Just for the record: What made you decide to fire Richt?
I felt like we all needed to hit the reset button. There’s a great book (by Jim Collins) – “Good to Great.” What I was trying to do was to create an environment to where we could have a great football program. I felt like we had sort of maxed out. We had reached a certain plateau. Our conversation on that Sunday morning … I struggled more than he did.
I should tell you that I’ve heard a counter-narrative: That you didn’t actually make the decision on Richt, that it was done for you by boosters …
I can put that to bed right now. I did not have any influence from anyone. People weigh in all the time. I get calls pro and con, pro and con. But there was not one person here on our campus that directed me to do anything. That was my decision. I made the recommendation to the president. He supported that, and so we moved on.
I can’t wait to read if he says the same thing about the Smart hire.
By this way, is this the McGarity Mantra, or what?
If I had to do it over again, I probably would handle it a different way.
In any event, this is the money quote (see what I did there?):
If you’re not where you want to be as an athletic department, why not?
I would love to go season to season: Football, (then) people excited about basketball and gymnastics, then baseball. (That’s) from a revenue standpoint. We go from fall to the winter to the spring. We’re competing at a high level. That has not happened yet. I want to see that happen. Especially our revenue sports, I want to see them become successful. Because we only have a few opportunities to generate revenue. All our other sports are complimentary admission. So I want to see us maximize that opportunity, and the way you maximize it is to be successful.
Athletic success in the service of making sure the reserve fund prospers. Now there’s the Georgia Way we know and love. Screw competition for competition’s sake.
… Altogether the top 20 is something we should be proud of. Are we totally overjoyed? No, I think there’s so much room to improve. And we know if a few other teams might have advanced a little further, the top 10 could (have been) achieved this year if a few things had gone our way.
Sounds like a man with a plan.