“We have got to get some wins.”

Chip Towers suggests Kirby Smart’s honeymoon isn’t over, buuuttt…

It’s barely July, but I already feel pressure building on Georgia’s 2017 football season.

I’m not talking about head coach Kirby Smart necessarily. Coaches always feel pressure to win. They’re naturally motivated by competition, not to mention compensation. They’re well paid for what they do, win or lose, and in the grand scheme of things they’re going to be fine.

And Smart’s just two years into this thing. He’s still in the honeymoon period. Unless the Bulldogs’ season deteriorates into some sort of unmitigated disaster or some unexpected scandal arises, he’s going continue to be Georgia’s coach and continue to bank big bucks.

No, I’m really talking about UGA as a football program. It’s time for the Bulldogs to get it going. It’s time to achieve something. It’s time to be something more than a “strong” program that’s financially sound. It’s time to do something more than to continue its “winning tradition.”

Ordinarily, I would consider that some well played hairsplitting, but given that accountability is not exactly a watchword at Butts-Mehre, Towers probably has a point making the distinction.  If the 2017 season falls somewhere between an embarrassing collapse and winning the East, Kirby Smart will no doubt return as Georgia’s head coach in 2018 (although it wouldn’t surprise me if there were a few staff changes in its wake; you gotta do what it takes to gin up fan enthusiasm, right, Greg?).

However, there’s a risk that another mediocre season opens up a fault line that wouldn’t be healthy for Smart’s future.

That’s not really me talking. That’s the feedback I’m starting to hear more and more. And not just from the core fans and alumni, who are going to be loyal to Ol’ UGA whether it wins big or not. It’s the players that Georgia is currently recruiting. And that might be more important.

I hope you’ve had the opportunity to read the work DawgNation’s Jeff Sentell has been doing lately, which has been considerable. He was recently out in Oregon for The Opening, the premier recruiting event of the summer these days, and was cranking out loads of great copy.

While he was out there, Sentell got to talk to several of the country’s most elite recruiting prospects, some of them already committed to Georgia, several of them being pursued by the Bulldogs and a few of them not really in the picture for UGA.

What I noticed from those reports and other recent ones is a bit of theme developing with regard to this set. Right now it’s just barely creeping in but, unchecked, it could become a full-blown meme.

That is, Georgia is cool and exciting and a great brand and a great school and an awesome campus, but it just doesn’t achieve anything on the football field. These kids aren’t saying that straight out, but that’s certainly the inference.

If you’re Kirby Smart at that point and you can’t recruit a top-five class, what exactly do you have left to bring to the table as Georgia’s head coach?

Smart’s honeymoon may not be over, but it sounds like, as much as Jeff Dantzler might strenuously object otherwise, 2017 isn’t shaping up as another throwaway year.  How much that affects the way Smart runs his program this season is likely to be as big a deal as having that rookie season under his belt.

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121 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Recruiting

121 responses to ““We have got to get some wins.”

  1. Russ

    Kirby has done a great job with recruiting so far. Time for the team to show dividends from those efforts. I think we should win the East but regardless of the results, the team has to at least look like a serious threat. That means minimal brain farts, WTF play calls, and late game collapses. And more come from behind, gritty wins when the odds are against it.

    Like

  2. Rocketdawg

    Win the East. Anything less is unacceptable.

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    • Dave

      Unacceptable. So, fire him if he goes, say, 11-2 including a bowl and doesn’t win the East?

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      • Brandon

        Its more likely that an asteroid hits and kills us all before the season starts than 11-2 not winning the East this year

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      • JCDAWG83

        I’d have to say yes, or at least put him on the “substantial improvement next season” clock. 11-2 and not winning the East would mean we lost to two East teams. Once again, the East is weak as water and Georgia has more player talent than any other team. To not win this season would confirm that Georgia cannot win when it counts, the exact thing that got Richt fired. This would also confirm that Georgia is nothing more than; as one of the recruits said, a “recruiting and hype program”. All wins are not created equal, some count much more than others and Georgia has to start winning the ones that count for something.

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        • Dave

          It’s close to a must win in the East, but yet, there are too many things that can happen to just outright say, “East or he gone.” That being said, if we don’t win the East but show marked improvement over last year, and the team that does win the East happens to be really good, then I might be able to stomach it. If we don’t win the East, and the team that does is crap, then I’ll have a major issue with it.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Wait… wait.

          So you’re telling me that going 11-2 (which means 10 wins at least in the regular season) would be enough to put the coach on a performance improvement plan?

          Holy shit.

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          • PTC DAWG

            HE plays the part well…no doubt. 🙂

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            • The gap between the program Georgia is and the program Georgia fans think it to be is becoming more and more vast with each passing year. Kirby Smart went 7-5 in the regular season last year. If he then goes 10-2 in his second year that’s a pretty sizeable improvement. How that would lead one to say he needs to improve or else is crazy to me.

              UGA fans are acting like Alabama fans right now. As if winning is something they’ve always done and will always do. 10-win regular seasons are incredibly rare. I think Richt had 5 in 15 years. UGA hasn’t won enough (not even close) to get to the point where going 10-2 in the regular season isn’t good enough.

              I’m not saying you throw parades for 10-2, but you certainly don’t put a dude on a PIP over them, especially in his second year.

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              • Rocketdawg

                We fired the second winningest coach (first by percentage) because 10-2 wasn’t good enough.

                Kirby walked into a situation where it is championships or bust. If he can’t get it done then we need to find someone who will. Otherwise there was no reason to fire Richt. He won the East 5x in 15 seasons (and probably should have won it 3-4 more times)

                I base my expectations on talent. With the exception of the Oline and maybe the WR is there another team in the East that can match UGA unit for unit? The answer is no especially on defense.

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                • PTC DAWG

                  He just pointed out that Richt did it 5 out of 15 years…it’s not something we do ever year…what’s not to understand?

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                • The greatest myth of Mark Richt is “10-2” wasn’t good enough. I love Richt, but he won 10 games in the regular season 33% of the time. He wasn’t churning out 10-win regular seasons.

                  When you fire a coach and hire a new one you don’t start from the point where the old coach left. You almost always take a step back. Rarely is a coach fired and his replacement immediately does better. Like it or not there are only a few Nick Sabans and Urban Meyers in the world, and we don’t have one.

                  Add in that Kirby himself has a lot to learn and if you expected him to hit the ground like a well-oiled machine that’s a you-problem. Kirby has to win, no doubt about it, but saying 10-2 in year-2 is cause for concern seems unrealistic.

                  Kirby walked into a situation where the talent was good, but not nearly as good as many UGA fans thought (and still think). He walked into a situation where the two most important aspects of an offense were in deep shit (QB and OL). It’s on him to fix that, no doubt, but no one fixes that in 18 months. That takes time, especially the OL.

                  If we don’t see improvement this year I’ll be very concerned about Kirby, but in my mind 2018 is always his make or break year. I think winning the East should certainly be the goal, and I think 10-2 will be more than enough to do that, but if Florida or Tenn or [insert team here] goes HAM and wins 10-11 regular season games while UGA goes 10-2, I’m not going to sit here and lament the season.

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                  • JCDAWG83

                    Kirby is getting paid veteran head coach money, his assistants are being paid very good if not top asst coach money. I see no real reason to give them much of a long leash on expectations. The 2015 team managed 10 wins with Lambert as qb. I think a second year Eason, (who was hyped as the next Peyton Manning) the best backfield in the country, a supposed strong defense and a schedule without a single really tough opponent should easily win 10 games or more and win the, yet again, weak SEC East.

                    10-2 and not winning the East would mean one of two things. First, we lost to two East teams, probably Tenn and UF (again), that would be totally unacceptable regardless of the record. Second, we lost to Auburn and an East team and another East team turned out to be a top ten team. That would be a little easier to take but would still suck and bring back the Groundhog Day feeling from the Richt years.

                    It’s time to win something that matters. If we’re going to be perpetual “also rans” let’s hire a cheap coach and cheap assistants and lower ticket prices and make games nothing more than a social outing.

                    Liked by 1 person

                  • 69Dawg

                    Ray Goff 2.0 great recruiter but he could not coach. Kirby is a great recruiter and was an excellent assistant to Saban but why must UGA always hire a “Project” as head coach. Had Jim Donnan not been the poster boy for inferiority complexes he would have been a great coach, why because he had been a champion at Marshal. If Kirby keeps calling defenses and wildly signaling to the defense ala Todd Grantham we are in deep sh@t. He will have learned nothing from his first season and will demonstrate to us that he is a stubborn guy that will, ala Will Muschamp, fail. At least being fired at UF has made Muschamp a better head coach at USCe, I just hope Kirby can learn enough to win at UGA and not at his next HC job.

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                  • paul

                    In fifteen seasons Mark Richt won a total of ten or more games ten times. Look it up. Ten times. (2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2014 and 2015). You can talk about regular season wins only and claim Richt’s record was a myth. It wasn’t. He had a .740 winning percentage at Georgia. Mark Richt won a total of ten or more games in ten out of his fifteen seasons and it wasn’t enough. McGarity was tasked with finding someone better. He hired Smart. Kirby needs to deliver. If it doesn’t happen this year or next both he and McGarity are toast.

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                    • The entire argument was about UGA going 11-2 and not winning the EAst thus putting Kirby “on notice.” If you think 11-2 in Kirby’s 2nd year will have him “on notice” I’d like to talk to you about my oceanfront property in Waco.

                      Going 11-2 and not playing in the Dome means UGA would at worst be 10-2 in the regular season. 10-win regular seasons are RARE. They happened 5/15 years in the Richt era and (without looking it up) I’d guess they happened less than 3 times in the 20 years before Richt. There’s no damn way that Kirby would be under any heat for going 10-2 and winning a bowl game (in what would almost assuredly be the Sugar Bowl).

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                  • DoubleDawg1318

                    +1
                    I agree. 2018 has always been the make or break year in my mind. That said, like you, I expect to be around 10 wins and hopefully in Atlanta. I think winning big this year is very important in order to bring in the big time recruits we are chasing.

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              • Hal Welch

                Dude, Richt hit 10+ wins nine times; he also hit 9 an additional 2 times meaning he was 9+ in 11 of his 15 years.

                Now to a point this may kind of support your theory or debunk it entirely depending on perspective. I think it debunks you.

                UGA fired a coach that averaged 9.67 wins per year because 10 wasn’t enough anymore.

                Any moron that expected anything much better than 7-5 maybe 8-4 this year out of the gate is just plain football stupid. Now I didn’t expect to lose to a couple of the teams we ended up losing to, but I also didn’t expect to beat a couple teams we beat either. Net-net we finished about where I expected and we were 5 points from finishing 10-2 in the regular season.

                I have a very strong gut feeling that those 5 points have been Kirby’s focus the whole off season. Hail marys, clock management, better red zone play calling on both sides of the ball. Situational football improvement in other words. But we’ll see.

                I think 10-2 certainly keeps his job, keeps the recruiting going. But with the starters we have back, the usual improvement most teams and coaches see in year 2, I don’t see a team on the schedule we can’t beat and shouldn’t beat until we get to Atlanta.

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                • PharmDawg

                  You related to Jeff Dantzler by any chance?

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                • PharmDawg

                  “we were 5 points from finishing 10-2 in the regular season…” Classic Georgia Way statement.

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                • “5 Points From 10-2” should be the novel written about UGA football post-Herschel Walker.

                  Liked by 1 person

                  • One Play Away Ray was 5 points from unbeaten in 1992 …

                    Liked by 1 person

                    • Hal Welch

                      Guys like you all worry me, you just seem football stupid to me but I know you aren’t. Maybe you’re just unhappy with your life and want things to bitch about, or maybe you’re just the typical lifelong UGA fan that’s just been burned so much you can’t find anything to feel good about. In Richt’s 15th season, constantly being 5 yards or 5 points away became an identity for him and the program. Under Kirby, in his first year it’s a relevant point to see just how close the team was to being really really good. That is particularly illuminating when you consider that he had to start a freshman QB because Richt didn’t have one on the roster. The best player he had was coming off a catastrophic knee injury. And the OL was, save for one or two seasons, always the weak spot on Richt’s teams. All of that, and the dude was 5 points from being incredible in his first year.

                      This shit doesn’t happen in a vacuum and everything matters in the game of football. I love Mark Richt and I would have been fine had he stayed another 15 years. But I also am excited to see what Kirby Smart can do now, it’s his team. I saw more spark from him in year one than I did from Mark, and Mark won the league in his second season. Of course, he didn’t have to meet Saban in Atlanta so we’ll see. I expect big things this year based on what I saw last year.

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                    • Maybe you’re right, Hal. But for the life of me, I’m hard-pressed to find a two-game stretch in recent memory when a Georgia team played as badly as last year’s did against Nicholls and Ole Miss.

                      Liked by 2 people

                    • I wasn’t bitching. I was stating a fact. I hope Kirby is wildly successful, but to state we were 5 points away from 10-2 is factually correct. Think about those two … Vandy and Georgia tech.

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                    • Hal Welch

                      Senator, one such stretch that comes to mind was ’03, UAB and UF. It was 16-13 in both games, barely winning UAB with a comeback and losing to UF by the same yet opposite score the next week. In 2013 we had the Mizzou and Vandy losses in back to back games that were ugly. In 2011 we bookended the year with two terrible stretches getting hozed by Boise and USCe the first two weeks. Annihilated by LSU in the SEC CG and embarrassed by Mich ST in the bowl game. Don’t forget the 4 game losing streak of 2010…

                      I’m not saying the team didn’t look bad in some spots. I’m saying they looked about like I expected them to. Good sometimes, bad others. Confused at times. Not sure they bought in all the way all the time last year. That stuff happens in coaching changes. It happened to me when I played.

                      The team wasn’t very good at the end of Mark’s tenure. What I saw last year was a team that from a talent perspective wasn’t nearly as talented as our teams had been. It had no real leadership. No star power. And the coaches didn’t know the team nor did the team know the coaches. But they grew, and they never quit on Kirby. He grew and they grew. Now if the OC can just get his head outta his ass we can do some big things.

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                    • None of those come close to a near-death experience against an FCS team that finished 5-6 and a record 45-point deficit against an SEC team. It was an historically awful two-game stretch.

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                • JBC

                  Well if you’re gonna play the “what if” game in regards to last year, we were also 5 points away from finishing the regular season 5-7. So, yeah…

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        • scrambledawg

          I totally agree. Barring some kind of calamitous injury bug like we had in 2013 (IIRC correctly the year), Kirby’s job is simple: win the east. Anything less would mean we should not have fired Richt, IMO.

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      • Rocketdawg

        I stand by my statement. 11-2 and not winning the East means we went 6-2 in the SEC with losses most likely against UF and either Auburn or Tennessee. There is literally no excuse to lose to an East team this season. Unless Malik Zaire is the second coming of Tebow the UF offense will be garbage again. The stellar defense that has bailed them out the last few years won’t be nearly as good as most of Muschamps guys are gone. Coach Beaver hasn’t exactly been killing it in recruiting.
        Tennessee is a dumpster fire again. Booch’s best chance to win the East was last year.
        There isn’t a team on our schedule that will have equal or greater talent on either side of the ball. I don’t think we’ll go undefeated so it matters which game(s) we lose as far as winning the division.

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        • It doesn’t mean we went 6-2 in the East. It means we lost two games. FLA could go 7-1 in the East, beat UGA and take the tie breaker in a reverse of what UGA did to it in 2012 should UGA drop a game to either ND or GT.

          Kirby is in the second year of his first ever head coaching gig. If he improves by 3 regular season wins I just don’t see how that’s anything other than a positive sign.

          We all want to win the East and get a shot at the SEC title. I get that. And if Kirby was in his 4th year I’d understand the win-or-else vibe. But he’s not.

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          • PTC DAWG

            It’s the texting/twitter instant gratification think going on. I want it all, NOW.

            I happen to think our OL is a year away…I may be surprised…9-3 would be my call if forced to bet…maybe a game better with a few breaks.

            Cap One BOWL sounds like an improvement to me over Belks/Gator/Liberty rotation.

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            • Rocket Dawg

              You just accept mediocrity…..you don’t DEMAND excellence. (Isn’t that how the refrain goes?).
              Kirby may have a little more good will for 2017 had we not looked horrendous and almost lost against a I-AA team AT HOME and lost 3 games with stupid coaching decisions in the last seconds.
              It would be different if Kirby had stepped into a 4-8 or 5-7 team. I’d give him 3-4 years and take the bumps along the way. With the talent that was here plus the talent he has recruited in the last two classes there is zero excuse for not being competitive with every single team on the schedule. None.

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              • You just moved the goalposts, though. I don’t think anyone is arguing UGA shouldn’t be competitive in every game. The argument is if UGA goes 11-2 and does not win the East that should put Kirby on the “substantial improvement next season” clock.

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            • Agree on the OL. I think it’s a slog again this year. My hope is the OL coach lives up to the hype and gets more out of the current 5. I think the 2018-2020 OL is going to be beast-like, though. I worry about Eason’s development, but I do think the reasons for optimism outweigh the cause for concern.

              There are just so many unknowns right now, both on the field and on the sideline. It’s impossible for me to predict UGAs record with any clarity.

              On the one hand I think back to the struggles against bad teams, while on the other you look at a stocked defense and two elite RBs. If you told me UGA went 7-5 I could see it just as if you told me they went 10-2.

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        • DoubleDawg1318

          We could have said similar things about the last two years and yet we lived on the edge the entire season. Teams that scrape by Georgia Southern and Nichols don’t suddenly destroy everyone. I fully expect to lose a couple games this year but I don’t know which ones because as you said, we have the talent edge. We have serious question marks of our own that could easily get us beat.

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    • Rugbydawg79

      beat florida

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  3. Aladawg

    Win the East or more alumni money dries up!

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  4. AusDawg85

    It has to be more than win the east. We do need style points. Club Appy. Man-handle Notre Dame. Whip USCe, gators, Auburn and GT. Show a style, preferably on both O and D, but at least create “Kirby Smart” football on D and get everybody rowing in the same direction. I saw none of that last year…ok, too soon, too little to work with, etc. Fine. But show us something beyond just wins and losses…that’s what he was hired for, right?

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  5. paul

    I think, as has often been mentioned here, the honeymoon has BEEN over. Losing to GT at home, losing to Vanderbilt at home, struggling with Nicholls at home, those things will put an end to any warm fuzzies real quick. Kirby has responded well by pulling in an elite class of young men. Now everyone, future recruits included, wants to see what he can do with them. Remember, Kirby is still very much unproven as head coach. It’s time to put up or shut up. Have a bad year and he’ll lose some assistants and probably (hopefully) the offensive coordinator. I would also hope that if we perform poorly this year that year three would be the last chance for Kirby. Let’s not drag this our unnecessarily if it ain’t going to happen. Let’s also show McGarity the door if the worst case scenario does unfortunately play out.

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    • JCDAWG83

      If we don’t win the East this season the donors/ticket buyers and recruits will head for the door and Georgia football will be in the tank for at least 4 years. The milk from the 1980 season cow has dried up, the fans have had enough of “wait til next year” and “If only!”. McGarity and BM know it too. The abysmal results of all Georgia athletic programs have shown the fan base what they are really paying for and they don’t like it.

      This season is truly put up or shut up time.

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      • PharmDawg

        Agreed. If Kirby doesn’t win the SEC East, at minimum, he and the love child of Archie Manning and Alfred E. Neumann will be on an exceedingly hot seat.

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  6. TMC DAWG

    Yes we need to win the east. But do that then we have a shot at the main prize. SEC champs and a New Year’s Day bowl or should I dare say a spot in the final 4

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  7. No One Knows You're a Dawg

    8-4 may not get Kirby Smart fired, but it sure will get Greg McGarity canned.

    Relatedly, I was just thinking yesterday that because the braintrust in Georgia athletics has decided to put all their revenue-generating eggs in the football basket, any waivering of support for the football program puts the success of every other sport in jeopardy. As a UGA All-American in a non-revenue sports once told me, what’s good for the football program is good for all of us. The flip side of that being what’s bad for football is bad for for all the other sports too. The decline in Hartman Fund contribution levels necessary for season tickets shows the cracks in fan interest are starting to develop. All this at a time when there is more intense local competition in metro Atlanta for sports’ fans dollars.

    Which makes the Florida, Auburn, and Tech games interesting for reasons beyond just conference standings and bragging rights. Because if we go into those games wobbling, our opponents are going to smell blood. Losing those games, and the chaos it would cause, would be a serious setback not only for football, but all our entire athletic teams. And I think this awareness by opposing coaches and ADs of the chance to cripple Georgia athletics across the board for years would add extra inspiration.

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    • No one is firing McGarity, as much as he may deserve to be fired, he aint going nowhere unless there is an academic or sex scandal.

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      • JCDAWG83

        If donations drop significantly and ticket sales slow down further, you can bet your behind he will be dropped like a bad habit. Money drives every decision at BM. If McGarity becomes seen as a threat to the cash flow the board will publicly execute him if that’s what they think it will take to turn the cash tap back on full blast.

        Another disappointing season in football will doom all sports for the next four years at a minimum. The donor/ticket buying/fan base has had enough. This is put up or shut up year for McGarity and the football program.

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        • Donations have dropped already. Ticket sales have already slowed. He hasn’t been fired yet, so what makes you think it will happen if the same stuff continues? “The Board” does not make the firing decision – The President of the University does. The President is 100% focused on increasing the University endowment and USNWR rankings. Athletics is a distraction at best, and competition for donor dollars at worst. So long as Athletics is not included in the USNWR ranking and they stay out of the news for a scandal, the President is more than happy to keep things at the Athletic Department just how they are.

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  8. Normaltown Mike

    Thanks Senator.

    This song is covered in a recent kid animated film (Sing!) so now my kids can appreciate Queen at their best. Thankfully not Queen at their worst…Bicycle Race.

    Freddy’s interaction with the crowd at Wembley prior to this song is priceless if you haven’t seen it.

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  9. 3rdandGrantham

    This is the most important year for UGA football in many, many years. If we succeed, UGA starts rolling and we become a top t power with playoff births and such coming up. If we fail, we will continue to muddle through without a lot of excitement to look forward to, other than the occasional big win here and there.

    I’ve said we will win 11 games and I’m sticking to it — a special year is just ahead.

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    • Will (The Other One)

      Yeah, the flip side to the expectations are some really nice rewards. Get to 10-11 wins and win the East, without losing to Tech, and especially without losing to UF again…
      And there’s then a far better chance at landing Sayler and Fields, so UGA gets recruiting momentum with the #1 RB, #1 OG, and #2 QB, plus Eason coming into his junior year…so potentially pack-to-back #3 classes (even in my most optimistic daydreams I don’t see the class passing OSU, Bama, and Clemson, just 1 of the 3.).

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  10. Glenn - Newnan

    It’s put up or shut up time Kirby. Win the East now.

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  11. No One Knows You're a Dawg

    “Show we are more than just a recruiting and a hype squad”

    Recruit Nolan Smith pretty much nails Georgia football over the past few years.

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  12. I have to imagine the pucker factor is pretty high on the upper floors of Butts-Mehre right now. I’m going with 10-2 as the standard and beat the traditional Big 3 as the benchmark. I wouldn’t be surprised to see us lose at ND and on the Kneeland cow pasture. Unless Tennessee exceeds expectations, that’s good enough for Atlanta and a likely NY 6 bowl game. I believe that puts the program on solid footing. Something worse than that (barring a catastrophic rash of injuries) puts Kirby on a warm seat in 2018.

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    • JCDAWG83

      The irony is; if we go to Atlanta and lose and end up 10-3, we most likely end up in Orlando, not one of the NY 6 Bowls. The loser of the SECCG really gets screwed on bowl selection.

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  13. Nah. He’s a Georgia boy and he has fire. He’s got at least 5 years to rebuild. Hell..Georgia people are still distracted convincing themselves of how bad Richt was so he’s probably got more than 5. And he’s a Georgia boy….and he has fire. No rush.

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    • PharmDawg

      Jim Donnan got 5 years, Kirby gets 5 years.

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      • That’s the Georgia Way

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      • paul

        No way. Kirby was brought in specifically to take the program to the next level. He got hired because 10 wins was not good enough. He has to win championships and he has to win them fast. Donor dollars are already slowing significantly. Another bad year and Kirby only gets one more to right the ship. Five years is what a normal hire gets with normal expectations. Kirby was not a normal hire and the expectations surrounding his hire are not normal either.

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  14. Uglydawg

    I hate it when “reporters” try to establish a meme and won’t just come out and admit it’s their own plant they’re watering. The last sentence in the second paragraph is telling. While I might agree this is a hazard that thae program faces, I would not pin it on kid’s “inference”. There’s always reporters around Atlanta that are ready to strike the match to light up the hot seat while assigning the deed to others.
    Just report, Chip, don’t instigate.

    “What I noticed from those reports and other recent ones is a bit of theme developing with regard to this set. Right now it’s just barely creeping in but, unchecked, it could become a full-blown meme.”

    “That is, Georgia is cool and exciting and a great brand and a great school and an awesome campus, but it just doesn’t achieve anything on the football field. These kids aren’t saying that straight out, but that’s certainly the inference.”

    See that quote..the one that no kid actually made? Then he qualifies it with the final sentence.
    Maybe I protest too much, but I still call shenanigans on Chip for this one.

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    • The quote in the header is from a commitment. I linked to another quote from a highly sought after in state o-lineman.

      Chip’s inference is a fair one, IMO.

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      • PTC DAWG

        I think the kids take is more than fair…7-5 again won’t cut it.

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        • Bright Idea

          Does Towers or a recruit really need to say it, or not, for it to be as plain as the noses on our faces? An underachieving football season means money and recruits will be leaving every sport in droves. Forget the talent level, schedule or phony expectations. We’re tired of winning nothing of significance while Florida excels.

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  15. reality check here

    11 wins including the bowl would be enough for me if we don’t win the SEC East. Anything less is not acceptable and McGarity should be held accountable. That is the standard McGarity set when he concluded 10 win seasons were not sufficient to retain the coach with the best win percentage in Georgia’s history. I am not interested in hearing from people who want to talk about Richt’s deficiencies. I have heard all that and subjective opinions about that history are not the point. If his successor cannot improve on a record deemed unacceptable, the person who fired Richt needs to be accountable to meet the standards he set.

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  16. Pedro

    It is not surprising that these comments are also coming after the team delivered no early round NFL drafts. The negative recruiting is partially by virtue of that, and projections of a strong dawg draft will quash that.

    The recruits want to see improvement. Salyer wants to see results from the o-line and the coaches he is buying into, fields wants to see the team create output from another 5 star qb, etc. etc. High offensive productivity, especially early in the season, and strong wins early should be enough to substantiate Kirby’s proposition.

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  17. Jeff Sanchez

    Last week ‘ol Dantzler was asked what Kirby needs to improve on in his second season, and he said he couldn’t really think of much.

    I think his only answer was “allow the position coaches to do more of their jobs” and not have the guy who pulls him back off the sidelines because of the “optics”.

    When it comes to Kirby, JD makes the Bama media look like Woodward and Bernstein.

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  18. Skeptic Dawg

    It is kinda funny reading everyone’s expected win total here. You guys throw out 11 and 10 wins with an SEC East title with ease. You so quickly forget that Georgia has played a large part in the East being down for some time now. It has been many a moon since we last saw a solid UGA team. There are a ton of holes to patch on this team and not a lot of time to fix them. 8 or 9 wins is about right for this group… steal one here to get to 10 or drop one there to find yourself at 7. Yep, 8-4 or 9-3 fits a program with questions at OL, WR, QB and DL, OC and HC. Those are mighty big question marks to be assumin’ 10 or 11 wins plus an East title.

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    • PharmDawg

      Kirby is getting paid $3.75 million. He better hurry up or else.

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      • I love this “or else” shit. I really do.

        The baseball coach is back after four losing seasons, but Kirby’s in serious trouble if the football team only wins eight or nine games this year? Get real.

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        • JCDAWG83

          I think the difference is; if fans stop buying baseball tickets, it won’t affect every other sport on campus. I’m sticking with my theory that not winning the East will cause a substantial drop in “donations” and ticket sales.

          Donations were down this year, all season tickets didn’t sell out for the first time in decades, Tenn, Florida and Auburn away game tickets are not sold out. The natives are already very restless and BM knows it. Another disappointing season and the wheels start coming off.

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          • 69Dawg

            Like it or not it’s true.

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          • McGarity isn’t canning the coach he hired two years ago for winning eight or nine games. He just isn’t. B-M has way too much invested in Smart to cut him loose quickly.

            I’ll believe your apocalyptic predictions when I see them. Our fan base tends to be forgiving.

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        • PharmDawg

          Apples and oranges, counselor. UGA baseball rarely gets nationally televised games, nor does it rate front-page coverage in the AJC. Mark my words, Kirby will be on an exceedingly hot seat if this team fails to win the SEC East.

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          • With all due respect, you ain’t Greg McGarity.

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            • PharmDawg

              You damn right I’m not.

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            • Macallanlover

              And McFrugal isn’t the one who will make that call either. He is a figurehead who will take the fall for continued failure, but he doesn’t have that much authority….and shouldn’t ever have. I feel the office should have that authority but wouldn’t give it to him if I were Morehead/Trustees. He is a mistake, and I am pretty sure they realize that. Just because you promote/hire someone and give him a title it doesn’t mean you don’t keep him in a “check with me” status until he earns your confidence. I submit, he has lost authority in his time in the position, not grown it.

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          • Ricky McDurden

            If he has a new AD, Kirby’s seat may be hot. McGarity’s career will live and die with Kirby’s but to be honest I’m no longer sure if McGarity draws the same vitriol and annoyance from the liquor barons and President that he draws the likes of us. This will be an interesting year for UGA Athletics for a number of reasons.

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        • reality check here

          Kirby deserves some time to make things work. Frank Beamer was just about run out of town early in his career at Va Tech and Dooley was hung in effigy at UGA. It takes longer to evaluate a body of work. For every Tom Herman who wins 13 in his first year you get a bunch of Mark Richts, Kirby Smarts or Nick Sabans who win 8 or fewer their first year then do fine after that. At least I hope Kirby does fine and think he will. What was Georgia’s record the year before we won the National title? Pitiful. And what was Tom Herman’s record his second year at Houston? Not so hot.

          But McGarity has had plenty of time to see what he can do. Give him another year or so and if things don’t improve hold him accountable.

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          • And what was Tom Herman’s record his second year at Houston? Not so hot.

            It was better than Kirby Smart’s. And before you make scheduling excuses, Houston was the only team in the country last season to notch two regular season wins over top five teams.

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            • reality check here

              I am well aware that a 9-4 record is better result than 8-5. I am certain I was not trying to compare Houston’s 2016 record with Georgia’s in my post. I was comparing long term results with initial season results.

              I know you are a lawyer. I am not. However, as a recovering CPA I am prepared to argue with you that 9-4 is not as good a record as 13-1, or as I put it, not so hot.

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              • If all you had said was that Houston’s record declined in his second season, you’d have heard nary a peep from me.

                I would still say that two regular season wins over top five teams is a little better than “not so hot”. Your mileage apparently varies as to that.

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  19. Dylan Dreyer's Booty

    This can not be just a throwaway year. But saying we have to win the East – or any specific number of games – is not a good goal, imo. After all, Mark Richt won 10 games in ways that we found distasteful enough that we fired his ass. What we really need to do is have a season without a Nichols State scare, without a last second UT meltdown, without brain fart losses to Tech and Vandy. I’ll know it when I see it.

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    • JCDAWG83

      Take away the inexplicable bed crap games and RIcht is still here and we have at least a couple more SEC championships.

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      • Jeff Sanchez

        Which “bed crapping” losses would have brought us a couple more SECCs?

        Specifics, please

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        • Will (The Other One)

          The 2004 UT game gets at least a rematch against Auburn. The 2007 UT game and/or the SCar game cost an SEC title and probably a national title.
          2014 UF cost an SEC East title, but probably did prevent a sure loss to Bama.
          2015 UF loss cost another SEC East title, ditto the sure loss to Bama.
          So that’s 4 more SEC East titles, 1, maybe 2 SEC titles, and 1 National title.

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    • MGW

      Thats pretty much it. Just go be a damn good team. There’s too much out of the team’s control to try to quantify it with any accuracy. Just go kick some ass and don’t look like garbage.

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  20. Somebody once told me that defense wins championships. From what I’ve been hearing, we are gonna have a pretty damned good defense. So logic (or lack thereof) has already deemed that we shall win a championship. All is well.

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  21. Will Trane

    I’m sort thinking in the same line as AusDawg85.
    There were a few 2016 plays by the freshman QB that hurt the Dawgs in two games. Particularly, late in the games, 4th quarter. Go back and look at the UT and GT games. In 2017 the QB can not commit those kind of turnovers late in games with a lead.
    He and his receivers have to stretch the field not only vertically but also across the width. The OC and staff have to create more space for play, and the running game.
    Want to see a very physical fast paced team that takes control in the fourth quarter and not wash themselves out from a win. Hopefully more quality depth and rotation will help in 2017.
    Think the players have to be more physical on offense and a lot smarter and savvy in their play and execution.
    Last year was an adjustment process for a lot of players, a lot of patching in of positions, and hopefully becoming more focused and disciplined in their play…no more taking your helmet off on the field after scoring a TD with just seconds on the clock.
    Just some maturity and stop being self indulgent in a moment. Put points on the board and act like you have done it all your life…a habit…muscle memory.
    The East is going to be a tough division in 2017. Even Kentucky and Vandy has players and coaches. Forget the past and start building a new tradition. No more “winning tradition” or “finish the drill”, start drilling the hell out of some teams…light them up.
    Athens should be the last place any team should want to visit for a game.
    And that goes for the wine and cheese crowd…make the place unwelcome for opposing teams.

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    • It was damn stupid for old “I Haz a Fat Pencil” to ask a true freshman to run a play-action deep pass off the goal line against Tennessee and to throw inside your own territory when you’re trying to put the tech game away. Make them use their timeouts, kick the ball and play defense with a favorable clock.

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  22. ApalachDawg

    Let me see if I understand this correctly, if UGA doesn’t win the East/10 wins, we might as well shut down UGA athletics after 100+ years because money/support/interest is just going to stop…
    To quote Gen McAuliffe “Nuts”.

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    • PharmDawg

      No one is arguing for a “shut down” of UGA athletics if the football team doesn’t win the East. What people are arguing for is increasing the pressure on the love child of Archie Manning and Alfred E. Neumann, and his hand-picked football corch Kirby Smart, should they fail to meet this objective. The only “Nuts” are the folks who are willing to accept less.

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    • reality check here

      11 wins Apa, including the bowl. And the accountability is not to shut down UGA athletics it would be to fire the guy who said 10 wins should cost Georgia’s coach his job and has otherwise done a shitty job.

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    • Got Cowdog

      Historical question: Did he really say “Nuts” or was it something stronger, edited for public content because of the times?

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  23. TMC DAWG

    I truly believe that chaneys play calling will dictate the weight of the pressure to win games. He has to open it up and not t be so predictable

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  24. Stoopnagle

    Honeymoon ended after the Nichols State game. And even that garbage was followed by our first (and worst ever) loss to Ole Miss in 20 years, a home loss to Vandy, yet another lifeless game in Jax, and blowing a 13 point 4th quarter lead to Tech at home.

    But, hey, we beat Mizzu and Kentucky!

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  25. MGW

    Aah the self-fulfilling prophesy of hot seat talk. If you can get enough people to believe it, its true.

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  26. Kirby gonna take us “Georgia Boys” to the promised land! Hell yeah….now pass me a beer and a 9/16.

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  27. Chopdawg

    When did we decide to start measuring our success as a university by the opinions of a bunch of high-school juniors?

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