Richt’s Dogs have struggled against ranked teams

Mark Richt is only 2-7 in his last nine games against ranked teams.

Mark Richt is only 2-7 in his last nine games against ranked teams. (Brant Sanderlin/AJC)

If most are doubting Georgia’s chances of upsetting No. 2 ranked Auburn Saturday, one reason is that the Bulldogs’ five wins have come over Louisiana-Lafayette (2-7), Tennessee (3-6), Vanderbilt (2-7), Kentucky (5-5) and Idaho State (1-8).

But there’s another reason: Mark Richt’s teams have struggled against any team in the top 25, let alone a BCS title contender.

Richt’s Dogs have lost seven of their last nine against ranked teams and are 4-8 since 2008. That includes losses this season to the only two ranked teams they’ve played — No. 24 South Carolina (17-6) and No. 12 Arkansas (31-24).

Contrast that with Georgia going 5-0 against ranked teams in 2007 and 10-1 in a stretch that started in November 2006.

In the recent 2-7 stretch vs. ranked teams, the lone victories came over No. 7 Georgia Tech in 2009 and No. 18 Michigan State in the Capital One Bowl the year before. The losses came to Florida (twice), Georgia Tech, Oklahoma State, LSU, South Carolina and Arkansas.

The breakdowns:

Here’s Mark Richt vs ranked teams year by year:
2001: 2-3
2002: 5-0
2003: 3-3
2004: 2-2
2005: 4-3
2006: 3-2
2007: 5-0
2008: 3-3
2009: 1-3
2010: 0-2
Total: 28-21
Here’s the breakdown since 2008:
#8 Alabama: Lost 41-30
#22 Vanderbilt: Won 24-14
#13 LSU: Won  52-38
#5 Florida: Lost 49-10
#22 Georgia Tech: Lost 45-42
#18 Michigan State: Won 24-12
#9 Oklahoma State: Lost 24-10
#4 LSU: Lost 20-13
#1 Florida: Lost 41-17
#7 Georgia Tech: Won 30-24
#24 South Carolina: Lost 17-6
#12 Arkansas: Lost 31-24

So there are the numbers. How confident are you that  Georgia will buck this trend in Auburn?

Follow me on Twitter @JeffSchultzAJC and

445 comments Add your comment


November 7th, 2010
11:57 pm


November 8th, 2010
12:01 am

and, no we won’t buck that trend this year. will be fun to whip tech after thanksgiving again though.


November 8th, 2010
12:09 am

Dream on Ben.

UGA will lose to Auburn and then GT will deny them the chance to play in a bowl, meanwhile you UGA fans can watch GT continue on in the season. It’ll be wonderful.

Go Jackets!!!!

To Hell With Georgia!!!!!!

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Jeff Schultz, Tennessee Vols News. Tennessee Vols News said: RT @JeffSchultzAJC: Richt’s Dogs have struggled against ranked teams [...]

Matty Nice

November 8th, 2010
12:19 am

Lol, good one Mustang. And how exactly are the Jackets going to beat UGA without Nesbitt and all of those other recruits that CPJ inherited from Gailey?


November 8th, 2010
12:19 am

Since there are no personal comments, I’m guessing you feel the statistics alone are enough. When might we expect your insight into why you think the stats are what they are?

[...] Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) [...]


November 8th, 2010
12:33 am

outside of 2006 and shocking Auburn in the wee hours of the morning, the team ranked #12 higher win. by this time of year you know who is good and who is bad and the rankings show it. the chances are ruined for an 06 repeat by two words – Heisman campaign. that means national stage and motivation, oh and a touch of revenge for losing 4 straight.

Auburn will almost equal how much Newton scores, UGA will add points after the game is in hand… Aub 52 UGA 24

Hairy Dawg

November 8th, 2010
1:15 am

when we finished with chumps War Tigers. They will just stink like rank smell and no longer worryinh bout BCS’s rank.

Hairy Dawg

November 8th, 2010
1:17 am

Cam Newton going be broken like a busted misfireing cam shaffs.

Hairy Dawg

November 8th, 2010
1:20 am

and another thing I telling you that Bammers is embareassing Aubie to get LUSa Les Miles to the ATL.

[...] News Sources wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerpt [...]

ajc pariah

November 8th, 2010
3:26 am

Rank,you think?

college fan in general

November 8th, 2010
3:55 am

Jeff Schultz again doesnt know jack about football. Where do they get these writers…….from Ga. Tech?
Jeff if you would read alittle more you’d find that Mark Richt is the most successful coach in Georgia history, has the best winning pct. among active SEC Coaches. Yes and Urban Meyer is only higher because of Bowling Green and Utah. 5th highest active wins/losses. 12th highest paid. If you google and do a comparison on Richts 1st 9 years as HC compared to other greats at Georgia it might enlighten you some as to where he stands.
This hopefully will shut your mouth and stop your campaigning on getting rid of Mark Richt.

17 of 20

November 8th, 2010
4:34 am

college fan in general,
During the great Richt years at Georgia two schools have better winning percentage.
Florida 56-19
LSU 53-23
Georgia 52-23

75-76 DAWG

November 8th, 2010
4:50 am

That’s why Bobo will be replaced at the end of this year. I think Bobo will be given the opportunity to stay as QB coach but there is too much evidence that he is not able to make the correct decisions when the game is on the line.


November 8th, 2010
4:55 am

Richt is simply Not getting it done. Both on the field with wins & off the field with all the issues & arrests.

Sure it is possible they beat Auburn, but is not very probable or likely.

Saint Simons

November 8th, 2010
5:00 am

(((( 34 – 31 ))))


dee oellerich

November 8th, 2010
5:07 am

EVERYONE strugges against ranked teams…that is why they are ranked.

Jack Lambert Dawg

November 8th, 2010
5:33 am

Another great spin Schultz.. One thing is for sure you out of state transplants can’t accuse UGA of getting any “Home Cooking” from the media at the AJC..

With that said I’m looking forward to to going to the plains. Hopefully the dawgs will play at their highest level and with a purpose of mind that winning is the only option.

To quote Vince Lombardi..
“Any mans finest hour, his greatest fullfillment to all he holds dear, is that moment when he has worked his heart out for a good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle —VICTORIOUS!”

Go Dawgs!!


November 8th, 2010
5:56 am

I just love your expert analysis JEFFIE.


November 8th, 2010
6:18 am



November 8th, 2010
6:21 am

Florida and Mississippi State are ranked. Maybe they were not when UGA played them. I think most people agree that it is your ranking at the end of the season that matters the most. Surprised you didn’t write “Georgia has not beaten amy top 20 team”.


November 8th, 2010
6:25 am

I will give Auburn credit they have a good team, and Newton is a Horse. THE DAWGS ARE COMING , THE DAWGS ARE COMING AND WE ARE GOING TO KICK THAT AZZ AND BAMA IS GOING TO COVER IT UP .


November 8th, 2010
6:32 am

UGA will have a losing season in all likelihood. Or at best 6-6. Pathetic with all that talent.

Auburn Man

November 8th, 2010
6:34 am

Talk is cheap. Auburn has beaten teams two tears above anything UGA has shown this year. I expect it to be close but UGA has done nothing to show they can kick AUs AZZ. Good luck you’re gonna need it. Defenses a lot better than UGAs have had no answer for Newton and company.

the truth hurts

November 8th, 2010
6:35 am

well well well, it seems that mr 90 wins in 9 years hasn’t been doing so good versus ranked teams.
what could cause that? Satan? Hmmm?
(my apologies to church lady….)


November 8th, 2010
6:37 am



November 8th, 2010
6:39 am



November 8th, 2010
6:39 am

stir up a few people, you do not have to be very smart to write a sports page.


November 8th, 2010
6:41 am

i dont care what the records are for both teams, this is a very dangerous, athletic, and nothing to lose team that will be coming to Auburn. UGA has a good QB, talented backs, game changing TE, and do i need to say anything about AJ. I see UGA putting 30 plus on the board. It should be a great game that goes does to the final possession. I predict 44-38 tigers, war eagles, or plainsmen if folks dont know what to call AU


November 8th, 2010
6:43 am

Stay tuned for Jeff Schultz’s next column on the color of the freaking sky.

Memo to haters and pot stirring tabloid sports columnists: We’re 5-5. Let’s take things a step further shall we? We KNOW we’re 5-5. So, don’t you think this whole “let’s put redneck UGA fans in their place” routine is a little bit moot? Morons on other blogs are talking about us getting “exposed” against Auburn. Exposed?!?! We are 5-5 you freaking morons!!! What exactly is going to be exposed?

Holy bejeebus some people are just flat out stupid.


November 8th, 2010
6:44 am

10-2 is a good year Auburn congratulations.


November 8th, 2010
6:50 am

Auburn playing in the Cotton bowl . good luck
Alabama Outback Bowl
LSU in the Capitol One Bowl
Florida Sugar Bowl
and yea were in the Music City Bowl or maybe the Gator Bowl


November 8th, 2010
6:52 am

Richt is also 3-1 at Jordan Hare stadium, but I guess that wouldn’t get as many hits would it Schultzie?

You Ain't-Know Gaily Whacker

November 8th, 2010
7:01 am

The Reporter: Mr. McGarity, Mark seems to have gotten the team back on track, is that your opinion ?

Greg: That is what he told me yesterday. He said the train was back on track and that our fans should get on board.


November 8th, 2010
7:02 am

You UGAG fans are the most dillusional people I have ever seen. In 10 games this year the UGAG team is 5-5 with the wins coming against teams with a combined record of 13-33 but you think your offense and defense is really that good? Come on people learn football before you start opening your mouth. I will be the first to admit I am a GT fan all the way and our team is just not that good this year but at the same time GT’s 5 wins are against teams with a combined record of 22-21 so looking at it right now I would say that GT does have better wins.

UGAG fans never seem to amaze me on how dillusional you really are to think you are going to even play Auburn a close game. Just one time please be honest with yourselves and stop talking out or you arses. True football fans know when to admit what there team really is all about. Auburn wins by at least 2 TD’s.


November 8th, 2010
7:20 am

After reading this, it’s obvious we have not been a factor in the last 3 years except beating the usual suspects….I didn’t know it was this bad……..but it is…….Mark and the Dawgs could go a long way by upsetting Auburn Saturday in the minds and hearts of the fans…..but, Auburn looks unstoppable………. Mark will be back in 2011 and probably beat the usual one’s we feast on, but if we lose the one’s that really coult next year, I don’t know what else this AD needs to see….or it’s just that being champions in Athens is not that important to those in power……Just as long As Mark and Bobo are happy I guess…..

Herschel Talker

November 8th, 2010
7:23 am

More evidence that Mark Richt is nothing but a mediocre guy who got lucky that the SEC had clowns running the other teams early in his tenure. Anyone who thinks that Richt should still be the coach at UGA clearly needs a lobotomy.


November 8th, 2010
7:25 am

hey ace, we’re not delusional we’re pulling for our team. we’ve beaten auburn 4 or 5 years in a row. we’re played some close games and missed on some plays that could have brought us wins.
even if we don’t win we play tech next after getting a week off. i certainly like our chances there and to finish with a winning record go to a bowl.
schult how about a recap of the ajc’s subscription fall over the last few years. the paper and it’s columnists stink


November 8th, 2010
7:26 am

The BCS stinks because the ACC still has an automatic bid. You just lost to a team that lost to James freaking Madison and you’re on here pimping your schedule strength? LMFAO @ you.

To all the big mouthed Techies that will undoubtedly come on here in droves to pop off at the mouth about Mark “8-1 against Tech” Richt, what is your wonderful coach’s record against ranked opponents? You know, in the rare event that he actually plays one. I don’t think he’s doing that great in that department. I’d love to see an AJC piece on it, but I guess Schultz wouldn’t get invited to the Christmas party if he did that.

..... rip-off

November 8th, 2010
7:28 am

The Idaho State/UGA game was a waste of time.


November 8th, 2010
7:28 am

The Dawgs are playing the role of spoiler, here.

Grantham needs to figure a way to shadow Newton – kinda like the way Tampa Bay under Lane Kiffen’s dad used to shadow Mike Vick.

How about #42 – what’s the kid’s name – Houston? He looks like a stud.

Cam’s due a less-than-stupendous game. Maybe Saturday is the day. Maybe Auburn v UGA , 2010 is the game.

Minimize dumb turnovers on the Dawg’s part, get a couple big kick-off returns and they got a chance.

[...] And Georgia under Mark Richt has had trouble with ranked teams, writes Jeff Schultz of the AJC. [...]

Ted Striker

November 8th, 2010
7:32 am

(After looking over all that data and statistics you laid out, I’ve decided you’re now hanging out with that Sabernomics/Sabermetrics guy)

My thought on the topic is: Interesting, however these figures may not mean quite as much as it seems. A superior metric would be to examine the season win/loss record against final season poll team rankings. (Get your hot intern on that)

If a team is victorious over an opponent in week 1 when the opponent was #20 but ultimately goes 6-6 for the season, did the opponent legitimately deserve to be ranked in week one? And if a team is victorious over an unranked team in week one but the opponent finishes 8-4 in the regular season and ends at #17 in the final polls, wasn’t that actually a quality win in week one?

But back to the stats as we have them. Interesting how for the first 8 years UGA played games against “ranked teams” an average of 5.4 times — with a high of 7 — annually. Fast forward to the last two years. Four “ranked” opponents in 2009, three in 2010. Yet the worst 2 year period of Richt’s career. Sheesh. More fodder for the bug zapper man.

Vain Jangling

November 8th, 2010
7:34 am

Whoa Nelly. Expect this to be a better game than predicted. Auburn gives up a ton of points (34 to Kentucky, 31 to Mississippi, and 24 to Chattanooga, all in the last month), while the Dawgs have found themselves a top 25 defense. And to my knowledge, A.J. Green hasn’t been suspended this week. But, then again, there’s the reality of our freshman quarterback at the helm on the road in another big game. Remember how that Florida thing went? Auburn, of course, has one of the best quarterbacks money can allegedly buy. I’m just glad the game’s not in Athens this year. All those Auburn fans coming over in their tractors and hay bailers and bush hogs really clog up Highway 78. But, in the end, it looks like 5-6 going into the Tech game. To recap; Tech sucks!


November 8th, 2010
7:42 am

Vick is in his prime. What a performance. He ran. He passed. He infused excitement and old time fun back into the game of football. I laughed. I cried. I barked, I sniffed. My dog changed the channel and hid the remote.

I hate that dog.


November 8th, 2010
7:43 am

It should be a close game, it is always a strange one and rarely goes as expected. But UGA has a mental problem and it starts with the HC and offensive coordinator.


November 8th, 2010
7:47 am

@ Jeff Schultz…
I left you a message on your “Weekend Prediction” blog…

Monty Kiffin had four superstars named (Derrick) Brooks, (John) Lynch, (Ronde) Barber, and (Simeon) Rice. Sorry to tell you, but no team east or west of TCU has that kind of talent in a college sense. You can try wasting your time spying Newton and their (Auburn) wideouts are going to be running wild behind your secondary… Just try being sound for 60 minutes for a change,,,


November 8th, 2010
7:48 am

thank goodness Mark has gotten this ship turned in the right direction. Great win Saturday against Idaho State. Now it’s on to Auburn for our date with destiny. Nothing will stop this team from reaching it’s potential. That potential hasn’t even topped out yet and I expect Auburn to go ahead and put these Dawgs down and out of their misery so they can then get on back to Athens and get the partying started. We haven’t seen yet how this team can perform downtown Athens after getting a proper beating administered by a really good team. This schedule that Georgia has played has been the easiest in 20 years and this is what Mark Richt has wrought. The job he’s done actually makes Nancy Pelosi look like a success. Come on Mark resign and be done with it. Do it before Saturday and save some face.