Tuesday, January 12, 2010

On the Defensive Coordinator Hire

Other than a quick post about the firing, a thank you to the coaches and thoughts on Richt's handling of the event, calling bullshit on Vic Koennig, and something on the Smart money, I have tried to stay away from the defensive coordinator hire.  When you consider it has been 42 days, and I we have written nearly 40 posts since then, I think that is a pretty laissez-faire approach.  However, after the hue and cry from Smart turning us down, I can't.  Just can't.

Who has two thumbs and won't be coaching at Georgia 
(with apologies to PWD)? (Image:AJC)

First, let's get separate the crap from the crap.  Georgia has made 'offers' to three people.  I'll get back to those in a minute, but let me list the names of people who are not on that list: Vic Koenning, Tommy Tubberville, Willie Martinez, Rodney Garner, David Pollock, Brian Van Gorder, or Hannibal.  The Vic Koennig thing particularly irked me, because someone I know and respect as a writer in the Chicago papers made the absurd point that Illinois outbid Georgia.  I hope the money on the table for Kirby will put that nonsense to rest both in the national media and elsewhere.  The closest he got to an offer from Georgia was his agent telling the media an offer was imminent.  Reminds me of boys talking in the bathroom about their conquests with girls. Having a girl talk about her underwear in front of you is a long way from third base, hoss.

 My agent said I saw a boobie, so I must have.

So, about the three.  Obviously, any of those three would have been home run hires.  That is good.  I have long held the notion that you should be ambitious in running your program.  We went after a guy that has been with is current head coach since college and is the natural replacement for his current boss at the school they have put on the map.  We went after a guy that has been at two other SEC schools, would likely still be at his Alma mater, had the new coach there not needed his daddy to run things, and is the natural replacement for his current boss.  We went after a guy that showed incredible accomplishment in his first year, but is a acolyte of his current boss...and is a natural replacement for his current boss.

See a trend?  Not saying that being HC at their current school is THE factor, but it certainly is a factor.  You can say, 'yeah, but any of those guys would be a natural replacement for Mark Richt, too.'  I agree with the point.  However, out of a universe of Frank Beamer, Les Miles, Nick Saban, and Mark Richt, which one of those three are most likely to still be coaching at their current school at the end of 2011?

A quick look:
  • Frank Beamer: 63 years old, been at Va Tech since 1987.  Has public expressed the sentiment that he isn't going to coach forever and wants Bud Foster to replace him.
  • Les Miles: 56 years old, been at LSU since 2005.  Has shown public interest in his alma mater, Michigan, which is likely to look at making a coaching change if RichRod doesn't have a Rose Bowl season in 2010.
  • Nick Saban: Yeah. Nick Saban. Do I need to put anything else here?
  • Mark Richt: Unless he gets tired of dealing with Georgia fans, I don't see him going anywhere for many, many years.
As for Kirby, I don't think he made a bad decision.  I am sure Saban got in his ear, made some promises like we could name you head coach in waiting in a year or so, stuff like that.  And something like $675large/year for three years sounds about right.  Hey, he just won a national championship.  What if Auburn had come calling to Erk Russell in 1981?  Would any of us think that was a good move for him objectively?  Probably not.  I think he and Mary Beth were truly torn about the decision.  I think he was probably planning on coming until about noon on Monday (well, up until it was 'confirmed' on one of the pay sites that he was coming I thought that; felt less good about it afterward). 

As for the announcement at the presser?  Well, Kirby is Saban's boy and that is Saban's football team.  He can do what he wants.

So where do we go from here?  It is important to note that Mark Richt is looking for his Will Muschamp, Kirby Smart, Bud Foster, John Chavis.  I WANT him to be looking for that guy.  You should to. 

Things I don't care about: Impressing Jeff Schultz or Mark Bradley or Mark May, making random fan in Jackson take a day off from work to see the press conference, scarring Tennessee bloggers, having a 'Georgia' guy, shutting up the Florida fans that get on Dawg Vent to rabble rouse, or getting a big name.

Things I do care about: solid coaching and teaching skills, the proven ability to in game adjust, a tenacious defensive style that makes QBs and offensive coordinators nervous, a legit interception or sack threat on every pass play, aggressive run schemes and someone that thinks offensive players are objects to be removed from the most prized possession on the football field..the football.  Hey, if the guy can recruit some and gig Lane Kiffin, that is a bonus.

I think Mark Richt is looking for those things and thankfully, he is willing to be patient and keep the search as private as possible until that guy is signed.  I like that.  I believe Mark Richt will coach the defense himself before he makes a hire that he thinks won't be a significant improvement over what we had.  "The bottom line is we want to get back to the top of the Eastern Division and the top of the SEC.."

I definitely care about that.

The list might be this long. I'm not sayin'.


  1. S, FL Chapter of the Bulldog NationJanuary 12, 2010 at 11:20 AM

    A-Men! I just hope the pursuit doesn't hurt the decision of some kids that may be wanting to commit to UGA and haven't done so bc they don't know what's going on...other than that I'm with you 100%! Go Dawgs!

  2. Ding Ding Ding Ding Ding!!!

    I don't care if the next hire was selling used tires last week. If he can teach this defense how to tackle, cover passes, and prevent other teams from scoring better than what we've seen since January 2, 2006, then who the hell cares who Coach Richt hires?

  3. This is a fact: MR offered VK the dc job. Vk accepted called zook, and 30 min later MR called vk back and said he'd made a horrible mistake. Vk then had to call zook back and beg for the job back. Believe it or not. It's a fact!

  4. This is a fact: MR offered VK the dc job. Vk accepted called zook, and 30 min later MR called vk back and said he'd made a horrible mistake. Vk then had to call zook back and beg for the job back. Believe it or not. It's a fact!