Six degrees of Richt

The big firings this week have a common thread that Bill Connelly uncovered.

In this way, Miles has been done in by something that has been the doom of many successful coaches: coordinator hires.

Georgia’s Mark Richt lost successful offensive coordinator Mike Bobo, replaced him with Brian Schottenheimer, and was unemployed within the year.

Fifteen years earlier, Bobby Bowden picked his son Jeff to replace Richt. FSU had averaged 38.1 points per game and 10.9 wins per season with Richt’s offense. Those fell to 29.5 and 8.5, respectively.

Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly lost defensive coordinator Bob Diaco in 2014. The Irish had finished fourth, 17th, and fourth in Def. S&P+ in Diaco’s first three seasons; under new DC Brian VanGorder, Notre Dame finished 43rd in 2014 and 35th in 2015. It’s early, but the Irish are thus far 78th in 2016. VanGorder is out after a 1-3 2016 start.

In nine seasons as an NFL coordinator, Schottenheimer (once Cameron’s quarterbacks coach at San Diego) had only twice produced an offense that ranked better than 21st out of 32 in Offensive DVOA.

VanGorder was trickier to evaluate. In four years as Richt’s coordinator at Georgia (2001-04), his defenses never allowed more than 20 points per game, and in four years as DC of the Atlanta Falcons, his defenses improved each year. His lone Auburn defense wasn’t very good (56th in Def. S&P+ in 2012), but it was better than the one before it (62nd in 2011). Still, his acumen did not fit in South Bend.

There’s a Mark Richt has lost control joke in there somewhere, no?

By the way, Schottenheimer was once Cameron’s quarterbacks coach?  I guess I should have been paying more attention when he was hired.


Filed under Georgia Football

42 responses to “Six degrees of Richt

  1. truck

    Maybe our brilliant passing game will light up the Vols, beginning a downward spiral culminating in the ousting of Sgt. Carter and Free Willy. Then and only then will the nefarious plot of Evil Richt be complete.

  2. charlottedawg

    I really don’t mean this to be snarky but why was anyone excited about the Chaney and Tucker hires. I know it’s apples to oranges but Tucker’s stint as a dc for the bears was a disaster and from what I can tell Chaney’s biggest accomplishment was coaching drew brees a long time ago and making Nathan peterman suck less. Honest question because im too lazy to research, Have either even put together a top 10 defense or offense?

    • Biggus Rickus

      He was all right with the Browns and Jaguars, but nothing to be over the moon about.

      • ASEF

        His one year at Alabama saw a dramatic improvement in their secondary play. But good luck compartmentalizing the effects of Tucker’s coaching from the effects of a pool of four 5-stars and six 4-star recruits on the DB roster.

        Pattern matching coverages are quite complicated and take a lot of reps. I was hoping that bringing Smith over from Alabama would help put a coach on the field in that regard, but it was never going to be an easy transition.

    • Gaskilldawg

      I was fine with the hire. I don’t evaluate coordinators for a living, so I figured it was wise to trust the evaluation of a former defensive coordinator who had to coach against him for what, 4 or 5 years.

      We do not know how much leeway Smart gives Chaney in creating an offensive. Maybe Chaney thinks we are better suited to a spread and Smart wants him to run an offense that fits his vision of what he wants his offense to be in the future.

      Hell, I don’t know.

      • If Kirby is telling Chaney what to do on offense, we’ll be in Boom 2.0 territory in no time. If Chaney is the offensive genius he was touted to be, he would have never taken the job under those circumstances. Therefore, I have to think either Chaney is struggling to find what works or he’s not an offensive genius.

    • 92 grad

      IMHO, the long time experience of both coordinators is understated and a big reason cks hired them. In theory they should be helping him with the day to day and game prep considerably though it remains to be seen when they choose the right mix of personnel and game plan. I agree with most that the D has regressed and the O should be kings of mis-direction and working the edges.

  3. Schotty was a $1M mistake. And bosses tend to frown on that.

  4. Macallanlover

    Guess I didn’t pay that close attention to Tucker because defense is Kirby’s forte, and he had a chance to observe his every interaction at Bama. I also felt with Schotty, Richt was the offensive specialist,and Schotty had been employed for years in a league where they can hire the best available at any time. Well, they missed with Schotty and Richt didn’t intervene, and we all paid the price. Kirby may, or may not, have to intervene with Tucker, but he had better have one of his many adviser get him some intel about how to fix the Chaney offensive issue ASAP or the recruiting class he has assembled may begin to fall apart and he will not get those Bama type recruits to play football the way he wants it.

    At this point, that might be more important than satisfying the fan base, although the two might be connected. I worry about the receivers committed and those we are still pursuing. Other than immediate playing time, what do they see about UGA that makes us comfortable they stay with us until the February signing date.?

    • dawgman3000

      I strongly disagree that we’ll lose the recruiting class this year. If anything, Kirby and Co are selling those guys hard on how bad they’re needed to execute the plan he and the staff are trying to incorporate. Now if the team looks like this at this point next season, then that’s when we have to be a little concerned IMHO.

      • DawgPhan

        I love that you guys think desperation and begging is what a 5* elite football player is looking for in a head coach.

        Like Kirby is going to be stand outside their house holding a boom box over his head hoping they reconsider.

      • Macallanlover

        I didn’t say “we would lose the class”, I said our comfort level of holding a class, currently ranked #3, until February could be in jeopardy IF we don’t fix some glaring issues. The very elite players, some of which we have verbals from and others that have us in their top group, have dozens of offers from top schools to choose from Why would they come to a program that is getting beaten down, has the fan base questioning players and coaches, not showing progress in fixing things, and could be regressing? This question is premised on us continuing to look like crap on both sides of the ball, so don’t jump on me, I want it to improve as much as anyone.

        IF we start looking like a team that has a clue and shows some momentum, I agree, we could not only hold onto the class, but add even more talent. I doubt we do that based on the first four games, the only reason for the uncommitted guys to lean UGA would be the chance for early playing time. A nice reversal on offense and a win this Saturday could be the spark we need.

  5. ASEF

    I think the worst-case retrospective on Smart would be “hell of a recruiter, put a lot more cultural emphasis on day to day preparation and preparing to a high internal standard, just couldn’t quite get all the pieces to mesh on the field.”

    I honestly thought a lot of the “hey, we can maybe win the SEC East this year” talk was ridiculous. Richt couldn’t do it when the programs in the way offered less resistance, with a program that after a decade should have been running as smooth as a Porsche Cayman. Why did anyone think Smart was going to pull it off with a team featuring no tackles, a freshman QB, zero depth, and a defensive line pinning most of its hopes on freshman contributions?

    The roster has some remarkable stand-outs, but it also has some gaping holes. Ole Miss landed a 5-star offensive tackle that many labeled an instant starter – he’s playing, but as a back-up; the coaches get to pick his spots and bring him along. How many recruiting cycles is Georgia away from that?

    If Smart has a long-term vision, then he needs to work towards that vision. That’s what he’s going to be judged on when his 3 year review comes due – not how long he kept the Dawgs in a game against Tennessee which has a substantially superior roster and has spent the last 3 years working through its own learning curves.

    • lakedawg

      “Programs in the way offered less resistance” , Tough we have to face these jaggernaughts this year, Kentucky, Vanderbilt, SC, Missou, and to me still u proven Tenn and Fla?

    • “with a program that after a decade should have been running as smooth as a Porsche Cayman”. …….dude, I know your attempting to suck up to the Senator but you need to review the Porsche roster a little closer . UGA had a damn smooth running Cayman but we fired it because fanbase thought we were deserving of and needed a 917. What McGarity hired is one of those kit cars that is very sexy on the outside and powered by an air-cooled VW engine. KIrby can have what ever long term vision he wants but now he needs to be a Coach who adapts to his available talent. These are the same DB’s who looked reasonably good in last years scheme but were clueless in the Ole Miss game. If he wants to change his “D” to be more like the “Process “fine ,it his team but, a smart man implements his system if and when he has the personnel to run that scheme. A smart man adapts to the environment and changes his environment over time . A not so smart man( I see a new nickname in there somewhere) sticks with the Process regardless of outcomes or applicability to the talent you have available.At present ,NOTSO Smart is embarrassing UGA with the product he is putting on the field. Our previous Cayman NEVER lost to Ole Miss much less got embarrassed by them. Does NoTSo need to humiliate our alma mater while he institutes his vision? Only if he wants the nickname to stick.

  6. DawgPhan

    I think most of you missed the point.

    Bad hires are sinking these coaches. I mean it does say it right there in all caps at the top.

    • 92 grad

      Ya but it can be interpreted as situations where the administration forces a coach to make a change when they don’t want to. Like an AD or booster saying “if you don’t fire this guy it’ll be your head”. So, they fire the guy and hire whoever they’re supposed to even though the head coach is thinking all along “relax, we just had a tough year”.

  7. WarD Eagle

    Tommy Tuberville snickers at all of these bad hire suggestions.

    Tony Franklin
    Scott Loeffler
    Hugh Nall/Steve Ensminger
    Borges was okay for a while

    He also hired some DC from the NFL who was terrible

    • Did y’all realize Scott Loefler is still an offensive coordinator at the FBS level with Boston College? How many people does he have compromising pictures of that head coaches continue giving him work? At some point – don’t the stats bear out that he’s a shit OC? How hard is it to read the last 10 years of box scores for his offenses and just say “NAH, I don’t think you’re very good at this coordinatin’ offense thing”?

    • Sh3rl0ck

      The Al Borges hire working out for a couple of years is the exception that proves the rule.

  8. CB

    “Georgia’s Mark Richt lost successful offensive coordinator Mike Bobo, replaced him with Brian Schottenheimer, and was unemployed within the year.”

    This statement is based in a fictional world where everything was fine before Bobo left the program. Like somehow the 2014 season overshadows all the offensive failures from 2007-2013, and the fan base/donors suddenly became discontent with Richt for the first time ever somewhere between last year’s games against South Carolina and Tech.

    I’m not grudging Schott for 2015 for the same reason I’m not grudging Kirby this season no matter what our final record is (although I do think it’ll be much better than 7-6). If it’s your first season with a bunch of kids you’ve never coached there is a learning curve. Especially when you lose the best rb in that nation (at the time) and have no talent at qb, and the o-line is terrible, but I digress.

    If you want to talk about coordinators bringing a program down, let’s talk the long haul. What about Martinez and Grantham? Or perhaps Richt giving up play calling duties in the first place.

    • Russ

      Yeah, because offense was really Richt’s problem all along.

      LOL! Where do you think 3rd and Willie and 3rd and Grantham came from?

      • Russ

        Why he hired Schittenheimer is beyond me, but it’s pretty obvious the offense wasn’t the problem for the last several years of Bobo’s tenure.

        • CB

          You’re right. Offense was never a problem. Well, besides Florida and Tech in 2014, Mizzou, Vandy, and Nebraska in 2013, SCar and Florida in 2012, Kentucky and LSU in 2011, SCar, Miss St, and UCF in 2010, Ok St, Az St, LSU, Tenn, Florida, and Kentucky in 2009, Scar, Bama, Florida, and Auburn in 2008, and SCar, Tenn, Vandy, and Kentucky in 2007.

          Other than all those games the offense was awesome with Bobo. We’d hang 60 on a FCS non con real quick, and that’s what really counts.

          Granted Schott may have proven to be much worse over time, but he didn’t have the advantage of coaching Matt Stafford, Aaron Murray, AJ Greene, Knowshon Moreno, Todd Gurley, Nick Chubb etc.

      • CB

        Did you not see what I said about Martinez and Grantham?

  9. i say we hire Charlie Weiss. Charlie and Chaney can be co_OC’s. Now that’s a Cayman you can be proud of . . . it will have the moniker of the triple (Charlie, Chaney & Cayman) C offense.