Category Archives: Georgia Southern Football

Make them an offer they can’t refuse.

I tell clients all the time that a contract is only as good as the people who signed it are.  So you can imagine how good these contracts were:

Georgia Southern’s co-offensive coordinators last season, who were fired in the wake of a 5-7 record, have filed separate lawsuits against the school’s athletic association, head coach Tyson Summers and multiple administrators including athletics director Tom Kleinlein. The lawsuits allege breach of contract, fraud and tortious interference after the school failed to execute the 18-month contracts the coaches signed initially, then pressured them to sign shorter deals two days before their dismissal…

… After being offered the job by Summers and receiving formal offer sheets, both David Dean and Rance Gillespie signed 18-month contracts on Jan. 27, 2016, that established June 30, 2017, as the end of their term.

Both coaches claim that more than nine months later, they learned the school’s Board of Regents and the Georgia Southern University Athletic Foundation never signed the contracts. According to the lawsuits, Summers notified the coaching staff on Nov. 3, 2016, that new contracts were being prepared.

The second contract, which was given to the coaches following the 10th game of the season on Nov. 16, had changed the end of the agreement to Feb. 28, 2017.

The lawsuit alleges that Summers, Kleinlein, senior associate athletics director for business operations Jeff Blythe and director of football operations Cymone George “conspired to change the terms of the January Contract and specifically the employment end date” in order to save money, knowing they would be making coaching changes on the offensive staff.

The lawsuit states that Dean refused three requests from George to sign the new contract, believing he already had signed a valid contract. Dean claims he finally signed the new contract on Dec. 2 following a phone call with Blythe that left him with the impression that if he didn’t sign it, he could be fired any time and that his salary and benefits would immediately cease. Gillespie’s lawsuit makes the same claim, saying Blythe “informed Gillespie that it would be in Gillespie’s best interest to sign the November contract for his own protection.”

All this to save a few bucks, evidently, as the fix was already in.

These events were unfolding amidst a swirl of speculation that Summers might be removed as head coach following his first season, as fans were upset by offensive changes away from the school’s traditional triple-option attack and the failure to make a bowl game despite returning 17 starters from the previous year’s 9-4 team.

On Dec. 3, following the final game of the season, Kleinlein announced that Summers would remain as head coach. The next day, however, Dean and Gillespie were let go. On Dec. 9, Georgia Southern hired Georgia Tech quarterbacks coach Bryan Cook — who turned down the job a year earlier — to be the offensive coordinator.

Whatever GSU saved will likely get eaten up in attorney’s fees, but at least they know one thing there.  As Brian VanGorder can tell you, nothing good ever comes of ditching the triple option in Statesboro.

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Filed under Georgia Southern Football, See You In Court

“But I’ve got to have somebody that wants to play us.”

Apparently Georgia has been talking to Kent State about a future game, with a guaranteed payout of nearly $2 million.  Georgia Southern’s athletic director wants to know why such sweet, sweet bank might be leaving the state his program shares with Greg McGarity’s.

“I’m not devaluing Kent State. But you’re paying them significant amount of money and they’re probably not going to have 100 fans there,” Kleinlein said. “(Whereas) I’m going to bring 15,000 people with me…”

Dude, I think you just answered your own question.

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Filed under Georgia Football, Georgia Southern Football

Ain’t got time for you no more.

Georgia Southern writes, Georgia Southern calls, but

“I’m trying to get that game back again,” Georgia Southern athletics director Tom Kleinlein said on Thursday. “We sat down and talked about it a couple months later and thought it was a great experience. Obviously we bring a bunch of our fans there, and a lot of their fans and our fans are closely-tied fan bases. And with the whole deal with Erk (Russell) coming from here it’s a great, great game. We’d like to play again in the future. But I’ve not gotten a response to being able to play that game.”

Georgia athletics director Greg McGarity did not immediately respond to requests for comment, via text and e-mail.

The last discussions with Georgia were earlier this spring, according to Kleinlein, and those came via e-mail.

“They have said that they’re kind of in the process of some other things right now,” Kleinlein said.

Like scheduling Austin Peay.

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Filed under Georgia Football, Georgia Southern Football

Had it all the way.

In a night filled with inexplicable happenings – I still can’t figure out what in the hell the officials were up to with the GSU muffed punt – the overtime period topped it all.

First, Southern decides to take the ball out of the hands of its most effective player by running the wildcat.  Twice.  (When you’re running the triple option already, what’s the point?)  It was as if the Eagles’ offensive coordinator looked across the field at Brian Schottenheimer and said, “You think you make dumb ass playcalls?  Buddy, you ain’t seen real dumb ass.”

Then came this.

On a night when it seemed like the offensive line couldn’t block its way out of a paper bag, everyone on the line made their blocks.  Hunter Long, who’d been used and abused all night, not only got his block down on the line, but managed to throw another one downfield that sprung Michel for the score.  Stunning, really.

And a welcome relief, because I was not looking forward to Mark Richt having to play another game of Marshall Morgan roulette.

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Filed under Georgia Football, Georgia Southern Football

Where’s the love, I ask you?

Hey, I thought you guys liked us!

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Richt tried to tell us, part deux.

Good advanced stats catch by David Wunderlich – Georgia is only one spot ahead of Georgia Southern in Football Outsiders’ S&P+ ratings.

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Filed under Georgia Football, Georgia Southern Football, Stats Geek!

If you’re a defensive lineman, it’s gonna be a long two weeks.

Well, Georgia Southern may not run the same version of the triple option Georgia Tech runs – more shotgun and spread, for example – but the Eagles do continue the use of one proud Paul Johnson tradition.

“Their offense is very unique, watching film,” defensive tackle James DeLoach said. “They have a lot of athletes and they spread the ball out. They get the ball on the perimeter, chop block[Emphasis added.]

Better watch those knees, boys.

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Filed under Georgia Football, Georgia Southern Football, Strategery And Mechanics