* Georgia has been playing football since 1892. In 123 years, the Bulldogs have had 21 seasons with 10 wins. Richt has 10 of those seasons.
* Richt has won 140 games in his 14-plus seasons at Georgia, an average of about 10 wins per year. With his next win, Richt will stand alone in second place on the school’s career list behind Vince Dooley (201 in 25 years), who averaged eight wins per year.
* Richt’s winning percentage, which is right at .740, is the highest of any coach in Georgia history. Dooley won 72.3 percent of his games.
* Richt currently has the fifth-highest winning percentage of all active FBS coaches, behind only Urban Meyer, Bob Stoops, Saban and Gary Patterson. That’s good company.
* The guy graduates a lot of his players (292 to be exact) and has run a scandal-free program. He had a stretch where too many players were getting into trouble, but Richt has effectively tightened up that part of the organization. Georgia has the toughest drug-testing policy in the SEC. Ever heard him complain about it? Me neither.
* Since Richt arrived in Athens in 2001, only one school (LSU) has had more players drafted than Georgia’s 79. Some see that as evidence that he should have accomplished more. I see it as evidence that good players want to play for him.
Mr. CW says the whole thing comes down to this:
Before the season, I had a conversation with a friend who is a huge Georgia fan. The subject was Mark Richt. My friend was not happy with the Bulldogs’ coach.
Predictably, he started pulling out the numbers and the well-worn narratives about Richt:
* He hasn’t won an SEC championship since 2005.
* He’s never played for a national championship, while Florida, Tennessee, LSU, Alabama and Auburn have won titles since 1998.
* His teams are good for at least one explicable loss per year (See Florida, 2014).
* He’s too nice.
* And the always crowd-pleasing, “He can’t win the big one.”
I stopped my friend in mid-rant and asked him this: What if Georgia had gotten the final 5 yards against Alabama in the SEC championship game in 2012? What if Georgia had beaten Alabama and moved on to the BCS championship game with Notre Dame, where it very likely would have won?
“Oh, then we’d be OK because we would have a championship.”
All righty then. So you’re telling me that if a coach gets 5 additional yards three years ago against the No. 1 team in the nation, then he’s a good coach? But since he didn’t get those 5 yards he’s not a very good coach? Is that what you’re trying to tell me?
I would phrase it “not good enough” as opposed to “not very good” coach, but that’s quibbling over semantics. You guys – agree or disagree?