tired now, working for two teams and all…

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        • Charles

          You missed the point. “In the last five years” is an arbitrary way of making a like comparison between two completely different circumstances.

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          • Will (The Other One)

            Tommy Tuberville’s gone undefeated and won the SEC multiple times too but no SEC team looking for head coaches has considered him. Recency does matter. And it’s been 10 years between conference titles for Richt.

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            • Charles

              1.) Tommy Tuberville has not won multiple SEC titles.

              2.) Three years ago, Mark Richt came closer to playing for a national championship than Tuberville’s ever been.

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              • Mayor

                Sorry Charles. Not true. Tubby won all his games in 2004 just finished #3 in the polls and wasn’t allowed to play in the Big Game. He did all he could do. CMR never did that. In fact, when CMR had the chance in 2012 to win the SECCG and land in the BCSNCG he choked.

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        • B-rad

          Would punctuation help? If they run off Pruitt, who has actually won NCs in the past 5 years, before Richt, I think all hope is lost

          -I’m saying Pruitt actually knows what it takes to win NCs as he’s been at 2x different programs that have won them in the past 5 years. What has CBS ever won as a college coach? Has CMR won one in the past decade? Believe that was 1999, as a lot about the game has changed since then. What it took to win one in 1999 doesn’t work anymore. I think he’s out of touch…

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  6. Derek

    I wish these anonymous sources would be more specific. X thinks Y, but Z thinks A. Otherwise it just sounds like the “Pruitt is fired” rumors that turned out false. Hard to believe that mcgarrity wanted to make a change last year and ended up with an extension. I would believe that there was disagreement about the extension but if jere saw that big a schism somebody should have been shown the door. Can’t keep both after that IMHO.

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  7. SAtowndawg

    did Pruitt hire the OC…because that is where the actual blame lies

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  8. JT (the other one)

    What a friggen’ mess. The culture inside the BM needs to be blown up. 10 wins is good enough attitude needs to be shelved. 10 wins shouldn’t be our ceiling but our basement.

    The mentality or country club entitlement culture needs to be gone.

    Not sure the next guy won’t step into a sewer either…

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    • Will (The Other One)

      How accurate is the “10 wins is good enough at BM” part though? I know a lot of us have felt it, but if McGarity wanted Richt gone after a 9-3 regular season with a shot at 10 wins, where’s the factual evidence for it?

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  9. DB

    Pruitt is very popular because he is shaking it up. He’s getting more done with less than any other assistant by far. If they fire him the noise will get louder for sure.

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    • Otto

      Pruitt isn’t going to get fired……

      However, he may make it known he is looking to leave.

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      • Mayor

        That is the more likely scenario and he won’t be unemployed long–take that to the bank. P.S. The scenario I saw elsewhere on this blog that if Kirby Smart gets a HC gig Pruitt is going back to Bama as DC is a pretty likely scenario.

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        • MLB2

          I don’t believe we will know anything until McG and CMR have their yearly review after the bowl game. There are not many credible sources any more. The silence from Barnhart and Schlabaugh today is interesting.

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    • Scorpio Jones, III

      Pruitt was popular at the onset of his tenure because he was “next year’s Bob Dylan”…now, from reading here it appears he has become this year’s Bruce Springsteen.

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  10. The other Doug

    Check Pruitt’s twitter. I think he just quit.

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  11. PatinDC

    Was it after BVG left that we had Grad Asst’s running the D? If Pruitt leaves, who will coach the D? Any scoop on out current GA’s? 😉

    Yikes.

    Like

  12. Athens Dog

    I put a post on Facebook that said “what a dumpster fire” A friend replied “that’s an insult to dumpster fires everywhere”

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  13. gurkha Dawg

    Who the hell are these powerful behind the scenes people? Boosters? BM employees? Morehead? Who the hell has that much power if CMR and Morehead are not on board?

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  14. Jared S.

    [img]http://www.atlantamagazine.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/12/2015/08/0815_markricht01_jevilla_oneuseonly.jpg[/img]

    Like

  15. No One Knows You're a Dawg

    As the USAT article below reports, the fundamental friction is between McGarity and Richt. One of them has to go and it’s why Morehead needs to step in. The question is which one is the proponent of the “Georgia Way” and which is not. Or maybe it’s that one of them, most likely McGarity, is using it squeeze Richt out and will loosen up on everything once he has “his guy” in place.

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  16. Spike

    The shit is hitting the fan at BM..

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  17. Dawgwood

    Holy Lord, what a mess. With all that’s going on right now we can pretty much declare that this program will be without a top coach shortly. Who it will be will be up to Morehead. I really hope it’s not Pruitt. He is stressing change, and the head coach is not willing to. He’s getting frustrated because he didn’t come here to see this product on the field. He is looking at the offense like the rest of us, thinking what the hell are you guys doing. NO points, still rotating QBs at this point of the season, and the terrible game plans are pissing him off. Schotty is pissing him off, and Richt protecting him is in turn pissing him off a Richt. Putting myself in is shoes, I can completely understand the noise.

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    • Moultriedawg

      Pruitt is gone man…. Pissed off the ad last year when he came out publicly about the ipf morrehead called him to his office and told him that was his only warning don’t do it again listen to mark wiser and fletcher on Bulldogs bites they mention it on there

      Like

  18. Spike

    Can Shotty. Is there a website dedicated to that yet?

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  19. BigD

    Maybe Glen Mason will take the job this time…

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  20. Skeptic Dawg

    In all seriousness, who is apart of the “old guard Bulldog” and these individuals with power inside B-M? Is it Richt and McGarity? It has to be a larger group than that, right? I hear people reference this group often.

    Like

    • Scorpio Jones, III

      Skep, as far as I know the real Old Guard is pretty quiet these days. Vince would be about the only one still grooming his garden, and you will notice he is pretty close mouthed.

      It would appear the “old guard” mentioned is folks who were there BJP.

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      • Skeptic Dawg

        It is possible. I find it incredibly curious as to why Pruitt would be the first one out in this situation. It appears to me that the defense is the only part of this team pullimg their own weight. As for the Georgia Way, well, those holding on to the idea are strangling the program they apparently love so. I am beyond fed up with our head coach, athletic director and the entire B-M crowd. They can all go kick rocks.

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  21. ApalachDawg

    Can you imagine the recruiting ammunition that this is giving to our enemies and unfortunately our soon-to-be enemies Pruitt, Rocker, etc if they are let go. Pruitt already talked about how they negatively recruited against the DAwgs – see IPF,etc – can you imagine if he’s at Carolina or somewhere else close by, they will have found Saddam’s wmd. stash. They can confirm the dysfunction of the jaw-juh way.
    They need to make some bold moves quickly but that ain’t the jaw-juh way.

    Like

  22. Hogbody Spradlin

    “Those of you jonesing for change might want to think about what Pruitt being run off from Athens means, regardless of Richt’s future.”

    If only Pruitt leaves and Richt is head coach next year, then the Georgia way wins. If Pruitt for any reason leaves and Richt for any reason leaves, then Pruitt is just collateral damage in a brouhaha that could go either way.

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  23. Will Trane

    Lets keep CMR.
    That way after McElwain has kicked us by forty points and is on his way to the Dome again…well, we can once again be treated to CMR skipping of the field with a smile on his face with his son.
    Next year all the coaches should bring their wife and kid to the game so they can do that.
    What a joke CMR makes of this program now along with Tarkenton putting his worthless two cents into. Maybe Tarkenton can baby sit some players so they are not out in the middle of the night during a game week.
    Call any of those former FSU alums ask if they want CMR back. I know. I’ve heard them enough!

    Like

    • Will Trane

      How did CMR let Dabo get that QB
      And Clemson and FSU are playing for a playoff.
      Do you honestly think FSU would ever even consider CMR?
      Or how did UT get their QB?
      Butch sent CMR a thank you note.

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  24. Will Trane

    Georgia could have top program if some deadbeat former NFL QB stayed out of the mix. Where was Tarkenton in 09 and 10?

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  25. sUGArdaddy

    Just another angle here. A friend of mine mentioned, “Not able to work with Mark Richt” is not exactly a great thing to have on your resume if you’re Pruitt. Though our defense has performed admirably and I like the intentionality Pruitt has brought toward winning and expecting to win, it’s also possible that he’s an insufferable jerk. FSU didn’t seem to put up much of a fight to keep him. And if they have Pruitt last year…do they win it all again? There were also murmurs coming out of Tallahassee about inappropriate relationships and the nightlife.

    The other thing is: Pruitt’s way could be flat wrong. We could have acquiesced to Pruitt’s way and we’re seeing severe team regression, and it’s possible Lilly and McClendon and the like aren’t happy because they believe Richt wasn’t THAT far off before Pruitt got here.

    How do you know Pruitt didn’t tell Richt to squib it because his D would hold but just don’t let them get a KO return here? How do we know that Pruitt’s schedule/practice changes haven’t been detrimental to developing players (because all sides of the ball have taken on Pruitt’s practice schedule). I’m not Grantham fan and was ready for him to leave, but it’s possible we weren’t as far off as we think after the run in 2012 and 2013. That 2013 team was decimated by injuries in a way we’d never seen, but before that, they had beaten a pretty awesome USCjr team, a very good LSU team, and on the road at UT. That defense also played alright down the stretch. It’s possible we weren’t that far off, and Pruitt has been given the reigns to turn it upside down and it didn’t need to be.

    I have no inside info, but it’s possible Richt realizes he made a huge mistake hiring someone of Pruitt’s attitude and personality, despite his competencies. The problem is that he’s also hired on OC who is incompetent. And I’m not sure the administration can trust him to make two more coordinator hires.

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    • Otto

      Why is it a bad thing not to work with a HC that extinguishes any spark of emotion?

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      • sUGArdaddy

        Richt is many things we might all want to change, but hard to work with is not one of them. I’ve been to enough practices to know that this has nothing to do with being fiery. Bobo was as loud and boisterous as they come, especially on the field. This isn’t about wanting to win. If there is tumult, it’s about something else.

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        • Otto

          From being around other programs is that they were viewed as all bark and no bite not earning respect. I can see that from what I have watched of practice. They would have been great coaches 20 years ago.

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  26. TMC dawg

    If they run off Pruitt, shame on all of the BM crowd. He is the only one that wants a winner. rIcht is the problem and has been for sometime. The ga way sucks. I am s seriously considering not renewing my season tickets, because of this kind of thinking!!

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  27. JCDAWG83

    Folks need to quit waiting on the “big money boosters” to run anybody off. Georgia does not have a T. Boone Pickens or a Lauder who pulls the strings. I’d bet the biggest donor of all maybe gives $250,000 a year and that’s not enough to tell anyone what to do. Until about 5000 season ticket holders say “enough” and don’t send in the $1000-2000 donations, nothing at all is going to change.

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  28. W Cobb Dawg

    If Pruitt leaves we are in for a real tough slog. He works harder and contributes more than any coach we’ve had in years (head or assistant).

    Thing is, I believe Pruitt reflects the current disposition of the Bulldog Nation more than any other person associated with the program. He’s not the type to shrug his shoulders when we lose.

    Like

    • Skeptic Dawg

      Westie, i believe what you said to be 100% accurate. If at seasons end, or before, Pruitt leaves, all hopes and dreams for this program leave with him. I had high hopes that the Pruitt Effect would lead to great things for the Dawgs this season. Sadly, there has either not been enough time for the changes to take hold or others are refusing to change…and at this point it appears that it is most certainly the latter.

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  29. Am I supposed to be taking a side? It sure isn’t gonna be with Pruitt. He’s done a lot of talking and stirring things up and that’s about it. From the day Grantham got here until now, our defense is marginally better. Dude came from high school and has piggy backed on the success of other programs and coaches. He hasn’t proven he can do anything. Want to impress me?? Make this defense better than what Grantham did.

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  30. Georgia Way at the athletic department is actually no different from how some if not a lot of the state facilities in Georgia are being run. Those in power and influence has enough power to keep themselves in position and run these facilities the way and manner to keep their own power and influence in place. I lived, breathed and ate for years.

    Am I surprise this stuff are going on in that athletic department? Some as I do care about the Dawgs, but sadly not.

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  31. Correction: I lived, breathed and ate the Georgia Way for years. I tried running my “trains” through them and was successful but eventually even my trains broke by the gauntlet of these powers. I however enjoyed the experience while the adventure lasted. I was able to kick some ass and now I’m now just watching on the sideline as they slowly bury themselves to obscurity.

    The Georgia Way is hard to defeat because it’s all about preserving power.

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  32. From a UGA fan and a West Coast football fan. No particular side on stay or go. If someone does decide to blow the program up, please do not follow any traits the U of WA. Followed. AD and department major infighting and turmoil. At are about the same level as what appears to be going on at UGA. So they fired Lambright, then followed that with Slick Rick and a major lawsuit, and the huge mistake of Ty Willingham. From a excellent program to 0-12.
    It has taken a long time to repair and would not like to see UGA follow the same path. Whatever they do, Please get it right.

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  33. A10Penny

    UGA has hired coaches to make lateral moves (Pruitt, CBS, Sale, Brown,etc.) which proves UGA jobs are sought after. Running off Pruitt in the wrong way could change that.

    I have faith that CMR will handle this mess with class (recent tone deaf comment about keeping the starting QB a secret notwithstanding). How Morehead and McGarity handle the situation will determine whether the job continues to be attractive to elite candidates once they finally act.

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    • The Nelson Puppet

      So Pruitt not-so-privately lobbied to have Richt fired and Pruitt succeed him? It begins to look like Pruitt might have had an OPERATION TROJAN HORSE in mind from the very beginning, what with the coaching crew Richt allowed him to bring on board. If this is true, it’s got to be personally humiliating for Pruitt to be retained on staff knowing that Richt foiled OPERATION TROJAN HORSE and knows all the details. Oh, well. Next season, Pruitt will more than likely be at Alabama serving out a Lane Kiffin-style rehabilitation tour of duty.

      Like