It never was about getting top talent.

If you had to pick a school that generated the most players on a list of the NFL’s top 100, you’d pick Alabama, correct?

Well, you’d be half right.

… The NFL’s Top 100 Players of 2017 features 20 former SEC players, not including former TAMU stars Von Miller and Michael Bennett.

Alabama and Georgia not only led all SEC teams, but they led all of college football, too. Of course, Alabama won several championships with the following players included, and Georgia, well, didn’t. But that’s why Kirby Smart now roams the sidelines at Georgia to help change that.

This is why I have a hard time feeling sorrowful over Mark Richt’s departure.  Georgia never had a problem signing elite talent.  It had a problem maintaining roster depth.  As to that, we all know where the buck stopped.

Just like we know where it stops now.

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28 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Recruiting

28 responses to “It never was about getting top talent.

  1. Eye opening for sure.

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  2. 3rdandGrantham

    Slight correction, if I may — Georgia never had a problem signing elite skill level talent. However, when it came to recruiting/signing elite talent along the lines — particularly the OL — CMR and co. performed quite poorly. Looking back at previous OL/DL recruiting rankings, along with the quality of OL/DL players selected in the NFL draft going way back to ’05, easily confirms this.

    Oh, and yea — roster management certainly played it’s part as well, in which some years we essentially imposed severe NCAA sanctions on ourselves for no reason whatsoever, carrying as little as 67 scholly players on the roster.

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    • There are plenty of Richt’s former linemen who’ve made good careers in the NFL, so I’m not sure I buy what you’re selling here.

      Note that Geno Atkins is on that top 100 list.

      Your second point is what I was really getting at in my post.

      Liked by 1 person

      • birddawg91

        While UGA has had its share of elite D-line talent, the O-Line has been awful and as pointed out the depth on both lines has been bottom tier SEC at best. Thankfully, it looks like CKS has identified this downfall early and he with Pittman’s help have taken this as a top priority to fix.

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  3. If the offensive line recruiting was so bad, how did we light teams up from 2011-2014? I would suggest the reason CMR no longer is on the Georgia sidelines were the multiple busts at QB following Hutson Mason, who wasn’t a great prospect himself. If CMR signs and plays Deshaun Watson, this story likely has a very different ending.

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    • dawgman3000

      Nah ee, I agree with 3rd on the marginal recruiting along the lines of scrimmage and poor roster management. Mason wasn’t as bad as some make him out to be as he did what he was supposed to do in being a game manager . I wholeheartedly agree that if Deshaun Watson played college ball in Athens, then Kirby is in Columbia coaching the chickens IMO.

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      • JCDAWG83

        I’m not so sure Watson could have done any more than Murray or Mason playing behind the O line they had. The huge holes in the roster every season were killers. It seemed like every season we were stacked at one or two positions and completely empty at a couple others. The narrative always seemed to be “if Georgia can find a __________, this season could turn out to be special”.

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        • dawgman3000

          Hard to disagree with that JC

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        • DawgPhan

          So you are saying that you are not sure that Watson would have set even more SEC records than Murray did.

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          • dawgman3000

            No, he’s saying that Watson would have had to deal with the same issues Murray had to deal with which was having insufficient talent in some positions while being stacked at other positions.

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          • JCDAWG83

            I’m saying I’m not sure Georgia would have won any more with Watson than it did with Murray.

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            • I would have liked to have seen what the offense the last couple of years would have been with Watson over grad transfer Lambert and true freshman Eason.

              I would take 2 appearances in Atlanta and beating Florida 3 years in a row like we did with Murray.

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      • I agree about roster management. That was inexcusable. My point about Mason is that he was a marginal prospect coming out of high school (3 star if
        I remember correctly). CMR’s offensive philosophy didn’t rely on having 5 road graders, but we didn’t need road graders because of the quality of the skill positions and well coached QBs (Greene, Shock, Stafford, Murray). When that elite QB wasn’t there, the offense got stuck in the mud.

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        • DawgPhan

          so like basically any offense in the country. If the QB isnt great, the offense isnt great. Unless you are FishFry or Navy.

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          • Very true – even in the service academy offense, you better have a QB who is good at running the system. Any team who is deficient at QB isn’t going to be good on offense regardless of the system/philosophy.

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    • birddawg91

      A great QB covers up many O-Line deficiencies! hopefully moving forward we have both.

      Liked by 1 person

    • 86BONE

      If my aunt had balls…..

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      • Stupid, childish comment. My point was that the reason for the previous guy’s departure wasn’t the offensive line. It was the fact that we had multiple whiffs at QB. The fact that we let Watson get away to Clemson when he was right under our noses in Gainesville was awful.

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  4. Go Dawgs!

    For most of my time as a Bulldog, UGA has done a great job of selling starting time to blue chip athletes, and a much more poor job of selling backup time to elite athletes.

    I’m heartened by the fact that Kirby seems to be having a little more success getting kids to come in and potentially wait their turn while competing … the still-lean 2018 recruiting class so far notwithstanding.

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  5. DawgPhan

    Just another one of those weird stats where did UGA did everything at a very elite level except win the right combination of games more years.

    Even if you wanted to do what UGA has done you couldnt do it. Not even in a video game.

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  6. Southernlawyer11

    The problem was that Richt managed the roster as if no players would transfer, smoke weed or emerge from an alley on a scooter and wind up . . . no longer on the team. His heart and love for his players was always in the right place, even if it was unrealistic. If you’re searching for a moral answer to what some (used to?) call ‘over-signing’, it’s that in top level college football I think you also owe a duty to your current players to manage their roster in a way that gives them the best chance of winning a championship. Aaron Murray may have had an even better chance in the 2012 SECCG if he had not gone into the game against a team that had 26% more scholarship athletes.

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  7. 69Dawg

    Terrible OL? I think David Andrews would like to show you guys his Super Bowl ring and his middle finger.

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