Nobody said sausage making was gonna be pretty.

I guess I shouldn’t be surprised by the amount of angst that cropped up in the comments following my post about Jeff Sentell’s interview with Aubrey Solomon’s mother.  It’s hard to let go of a gauzy, romantic image that you’re invested in, and for many, the ideal of a football program that doesn’t stoop to making business decisions when it comes to roster management is a powerful one.  (As powerful as the ideal that student-athletes are already more than fairly compensated for the privilege of playing.  But I digress.)

Anyway, whatever else one might say about the Process, romantic it ain’t.  Kirby is being paid to win.  In his mind that includes pushing roster management aggressively.  The issues with Carter and Blankenship arose because Smart was at the edge, numbers-wise, with the 2017 class before the four underclassmen stepped up to announce they were staying.  That decision — and would any of us have preferred that they leave for the NFL? — meant that Smart had to do a lot of re-jiggering on the fly.

I’m not defending the way the Carter situation was handled.  Smart botched that by not stepping up and telling the kid himself.  But he’s being paid to put together the best roster he can and that’s what he’s trying to do.

Let’s not forget that one big reason Mark Richt is no longer gracing Athens with his presence was due to his lax roster management.  Fielding a team with less than 70 scholarship athletes is no way to go through SEC life, son.  That’s not a mistake Smart wants to repeat, or even be in the vicinity of repeating.

You can argue there’s a happy medium between the two, but it’s a lot harder to implement that in real life than it is to argue about it.  Just ask the coaches at the two other programs that Solomon was interested in at the end, who’ve done more than their share of cutting off commits when it suits their roster management goals.

Speaking of which, before some of you lionize momma for speaking truth to power, remember that Solomon committed early on to Michigan, way before Carter and Blankenship were points of contention.  And if getting an explanation from Smart about the way he handled those situations were as important as she told Sentell it was, she sure had a funny way of going about getting that.

As someone wiser than me suggested, sometimes when a kid signs with a place a long way from home, it’s as much about getting away from something as it is the destination.  If so, there wasn’t much Smart could have done about that.  Not that such is going to matter much to the romantics among us.

Advertisements

83 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

83 responses to “Nobody said sausage making was gonna be pretty.

  1. Bigshot

    I love sausage. It’s a lot better than limp bacon.

    Like

  2. Squatchdawg

    Since when is it “The Process” to not be able to bring in an EE because of scholarship restrictions? That sounds more like “The NCAA”. “The Process” would’ve been to kick off somebody else to make room for Carter IMO. We didn’t do that and since he needed a home for early enrollment it didn’t work out.

    Also – given what we’ve seen publicly of AS’s mom I’m hesitant to take her opinion as gospel. I’m glad her 15 mins of fame are over.

    Like

  3. DawgPhan

    senator getting into the whole whataboutism…nice…if you can’t beat em join em, I guess

    Like

  4. Sausage Making, Throwaway Seasons; at least we aren’t blaming shit on the “Georgia Way” anymore because Kirby blew that bullshit excuse out of the water. If he does not win it will be on him, just like it was on Richt.

    Like

  5. Hogbody Spradlin

    Some things in life are inevitable, like people saying in hindsight that ‘so and so should have talked to me’.

    Like

  6. UGA85

    I am ready for sausage making across the board in UGA athletics. Just like our ceiling in football is higher than two SEC titles in 15 years, our ceiling in basketball and baseball should be way higher than where we are. The Georgia Way, now decades in duration, needs to go away. I want coaches who know how to win and are completely committed. As I look at our school and our state, it takes deliberate, planned incompetence to be as mediocre (a nice word for it) as we are in the top four sports. Why have we accepted irrelevance for so long? Edginess has worked for other schools, like USC, and it is time for edginess at UGA.

    Like

    • Mayor

      To start with we need to clean out B-M. It is full of people who are not committed to winning. Where is it written that if you played at Georgia years ago and you can’t find a job anywhere else you get to come to Athens and work at B-M? B-M is all about money–not winning. Those things are NOT mutually exclusive. That thinking has to change before any meaningful long term change will occur on the field. The first guy to go needs to be McCheap. Hire a top-notch AD and let him do the weeding out. Once we get the infrastructure pulling together in the same direction you’ll be shocked at how fast things improve on the field–and I am not just talking football. I’m talking basketball, baseball and women’s sports, too.We have always been competitive in golf and tennis which the B-M crowd seems to just leave alone.

      Like

      • I don’t disagree, but here’s the problem: there aren’t that many “top-notch” ADs. The overwhelming majority are just like McG, hangers-on that have been Peter Principled into the big chair. That said, I don’t know where you go to find a new AD. My preference would be someone young and aggressive that realizes winning across the board will bring in more revenue than anything else.

        Like

        • Mayor

          I think you look at places where they win consistently in all sports and steal their AD or (if inclined to take a risk) you hire a top assistant AD from there. We followed that model already with the McCheap hire so I’m not inclined to want to go the top assistant route again.

          Like

  7. Charlottedawg

    If Kirby wins a championship nobody is going to give a damn about how he treats recruits and players. Just like the inverse that being a good guy wasn’t enough to save richt from the fact that we didn’t win enough and consistently got embarrassed in Jacksonville. The ugly truth is that if someone is successful enough especially in competitive fields like college football or business it is more than enough for people to overlook their character flaws however major they may be unless said person commits a truly egregious wall street journal front page type of act. Even then you could still have people rushing to their defense because people really want to believe that success correlates to character and virtue. (See paterno, Joe)

    Like

    • UGA85

      The flip side of that is also true. Lack of success does not correlate with virtue, either. Looking for a certain nice guy personality in a coach, or creating an additional layer of rules to follow at your school does not make UGA virtuous. It just makes us bad.

      Like

      • Uglydawg

        Are virtue and successful ever inclusive in a set? I suppose it depends on what one considers virtuous and what one considers successful. Charlottedawg’s point about PSU and Paterno is right on.Some people will still insist and even fight you over their belief that JoePa was a loveable and virtuous man. I’ll give you that he was successful on the football field for a long time…and go watch some You Tubes of Woody Hayes (ruthless)..but kind of successful, I’d say.
        Then there are the Bowdens and Richts, and Stallings, and Dodds and Dabos who are virtuous by most people’s measure with very much success in their coaching careers. So to answer the question in my first sentence, “Yes”, if you have realistic views of what the two words mean.

        Like

        • Uglydawg

          and I didn’t say any of them were “perfect”.

          Like

        • Mayor

          Actually, I always thought that Paterno was a total horse’s ass.

          Like

          • Uglydawg

            I thought so too..and Hayes, and even a certain coach or two that are legends in the SEC, but don’t go to those places and declare it out loud unless you are a bad-ass.

            Like

        • Charlottedawg

          I’m a pretty cynical guy but I’m not going to go as far as to say being a decent human being and being successful are mutually exclusive and it always makes me chuckle when an unsuccessful person expresses the sentiment of “i could be successful too I’m just not willing to be a douchebag”. My point was more along the lines of you better produce results or your tenure will be short lived. I’ll also say that by and large the best mindset is to be “long term greedy” and part of that includes honoring your commitments and acting ethically. Which isn’t the same as being naive or unwilling to make tough unpopular decisions. But even in my line of work people aren’t stupid and have long memories so if you develop a reputation for being a shithead boss or screwing/ lying to your clients, word gets around and shocker soon clients don’t want to do business with you because they don’t trust you and/ or top talent (who you depend on because they’re the rainmakers that generate revenue and have the lucrative relationships) straight up refuse to work for you. Obviously this is a little over simplified but I think illustrates the point.

          Like

    • Uglydawg

      Unfortunately, by and largely, true.

      Like

  8. ToccoaDog

    Probably has more to do with the top folks at ButtsMehre and the Athletic Board than anything else. At least the reserve fund is growing.

    Like

  9. Rebar

    So why was Rocker let go?

    Like

  10. It’s worth mentioning a couple of things to boot:

    1) I am 99% sure UGA was denied an in-home in early December, before both of these situations arose.

    2) Jim Harbaugh has done no small amount of roster managing and scholarship yanking himself over his three recruiting classes. Including this years, if memory serves.

    The point of all this is that the Sentell interivew (through no fault of Jeff’s) should be viewed with a skeptical eye.

    Like

    • Irwin R. Fletcher

      (through no fault of Jeff’s)

      Yeah…it’s not his fault he didn’t ask any questions or try to substiantiate any of her statements…she was on a rolllllllll! *

      *Sarcasm font

      Like

      • There are no questions he could have asked that would have produced anything other than pure bullshit.

        Nobody serious actually cares that there are no other questions appearing in the article.

        Like

  11. Macallanlover

    Mama had every right to vehemently deny her role in the Rocker situation if not true because she had full, and total knowledge of her actions. Had she left it there, I had no problem with Mama (except maybe letting her child go to a for shit climate to play for a total dick.) When she got into the Rodrigo and Carter situation, she was over her head and should have shut up. She became another version of Kenny the helicopter parent.

    But with Carter, there is a lot of room between being denied an EE slot because of the returning players and not coming to UGA at all. It was reported by some that we pulled the June option as well, and that was not because of numbers, if true. That was a screw-up by the staff and HC, and looks particularly dumb since Kirby has just left Houston and forced a hard commitment from Carter and prohibited him from taking an official visit to another school. That is beyond “sausage making bad to me. But, that version may not be true. Perhaps Carter just didn’t want to wait and enroll in June, it didn’t sound like it though.

    Like

    • DawgPhan

      women should know their place, right Mac?

      Like

      • JarvisCrowell

        That’s sad Phan. Playing the misogyny card for that comment is just ad hominem. She wasn’t anywhere close to the rod situation so yeah probably shouldn’t be opining on it publicly. Funny thing you need to learn is that women are people, and it’s ok to criticize people for what they say and do.

        Like

      • Macallanlover

        Pretty dim witted on your part, that is what you got out of those words? Why stop there? I am sure you can draw thousands of other erroneous conclusions after a thought like that. Jump on me hating Kenny too, I definitely swing both ways in identifying fools who speak when they should keep their mouths shut….can throw you into that mix as well. I don’t discriminate when it comes to saying people should not speak when they don’t have an inkling of which they speak.

        Like

  12. Uglydawg

    Standby for some really. really, ugly (worse than Iron Bowl ugly) rivalry action between Harbaugh and the rest of the world, but particularly TheOsu. He is driven against them like Spurrier was driven against UGA..only Spurrier knew how to control his drive. I’m not sure JH can.
    He’s the MI equivalent of Woody Hayes…which is a statement he may hunt me down and kill me for making.

    Like

    • The Dawg abides

      It’s funny you say that because I’ve wondered if the Woody-style glasses Harbaugh wears during games is him trolling OSU.

      Like

  13. Go Dawgs!

    I don’t necessarily love the departures from The Georgia Way as far as roster management goes. I certainly hope that in the future we get things calibrated a little better where we don’t have kids the night before signing day being informed there’s no room at the inn.

    But can we blame Kirby Smart? Really? Hell, we just fired a man who is arguably the most beloved coach in Georgia football history not named Vince Dooley because he didn’t win a big enough ring for a decade. Kirby has what is ostensibly his dream job. He knows that in order to keep it, he’s going to have to win huge and win quick. Being beloved isn’t enough to keep your job as the Georgia head coach long term anymore.

    Like

  14. CB

    “and would any of us have preferred that they leave for the NFL? ”

    For their sake yes. Why risk your career on another “throw away season”?

    Like

    • That’s their business, isn’t it?

      Like

      • CB

        Makes me question who’s in their ear. College athletes make dumb decisions based off of bad advice all the time. I’ve personally witnessed coaches with influence talking players into things that were directly against their own self interests because the coach wants to keep the kid around to help them win games. Maybe it’ll work out for the best, but I would be sad to see a Lattimore situation play out unnecessarily. As a fan I’m pumped to have them back, but as a human I think it’s a bad call especially for the RB’s.

        Like

        • Irwin R. Fletcher

          Yes, college degrees and endearing yourself to a fan base that includes business owners and potential customers/clients…i.e. setting yourself for a lifetime of earnings on top of whatever career you may have in the NFL is stupid.*

          *Sarcasm font [which I’m having to use a lot of today for some reason]

          Like

          • CB

            “college degrees”

            You can get that any time.

            “endearing yourself to a fan base”

            Which part of the fan base didn’t already love Michel and Chubb? (I believe the LB’s coming back is probably the right call fwiw)

            “setting yourself for a lifetime of earnings”

            I’ll refer you to points one and two. To reiterate you can get your degree any time and the fans already love you so you’re already set up for said “lifetime of earnings” either way.

            In the end you wasted your sarcasm on a comment without much basis in reality.

            Like

            • Irwin R. Fletcher

              So you tell me the statistics of the kids that leave for the NFL and come back and get their degree, smart guy. Not to mention the fact that they aren’t on scholly anymore and have to come out of pocket. It’s hard going back to college at age 25 or 27 for ANYONE. You’ve got bills, family, etc.

              And the point isn’t that they don’t already love Sony/Chubb…the whole point is that they aren’t employable in many cases without a college degree….and a UGA degree has a lot of worth.

              Believe what you want…but there is a reason the old axiom about a bird in the hand has been around for so long.

              Like

              • CB

                Plenty of them do it. The NFL has more college graduates than any other professional league, smart guy. It’s not too hard to pony up for tuition when you sign a multi million dollar deal. Even with the league minimum you’re making a few hundred thousand. You think that won’t cover in state tuition and bills? Give me a break, do you even think about what you’re saying at all?

                Like

  15. dawgfan

    Scholarships are even more valuable now since they come with $200 per week in spending money. Just ask Hot Rod’s dad. I don’t blame CKS one bit for trying to put together the best roster he can to take advantage of all 85! Who else that wants to beat Florida and Auburn wouldn’t? College football in the SEC is nothing more than the minor leagues for he NFL and to pretend that it is anything else is a joke. It’s all about money to the players, coaches, and even more so to the schools. Solomon went to the school that his mom thought would give him the best chance to make it in the League.

    Like

  16. CB

    “if getting an explanation from Smart about the way he handled those situations were as important as she told Sentell it was, she sure had a funny way of going about getting that.”

    The birth of a grandchild and horrific storms sound like a pretty good excuse to me. YMMV. As for getting away, Lee County is 3+ hours away from Athens which is plenty of distance for most kids. Athletes sign to get away from home successfully with significantly less drive time every year.

    Like

    • The birth of a grandchild and horrific storms sound like a pretty good excuse to me.

      Sure, if you’ve put things off until the very last minute. What, her phone was broken? I’m pretty sure she had a way to reach Smart if she really wanted to.

      Like

      • CB

        Getting in for the last visit is usually what I believe you would refer to as a feature not a bug. You make a fair point about the phone, but then again if our fearless leader got wind of what questions he would be answering there is a good chance he would screen the call anyway.

        Like

        • If you want to believe in the woman’s sincerity about this, knock yourself out.

          Like

          • CB

            She might be lying, but what else do we have to go on?

            Like

            • Aside from Occam’s Razor, you mean?

              Like I said, knock yourself out.

              Like

              • CB

                I think I’m making less assumptions in this case. In fact, I’m not really assuming anything except that she’s telling the truth.

                Like

                • I’m not really assuming anything except that she’s telling the truth.

                  LOL. Minor detail, that.

                  Like

                  • CB

                    Well, if you’re assuming that she’s not telling the truth, and then making further assumptions about whether or not she actually had the means/time to prioritize getting in touch with Smart wouldn’t you be making more assumptions than me?

                    Legit question, I’m not invoking snark here.

                    Like

                    • I’m not assuming. I’m measuring the words of a woman who claims that certain actions by a head coach had a serious impact on her and her son’s decision about where he would spend the next four years of his life, serious enough that she wanted an explanation before making a final decision, who never troubled herself to get that explanation before her son signed on the dotted line.

                      Sorry, but that doesn’t add up on its face.

                      Like

                    • CB

                      Perhaps Smart’s actions spoke for themselves? You and I don’t need to talk to Kirby to understand the Carter, Blankenship or Turman situations do we? Even if we did talk to him, would we learn anything that would change our opinions? Probably not any more than Mo Smith’s family got out of the Saban meeting.

                      Like

                    • Then why even claim you want an explanation in the first place? Just say UGA isn’t in the running and be done with it.

                      By the way, I’m amused by the equivalence of a walk-on hoping for a scholarship to a 5-star recruit whom every major program in the country is battling over. Do you seriously believe that Blankenship not having a scholarship was evidence that Smart was slow playing his offer to Solomon? C’mon.

                      As far as actions speaking, I thought you weren’t into making assumptions.

                      Like

                    • CB

                      Now you’re the one making assumptions Senator. I was just using the above examples to show that Smart may not care as much about kids as he says he does especially when he no longer feels he has any use for them. I wasn’t trying to draw correlations.

                      Like

                    • Ah… you’re not assuming, you’re just speculating.

                      You remind me of the immortal words of Peggy Noonan: it would be irresponsible not to speculate.

                      Like

                    • CB

                      What exactly did I speculate about?

                      Like

                    • “…Smart may not care as much about kids as he says he does especially when he no longer feels he has any use for them.”

                      I wasn’t an English major, but “may” is kind of a dead give away there.

                      Like

                    • CB

                      Replace “may not” with “doesn’t” and I’ll still stand by that statement. You’re better than an argument based on semantics.

                      Like

                    • I’m not having an argument with you. I’m simply pointing out that you’ve wandered afar from the point I made. You’re more than welcome to your opinion on Smart’s actions, but they’re irrelevant to the logic behind momma’s explanation.

                      Like

                    • By the way, CB, one more thing about the lessons from the Carter, Blankenship or Turman situations you find convincing on their face. Why haven’t we heard dissenting remarks from Blankenship’s teammates? Or from the 2017 signees regarding Carter? For that matter, if life under Smart has been so troubling, why did Chubb and Michel decide to stay, against what would have been your better advice?

                      Like

                    • CB

                      Coaches with influence can make young impressionable athletes feel wanted, it’s as simple as that. I’m not going to go so far as to call Smart a wolf in sheep’s clothing. I think the guy does care about the kids, but my guess is it would take a lot more than snubbing a nerdy looking kicker, a back up runningback who never played a snap, or a back from Texas that nobody really knows for anybody on the team or the 2017 recruiting class to break ranks and bite the hand that feeds them.

                      Heck, it was hard for me to leave an NAIA football program where I was paying out the nose to go to school and play special teams. Why was it hard? Because the coaches sat me down and made me feel wanted.

                      What motivation do any of the players have to speak out lest they become outcasts end endure the same fate?

                      Like

                    • I’m sure Nick Chubb worries himself to sleep every night thinking about becoming an outcast at UGA.

                      We’re getting far afield from the point I was making — simply, Solomon’s mom’s explanation doesn’t make any sense. From there, feel free to speculate or assume about anything else to your heart’s content. I got no answers for you.

                      Like

                    • CB

                      The explanation makes perfect sense to me, I guess that’s where we part ways. Which as you have stated many times before, is part of the fun.

                      Like

                  • CB

                    I just can’t think of a good reason for her to lie. It’s not like her son did anything wrong by signing with Michigan.

                    Like

              • CB

                I’m not a lawyer though, so it’s entirely possible that the Law classes I took left me unequipped in my understanding of the concept. On that note I defer to your professional opinion.

                Like

      • Irwin R. Fletcher

        Senator…if you insist on actually asking questions, they won’t ever hire you at the AJC. 🙂

        Like

  17. Ole Dawg

    At UGA that Momma was only 3 hours away. The plane ride to Ann Arbor is longer than that and a lot more expensive. If I were that kid with that Momma I’d have been talking to Washington State and Hawaii.

    Like

    • CB

      Yeah, it must suck to have a mom who looks out for you and understands that coaches don’t really care about you as a person and therefore encourages you to do what is best for you.

      Like

  18. SOWEGA Mafia

    yup. give her credit. she’s smart and just setting the tone for living room visits the next few years….his younger brothers, they can ball too. especially the one at QB.

    Like