Dream on

Man, Greg McGarity rolled into Athens almost seven years ago, acclaimed by the conference commissioner and those who knew him best in Gator Country, and let us know he set some high standards.

McGarity, who played and coached tennis at Georgia and worked in its athletic administration before leaving for Florida, said “there is nothing greater than being part of championships. That’s why we do what we do.

“At the end of the day,” he continued, “all the time you put in at the office, the fun comes when you’re competing for championships and you see what these coaches have done over a number of years to finally get to the top of the mountain and you’re able to be just a small piece of that.”

That was then.  This, after the better part of a decade upholding the Georgia Way, is now:

… Here’s how athletics director Greg McGarity, speaking on the day of what turned out to be the NIT loss to Belmont, summed things up during an interview on the Bulldog Roundtable:

“Consecutive winning seasons (in) basketball at Georgia haven’t really been in common in the past. It ebbs and flows. We’ve been up and down, like an elevator. And so what Mark has done has provide that stability in a winning program. Now Mark would be the first person to tell you it’s not the level that he wants it to be, and that everyone wants it to be. But it is a winning record, and it’s something to where it’s become commonplace now in our program. We’ve just got to take that step forward in getting to the dance.”

Inspiring, no?  Maybe it’s not the athletic director’s fault.  After all, he’s just giving his bosses what they want, just like he was accustomed to doing in Gainesville.

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56 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

56 responses to “Dream on

  1. Granthams replacement

    It’s been said before – Reserve Fund Champions!

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    • See, the issue is that we misinterpreted that first quote. We all should assume he meant:
      McGarity, who played and coached tennis at Georgia and was assimilated to the Georgia Way before leaving for Florida, said “there is nothing greater than being part of reserve fund championships. That’s why we do what we do.
      “At the end of the day,” he continued, “all the time you put in at the office, the fun comes when you’re competing for reserve fund championships and you see what these coaches have done over a number of years to finally get to the top of the cost efficiency mountain and you’re able to be just a small piece of maintaining the status quo and not rocking the boat.”

      There I fixed it, no?

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  2. From someone who thought he would be an excellent choice, he has consistently disappointed me.

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  3. St. Johns Dawg

    I don’t think Fox has proven to be a good game-management coach over these 8 years … And I’m no fan of McGarity … But taking the athletic director’s comments at face value, he is highlighting the moment we’ve seen other major college sports programs have in the past decade. Clemson football immediately comes to mind. There were several lean or mediocre seasons under Dabo Swinney at first. Administration held firm despite fan grumbling (maybe not to the level of UGA fans, but there was some at first). The patience paid off.
    The difference for me would be if I saw Fox making good coaching moves in close games … I’m seeing the opposite more often than not. Doesn’t give me hope.

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    • PTC DAWG

      Ed Zachery…Fox is clueless in close games..

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      • gastr1

        It’s not just good coaching moves, it’s the whole scheme. He’s recruited and inherited some very good players in his time at UGA–several who played in the NBA at least briefly or are in the NBA now. When it comes down to it, if you have one or two NBA-level players on your roster in the SEC, it’s just not that hard to make the tournament. All you really have to do is win all or most of your out of conference games and go .500 in the conference and you’re at 22-9, 21-10. There aren’t exactly a lot of basketball powers standing in the way.

        South Carolina is a great example of how you can take a program in the SEC that has historically blown chunks, not been cared about, likely has not invested much in BB facilities, etc., but it only takes a few good players and a good coach to win. That’s why schools like Butler, Creighton, Xavier, and Gonzaga can do it, too. There’s not really an excuse for Power 5 school to not be relevant in BB.

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        • South Carolina built an arena that is every bit as good as anything out there now. I believe they did that in conjunction with the City of Columbia similar to what NC State did with their arena (it’s phenomenal). We put lipstick on a pig in the Coliseum instead.

          The fact we didn’t make the tournament with 40% of the All-SEC 1st team is borderline criminal.

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          • Skeeter

            We should tear down Stegeman so Fox will make better in game choices.

            Liked by 1 person

            • “South Carolina is a great example of how you can take a program in the SEC that … likely has not invested much in BB facilities, etc., but it only takes a few good players and a good coach to win.”

              I was responding to the comment about facilities. USCe invested heavily in the basketball program in conjunction with the City of Columbia in the Colonial Life Center. Guess what? Our AD isn’t smart enough to come up with something like that with the City of Athens to build a top-notch facility for basketball, concerts and other events.

              Then, did you continue to read my comment about players? It’s clear Fox screwed up at the end of games this year, and, yes, that has zero to do with facilities. The players didn’t get off the bus for multiple games at the beginning of the year. There’s a lot of blame about the waste of Maten and Frazier this year, but if you don’t think the Coliseum is a boat anchor on our recruiting, you are nuts.

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              • gastr1

                Agree. Not just the coliseum, though…the lack of fan support as well. Poor facilities, poor fan support, poor admin support, and add to that a decent but not great coach with a system that’s not especially attractive to players (and used to be even less so), and you what we have: slightly better than poor.

                Liked by 1 person

    • At least Dabo was stockpiling talent. Fox has been mediocre at best on the recruiting front.

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  4. JCDAWG83

    McGarity is doing the job his bosses, the donating fans and two liquor distributors, want him to do. He hires coaches who have winning records but don’t push the envelope to win championships. He makes sure the marketing department creates plenty of slick ads and hype videos showing great plays in slow motion and puts them in front of the fans who lap them up and foolishly say idiotic things like “next year is the year we win it all”. Most of all, he pinches pennies like a spinster great aunt and keeps a tidy sum in the bank. He does all of these things without ever making the University look like a school that puts any sports above everything else and stays out of any trouble with the NCAA. He is doing the exact job he was hired to do.

    His silly naivety when he was hired, thinking the goal was to compete for and win championships is almost cute looking back on now. He had no idea what the job of AD at the University of Georgia was all about when he arrived but he was quickly made aware.

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    • Bigshot

      I really want to know why the 2 liquor distributors would not want UGA to win championships? I not asking this to be snarky or anything. I suppose I am not in the loop enough to know and I would appreciate it if you could enlighten me.

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      • Gaskilldawg

        I cannot speak for JCDawg, I am just stating my conclusion. There is an attitude of ” a dollar spent on basketball is one less dollar spent on football” that is common among Georgia fans. Some of those big football donors have that attitude.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I think they enjoy the influence and power they wield more than they care one bit about results. They aren’t rich enough to own a professional sports team, so this is as close as they can get.

          Liked by 3 people

          • Bigshot

            Well I am just a lowly donor who gets my four seats a year and I want them to win. They certainly are not getting their bang for their buck in football either. Wouldn’t they have a lot more power and influence if they won?

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            • Oh, I’m sure they want them to win, but they clearly don’t want to lose their seat at the table because someone outside the Georgia Way is in charge and make shake things up.

              Liked by 2 people

            • Bulldog Joe

              The alumni on the Athletic Board’s influence pales in comparison to the University faculty, who comprise the majority of the membership and hold all of the officer positions.

              They get first cut of the athletic revenues and everyone else has to use what is left.

              No other P5 athletic department operates like this.

              This is The Georgia Way.

              Liked by 2 people

              • Chi-town Dawg

                Joe is exactly right! He’s made this observation several times, so I looked up the UGAA BOD after reading his comment and there are 10 members representing the faculty, 8 members representing the alumni, 1 voting student member and 2 non-voting student athlete members. This goes a long way towards explaining why the university is siphoning off such a large portion of the revenues for non-athletic use. Now I feel even better about significantly reducing my contribution and not buying football tickets because if I wanted to use this money for academic purposes, I would’ve contributed it directly to the business school, etc.

                Liked by 1 person

                • Bulldog Joe

                  True,. You can instead direct your contribution to the program of your choice and not have to take a 20% penalty on your charitable deduction.

                  Damn shame they put Coach Hartman’s name on that scheme.

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                • ATL Dawg

                  This is amazing to me. The faculty majority controls the athletic board? Is this the way other big schools operate?

                  It would certainly explain the behavior of Butts-Mehre over the last 30 years.

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          • PTC DAWG

            Probably a fair statement

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          • ugadawgguy

            This is accurate.

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  5. BCDawg97

    After reading so many comments recently, I gave up my FB tickets this year. I even sent back my application but with a note – “When AD McGarity leaves, I will buy tickets again.” Sadly, I know it won’t make a difference as there are simply too many others who want tickets. Many like me with 2 boys who love going to games and just having tickets in hand and set seats from year to year was convenient. But I am convinced that Stub Hub will work out (and maybe even a bonus since hopefully I’ll get to pick some better seat locations).

    But agree with EE – I liked the hire and I don’t think many of us thought ADGM was anything but a slam dunk hire. But it is really sad to see how it’s turned out.

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  6. georgiajeepn

    As Bugs Bunny would say. What a Maroon!

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  7. ToccoaDog

    As I’ve said on here before, most Athletic departments use fundraising to benefit the teams. At Georgia, we use the teams to benefit fundraising. Those two techniques are totally separate concepts of the meaning of “winning”.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Bulldog Joe

    The evasive way he answers questions reminds me of a white collar criminal trying to hide something, like where $20M of his annual budget is spent.

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    • Chico Dawg

      Joe, do you care to elaborate what you mean here? Is there some unclassified line item on the budget that eludes to this $20 million?

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      • Bulldog Joe

        http://www.dacbond.com/dacContent/doc.jsp?id=0900bbc78011cb9b

        Reference the line items on the amounts sent to the UGA Foundation.

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        • Chico Dawg

          OK- lets remove the “criminal” tag and follow the money for a second and look at what this report tells us. Forgive me for my rant here, but this is something I think we all need to fully understand so that we can appreciate what Joe has brought to light. I do agree with you, Joe, that it would just be so much easier that if McGarity would step up to every hot mike and say, “my job is to make money for the University. And I will not flinch on spending any of that money until the seat gets hot enough for me to react.” But as we all know, that type of honesty is not rewarded in this world.

          First:
          It looks like $34 million- a $30 million transfer and then a $4 million payment- went to the endowment arm of the University in FY 2013. And in the 15 report, that number has elevated to $44 million in assets of the Athletics Department being held by the Foundation. The UGA Foundation manages over $1 billion in assets, and is a relatively small endowment for a University this old and this large. Florida is $1.5 billion (Vanderbilt’s is almost 4!) This annual report supports the argument that the Athletics Department has a primary objective of being a fiscally responsible cash cow for the University- and specifically, its lagging behind Endowment.
          Second:
          Some members of the UGA faculty also control the Athletics Board, which is ultimately responsible for the walking orders of the Athletics Department. Those walking orders (more and more every single day) look like it is to make buckets of cash first, and anything else, like winning at non-revenue-generating sports (like basketball) which might get in the way of Objective Number One, are things that are better left alone. Think about it-if you win at basketball, you will have to pony up at contract time, or spend money on a new arena. That cuts into the surplus- much to the chagrin of the Board- and your big bosses up on North Campus and ultimately The Foundation. This looks like a fight that will result in more Tums than champagne if I’m the Athletics Director.
          Third:
          Because of the successes at places close to Athens, the Athletics Director has seen the cash value in a winning football program. He saw a program marred in mediocrity and the possibility of falling contributions, along with his own possible mortality, and made the change. This (not liquor barons) is what made that change happen. Who he chose to replace the predecessor may have been influenced by them. I believe he has sold the Athletics Board and the Foundation on this very notion. And McGarity’s ultimate reputation with his bosses ultimately resides in an unproven assistant coach from Bainbridge who holds his balls in a vice. So it really doesn’t matter in his book if Fox is average, or the baseball team is dreadful. A winning football program is all that matters. In honest moments, I have heard him almost utter those words.
          Like many who have posted before, what he thought the job was and what the job is has changed. As supporters (or fans) this is what we have to accept. And until the money stops, this is what we will get. Meanwhile we will continue to be the the 68 Shelby on the outside with a 4 banger hybrid under the hood.

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          • ATL Dawg

            Good analysis Chico. I think that’s probably pretty accurate.

            The Georgia Way sure does have a lot of passive-aggressiveness to it.

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  9. Jt (the other one)

    He’s got to go. He was FORCED into hiring Kirbo. He didn’t want him. He will have to be FORCED into hiring a BB coach. McEars gots to go!

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  10. Tlkdawg

    We’ve got a couple of very highly rated players committed to the basketball program for next season. I personally can’t wait to watch them sit on the bench in favor of less talented upperclassman.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bigshot

      You said a mouthful!

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    • Gaskilldawg

      Who will be the less talented upperclassmen taking big men minutes from Hammond and Claxton? Geno and Kessler are gone. Maten, Ogbedie and Edwards have talent, physical maturity and experience.

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  11. Bigshot

    Clemson has won a national championship in football and SC is I the final four while the flagship university of this state sits mired in mediocrity. Please forgive me, if I am not impressed.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Ha ha ha

    South Carolina in final four. ‘ Nuff said.

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  13. aladawg

    “Of course we are competing for championships. We are tied for the conference lead at the beginning of every year” AD Greg McGoofy…….

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    • The Georgia Way

      Our commitment to you, the valued Hartman Fund contributor, is to be in the hunt.

      And we have delivered on this commitment every year, except for wrestling and that one year we prematurely ended the basketball season.

      Remember, your ticket purchase deadline of March 31 is fast approaching.

      #COMMITTOTHEG

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  14. Godawg

    It’s bewildering that a program the size and with the budget of Georgia cannot field a basketball program in the top 68 in the country. What’s more, they don’t seem to give a shit.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Skeeter

    Thanks Jan Kemp!

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  16. AD hires are a complete crapshoot bc most of these guys are athletic department employees that have just hung around long enough that there is no where else to promote them.

    That said, can McG and hire someone under the age of 50 that doesn’t look like a goober on camera.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. paul

    Funny thing is, you could cut and paste those comments into a story about why Marck Richt got fired and you wouldn’t have to change a single word. If it ain’t good enough for football to consistently win without bringing home championships why is it good enough for basketball?

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    • Mark Fox’s record is a lot less impressive than the previous football coach’s record. The difference is the liquor barons wanted Richt out and Kirby in. Richt did his part by failing to prepare his teams to win in Jax in ’14 and ’15.

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  18. Bright Idea

    Ray Tanner may be the best AD in the SEC. He’s an old coach with guts and a competitive fire, and capital within the university, not a politically correct bean counter. If UGA doesn’t take the east in football this season watch USCe pass us.

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