Georgia’s head coach addresses the perception that his calling players out publicly isn’t the best policy:
“I don’t know. I think I’d leave that for y’all to judge,” Smart said. “I mean, I don’t think as many kids look at the stuff as you think they do, but if they read that we’re challenging them physically, then we probably are challenging them physically to their face, so they already know that. They know it’s an honest opinion; it’s not a motivating tactic; it’s just honesty.
“I just think when you’re honest with players, they trust you more. I would rather just tell them exactly like I feel.”
In the end, that really is the proof in the pudding. It’s not important whether the public airing of grievances sits well with the fan base; it’s whether the kids are turned off by it that matters. There are quotes in the article from Sanders, Smith and Kublanow that indicate the message is being accepted in the spirit in which it’s given, but who’s to say that malcontents would step up and disagree on the record?
In short, I’d expect that this is simply a part of everything that goes on when there’s a coaching change and a new mentality surfaces in the program. Some players will have no issue with it, while others will drift away after the season ends.
Just out of curiosity, for those who are a bit squeamish about letting the world in on this kind of stuff, what do you think of this as an effective rebuttal?
Kublanow wasn’t on the team in 2012 when then-senior safety Shawn William had his famous pre-Florida rant, which caused waves but lit a fire under the defense.
Then-head coach Mark Richt reacted to Williams’ rant by saying he preferred such things stay behind closed doors. And Richt would rarely publicly criticize his players.