“Kirby’s just taken it to another level over there.”

This is a really good piece about what’s led to Georgia’s recruiting taking off so dramatically over the past two years.  There are multiple factors involved, of course, but the biggest one is a determination by Smart to keep the best in state talent home.

Richt recruited well — Georgia reached the national title game mostly because of his recruits — but Smart came in knowing that other schools had benefited from Georgia players. A source close to the coach said he was “relentless about keeping the best players in Georgia at home.” He created an Alabama-like recruiting operation but with a much deeper local talent pool.

“He’s done a great job of preaching about doing it for the state school,” said Chris Slade, the coach at Atlanta-based Pace Academy, which has sent standout offensive line recruits Jamaree Salyer and Andrew Thomas to Georgia in the past two classes. “Being a Georgia guy and playing at Georgia, he can speak with a lot more conviction, as opposed to a lot of other coaches.”

Creating “an Alabama-like recruiting operation but with a much deeper local talent pool” sounds like a solid way to build a powerhouse football program.

It all starts with knowing where you want to go as soon as you walk in the door.

“My goal is to outwork everybody in recruiting,” Smart told ESPN.com in April 2016, “sign the best players in the state and turn these guys into the best team we can. I’d take the state of Georgia over all the other states. That’s my home base, which makes this a very good job.”

I’ve said this before — Kirby has succeeded in spite of, not because of, Butts-Mehre.  I don’t know if he’s the smartest guy in the room, but I do know he’s the one guy in the building with a coherent plan of action.  In the land of the clueless, that makes him king.  Fortunately so, for us.


Filed under Georgia Football, Recruiting

19 responses to ““Kirby’s just taken it to another level over there.”

  1. Uglydawg

    Kirby is very intelligent, very driven and very knowledgeable.
    He has surrounded himself with good coaches and talent, which required all three of the qualities mentioned in my first sentence.
    UGA fans have a lot to look forward to!
    (and that’s my stab at stating the obvious for this day!)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Otto

    Richt did recruit many talented players, and as such had some highly rated classes

    Smart recruits talented players, filled needs, and managed the roster.

    Could Smart have had such a good year if he didn’t inherit good talent? Likely not. Would Richt have been as successful? Likely not. Would UGA enjoy the OL depth it has now? No

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thorn Dawg

    Set a goal. Devise a specific plan to achieve that goal.

    Easy peasy.


  4. Russ

    You know, if Kirby continues to get the top recruiting classes each year, Georgia might be pretty good.

    How’s that for my Mr CFB take?

    But you’re correct, Senator. Kirby definitely has a plan and in most fields, that alone can get you pretty far. His execution of the plan has been superb this year.


  5. Normaltown Mike

    Kirby really is a smart guy (I was in skool with hem) but I think it’s his relentless work ethic and competitiveness coupled with intelligence that makes the difference.


    • Sanford222view

      Total agree. I think that is what separates the elite in every field. Lots of people have talent but the elite recognize their talent and maximize it with relentless work ethic, drive, and competitiveness. Look at Saban, Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Jerry Rice, Peyton Manning, etc. Yes they have/had God given ability but they became elite because of a drive to be the best and to out work everyone whether that be physically in the gym or mentally in film room or studying their game.


  6. Gurkha Dawg

    It’s good to be the king.


  7. Everything is about to change IMO. Not just the number in the win column or trophies in the case, but the entire aura of UGA football and, secondarily, Athens. My prediction is that everything touching this football program is about to see an economic boom of epic proportions. Good luck to those trying for admission in 5 years or needing to buy property in Athens.

    /and I mean this is a good thing.


  8. Derek

    The thing that happened to CMR was that he never had to recruit at the highest level to be competitive until Urban came to UF and Saban went to Alabama. By the time he saw it, it was too late. The players didn’t think they could come to UGA and win titles. So guys like Vonn Bell, Raekwon McMillan, Hayward go to OSU and Alabama gets guys like Kamara and Tomlinson and Auburn snakes it’s share out too.

    Georgia guys think they can win titles in Athens. As long as that is the perception, things will be very good.

    Here’s to hoping that Kirby will be to Saban what Belichick has been to Parcells: better.


  9. Hogbody Spradlin

    Hell, even Lee Corso can figure that one out. He said he’s watched hundreds, maybe thousands of college football games and the team with better players won over 80% of them.


  10. Comin' Down The Track

    “I am, as I’ve said, merely competent. But in an age of incompetence, that makes me extraordinary.”
    ― Billy Joel


  11. doofusdawg

    “in spite of” are the three most underutilized words in the English language.


  12. DawgPhan

    I wonder what happened to bama with recruiting this cycle? did the coaching turnover finally catch up to them when coupled with the earlier signing period?

    There are still some top guys out there, but doesnt seem like there is enough to move them back to #1 though. They could end up with a class over 300points though.


  13. Jt (the other one)

    In spite of the BM chaos indeed!