As I drove back from Athens after yesterday’s root canal of a basketball game — how on earth do you lose a home game to a team that shot 27% from the floor? — I pondered the meaning of the moment when the home crowd cheered the longest and hardest, which was when Kirby Smart’s mug went up on the big screen and everyone there realized he was in da’ house.
And I realized it simply boils down to this: Greg McGarity is finally on easy street. Nobody cares that Mark Fox is on track to take yet another underachieving team to the NITs, or that women’s gymnastics is a shell of its former self. (Feel free to continue the litany here; I’m too depressed.) Sure, there’s just enough of the old guard left around in places like men’s tennis and swimming/diving to keep those Director’s Cup rankings from tanking. When you get down to it, though, nobody gives a rat’s ass about that stuff when the football team is rolling.
Hell, McGarity himself doesn’t even care enough to make sure the basketball team can make it to and from Missouri smoothly, which I suspect is part of how a team can look so flat at home against an inferior opponent.
And why should he? At this point, his job responsibilities boil down to two: maximize the incoming revenue stream and give Kirby Smart whatever he wants, both of which happen to be right in his wheelhouse. He can do those in his sleep. In fact, that might be preferable in that he can’t be interviewed while napping.
It’s great to be a Georgia Bulldog. Especially when you’re a Georgia Bulldog who can trot Smart out at any other sporting venue to get a big cheer. The man ought to pinch himself every day over his good luck… although I suspect there are days when he grumbles about not getting the lion’s share of the credit for something his boosters pushed him into.
In the meantime, folks, remember those Hartman Fund contributions don’t send themselves.