Tag Archives: Kirby Smart

Defensive about the offense

Kirby Smart hears the noise.  He just doesn’t care about the noise.

Georgia head coach Kirby Smart appeared on the Paul Finebaum Show Friday, as the show broadcasted live from the Georgia campus in Athens. Finebaum asked Smart about his team’s offensive struggles during the season.

“First off, I don’t think you have to defend your offense in this conference when you’re playing the level of football that we’re capable of playing,” Smart said. “There’s good defenses, I mean, the SEC is a very defensive league. When you look across the board, and I turn on tape and I get to watch it every week, there’s some good defenses out there. There’s some really good defensive backs, and they tend to get their hands all over you. And they let them play in our league, and that’s what you look across the board and see.

“So we’ve had moments (on offense) where we’ve really shined in third down. We’ve had moments we’ve really shined in the red area. We’ve had moments that we’ve been able to run it better than others. We haven’t put that combination together. And that’s what we’re always looking to do, so we’re trying to improve.

“We’ve got two receivers that have been out of action, in action, out of action. We’ve had an offensive line that’s been in and out and a little beat up. But we’re trying to put a complete game together.”

And Jules was trying to be the shepherd, Ringo.  Trying real hard.

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Filed under Georgia Football

Mike Bianchi is a national treasure.

The weekend hasn’t even ended yet and this hot take already hasn’t aged well.

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Filed under Gators, Gators..., Georgia Football, Media Punditry/Foibles

A simple question deserves a simple answer.

I’m not one of those who believes hiring an alum as your head coach is a guarantee of success.

But I gotta admit it sure does lead to some satisfying moments.

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“You don’t really know what’s inside you, in life or football, until you get tested.”

I’ll say it again — you and I may not think Kirby’s manball approach is appropriate in all circumstances, but it’s hardwired into his DNA.

But a hard-fought game against the Irish will go a long way in building comfort and confidence in those situations for this year’s squad, particularly for players who haven’t been in that spot before.

“You look inside yourself when you get tested, and there were some guys that had to look inside themselves,” Smart said. “They had not been tested like that. How are they going to respond? They came out fighting.”

I don’t think it’s merely the case that if his team runs the gauntlet into the CFP at year’s end that Smart will turn around and point to how they held up when things got tight at the end against Notre Dame.  I think it’s something he is happy to verify in the here and now, regardless of how the rest of the regular season plays out.

Best get used to it, in other words.  If nothing else, you can’t accuse him of not forging a team identity.

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Filed under Georgia Football

Yeah, he watched that Florida game, too.

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Filed under Georgia Football

Gotta start somewhere.

Good story from Seth Emerson’s piece ($$) on Valdosta State, cradle of coaches, where Kirby Smart landed his first defensive coordinator job, barely three years out of playing at Georgia:

After one season, Muschamp moved on to LSU, where Nick Saban hired him to be the linebackers coach. Smart was elevated to defensive coordinator, thrust into a job running a defense just three years out of college. He didn’t think he was ready. He called up Joe Kines, who had been his DC at Georgia, who told him: “There’s no book for that. You don’t get ready for that. The only way you get ready is you take the job, and you sink or swim.”

Although I’m sure it sounds better told in the original Kines.

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“Once we see you’re in the portal, you can be cut.”

In case you were wondering, there are a lot of coaches who really, really don’t care for the transfer portal.  Like this guy:

Kirby Smart is torn. Georgia’s coach believes players deserve a certain amount of transfer freedom. Excuse him, though, if he’s not exactly celebrating the seven-month anniversary of the transfer portal this week.

“My biggest problem with the portal is that it gives kids an easy way out,” Smart said. “I know the devil’s advocate of players’ rights and they should be able to go wherever they want to go. But I’m telling you, no normal parent would say, ‘At the first sign of trouble, I want my son to run.'”

I really love this “easy way out”, quitter bullshit.  The reason the portal is a reality isn’t because, as Smart intimates, some kids are too soft.  It’s because there have been plenty of Smart’s peers over the years who have been unreasonable in their restrictions on where and how kids have tried to transfer from their programs.

Add to that a heavy dose of hypocrisy…

It’s difficult to have sympathy for coaches when their biggest headache is “roster management.”

But there is also that ethical, psychological, loyalty component to it: Be a man. Finish what you started.

Coaches preach it until they don’t and leave for the next best job overnight. A bit of hypocrisy at work there?

As for loyalty, you won’t find the following phrase written in large type on the portal: A school doesn’t have to renew the scholarship of any player who places his name in the portal.

I got news for you, Dennis.  A school doesn’t have to renew the scholarship of any player who doesn’t have a multi-year commitment, portal or no portal.

Smart, Georgia coach: “[The transfer issue is], ‘Where are you going to go to get developed the best?’ But that’s not the society we live in. We live in the, ‘Me, now, I want mine now. I want to go play right now.'”

Man, losing control really sucks.

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UPDATE:  One further thought from Dodd’s piece that some might be overlooking…

Clay Helton, USC coach: “I’m hoping kids get educated on it. With it being new this year, I think it went over the top. … I’ve got to figure there will be a lot of people without homes.”

Although unofficial, that 247Sports transfer portal list shows approximately 400 of those 720 FBS players have yet to find a new school.

Herm Edwards, Arizona State coach: “It’s caught a lot of kids by surprise in the fact that a lot of guys don’t have scholarships. There’s a little bit now, ‘Whoa, what just happened?’ I think they assumed their name is in the portal, ‘I’ll get a scholarship somewhere else.’ The unintended consequence has hit them in the face.”

There’s a distinct possibility that some of this might be self-correcting, as it begins to sink in with kids pondering a portal decision that they might not be in as much demand as they think they are.

Of course, I pose that realizing that every year there seem to be more college juniors who think they’re destined for an NFL roster than it turns out.

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Filed under Transfers Are For Coaches.