When you gotta go…

While I’m on the subject of the new west end zone project — you didn’t think I was done with that, did you? — there’s something else besides the money that sticks in my craw a bit.  Listen to Kirby Smart wax eloquent about his new present:

“Really, it’s something we need to enhance our gameday experience for recruiting, but also make it better for our overall fan experience,” football coach Kirby Smart, entering his second season, said after the indoor facility dedication.”Then also for our players to have a locker room over there.”

… Smart said the stadium is used not only on gameday but on recruiting visits when hosting dinners. He said “a lot of teams on the (SEC) West obviously have had these venues. Most of the places I’ve been at stadiums they have had a recruiting room or a place to host recruits so we want to try to catch up to that, but we also want to go beyond them and do a better job and have a nice place for our players gameday locker room.”

“The biggest thing was just to have a recruiting venue at your site,” he said. “When kids come for a gameday experience, you’re able to have somewhere to take them.”

What about when the fans come for a gameday experience?

Look, I get that recruiting is a big deal for Smart.  Use whatever adjective you like — obsessed, laser-focused, driven — recruiting is über alles for the man getting paid almost four million a year to win big.  Really, I get that.

What I don’t get is why I have to be made to feel like my fandom is reduced at times to being a prop for recruiting.  We saw that last year with the #93k exhortations to make G-Day a special occasion for the recruits and it appears we’re seeing more of the same with the new project if, as it appears, the recruiting lounge is centered between the students on game day.  We’re not there to be entertained.  We’re there to contribute to the experience of kids who aren’t even part of the program yet.

Yes, there are some fan friendly improvements in store for the west end, such as the new plaza area (not that Reid Plaza has been that terrific), redone concessions (a professional staff would be more welcome) and more bathrooms.  But you get the feeling that most of those come almost as an afterthought, more of a throw in along the way as the facilities are upgraded for recruiting.

Doubt me on that?  Well, maybe you should read Seth Emerson’s piece from yesterday about… bathrooms.

Georgia’s massive new stadium project hadn’t even been formally approved yet, and school president Jere Morehead was already going into fundraising mode. The goal, you see, is for most of it to be paid by fans, and only a bit for the reserve fund, so Morehead apparently knew he had to justify it.

“I share the athletic director’s optimism that these two initiatives the indoor athletic facility and the west end zone project, are certainly going to put the University of Georgia at a very competitive advantage in the Southeastern Conference,” Morehead told the athletic board. “And I hope and expect they’re going to lead to even greater success for our football program in the future.”

Then the board unanimously approved the $63 million project to rebuild Georgia’s dilapidated locker room on the other side of the stadium, along with a recruiting room that Kirby Smart was urging, and a nice plaza to accompany the project.

Great, right? Well, based on the feedback from many fans upon news of the stadium project, there are plenty of grumbles that the fan experience isn’t getting financial attention too. For instance, the fans are, er, ticked about the state of bathrooms at Sanford Stadium. The locker rooms may be old, but the bathrooms are from the 1970s, one fan said in a phone call. The concession facilities are also below par, fans say, leading to over-crowding and just a cramped, uncomfortable experience in the concourses.

So acting on behalf of those fans, this reporter asked athletics director Greg McGarity about just that.

Great question (by the way, if I can wander off from my stated topic for a second, can I take the opportunity to question once again why Seth gets the criticism he does from some of you, when there are moments like this when he’s clearly doing the Lord’s work?), but the answer shouldn’t surprise anyone in not being great.

“We’re trying to maximize everything we can,” McGarity said, speaking about the stadium as a whole. “As far as renovating restrooms, we’ll start with another – sort of our normal standard operating procedure is to make them as new as they possibly could be. But with this addition it does relieve a lot of the pressure in the main gate area and the west end of the stadium.”

That does not sound like a man who concerns himself with the fans’ game day experience, does it?  Maybe he’s just too focused on improved wifi.  Or maybe he’s simply not focused at all.

Then there’s the vision thing. UGA seems to be hopping from one major facility project to another, while sprinkling in many smaller projects, not only for football but other sports.

Why not go with a big master plan, as some other schools (like Clemson) have done?

McGarity pointed to a master plan that did exist in the late 2000s, that included an indoor building further off campus. He also pointed to a plan he saw in 1999 that had an indoor facility being built right on this spot.

“You prioritize stuff as they become important,” he said. “A master plan, it probably touches every facility that we have. So there’s a lot of other projects for other facilities that are in a master plan. But a lot of things are important as we go on, and some things rise to the level of importance.”

Like recruiting.  And the Magill Society donors.  For the rest of us unwashed, Emerson has some practical advice.

And for now, bathrooms in areas other than the west end zone don’t reach that level of importance. Fans will just have to hold it a bit longer.

Or stay at home where the lines are shorter and the facilities are friendlier.  I’m not kidding myself when I write that; it’s not a perceived threat to Butts-Mehre, but merely the expression of a personal choice that some fans will make.

How to make it a perceived threat that would force McGarity to prioritize this as important stuff?  I dunno.  Hey, they’re big on Twitter hashtags.  How does #flush93k work as an attention getter?  It’s not like they’ll be using the last three characters for G-Day this year, anyway.

Eh, who am I deluding with this?  It’s been a steady regression on the game day front for us since Michael Adams worked his magic on tailgating and it’s hard to see that changing, at least as long as everything is working from the administration’s point of view.  That appears to be going swimmingly, so don’t miss your opportunity to commit to the G and support the West End Zone Project.  And, in the meantime, hold it.

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140 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

140 responses to “When you gotta go…

  1. SemperFiDawg

    Let’s be honest. Your fandom is NOT being used as a prop for recruiting. It’s bring used as a financial pool.

    Like

  2. The ChilliDawg

    Look… you sat on “the tracks” for all those many years soaking in “free” football. You’ll get nothing and like it!

    Like

  3. Bubs

    To me, the fan experience is great at Sanford. Everything Kirby does geared toward recruiting is all about one thing: Putting a better product on the field. Isn’t that really all that matters? The fixer of all ills?

    Like

  4. Bright Idea

    It will be easier to hold our water when we start winning something of significance. Struggling with Nichols and Vandy makes everyone run to the bathroom at once. The folks in the Magill Society and above aren’t likely encountering bathroom issues. It’s those of us in the cheap seats chomping for a winner who are being ignored and we are noticing.

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    • What if they sent out catheters and collection bags with every ticket? Would that be cheaper than renovating the bathrooms?

      Like

    • HirsuteDawg

      Ding! Ding! Ding! We have a winner! The reason the board isn’t interested in our game day experience (including restrooms etc) is that they don’t have the same experience – don’t wait for/at poorly run concessions and don’t use our grimy restrooms. As long as we show up they don’t give a rat’s ass.

      Like

  5. The Quincy Carter of Accountants

    How much of this could be paid for by selling beer in the stadium? Is that benefit offset by increased bathroom useage? I demand a study.

    Like

    • paul

      The restrooms would be exponentially worse if we started selling beer. More pee. More vomit. More stench.

      Like

      • Bulldog Joe

        True.

        Plus those federally-mandated urinals in the women’s room aren’t going to help the situation down the road.

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      • Go Dawgs!

        I’m not sure this is the case. The argument has been made that stadium alcohol sales could lead to fewer people going quite as hard at the pregame tailgates which could result in fewer people showing up to the stadium already falling down drunk and ready to wreck things. There will always be drunks and there will always be people who wouldn’t be responsible with stadium beers. But I think it’s reasonable to expect some better conduct if the stadium sells alcohol, too.

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        • RandallPinkFloyd

          Agreed. Also, means less people sneaking in brown liquor, which can often lead to people going to 0-60 in the matter of one stinky plastic cup filled with Coca-Cola.

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          • 'Ol Gill

            I don’t think there would be much of a change. I didn’t drink much at games when I was a student, but most people I knew (15 years ago) were more into getting drunk for the social aspect of tailgating than trying to get lit for the game. Also, when you can buy as many fluid ounces of quality brown liquor and sneak it in as you can stadium beer, I would still sneak if getting drunk was what I cared about.

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            • Chi-town Dawg

              My bet is that most people would still knock’em down hard before the game because they wouldn’t want to pay the high prices at the stadium or miss 25 min of the game waiting in line for a beer. They might top off the tank at the stadium to keep the buzz, but I doubt we’d see much of a change from what occurs today.

              Like

  6. And just wait until the loserbirds open their new stadium, people might start asking “and why can’t we have nice things like this at Georgia?”

    Like

    • No One Knows You're a Dawg

      I went to 2 Falcons games this year. Hadn’t been to a game in over 30 years because I’d heard what a poor game day experience it was. As a UGA season ticket holder, I’d always thought “Can’t compare to Saturdays in Athens, right?”

      Well, I was shocked to find it can and does compare very favorably. For one thing, I was treated as a “valued customer” by the friendly and professional stadium employees at the Georgia Dome. Whereas at Sanford Stadium, I feel like paying fans are treated as if the university feels they are doing the fans a favor by allowing them to attend the game.

      I’d also heard there were lots of drunks and fights at Falcons games, in part because alcohol is sold in the stadium. Instead, the Falcons game crowd actually seemed much more sober and I saw no fights, despite one of the games being against the New Orleans Saints and there being a good number of Saints fans spread around the stadium. There was some banter back and forth between the fanbases, but nothing that made me feel uneasy. compare this to what I experience at Georgia games, where there seems to always be an undercurrent of fan tension, that often seems on the verge of erupting into fights.

      The atmosphere around the Georgia Dome also compared better than I expected to Athens. The area around the Dome was geared toward helping fans enjoy themselves with security only being “heavy” in places one would expect and hope it would be heavy, such as the lines to get in the Dome. This contrasts with the “on-edge” attitude of much of the police and security services you see in Athens on gameday, where one misplaced foot onto a sidewalk can result in a ticket, or worse. All in all, security just seemed more professional at the Falcons games.

      I’ve been taking my now 14 year old son to UGA games since he was 2, after going to the Falcons games with me, he said he’d rather we had Falcons season tickets than UGA season tickets. Both the Falcons and Braves are upgrading their fan experiences this year, and there’s a new pro soccer team to also compete for the sports fan’s dollar. UGA ain’t the only game in town.

      Every year I renew my Georgia season tickets, I feel like I’m being played for a fool. If the school keeps acting as if the fans don’t matter, eventually we’ll decide we don’t, and take our money elsewhere.

      Like

      • Good post. Someone should forward this on to McGarity..

        I’m looking now at the new Braves stadium right now (across from where I work) and look forward to taking my boys to some games. Falcons too, as soon as the soreness wears off from Lucy (aka sports gods) pulling the football away from us Atlanta fans once again.

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        • No One Knows You're a Dawg

          Thanks. I’m looking forward to going to some Braves games too. My money-is-no-object daughter wants to go to opening night. Thaaat’s probably not going to happen, but we’ll definitely make it to a couple of games.

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  7. Spike

    What about parking and traffic control improvements? Crickets.. I fear..

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    • Otto

      UGA needs both improvement for fans as well as recruiting facilities. Smart knows what it take to get recruits unfortunately I don’t think he understands the fan experience and it isn’t really his job, that is for the staff in B-M who seems not to care about the fan experience.

      Like

      • Bazooka Joe

        You are right Otto, CKS doesn’t understand the fan experience because he has not had to. In the state of Alabamastan its either the tide or the wartiggles, there really isn’t much else to do in the state so they kind of have a captive audience. Not so in Georgia, we actually have many options for our dollars.

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  8. 3rdandGrantham

    {Speaking as ADGM or TPTB at UGA}:

    Let’s be honest here — the main contributors we are relying on to help fund this 62 mil initiative are not Joe six pack sitting in section 317 who has been a loyal season ticket holder for many years; its wealthy individual contributors who already are enjoying nice accoutrements in the club level or Sky Suites. Did you not notice the myriad “Donor Name” signs that were well placed throughout in the renderings of the new west end project?

    Thus, why should we be motivated to improve, say, bathrooms, when we know damn well those suckers..err, I mean…season ticket holders will continue to renew and show up to games regardless? Sure, these season ticket holders complain yearly about lack of concessions and third world restrooms that would be condemned in Beirut — but unless we start getting flooded with non-renewals, then frankly we don’t really give a rip.

    Oh, and besides, when Smart gets the ball rolling and UGA starts winning big, we’ll be happy to replace non-renewals with new bandwagon fans from all over the Atlanta metro, who will be screaming ‘Go Dogs!’ in their finest midwest or northeast accents. Its going to be great.

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  9. Face it: the more successful we try to become the more our fandom will get stepped over. It’s nothing personal, it’s just business. The good thing is that winning allows us to forgive any transgressions. We’ll overlook sleazy recruiting and roster management practices and we’ll overlook game day inconveniences.

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  10. 92 grad

    Y’all want Kirby and mcgoofy to pay attention? Start hitting the recruits up on twitter and have them tell Kirby “if you don’t start paying attention to your fans, they’re not going to come and watch us play, so why would we want to commit to the G?” If the recruits are going to be the definitive “key” to the whole thing then use them.

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    • paul

      No need to depend on seventeen year old boys. Just quit sending the Hartman fund your money. Money is the athletic department’s love language.

      Like

  11. I do like how McGarity and company are already way ahead of themselves but whatever. Most the fan base has taken the hook, line and sinker without even a sniff of success. Smh

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  12. JasonC

    I personally like the #flush93K idea.

    Second, I can confirm from firsthand experience that as far back as when Kirby was playing, they were using the luxury boxes on the South Side of the stadium for non-game day recruiting visits (e.g. December & January), which weren’t too shabby, so it’s not like we were left only with the dumpy East Side locker rooms or Uncle Cooter’s basement as the only places to entertain recruits.

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  13. BulldogJay

    Kirby is so focused on recruiting he barely has time for anything else. He came to Columbus last year on the Coaches Tour and wasn’t able to talk to the fans because he needed to take care of recruiting. He wasn’t planning on coming to Columbus, or many other cities, until he realized he had a contractual obligation to do them. I understand recruiting is important but it seems like the tail is wagging the dog, or maybe I have a poor understanding of all this.

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    • Otto

      See I disagree many UGA fans are hung up on talking to a guy that makes them feel good. Smart is focused on winning and ultimately I don’t care if he spend any time talk to alumni fans if he runs a clean program that wins.

      Like

      • 3rdandGrantham

        I totally agree. If CKS were to do zero grip and grins from this point forward, not only would I not care…I would actually applaud him. The previous coach seemed to do too much campaigning type work for the AD, all while passing various responsibilities off to his assistants, and that didn’t exactly bode well for our success.

        Saban, for example, rarely if ever does any alumni type of events, and I’d say that philosophy has paid off quite well for him.

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        • Saban had NFL experience and a national championship when he showed up in Tuscaloosa. The first words out of his mouth practically were “I don’t have time for this s—.” Sorry, but Kirby doesn’t get the same treatment until he proves he’s going to win.

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  14. Atticus

    Yes it IS the offseason……the best fan experience is not losing to Vandy. The best fan experience is cleaning up the bathrooms, concessions and traffic flow so you can actually watch the game and not miss a quarter. The best fan experience is not playing 2-3 patsies every year. The best fan experience is not listening to BS music in between timeouts and TV breaks. The best fan experience is simple…. winning games and playing for titles.

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  15. PTC DAWG

    Kirby isn’t in charge of the fan experience as it relates to the stadium bathrooms, concessions, parking, etc. PERIOD.

    Like

    • I didn’t suggest he was. But thanks for the dramatic punctuation at the end there, Sean.

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      • Otto

        The tone certainly implies it.

        Like

        • The tone? How about the words?

          Look, I get that recruiting is a big deal for Smart. Use whatever adjective you like — obsessed, laser-focused, driven — recruiting is über alles for the man getting paid almost four million a year to win big. Really, I get that.

          What I don’t get is why I have to be made to feel like my fandom is reduced at times to being a prop for recruiting. We saw that last year with the #93k exhortations to make G-Day a special occasion for the recruits and it appears we’re seeing more of the same with the new project if, as it appears, the recruiting lounge is centered between the students on game day. We’re not there to be entertained. We’re there to contribute to the experience of kids who aren’t even part of the program yet.

          Kirby is concerned about recruiting more than anything else. As I said, I get that. And that’s as far as I went with that.

          If you’d bother to read what I posted, as opposed to what you feel I wrote, you’d see that I placed responsibility for the fans’ game day experience on McGarity and the people he answers to.

          Trust me, I’m a big boy. If I want to blame Kirby for something, I’ll come right out and say it.

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          • JCDAWG83

            Where will they move the visitors seating to? If the team will be entering and leaving the field by the West end zone, it really doesn’t make much sense to put visiting fans down in that Northwest corner so they can taunt and boo our players. Also, do the recruits get to stand on the plaza area and look down and see the visiting fans and how engaged and excited they are when their team is doing well?

            So far, this seems like a very poorly thought out plan.

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          • Otto

            Senator, Comment above: That’s what they’re counting on, anyway.

            JC I am sure they can move the visitor seating to the other endzone possibly fully swap student and visitor seating.

            Visitor seating is mostly in the upper decks. I have attended games on athletic department tickets from another SEC school, the visiting fans you see in the corner of the end zones are mostly family of players or support staff.

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        • PTC DAWG

          My point exactly.

          Like

    • watcher16

      No, but he could certainly become an advocate for the fans and realize that they are an asset to his overall goal/vision

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Cojones

    A large open urinal trough could be installed just outside the upper parapet wall that encircles from the east end zone to the north and ends at the west gate wall. Place a blind immediate to the uppermost seats with slots in the outer wall where you can lean against an abutment next to a slot to pee through and the trough could have a privacy upturn to it’s outer edge where you can gaze across downtown Athens while relieving yourself, but not be seen from below. Downspouts from the urinal would periodically be placed so as to drain past a downstairs bathroom. A wire grill just outside the parapet slots would prevent paper and other objects from being thrown into the trough.

    Adam’s Wuthering Heights seems like a start for a name of such a stress-relieving structure that would be welcomed by the younger and more energetic fans who would prefer the outdoorsy pissery while old farts take to the enclosed structures below. It may serve secondarily as a vomitus depository for the young and intemperate drinkers and fraternity initiates getting into practice in the upper decks. By roping off the blinds areas, we could make it slightly entertaining by encouraging those in the lower decks to experience pissing Upper Ropes, a secondary name committed to fan stress reduction concerning more bathrooms at the stadium. The secondary name also serves as a retort from McG when proposing construction of such.

    Like

    • Nashville West

      Great idea, we just need to pay for it by selling the naming rights. How about the GTP/Senator Blutarsky Open Air Stress Elimination Station ? If everyone who accesses GTP kicked in a buck we just might be able to cover it. If the Senator is too modest we could call it the James Brown Memorial Man’s World facility.

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      • Got Cowdog

        I’m not sure sending any more drunks to the upper deck is a good idea. As short as the wall is it’s a wonder there hasn’t been a long range mosh pit incident yet

        Like

  17. Greg McGarity, J. Reid Parker Director of Athletics

    Today is the deadline folks! Send in your money!

    I know most of you aren’t very good with money, so make sure you get it in the hands of people who are!

    Like

  18. dawgfan

    Was it really necessary to spend $31 million and $63 million to impress recruits? That seems like a HUGE sum of money just to make 17 year olds go “wow”. Talk about spoiled millennials, good grief.

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    • Otto

      Yes if you want championships

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      • dawgfan

        Athens, Sanford Stadium in the fall, and a degree from UGA are a huge recruiting advantage already built in. That’s why UGA is also listed as a top 10 coaching job.

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    • Otto

      ..and this didn’t start with millenials this has been going on for over a decade. UGA has fallen behind.

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      • JCDAWG83

        We just had the #3 recruiting class in the country coming off a very lackluster season. Our recruiting rankings have been top 10 for a very long time in spite of laziness and bumbling on the part of our coaches. Our facilities have not been holding us back in recruiting.

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        • Otto

          They haven’t been keeping up. UGA has fertile recruiting grounds which masks shortcoming but it won’t be a regular contender until improvements are made.

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        • Yes they have… in fact our lack of up to date facilities was regularly used against us by schools like Alabama and FSU (Pruitt confirmed this because he used to be the one doing it)

          I’m not sitting here saying we couldn’t get recruits before – but we definitely were falling behind the elite national championship caliber programs.

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      • dawgfan

        I guess we will get indicators on our return this fall and next February. I’m thinking at least 10 wins and a top 5 recruiting class would be an adequate initial return.

        Like

    • 3rdandGrantham

      Yes. And speaking as a Gen X’er, millennials are no more spoiled than any other generation. Hell, the worst generation clearly are the Baby Boomers…nobody comes close to touching their arrogance, selfishness, and overall greed. Thanks Boomers for leaving us with a 20+ trillion debt to figure out what to do with after you’re long and dead. ‘Preciate it!

      Like

      • Worst generation and it’s not even close. Every significant challenge we currently face as a society can be directly traced to the selfish decisions made by the Boomers once they got in charge who are STILL bankrupting the system now that they’re all hitting retirement age while bitching about entitlement spending (the lack of self awareness of old people bitching about entitlement spending while cashing their Social Security check which is the vast majority of what is considered entitlement spending will never cease to amaze me).

        I’m on the upper end of the millennial generation and tire, oh so much, of the constant bullshit thrown our way by the Boomers that accuse us of being entitled for just wanting the same opportunities at betterment that they were afforded.

        /off the soapbox

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        • 3rdandGrantham

          Sadly, you and I will never come close to being afforded the game gov. entitlements or opportunities as they’ve fruitfully enjoyed for decades. 70 trillion+ in unfunded liabilities — which our own gov. has admitted is impossible ever to pay off — will be placed directly on our shoulders to deal with while they get old in retirement and die off. Money that otherwise would be available for investment, gov. programs, etc. not only won’t be there, but again we will be given the insane burden of managing tens of trillions of debt, which by 2030 we will barely be able to make interest payments on, let alone attempt to pay down.

          Yet somehow we are the young, immature greedy ones. Amazing.

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          • I’ll agree that the boomers suck. I won’t attribute it to what our government has done with respect to debt. Every “conservative” since 1980 has been elected on a promise to bring spending under control. Every time they’ve won the debt has exploded. Taxes go down, spending goes up. The rich get richer. The poor get poorer and the middle class finds the vise on its nuts is just a turn tighter. It’ll happen this time too.

            The only time congress reins in spending is when a democrat is in the White House. Every time a republican is in there he whips out the national credit card and goes on a spending spree. Is this a function of a generation gone amuck or a function of lying bastards who simply want to bankrupt the country because they know they can’t win being honest?

            The pattern is very clear and obvious to anyone whose paying attention. In fact, Grover Norquis said the goal was to do exactly that: make government small enough to drag it in the bathroom and drown it. They’ve been at it for 37 years.

            37 years again the annual debt was around 50 to 60 billion. By 1991 it was over 300. By 2000 we were running a surplus. By 2008 we were once again fucked. The annual debt had tapered off over the last few years. Watch what happens now….

            It’s not what the boomers or any other generation wants, but we’ll get it in the end, literally. We always do.

            I don’t care whether you agree with dismantling the New Deal/Great Society or not, doing it by stealth is simply wrong. The fault doesn’t belong to any generation. The responsibility belongs to those ideological, evil cowards who hate Social Security/Medicare/Medicaid and hate that they can’t be destroyed through an honest, open, democratic process.

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            • just sayin

              “The only time Congress reins in spending is when a democrat is in the White House.” I guess we need look no further than the latest democrat president for the proof of that statement.

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              • Not sure if this is sarcasm or not but it’s a fact that government spending as a % of GDP was lower at the end of both Obama and Clinton’s terms than it was in their first year in office. Government spending as a % of GDP was higher at the end of Reagan’s and both Bush presidencies then it was in their first year in office.

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                • Sherlock

                  During those 37 years you mention, absolutely none of the improvement happened during the less than 4 years of a Democratic Congress and a Democratic President. They were not any better with a Republican President either. Ever since the Blue Dogs left the Democratic Party, a Democratic congress has been a tax, borrow, and spend disaster regardless of which party held the White House (see 1993-1994 and 2007-2010).

                  Things were only sort of OK fiscally during Obama’s last six years is because the Republican Congress spent the entire time virtue signaling about repealing Obamacare. The second half of the 90s was highly successful because “The Era of Big Government was Over”. Clinton worked with the moderate Republicans to follow Mitchell’s Golden Rule: “The Private Sector should grow faster than the Government”. No new Departments, no new Entitlements, no big time wars. The biggest things they did were add work requirement to welfare and reorganize the military to be Brigade Combat Team focused. As an extra bonus, that is also the time-frame where the Evangelicals lost the culture war.

                  Then we had to fuck it up with two major clusterfuck wars while putting the tab on the credit card while trying to cover up the costs by keeping interest rates artificially low, a new Department, two new medical entitlement programs, every god damn thing the government did during the entire period of 2008-2009, and electing a reality TV personality president. How any of you bastards support either major political party is beyond me.

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                  • Two of them have a chance to win and one nominated Trump. The same one that nominated Bush II twice. You know fucking morons. It’s really not that hard. Lesser of two evils is easy when one of the evils is just that evil. If “perfect” is your standard your going to have to find a party that doesn’t have any people in it.

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                    • Sherlock

                      It’s not my fault that the two best nominees in the post-Clinton timeframe have been MItt Romney and John Kerry. Neither party has even been good at what they are supposed to be good for. Republicans are horribel with the budget. Democrats haven’t done a damn thing for civil liberties.

                      In a sane world the Democrats would have nominated Jim Webb and Steve Bullock. The Republicans would have nominated Bill Weld and Jon Huntsman. Well, in a sane world, the Republicans would have nominated Weld in 2000 instead of the dumber recovering alcoholic version of Daddy Bush. Instead we got 8 years of that followed by 8 years of a community organizer who’s biggest leadership accomplishment was running a staff of 14 people that helped people register to vote.

                      I understand that you support the Democratic Party because you are deluded into thing that you are fighting against 100 million crypto-nazis. You aren’t. The republicans are not nazis; they’re just stupid. The same thing with your side. They do not care about classical liberalism. They want the economic policies of Venezuela The politicians on each side just want the votes. The best part of being a / voting Libertarian is that for my entire adult life I have been able to bitch about the government without being a hypocrite.

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          • Don in Mar-a-Lago

            “Yet somehow we are the young, immature greedy ones. Amazing.”

            (1.) Turn off the sound of music from “The Young and the Restless.”

            (2.) Start work on amazing new Boomer soap opera script.

            (3.) Call it “The Young, the Immature, the Greedy.”

            (4.) Pilot episode: “The Best Walls are Load Bearing Walls.”

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        • DoubleDawg1318

          +1

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      • Sherlock

        As a tail-end Gen X’er I just wanted to join in on the Boomer hate.

        Like

        • ATL Dawg

          I’m also a tail-end Gen X’er and I always get a kick out of hearing Boomers bitch and moan about the Millennials. I just want to say “you people need to take a long hard look in the fucking mirror.”

          Like

    • 'Ol Gill

      Seeing how previous generations got cars, I think we shouldn’t really be picking on millennials.

      Like

  19. JCDAWG83

    I guess the same “donors” who recently gave $30 million to build an IPF will be hit up to give $63 million to build a new locker room and recruiting room. If I am one of these heavy hitter donors, I think I’d like to see some results on the field before I open my wallet again. Additionally, I imagine the big donors who will be hit up to write the big checks have never spent any time at a game in the West End Zone, their seats are much better and have much better concession and restroom facilities.

    We heard for years how not having an IPF was holding us back from championships and was hurting recruiting. Well, we’ve got one now, how long before we see a championship?

    Now, we are led to believe the locker rooms in Sanford are holding us back from winning a championship. I’m pretty sure the locker rooms are not some dank, dark dungeon like space with water dripping from the ceiling and rats scurrying about. I don’t ever recall a complaint about the locker rooms from any player or coach. I also can’t recall any recruit who signed with Auburn, Bama, Clemson, Michigan, etc. over us saying the locker rooms at his chosen school were the reason he made the decision.

    It seems to me we are going down the rabbit hole where we have allowed “nice to have” to become “need to have”. The thing we truly need to have is a season with no bed crapping losses. If we can put a few of those together, the championships will come regardless of the IPF, locker room, recruiting room or video board.

    Like

    • It seems to me we are going down the rabbit hole where we have allowed “nice to have” to become “need to have”. The thing we truly need to have is a season with no bed crapping losses. If we can put a few of those together, the championships will come regardless of the IPF, locker room, recruiting room or video board.

      If it ever gets to that point, imagine the money they’ll be able to raise then.

      Like

      • JCDAWG83

        It would be epic. If Georgia wins a NC, the donation amounts will become mind boggling. After the ’80 season, they increased the per ticket donation by a factor of four. I imagine you would see the same thing happen if we won another NC.

        Like

    • Servicestaff

      The locker rooms really are that bad. It is dark and dank. Water does drip from the ceiling. I don’t think there are rats but I know there is a possum.

      Like

  20. Yo

    This is where McGoofy is a total failure as an AD. We need the kind of AD that doesn’t wait around until an assistant football coach complains about having an indoor practice facility or waits for new coaching staff to point out our that our recruiting and player facilities are behind peers. A real AD would already know what needs to be done and have a plan to execute. McGoofy is all lead from behind (so he can have easy access to your wallet in your back pocket).

    Like

  21. MGW

    If the motivation to win more games was the end in itself, I’d be more accepting of this kind of thing, but its not. Winning more games is just a means to the end of getting more eyeballs on television ads and getting bigger payouts from better bowls, etc. If they could make more money without winning, no money would be spent on things like this.

    Plus they know that as much as every single fan agrees with the premise of that article and this post, the listed complaints aren’t enough to keep them out of the stadium. If the team is winning, all our whining about everything else is completely irrelevant; we’ll still pay to fill the stadium up.

    Like

    • JCDAWG83

      I think the key phrase you use is “If the team is winning…”. At some point, the fans decide to stay home and watch the losses on tv instead of putting up with the bad game day experience. Unfortunately for McGarity and the BM crowd, once the fans start staying home, it is very difficult to bring them back.

      The demographic changes in the alumni base (about 63% of UGA students are female now and quite a few grads move out of state after graduation) are going to make the job of getting people to pay big money to actually attend games much harder. Unless the team starts winning, there will be nothing to attract the “sidewalk alumni” who are willing to pay the donations and ticket prices.

      Like

  22. This was an excellent editorial.

    Like

  23. It’s not all that I want, but Kirby has gotten through more infrastructure/support in a little over a year than in the previous 25 years combined.

    Like

    • Bulldog Joe

      I agree. As far as football facilities go, the gap between our program and the rest of the conference is narrowing.

      Credit Pruitt and Kirby for the brutal, outside assessment of where we are and credit Jere for being willing to listen.

      Like

  24. Macallanlover

    Almost a hundred million dollars between the IPF and this renovation to Sanford in a two and a half years and UGA will still be chasing Clemson, the closest power program to Athens, the one who has a huge jump on everyone with 2018 recruiting rankings. And still inferior bathrooms, concession operations, sound system, wifi, etc., for those attending games and paying for these upgrades. Leadership, it’s what you can be most proud of sheep. How much per quality, noon start does that come to?

    Like

  25. paul

    Money is the language the folks at BM understand. Until more of us QUIT sending them money and make it clear that the reason for our lack of contributions is their lack of emphasis on the fan experience, nothing will change.

    Like

    • Atticus

      Correct, I stopped the money years ago. I love the Dawgs and went there and have been a fan for 40 years but my money goes elsewhere and I simply buy 2 games a year for much less.

      Like

    • Dog in Fla

      “Money is the language the folks at BM understand.”

      Reptilian brain waves that Agent Greg brought with him from Hogtown

      Like

    • ATL Dawg

      Most people that I know love to bitch about this kind of stuff but when it comes time to actually do something about it (i.e. not send in their money), they clam up and bow down to their master.

      It’s amazing to me how much some people complain about something but yet continue to funnel their money into it. It’s almost like an abused spouse who hates their relationship but is afraid of what life might be like without it.

      Like

  26. Bulldog Joe

    It’s time to take matters into our own hands.

    Like

    • Otto

      or piss on B-M…

      Like

    • I already told you guys yesterday that’s what already happens in the Section 304 bathrooms. We figured that out years ago. Jeez!

      All joking aside – I can’t remember another time in my life where I was actually overjoyed to give up something I once loved doing as I am today by not donating anymore money to these assholes.

      Like

  27. Snoop Dawgy Dawg

    as a 32 year old alum without season tickets, my gameday experience issues are that we have so many freaking noon games, the campus is not inviting for tailgating now, and it seems that I’m an annoyance to the powers that be, rather than a customer with other ways to spend my hard earned money.

    Every year my wife and I talk about jumping in line and getting seats and every year the home slate of games, expected kick offs, and just overall issues of getting onto and off of campus, mean we continue to not get tickets. I don’t want to tailgate in a deck. I don’t want to tailgate at the edge of campus. Both are my options. perhaps with season tickets I could get closer to the stadium, but perhaps not.

    With young kids, it’s even harder to coordinate it. I don’t know the answer, but it’s easier and easier to just buy tickets to the one or two big games in athens each year and watch the rest at home.

    Like

    • To piggy back that –

      I try to go to one game a season. I have generally not lived anywhere near Athens. My last game, I did live in Atlanta for a bit. It was a very early game, and I met my bud at like 7am. 11am kick off. So I got up at like 5am in the morning. We lost. Then the traffic was so horrendous, and I got back to the Atlanta Area at like 7pm.

      I love college football, and that very unpleasant day left me tired and drained, and missing a lot of other quality games. As I get older, the bathroom issue becomes a bigger one. It just reaches the point where the juice is not worth the squeeze. And now, 6 hrs away, I would have to plan a weekend around 1 game. And not cheap either when its all said and done.

      I am crying old man river, I get that, I just also get it that others may feel somewhat the same. I know people that spent a TON of money and time and anticipation on that Bama game….ugh.

      Like

      • This. I’ve been to every SEC stadium save Bama, Arky and aTm. Every single one (even the Hogtown cesspool) gives better gameday experience, especially pissers and concessions.

        I try to make one home game a year or a really good road trip. I refuse to donate money to Hartman that I can otherwise use to finance those trips instead of having to drive 6 hours, pay too much for a hotel room, tailgate somewhere shitty, stand in line to piss in a smelly 1950s era trough and endure a halfwit concessionaire who can’t make change or keep enough ice on hand to dilute my red liquor. And listen to too-loud tunes when I can finally manage to squeeze my extra wide sweaty ass into a too narrow slot on an uncomfortable bench, all while watching us almost lose to Pigknuckle State. It is like the worst airline experience ever.

        And get off my friggin’ lawn, you damn Gen XYZers. /Rant off.

        Like

        • lol! good one. I’ve actually been to the three you haven’t. When I went to Bama the first time, I was SO SO SO worried about parking and traffic. It turned out not to be a big deal actually. Of course, T Town sucks, which is a different thing.

          Like

      • sniffer

        Fuck the money. I can’t get those hours of my life back.

        ps. Four days in a house at Reynolds. Brought the whole fucking family (wife is Bama grad and her three Bama grad sons and their girlfriends) my three kids, tickets for the whole fucking crew…

        Sorry for all the”fucks”, but fuck

        Like

  28. engrdawg

    Amazingly, UGA has been able to recruit well without this “much needed renovation.” Kirby was even able to bring in the highest rated class ever without it. Not to be cheap about it, but the return on the money isn’t going to be much.

    Like

  29. Silver Britches

    “But with this addition it does relieve a lot of the pressure in the main gate area and the west end of the stadium.”

    This is the biggest load of shit in the whole set of articles. Of course it doesn’t relieve the pressure, it just moves it upwards to the bridge, which is already a cattle chute on gameday.

    I don’t mind putting a glitter finish on the stadium, but don’t make shit up and hope we don’t notice.

    Like

  30. PTC DAWG

    The pissing and moaning on this thread is mind boggling….pun intended. Do we want to keep up with our rivals or not?

    Like

    • You guaranteeing a championship after the west end is upgraded? Otherwise, your question isn’t relevant.

      And how dare the paying customers have an opinion about the football program. They should shut up and know their place, right?

      In the end, nothing in this comment thread matters, including your point of view, because McGarity’s gonna McGarity with or without us.

      Like

      • PTC DAWG

        Nothing is guaranteed here, we both know that. Obviously we see things a little different here.

        The real problem with stadium infrastructure etc. is that most of the concourses etc were designed around 60-70k max. Short of a very expensive rebuild of all of those, and who knows if the structure, surrounding buildings etc would allow it, we are pretty much stuck with what we have in that regard.

        Like

        • I’m not an engineer, so I have no idea. But I will note that there are other schools’ facilities that have been massively upgraded, like TAMU’s, so it can be done. And even McGarity noted that a master plan was drawn up for UGA’s facilities over a decade ago.

          Like

          • PTC DAWG

            RE Kyle Field…

            The design was lacking. The functionality was less than stellar. And the amenities were abysmal (the new venue increased women’s restroom fixtures 300%).In short, Kyle Field wasn’t attractive and wasn’t functional. The $485 million, 18-month project changed that.

            Nearly 90 percent of the stadium stands new, Kaufman says. The 2009-built north end zone building received a redone exterior and seating bowl in order to connect it to the rest of the stadium. On the east side, which was done prior to last season, the existing three-deck seating welcomed a new lower deck, leaving the upper two in place. All the concourses were redone on the east side, changing the entire feel of the side. In the south, where a few bleachers blocked an otherwise wide-open end, Populous filled in the design, making Kyle Field a true symmetrical bowl. And on the west side, the final phase, crews simply imploded what was there and built something totally new.

            Liked by 1 person

        • Otto

          A&M was a massive rebuild and Bryant Denny’s stadium is newer than most thank to Bama playing home games in Birmingham for years. However I have been half of the SEC stadiums, I don’t view Sanford Stadium’s traffic, food vendors or bathrooms as massively worse than rival stadiums.

          Like

          • So which is it — UGA needs a massive upgrade to keep up with its rivals, or it’s not that much worse off?

            Like

            • Otto

              UGA needs upgrades to locker room, and a recruiting room to get recruits, from the fan’s perspective it is about on par.

              Does that clarify the stance?

              Like

              • How would you know that it needs the upgrades, other than what Kirby has said?

                Like

                • PTC DAWG

                  Scoreboards etc are obviously below par for most of our rivals. I can see that with my own eyes. I see the gate coming directly from the bridge as a huge upgrade for access myself.

                  Like

                • Servicestaff

                  I have been in the locker rooms, and have worked in the lower press areas. They are terrible. They are extremely outdated functionally and physically.

                  I have also attended many games in the past 15 years as a fan. The bathrooms and concession service are also terrible. Everyone knows the bathrooms are bad but the behind the scenes of concessions are even worse. Some of that is due to age but most is due to poor staffing and management. My interactions with individuals who manage Sanford (and to a lesser degree Stegeman) day to day have been terrible also. I have personally seen the facilities manager for Sanford treat his employees and employees (including students) of OTHER departments like trash. So from where I sit, it all needs a remodel. From facilities management to the shitters.

                  Like

          • PTC DAWG

            Exactly, it’s not state of the art, but it’s not that bad either. The bones of the Sanford are OLD.

            Like

  31. Bob

    I can’t think of an SEC Stadium that I have been to whose restroom facilities are remotely as bad as those in section 305. None.

    Like

  32. Sherlock

    can I take the opportunity to question once again why Seth gets the criticism he does from some of you, when there are moments like this when he’s clearly doing the Lord’s work?

    It is because he isn’t David Hale. We were spoiled. Had he only worked for the AJC, he never would have gotten the backlash. Following Hale at the Columbus and Macon papers is a tough gig. His work at the AJC has been a little better. After getting married he is finally starting to show some personality in his writing… even if it is usually bad rap lyrics.

    Like

  33. Bob

    I got nothing against Seth or Chip. Just trying to do their jobs. Don’t always agree with them, but that’s what makes the world go round.

    Like

  34. Bright Idea

    My closest bathroom option in Sanford is good but damn if I’m gonna’ tell anybody where it is. Concession lines are as slow as cream rising on buttermilk. The kids and their elders just can’t keep up.

    Like

  35. Chico Dawg

    I believe it would be best if most of you came to the realization that no one at BM cares about commoners bathrooms/ concessions/ or tailgate spots.
    The fact that you piss in a coffee can, get your diet coke from a Boy Scout, or set up your TV in Bogart does not under any circumstances matter to either of the primary focal points of the Athletic Department:
    1)money- and not your minimum Hartman Fund donation but Jesse Pinkman type fat stacks.
    2) football winning at a high level. Not the damn Belk Bowl- but football playing for serious trophies,
    One makes the other happen- they are hand in hand- chicken AND the egg- it’s that simple.
    Smart has convinced the folks that this will make a 17 year old play ball for us and lead us to elite winning levels- making folks like us open our wallets at elite levels. It’s a hell of a gamble and quite frankly, very un-Mcgarity like. If football continues to finish in the middle of the pack, money will dry up, and be a huge black-eye on the institution resulting in major overhaul. It’s really quite stunning how close we are to 10 more years in the wilderness, or 10 years of unprecedented accomplishments.

    Like

    • I believe it would be best if most of you came to the realization that no one at BM cares about commoners bathrooms/ concessions/ or tailgate spots.

      You honestly think most don’t already know that? LOL.

      Like

  36. JCDAWG83

    Let’s be honest, given the geographic/physical location of Sanford, short of bulldozing Memorial Hall and Reed Hall, rerouting East Campus Rd to the other side of the tracks and tearing down the Geology/Chemistry buildings on the South side of Field St. there is no way to expand the footprint of the stadium. The amount of physical space inside the footprint is finite, in order to expand rest rooms, some other space will have to be reduced. It would have to be seating, concessions, mechanical, concourses, or other areas used for the operation of the stadium. None of these are realistic options. The East end zone closure in ’82 brought the capacity to 82,000 and was built with enough rest rooms to accommodate the additional 25,000 fans. Every expansion since then has been made to a stadium with rest room, concourse and concession facilities designed for 82,000 people. Unless the brain trust at BM decide to build a completely new stadium out Milledge Rd or on the intramural fields on East Campus Rd, the stadium will always be overcrowded in some area or other. I, for one, like having the stadium in the middle of campus and would hate to see it moved to another area.

    I don’t think dumping $63 million into a locker room and recruiting room is going to change the trajectory of the program or the quality of the recruiting classes. If Kirby really is laser focused on recruiting, the best thing he can do is to start winning games that matter and win a championship of some kind. Having Kirby and Pruitt say they used the facilities to recruit against us sounds pretty bad until you realize they are trying to sell the idea of upgrading facilities. I’ll say it again; I’ve never heard a recruit say he didn’t pick Georgia because of the facilities, I don’t believe it’s ever been the case. The people who are buying into the “our facilities are sub par” are grasping at straws for reasons why we haven’t won anything of consequence in 11 years. Winning a championship of some kind will solve pretty much every problem for Georgia football.

    Like

  37. WarD Eagle

    We’re all vestigial fans of professional sports franchises that have branded themselves with the storied, colorful history of college sports. They’re making bank while they can and there’s likely nothing we can do to change the trajectory. This genie isn’t going bank into the bottle willingly.

    Like

    • JCDAWG83

      100% true and the key word is “willingly”. The wise man told the Persian king “this too shall pass” and those words apply to everything, good or bad. Some time in the future, maybe in ten years maybe in thirty years maybe in fifty years, the tipping point will be reached and there won’t be enough people willing to write big enough checks to keep the machine going. Until then, the people who run college sports and the tv network execs will continue to do what they have been doing. In fact, they will not recognize the moment the tipping point is reached. They will continue to believe things will never change and the public is a bottomless source of money until the day comes when most college games will be played in front of empty stadiums and the money dries up.

      Like

  38. Got Cowdog

    Did I read the article correctly? That 475 donors contributed 30.1 million dollars? That’s some rarified air, I wonder if it is tax deductible.
    To improve my game day experience, the G. Cowdog? Change Jar and Reserve Fund contributed resources for a kegerator, fully stocked oak bar, 120″ screen projector with surround sound, no waiting restroom complete with Munson autographed toilet seat ( hunker down ) and a pool table for especially long breaks. Of course the veranda has comfortable seating, shade, and wifi.
    But I still like sitting in the parking lot with my old man and his buddies, having beers and listening to the lies and the crowd. I’ll buy tickets for a couple each year. It’s my choice where I spend my time and my money. I know what the environment is, no need in bitching about it.

    Like

  39. I keep hitting the Z function.

    It doesnt work here.

    Like

  40. Pingback: “[The Dawgs] always have my loyalty, [but] I can think of better uses of my money than the Hartman Fund.” | Get The Picture