Daily Archives: June 15, 2022

‘Bout damn time

As I’m sure you figured out from yesterday’s post about the latest version of Stewart Mandel’s national powers rankings, he reached out to me for a quote about Georgia finally ascending to king status.  He used my short and sweet reaction in his piece, but I gave him a longer answer, which you can hear on his podcast with Bruce Feldman here.  (Dial it up to the 3:40 mark and listen for the next five or so minutes.)

Here’s what I wrote:

The ingredients for sustained, elite success have been there for decades. UGA enjoys one of the best recruiting bases in the country and the program has been extremely good at generating revenue. What’s held UGA back — subjectively, objectively, take your pick — has been the four power bases (school administration, athletic department administration, boosters and head coach) not working in sync and sometimes working at cross purposes. That’s not the case any more and Kirby Smart deserves the lion’s share of the credit for that. It’s an underappreciated aspect of his head coaching tenure and it’s why things feel more sustainable for the long term than they’ve ever seemed for Georgia.

I think back to so many bumps in the road along the way after 1980 — the complete botch job the school did trying to replace Dooley when he stepped aside in 1988, Michael Adams’ treating the athletic department as his own personal fiefdom, the petty way Richt was treated with regard to his assistants’ compensation, the embarrassing presser after the 2015 Belk Bowl win, etc. — and I’m always drawn back to something I posted in the wake of Richt’s firing that continues to ring true even as the program has ascended to the highest level we’ve seen in four decades.

If you manage an SEC football program, there’s a difference between being committed to winning and being financially committed to winning. Everybody wants to win. The hard part is figuring out how to allocate resources to make sure that happens. And, no, that doesn’t mean spending money like a drunken sailor. (We’re looking at you, Tennessee.) It simply means that if you think your rightful place is among the Alabamas, Floridas and LSUs of the world, you’d better take a hard look at what they’re doing and make sure you’re giving your coaching staff the opportunity to keep up with them.

The simple truth is that Georgia wasn’t doing that for the better part of forty years.  Instead, the powers that be spent much of that time smugly wrapping themselves in the blanket of “we do things the right way here” (aka The Georgia Way) when they didn’t have the first damn clue about what the right way actually entailed.  At least not until Kirby Smart showed up.

Sure, I’m thrilled where we as a fan base are now.  But it pisses me off a little to look back and see how much of our passion (and money, sure) was wasted by a bunch of folks who had no business directing an SEC football program.  Let’s not do that again, aight?



Filed under Georgia Football

Genius at work

Florida, you may remember (not that it should take much effort), finished last season with a losing record.  What’s truly impressive is how hard the Gators had to work for that, as this stat indicates.

That seems nearly impossible.  Perhaps we haven’t fully appreciated the fine work Dan Mullen did.


Filed under Gators, Gators..., Stats Geek!

Threatened and concerned

Honestly, I could only think of one thing when I read this:

The ACC had a record revenue year in fiscal year 2021. Still, the league could find itself falling farther behind the SEC and Big Ten in the future as media rights deals come on the horizon — and Miami athletic director Dan Radakovich talked about that.

Radakovich saw the ACC grow during his time at Clemson before arriving at Miami this offseason. In fiscal year 2021, the ACC brought in $578.3 million, which was an $82 million increase from the previous fiscal year. But the SEC led the way with $833 million in revenue and the Big Ten was next at $679.8 million. On top of that, the Big Ten is reportedly on the verge of a massive media rights deal worth nearly $1 billion, which would likely increase that number even more.

That was all part of the question to Radakovich on the ESPN College Football Podcast, and he shared an honest answer with hosts Adam Rittenberg and David Hale.

“Yes, from an answer perspective. Yes. … We’re concerned,” Radakovich said. “It could be a threat. This is why we have commissioners and people in our home office in Greensboro, to be able to help work on that. The athletic directors talk about it all the time. ‘What can we do to help further our cause?’ There are contracts in place, there are rights agreements in place that are there and those contracts have been made. It’s going to be different.

“But I’m looking forward to continuing the conversation to see how we can impact that and possibly change it because if you just take the soliloquy that you just mentioned, we’re going to be a little bit behind the eight-ball as it relates to dollars. How you make that up, that reverts back to each individual campus and decisions that are made on each one of our campuses. We’ll continue to see how that works, but it’s certainly an everyday issue for Commissioner [Jim] Phillips and our staff in Greensboro.”

“Hello? SEC? How soon can you get us out of this conference?”


Filed under ACC Football

Never ever gets old.

Five months later, and it still hasn’t completely sunk in.

Of course, there’s no mention of Metchie and Williams, so I’m not sure how realistic that clip really is.


Filed under Georgia Football

No portal for you

Here’s an interesting trivia question for you:  what do Georgia, Army, Navy and Air Force have in common?  Per 247 Sports’ transfer portal database, these four football teams are the only ones on the FBS level that have not added a single player via the transfer portal this offseason.

If you read the linked piece, there’s definitely a sense the coaching staff was somewhat surprised that fewer players opted to hit the transfer portal than expected. (And don’t forget a certain five-star offensive lineman who dipped his toe in the portal and then decided to stay after all.)

I had heard whispers earlier in the spring that they were looking to add maybe three players from the portal, but now, it appears that there won’t be any new faces coming in.  The staff and the players obviously have a lot of confidence in each other.


Filed under Georgia Football, Transfers Are For Coaches.

On the banks of the St. John’s

The Athletic’s Florida beat writer ranks the Gators’ soon to be fifteen conference opponents in order of priority ($$).  Georgia is, of course, first.  Here’s what he writes about the rivalry:

Alongside the Iron Bowl, the World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party is a must-save rivalry — guaranteed to remain a yearly event even if the SEC wrong-headedly chooses the eight-game model with only one permanent opponent. These schools go head-to-head for recruits and division titles, and the fan bases go at one another even harder. It’s a series so combative, the schools can’t even agree on how many times they played. (Florida lists 99 meetings, whereas Georgia tallies 100, counting the 52-0 win in 1904 over a team from Florida Agriculture College.)

Whatever the number, this border war is thick with moments. From “Run, Lindsay, Run” salvaging Georgia’s national championship in 1980, to Guss Scott’s pick six derailing the Bulldogs’ title hopes in 2002. From Steve Spurrier the quarterback tossing three interceptions in 1966 to Spurrier the coach hanging “half a hundred” on Georgia in ’95. From Jack Youngblood’s goal-line strip in 1970 to the trickery of Appleby-to-Washington five years later.

The unique neutral-site atmosphere is a festival, though there are occasional rumblings about leaving Jacksonville so that teams can host recruits on a home-and-home rotation. My guess is that when major-college football separates from the NCAA in a few years, neutral-site games like this one and Texas-Oklahoma no longer will face that obstacle. And we can keep enjoying these hellacious meetups on the St. John’s River each fall.

It amazes me to see some argue that one more recruiting day every other season trumps the rich history of the series.  (Especially when Smart is already killing it on the recruiting trail and Florida… er, hasn’t been.)


Filed under Gators, Gators..., Georgia Football

Work of art

This may be the most perfect job of trolling I’ve ever seen on Twitter.  It’s pretty much guaranteed to provoke a response from everybody.

I mean, sometimes you’ve just got to step back and tip your cap to a master.


Filed under Social Media Is The Devil's Playground

Musical palate cleanser, commercial edition

This is mesmerizing.

See?  What did I tell you?


Filed under Uncategorized