Tuesday, September 28, 2010

I'm Done With Mark Richt(and no this isn't reactionary)

Anyone who has been around me in the last couple of days knows I was singing this song way before we lost to the perennial dormat of the SEC(also one of the worst teams in the nation BTW). While Cousin Pat has some stats on the coach that are impressive, I have a list of complaints that I feel are pretty damn legit, and anyone who has played NCAA Football on Playstation can understand. And you know what? I have all the confidence that Mr. Armstrong from Louisiana will actually agree with all my arguements here.

1.No clock Management- How many times can a coach burn through all his timeouts before switching fields for the second or fourth quarter. I'm not talking play-saving, wrong personnel for the situation timeouts. I'm just asking if we really need to hash it out on 4th and17 on our own 30. Should we punt, or shouldn't we? Let's talk it out and make sure we do the right thing. Never mind how many times we call it on the PAT to prevent a delay of game. Right there we're ill prepared for what to do, and in that situation, I'm just as confident in our kicker making a 22 yarder as a 17 yarder.

2.Atrocious Special Teams- I'm not talking kickers. They are always solid. I'm talking return teams. Did anyone else besides me catch on that our Elite 11 QB Logan Grey's only job for 2 years was to go out on punt returns and call a fair catch? The other side was actually scarier if we don't just kick the ball at the end zone and force a touchback. Who knew if we were going to allow a touchdown or commit a personal foul.

3.Play calling- OH MY FREAKING GOD!! Especially on third down. This is where I lose my mind. Between calling for Joe Tereshinski III draw plays on third and long all day against Florida, to the play-action pass on EVERY third and 8-or-more this year! This is a career-long habit. Down by 14 points against anybody in the fourth quarter, he just can't help but call for play-action, even when everybody in the world knows we're throwing. How about just calling a straight up pass so our 5-10 QB can actually look at the field before one of our overrated OL lets one in for an auto-sack. It worked once against UT with David Green at the helm, and he apparently just can't help himself anymore. I'm going to stop here, before I recap our entire season so far, and throw my computer out the window like so many remote controllers.

4.Lack of Discipline-You can say what you want about his high-end Christian values, but all you gotta do is take a look at our penalties on the field and the police blotter off it to see how tight a ship he runs.

5.Florida-This is an auto loss. No matter how good we are and how bad they are we lose every year. Our last win came to straight up shenanigans by charging the endzone. Any Dawgfan can agree on the amount of dread we all feel approaching that game.

6.Defense-In my opinion, our best coach in the last 15-20 years was Brian Van Gorder. He was the only one to show any consistent results. Considering we hired Richt for his offensive genius(ha,ha), Van Gorder produced defenses every year that could stop anybody, yet even paired with Richt's genius all we do is underachieve against all the teams around us.

These arguements are things most of us agreed on years ago when we liked Mark Richt. The hiring of Mike Bobo was directly to solve the problems of clock management and play calling(that's working out real well). All of our defensive successes are atributed to Van Gorder(not disputed). If it wasn't for having waaay above-average kickers(Billy Bennett, Blair Walsh, etc.) our special teams as a whole would be terrible. Zero discipline. Why is he here? What does he bring to the table? I used to think he was a good delegater. Between Martinez and Bobo that ain't it. He's got to go.

While yes I agree with Cousin Pat that we have seen some nice double digit win totals, they can't necessarily be attributed to quality UGA football. They all came with UT on a down cycle, and USC, Auburn and Tech all having relatively mediocre years. All these arguements tell me that we have seen the absolute best Mark Richt has to offer. After ten years as coach, he's been around long enough so we can now fire him and not look like a reactionary program on a down year, and we can get a head start on the hiring process before it's too late and start losing to the likes of Mississippi State(Ooops!! Too late!).


Cousin Pat from Georgia said...

1. I do completely agree with you on the clock management. This has approached Les Miles level incompetence.

2. Special teams have only become a detriment to this team since about 2008. We got burned on a few before that (WVU - Fake Punt), but the kicking units used to be a feature of what made us an elite team.

3. I have absolutely no explanation for the predictable nature of our playcalling. The 3rd and long play-action might be the most infuriating repeating mistake I've witnessed.

Point of information, there were a lot of good playcalls during the Greene/Shockley years. But I have to wonder, at this point, how much of that was QB play changes at the line. Or is that the offensive philosophy we've developed, without the players to run it?

Because if you don't have a QB who can modify the plays, you have to be able to adjust your gameplan accordingly. I do not understand how the coaches stick so long with game plans that aren't working while abandoning plays that do work so quickly.

4. Sorry if I cannot get angry at the ticky-tack infractions leveled at this team by the ACC and UGA police forces. While there have been several legitimate and troubling arrests, "emerging from an alley," "obstruction of justice for failure to provide middle name," and "hit and run bumping in a parking deck" do not make my list of America's Most Wanted.

5. This is inexplicable, except to think the coaches get into panic mode about a week before this game.

6. Explain to me then, why did BVG fail to succeed elsewhere? He was DC during a time when the offense and special teams were able to take over and control games.

As I pointed out before, Georgia has had 3 rebuilding (2001, 2006, 2010) years and 1 year that could be considered disappointing by any rational metrics (2009). This era has lasted through rises and falls in all our divisional rivals, and several of the teams in the West.

Over the same span, only one other team has been as consistent in the SEC: Florida.

Based on record alone, CMR has earned at least one more year to right this ship.

Dante said...

The end of this year is when the buyout clause for Richt stops being a pipe dream. I think he gets one more year either way. Some people are worried that we won't be able to get someone good to follow up if we treat Richt poorly, but I think a lot of coaches will look at the talent on our roster versus how we perform and roll the dice on the coaching gig. In fact, I'm not so sure I'd want a coach who would rationalize away such an opportunity over fear of losing. We just need to do what's best for the team. But I'll personally reserve judgement on that at the end of the season. However, I am aware that starting flat has already cost us one shot at a BCS Title Game. If we win our next 8, I'm going to be pretty adamant that we cut the bastard (and you can take that figuratively or literally).

I've said this on over Blutarsky's site and I'll say it here, too: If we do get rid of Richt (and I'm undecided on if we should just yet), we need to give a serious look at June Jones. No, I hate that offense, too, thank you very much. But that defense at SMU is absolutely astonishing. He's got guys who couldn't get a scholarship at UTEP keeping Texas Tech honest in a first half where they started almost every drive in SMU territory. He led the #4 team in the nation for about a quarter thanks to a stout first half D that knew where to be and knew how to tackle when they got there and got a nice pick along the way. In games where SMU is not seriously over-matched on talent, the defense is playing well in the second half, too.

I know he's not the sexy pick and Georgia fans in particular would probably groan about it given a certain Sugar Bowl performance, but I like him better than most of the names I hear being thrown out there.

Cousin Pat from Georgia said...

I like the reserving judgement until the end of the season, as I've already stated I'm prepared to reserve mine until the end of next season.

The "coming out flat" phenomenon is also a good point to discuss, though I recall plenty of Donnan's teams started well. It seemed we always went into the Tennessee game undefeated. With McGarrity planning on setting up a cupcake buffet for future schedules, I'm sure such starts will be more readily available.

And if we're going to talk about possible replacements even as we reserve judgement, I'd just like to state that the name at the top of my pipe dream short list is Sean Payton.