Off again, on again

Honestly, this is approaching comedy now.

UGA had an abrupt change of plans on Monday, and decided to send its football coaches out on the road to recruit on Monday, DawgNation has learned.

This week is one of the biggest recruiting weeks of the year, due to the football season being over and February’s signing day looming around two months away.

Monday’s decision marked a change in plans from Sunday, when UGA’s athletic officials decided to pull all the assistants off the road, with the exception of recruiting coordinator Bryan McClendon and running backs coach Thomas Brown, after head coach Mark Richt was fired.

Jeremy Pruitt, who still holds the title of UGA defensive coordinator, is expected to visit on Monday evening with two high-value targets from Peachtree Ridge High School – defensive back Chad Clay (committed to UGA) and safety Nigel Warrior (undecided). Clay has an in-home visit scheduled with UGA for 7:30 p.m.

UGA defensive line coach Tracy Rocker was supposed to see two of the state’s senior top defensive linemen – Antwuan Jackson (undecided) from Cedar Grove and Michail Carter (undecided) of Jackson.

Maybe that explains why McGarity had no clue at today’s presser as to who was recruiting for the program.  Way to keep the trains running, fellas!

113 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Recruiting

113 responses to “Off again, on again

  1. OhioDawg

    Well, this reached cluster&*%^ status more quickly than I imagined it could.

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  2. I Wanna Red Cup

    I have to say that this does not surprise me. B-M is a total mess.

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  3. Bright Idea

    If McGarity was 100% sold on this move he would have kept the staff off the road and live with the recruiting results. He’s trying to have his cake and eat it too with this whole thing.

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  4. rocksalt

    Turn those machines back on! Turn those machines back ooooooonnnnnn!!!!

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  5. He’s an idiot. What would have been comedy gold would have been for GM to ask CMR to go out recruiting.

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  6. Sam Johnson

    Or – maybe Smart has already indicated he wants to keep these coaches? Wouldn’t you? Sure would make for an interesting recruiting visit.

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    • Billy Mumphrey

      This was my thought also. Doesn’t quite jive with the “McGarrity/BM has no clue what they are doing” narrative though. No way to really know.

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    • Biggus Rickus

      Yeah, it’s going to be a long week of parsing every statement and action until they announce whoever they’ve probably lined up. Of course, if it turns out they haven’t lined someone up, then they’ll deserve every bit of criticism they’ve been getting so far.

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    • fuelk2

      Agree. We can’t know who the head guy is to be yet I suppose, but you have to think this means that those guys are being kept.

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      • Chi-town Dawg

        While I think there are some excellent coaches on staff worth keeping, I find it hard to believe that any new HC is going to be asked let alone agree so quickly to keep the existing staff. They almost always want to bring in their own team especially when the existing staff has fallen under such criticism over chemistry and on field performance. My guess is this is just another one of those Chinese fire drills to “show the new boss you’re committed in the hopes of keeping your job”, which is unlikely. The flip side is that it allows the coaches to continue forging relationships with the recruits, so when they land elsewhere, they can quickly try to swoop in like Rodney Garner did with several top DL prospects before CJP and Rocker could get up to speed.

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    • mp

      UGA hasn’t even asked Saban for permission to talk to Smart. You must be joking thinking that he is in a position to be making decisions like that.

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  7. Rocket Dawg

    BM just looks more and more incompetent as the hours tick by……

    I did hear that if Kirby was hired as HC that the offensive staff minus Schotty and the defensive staff would all have the option to stay. Just rumor though so I would take it with a grain of salt.

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    • Tronan

      The Bammers seem to think Kirby to UGA is a done deal. But, even if so, WTF?

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    • I wouldn’t bank on that at all … I also wouldn’t be surprised. Damn, I’m starting to sound like Greg!

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      • Skeptic Dawg

        EE, as I said yesterday, I was told early last week that Richt would be fired and that Smart will be our head coach. I did not believe it at the time. Now? He is 1 for 1 so far.

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        • Skeptic, I’m skeptical about the part regarding the staff. If it happens that the defensive staff stays, fine, but I’ll believe it when it’s announced.

          Hell, if you’re going to do that to bring in Smart to replace CMR and do nothing else, hire Bobo for a fraction of the cost and we get his crayons back (and Jacob Eason to boot).

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          • Skeptic Dawg

            I have zero clue as to what the final breakdown will be concerning the staff. However, I do not expect Schotty to be back. If he is…well…I be at a loss for words.

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            • McGarity seems to hate CJP and probably the rest of the defensive staff. I don’t see any way Pruitt is going to be willing to coexist with him. The offensive staff is probably going to be new with the exception of BMac and Brown.

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              • Chi-town Dawg

                Skeptic, I find it hard to believe that any new HC is going to be asked, let alone agree so quickly to keep the existing staff. They almost always want to bring in their own team especially when the existing staff has fallen under such criticism over chemistry and on field performance. it also sounds like CJP has burned too many bridges to remain in Athens, which is unfortunate.

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                • Skeptic Dawg

                  Chi, I agree with you. However, there has to be a few guys left over for recruiting purposes…right? It really is anyone’s guess at this point. I am excited to see who we land and the impact they have on recruits.

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                  • Chi-town Dawg

                    Agree with you about change being exciting and as much as I like CMR, we needed to make a change. There are several coaches I’d like to see us retain (McLendon, Pruitt, Rocker, Brown), but suspect some/most of them will be shown the door. I have no doubt that whoever we get they will be a strong recruiter with a recognizable name, I just hope they can handle all of the other stuff that comes with being a good HC. Hopefully, the decision will be announced soon, so that we can start the healing process and begin looking forward. The longer things take, the worse that “wtf are we doing” feeling begins to set in for everyone.

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                    • Skeptic Dawg

                      “The longer things take, the worse that “wtf are we doing” feeling begins to set in for everyone.” Agreed! However, my “wtf are we doing” clock will kick in by Wednesday or Thursday of next week. An announcement Sunday or Monday would be great.

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  8. 83dawg

    On the bright side, now that they can’t get clicks telling everyone why Richt should be fired, they are now turning on McGarity.

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  9. Jack Klompus

    oh my

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  10. Derek

    I assumed that if you’re going to fire a guy with 9 wins that you’d have a plan. Firing a guy like CMR and saying “well now let’s see how this sorts out” is more than a little troubling. Maybe Greg thought CMR would blink on staff changes and surprised him when he said “no.”

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    • Dolly Llama

      If Richt said “no” to jettisoning Schottenheimer, then I’m glad he’s out. That’s loyalty to a coach over the players and program.

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      • Will (The Other One)

        And a bad coach, whom he had no prior experience with prior to this year, and who would have no trouble getting work in the NFL again anyway.

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    • doofusdawg

      He’s probably surprised that things just don’t take care of themselves…perhaps he should have formed a committee to study it.

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  11. Yeah, I can see that the change in plans is part of the plan.

    Anybody want to wander over to a Bama message board and ask if Kirby and Pruitt got along? I’d be interested to know what their working relationship was like at Bama.

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    • Chuck

      They were successful together. Pruitt left to be a DC. Maybe he also wanted to get away from Kirby but I never heard that.

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  12. Chuck

    Kirby to UGA a done deal? If that were so – and hey, it might be for all I know – why not just say so, and explain that Kirby will stay through the SEC championship game… It doesn’t seem like to me it does any good to send people out recruiting unless you can tell the recruits something.

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    • Ben

      Someone mentioned somewhere that any state job has to be advertised for a minimum amount of time. Obviously, they’re not going to hire someone through that process, but that’s the way it works. If Smart (or anyone) was hired within hours or days of that position posting, the University could be set up for a lawsuit.

      Source: I’m not a lawyer, but I read it on the Internet. Plus, that’s how it’s worked with coordinator searches, too (unless Pruitt’s hiring was faster; I can’t remember. It seems like he was moving in as Grantham was moving out).

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      • Dolly Llama

        Shit, where can I apply? You don’t get any fresher a start than me. I’m a blank slate, baby. Didn’t even play pee-wee football and don’t even have a 100% clear understanding of the rules, but I’m a self-starter and a quick learner.

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        • sniffer

          Back up, Llama, I’ve been in the arena. Once, no twice. I have been on the field for a Sugar Bowl AND I ran the bases once at Fulton County Stadium. I am clearly less qualified than you

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          • Chi-town Dawg

            We should apply for the job and then under the open records law we’ll have proof for our kids that we were “considered” for the UGA football head coaching job, lmao.

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  13. Russ

    Well, I’m going to take the optimistic view that the staff knows what to tell recruits re our next staff. Yeah, that’s it. All is well, remain calm!

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    • No, let’s just jump to conclude that there is no plan and McGarity doesn’t know what he’s doing and we’re screwed. That seems to be the theme of the day here at GTP. Don’t get in the way of the panic train.

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      • Derek

        Hello Sheryl, nice of you to drop by!

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      • TheTruth

        Chili dawg do you really have confidence in McGarity? He’s been in charge of the massive decline in Georgia sports for the last 5 years.
        Just to sum it up,
        McGarity’s 5 years as AD: 4 SEC championships, 3 National championships
        The 5 years prior to his arrival: 20 SEC championships, 10 National championships
        His ass deserved being fired way before Mark Richt

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        • Mark Richt has presided over the decline of UGA football for 10 years, and y’all still don’t want to place the blame squarely on his shoulders. So why is McGarity suddenly the lone party responsible for the decline of UGA sports? It’s amazing how your tune changes when it’s anybody besides Mark Richt.

          I never claimed to have confidence in McGarity. I’m just willing to wait to pass judgment, unlike the foolish masses here today that are frothing at the mouth and waiting to pounce on every tidbit of information that comes through and put a negative spin on it.

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          • Red Cup

            So you think hiring security guards to protect B-M and to prevent players from talking to the media is ok? Pulling guys from recruiting and then putting them back out there are solid decisions made by someone with a plan.

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          • Gaskilldawg

            Richt got fired. There is no point in calling for his job any more. McGarity isn’t going to fire him twice. Arguing about Richt’s skills is no more relevant than complaining how Wally Butts wasted Zeke Bratkowski’s skills.
            Richt had nothing to do with how any other UGA sport performed.
            I am looking forward. McGarity gets paid a lot of money to provide the resources and leadership necessary for all our coaches to succeed at the highest level. When all our sports production declined under his leadership it is fair to ask how much he continues to the decline. No one said McGarity is solely responsible for coaches’ records but to claim he is blameless suggests that the role of AD is irrelevant.
            Maybe McGarity is the greatest AD in history and his performance will lead to the new guy winning every NC from 2016 through 2031. I truly hope so. But we all assess peoples’ ability to succeed at a task based upon what we have observed of performance to date. You do it, and so do I. How McGarity has handled the athletic department to date is fair game for conclusions as to his future. If you hired a contractor to build something for you and he appears knowledgeable and professional from the beginning you have more confidence that he will do the job well. By contrast if the contractor starts the job and makes mistakes you would be justified in having doubts as to his ability to complete it well.

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            • Chi-town Dawg

              +100

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            • McGarity is in the process of hiring a new coach. That’s doing his job. Sorry you are all too hell bent on taking out your anger on him for firing your hero to be able to relax and wait on real news.

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              • Dawgwalker07

                “Sorry you are all too hell bent on taking out your anger on him for firing your hero to be able to relax and wait on real news.”

                Sorry, but that’s a load of horse crap. This has nothing to do with Coach Richt and everything to do with protecting UGA football (and the highly ranked recruiting class that was projected to come in this year) going forward.

                When you make the decision to fire the coach of your biggest money maker you need to have a plan in place to protect that golden egg during the transition. And I don’t mean by hiring security guards. I mean by knowing who the hell you want recruiting during the most important recruiting period of the year and what you want them pitching. McGarity didn’t make this decision on Saturday night. He had plenty of time to figure out the details, and he’s probably been at least THINKING about this for longer. And yet THIS is the result: Chaos and confusion. Talking about hiring a search firm. Paul Blart telling players to get into their cars and leave and telling the press to go across the street (both of which are illegal requests). Not knowing who’s on the road representing our program and who isn’t.

                This is not a transition done with any type of serious forethought or planning.

                And it’s garbage.

                This isn’t the first time McGarity has wet the bed in big moments with the football program either (Gurleygate and the weird Mark Bradley interview last year are the first 2 that come to mind), so get your panties out of a wad for people looking at McGarity with the same skeptical eye that you looked at Richt with. Richt at least produced in the first 5 years of his career here. McGarity hasn’t done anything to inspire confidence in his ability to fire a coach, properly manage the transition, and hire someone else. And now, at least in my eyes, we’re seeing more evidence that points to the fact that this is being handled poorly and that UGA football isn’t headed in a good direction.

                And maybe something different is happening behind the scenes that would calm me down. But guess what; no one knows that because it’s behind the scenes and doesn’t matter. What matters is public perception, and McGarity is already losing that battle with the things that he’s said and the decisions he’s already made.

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              • Gaskilldawg

                I know you can read. I said Richt is gone and I’d not coming back and I want the new,guy to succeed. The more you post saying that McGarity’s track record is irrelevant as to how he will handle the football team going forward the more it appears that firing Richt was your only concern and that is all you demanded of McGarity.
                If you were really only motivated to improve the future of UGA football you would get off of the vendetta against Richt and be concerned about the future.

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    • Just Some Guy

      Indeed. Witness the secret strategic planning footage from deep within the bowels of BM….

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  14. Uglydawg

    ……hell of a way to run a railroad.

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  15. Borodawg

    Pruitt: Come play for UGA!
    Recruit: Are you going to be my coach?
    Pruitt: Don’t know yet.
    Recruit: who will be the head coach?
    Pruitt: Don’t know yet.
    Recruit: what type of offense/defense will be in place?
    Pruitt: don’t know yet.
    Recruit: Think I will keep my options open. Thanks for coming by.

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  16. BigD

    Ass clowns=The Georgia Way.

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  17. Turd Ferguson

    Maybe signatures weren’t on paper until this morning, so it wasn’t until today that the recruiters could officially pitch the new staff to recruits.

    Look, I’m not saying that McGarity & Co. aren’t incompetent. But I also think a lot of the blame they’ve gotten over the past 24 hours has been based upon sheer ignorance.

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    • infantrydawg

      Pot and kettle….

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      • Turd Ferguson

        If the implication is supposed to be that McGarity & Co. are also ignorant, my point is precisely that we’re not (yet) in a position to know whether that’s true. In other words, at this point, we’re ignorant of just how ignorant they really are.

        On the other hand, if the implication is supposed to be that I’m also ignorant, that’s exactly my fucking point. Surely anyone with a kindergarten diploma can see that.

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  18. Will Trane

    Even McGarity is on the road recruiting. That is where he does his thinking and decision making. First stop will be in the state of Alabama, then if rejected to Mississippi, if rejected again, then on to Texas, and possibly swing up to Colorado.
    Presser scheduled for Friday, assistant AD and President of UGA take over for McGarity in search. Left his list at McDonalds in Starkville.
    Somewhere there has to be something tangible. Or he could be Ray Tanner who has had since October looking for a HC. Did not take VT long.
    Something tells me this could get ugly in a hurry.

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  19. Will Trane

    Who accepts the bowl award? Coach in waiting.
    Remember Mason.

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  20. Yogi Berra

    “You’ve got to be careful if you don’t know where you’re going because you might not get there.”

    “But we’re making great time!”

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  21. Scorpio Jones, III

    I have no idea, either, what the recruiting news means. But, I think there are some waypoints in the search that do have meaning.

    If Kirby takes the job. Is he smart enough to demand changes in the way the institution does its football business? Demand may be too strong a word, but the word he would use would depend on how serious UGA is about hiring him.

    I can’t imagine Kirby would take the job with the restrictions Richt worked under in place. If the restrictions remain, Kirby is as doomed as Richt was by the Georgia Way.

    So, if Kirby takes the job, or has already taken the job, hope springs eternal that the university will at least get out of his way.

    The really bad sign, to me, is if Kirby does not take the job.

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  22. Athens Dog

    Let’s trust the folks at BM to do a stand up and thorough job.

    That was hard to even type………………….

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  23. Sanibel Dawg

    I know this is off topic as far as the post but for arguments sake let’s say Kirby is our guy. Who does he bring in as OC? This to me is the make or break decision if we go with Smart. He could learn a few things from Boom as to what not to do.

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  24. DugLite

    We are in trouble.

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  25. JoshG

    I’m glad they’re in charge of replacing a 10 win coach to cosistently compete for championships.

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  26. illini84

    Jesus, what a bunch of vultures.

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    • Dolly Llama

      Who? The admin, the coaches, the commenters here …? So many to choose from nowadays.

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      • illini84

        McGarity was a cheapskate, he’d never come up with the dough to keep coaches and build an indoor facility. He’s gutless, he’d never fire Richt. He’s an idiot and had no fucking plan for the future when he let Richt go.

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  27. Cousin Eddie

    So McG is letting them recruit the players for their next jobs unless they are retaining the staff, which includes letting Schitty go out recruiting.

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  28. AusDawg85

    This takes time. McG has to finish turning in our year-end NCAA violations and proposed self-imposed penalties before he get’s this whole HC hiring project under way.

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  29. I like this. UGA football is the train. McGarity is the Engineer and Morehead is the conductor. That means the boosters are the doctors and lawyers who are telling them how to operate it. 😡

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  30. rchris

    I think putting them back on the road was the Smart thing to do.

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    • Lrgk9

      Bluto’s New lexicon oxymoron

      Greg McGarity and has no clue

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      • bob

        Eason visiting Gainesville tomorrow.

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        • Cousin Eddie

          Would you want to go play football at a clown college? That is what McG has turned UGA into. Ok maybe a little harsh but why wait to see who McG gets as a search committee to see who they recommend as a head coach by then it could be to late to decide and what if they pick a spread option coach.

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  31. hassan

    I am getting this on a coffee mug for McGarity for Christmas:

    “I am their leader…which way did they go?”

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  32. Debby Balcer

    Eason is visiting Fl.

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  33. W Cobb Dawg

    Jeebus! Just make Bobo HC, kick Richt upstairs to A.D., hire Elliott as OL coach, and we’re done! Bye bye McG, Schotty and Sale. All our problems solved! One last thing – send very large check to W. Cobb Dawg search firm.

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  34. Gaskilldawg

    Does anyone know what each school’s limits on in-home visits to recruits is? If there is a limit on how many times UGA coaches can visit in home it is interesting that lame duck coaches are using visits that next year’s coaches will not be able to use.

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  35. Bro Tereshinski III

    Thought I’m having…

    HC – Kirby Smart (with all the smoke at this point, I think it’s a lock)
    OC – Doug Nussmeier (coached at Alabama with Kirby, runs a pro-style offense, would stick it to UF and undercut Jim Bob Duggar)
    DC – Jeremy Pruitt (I don’t know what his relationships are with the crew at BM, I don’t know how he gets along with Smart. I do know he’s been a good DC so far and a lot of our commits on the defensive side of the ball are tied to him)

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