Todd Grantham needs to worry about coaching, not contract

Todd Grantham shouldn't be making an issue of his contract in November. (Jason Getz/AJC)

Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham shouldn't be making an issue of his contract in November. (Jason Getz)

If there is one thing that we have learned this season at Georgia, it’s that Todd Grantham is a pretty good coach. The Bulldogs’ defense has improved almost every week this season, and is miles ahead of what it was a year ago.

But we’ve witnessed, courtesy of YouTube, that sometimes Grantham just does dumb things – and here he goes again.

If you missed the stories earlier this week from our Chip Towers, Grantham’s agent is publicly pushing for a raise and contract extension for Georgia’s defensive coordinator. Never mind that the contract still has 14 months to run.

Agent Michael Harrison has been rebuffed by athletic director Greg McGarity, who says he won’t address coaches’ contracts until after the season. And sorry, but Mark Richt’s contract is a slightly higher priority.

Grantham is a coach. It would be a good idea to stick to that for possibly four more games and worry about his finances in January.

I’ve covered player and coach negotiations for nearly 30 years. Let me tell you how this works. Agents generally don’t go rogue. When they talk to the media, it’s at their clients’ urging and/or approval.

Harrison told Chip that he has gotten “inquiries” from NFL teams about Grantham returning to the league as an assistant. He claims he has gotten “feelers” from college teams about being a head coach.

These soundbites are all orchestrated. I understand Harrison is just doing his job for his client. But the client – Grantham – needs to understand bringing this up now is counterproductive. Seriously. Grantham expects the Bulldogs to make a commitment to a defensive coordinator less than two full years into a three-year contract when they haven’t even finalized the head coach’s future yet?

Consider the importance of Georgia’s potential four remaining games: 1) Kentucky, the potential SEC East-clincher; 2) Georgia Tech, the local rival; 3) LSU (probably), the SEC championship; 4) Bowl game opponent, which finalizes rankings and stature.

Should this really be an issue right now?

I’m guessing somebody said something to Grantham follow Monday’s initial story because by Tuesday Grantham was trying to say the right things. Following practice Tuesday night, he maintained that his focus was on the Kentucky game and not his contract.

But when he alluded to Harrison and said, “You hire people to do a job for you and I let him handle that part of it,” it missed the point. Agents work for their clients, not the other way around. This is a public issue now because of Grantham, not his agent.

One more thing: While it wouldn’t stun me if Grantham winds up returning to the NFL, I don’t buy Harrison’s claim of legitimate head coaching offers, certainly not at a major college. Any coordinator who has a head coaching offer would jump at it rather than worrying about using it as leverage.

In other words, this is all drivel we could’ve done without.

By Jeff Schultz

424 comments Add your comment

TG

November 16th, 2011
10:37 am

Grantham needs to quit embarrassing U(sic)GA with his immature behavior on the field before he starts thinking about an extension.

Gefilte Fish Schultz

November 16th, 2011
10:39 am

Go Dawgs! Awebarn sucks!

j

November 16th, 2011
10:41 am

Dream Team 2.0

November 16th, 2011
10:43 am

Let the SEC Championship game and bowl game be our measureing stick. If win the Title then comes the payday.

Frank Lane

November 16th, 2011
10:44 am

And frankly the press is adding to the drivel.

Junior

November 16th, 2011
10:45 am

Fire Bill Curry!

wallyworld13

November 16th, 2011
10:48 am

You really think CTG is “urging” this? Sounds to me like the most likely scenario is that he’s got an aggressive agent who called him up and said he wants to start talking contract and CTG said “Sure, go do whatever and I’ll just keep coaching.” ”

“This is a public issue now because of Grantham, not his agent.” Hardly. I agree, it’s drivel. So why are you bringing it up? You really couldn’t find something better to write about?

JB

November 16th, 2011
10:53 am

CTG has done nothing wrong. Yes, his agent probably did call McGarity to ” feel him out” because HE IS GETTING CALLS ABOUT HIS CLIENTS SERVICES, because the AGENTS JOB is to look after TODD, NOT THE GEORGIA DEFENSE. Yes, I know Todd has one more year, and it shouldn’t be an issue, but If I remember correctly, Saban WAS UNDER CONTRACT with the Dolphins also.

GTT

November 16th, 2011
10:54 am

wdm

November 16th, 2011
10:54 am

This Schutlz idiot is the biggest douche to ever grace the AJC. Hey idiot, your own newspaper had an article where Grantham clearly says he is not worrying about his contract right now. According to the article, Grantham says he hired a guy (and agent) to worry about his contract so he can focus on football. No one would even know about his contract if you didn’t write about it. Parents of young kids, if you want your kid to be a total loser in life, tell them to study Schultz. It will get them there as fast as humanly possible.

J dubb

November 16th, 2011
10:54 am

Hope you’re not right about this Jeff. Although I fear this is par for the course with CTG’s personality (according to what we have witnessed so far). Sometimes he acts without thinking of consequences.

But – I LOVE his fire and coaching of our defense – so I hope after this year we can get him a little bump in salary and let him keep our D dominant for the next few years.

I think we have the talent here, and coming in, to be relevant and in the top 5 for the next few years; but if we have to start over with a new D-C then I am afraid that won’t happen.

Go Dawgs!!

No Dog in this Fight

November 16th, 2011
10:54 am

When the article and blog appeared earlier this week, most UGA fans were apoplectic to keep Grantham and give him a huge raise. Some even want to make head coach. Just wow. As an objective sports fan in Atlanta I think this guy severely tarnishes the Georgia team. You can do better. He behaves like a thug. Some of you should step back and think about what you would be saying if Florida or Auburn had a coach that did the stuff that Grantham has done.

St Simons - get down tonight

November 16th, 2011
10:55 am

Yes, and this blog needs to get back to doing its job -

doing negative UGA stories and hating on us. oh wait….

SSIgator

November 16th, 2011
10:55 am

“In other words, this is all drivel we could’ve done without”

It is about UGA football and its coaches. They invented drivel.

Don Draper

November 16th, 2011
10:55 am

Sounds like someone needs a Midol this morning. Let the coaches and the AD worry about this, I think they have a good handle on things. Perhaps you and Mark can cook up another column about the towering intellect of Paul Johnson.

Destin Dawg

November 16th, 2011
10:56 am

Todd Grantham’s Junk Yard Dawg Defense is doing great..I think he loves athens lake home etc.. Richt and TG compliment each other.. just Beat Kentucky !!

OkieDawg

November 16th, 2011
10:56 am

But, if you want a bump in pay and a couple of years added to your contract, the time to strike is while the iron is hot. Can it get hotter? I don’t think so. I’m afraid the iron may cool some when GT puts up big yardage on us and LSU does the same. I’m sure 4 months ago CTG was thinking he may be out in the cold with the attitude of the AD and the fans. But he turned around the defense in a big way and he just wants to secure his future. I don’t blame him, after all, if you want to judge fan support for a raise and extension, just look at the responses that have been given in his support. He can and will focus on coaching while his agent is trying to get the best deal McGarity can offer. We need CTG or we may end up back in the dark days of another Willie type.

Dap01

November 16th, 2011
10:56 am

I agree with Jeff but the AJC is harping on it more than the agent. Grantham has said nothing except he is focused on coaching.

It seems the press is creating an issue in order to report on an issue in order to complain about there being an issue.

He is a great coordinator though. He coaches defense at a championship level. Eat your heart out GT fans!

JB

November 16th, 2011
10:57 am

Schultz, which vault at the AJC vault did you and Bradley bury all the “Fire Mark Richt ” blogs?

ty webb

November 16th, 2011
10:58 am

chip proved his jounalistic bona fides yesterday with that garbage about someone being “nowhere to be found” at practice…good grief.

Destin Dawg

November 16th, 2011
10:58 am

Muschamp acts CRAZY.. he makes Zook look good.. TG has Fire.. compliment to Richt’s calm laid back demeanor

J dubb

November 16th, 2011
10:59 am

You bloggers kill me….
Why read and post on his EDITORIAL blogs if you can’t stand his writing so much???
It’s his JOB to blog his OPINION on news that is floating around.
I am sure he would hate the way you perform your job, if he was inclined to criticize every memo or instruction you issued.
Get a life, and stop being so sensitive.

Dap01

November 16th, 2011
10:59 am

The anti UGA bias always comes up.

But didn’t UGA look good on Saturday!

Dap01

November 16th, 2011
11:01 am

J Dubb: You are the one clueless. If there is no differring opinions, why have a blog. Go be a GT fan and don’t worry about people who don’t agree with you.

Starring Kam Fong as Chin Ho

November 16th, 2011
11:02 am

The numbers show that Grantham HAS been focusing on coaching. Stupid premise to a stupid article. We have come to expect no less.

UGA Fan

November 16th, 2011
11:02 am

Richt has 2 years to go on his contract..Grantham has another year…why the he!! has contracts come up now?..just 2 months ago everyone wanted to run Richt and Big G out of town…just win and everything else will fall in place……Thanks Jeff.

beast of the east

November 16th, 2011
11:02 am

You tell em SSIgator, Coach Boom and the boys NEVER give the press soundbites to latch onto. Wait, unless there is a CBS boom mic around. Other than that, and telling the SEC to “get us while you can”, nothing to report on.

MLH

November 16th, 2011
11:04 am

Schultz, I usually enjoy your columns, but I have to agree with most of the poster here. It seems like you are just trying to stir the pot and make an issue out of nothing.

Fred

November 16th, 2011
11:05 am

who really cares till season is over…..

J dubb

November 16th, 2011
11:09 am

yo dap.
The responses that i am referring to are the ones that resort to telling the writer that he is pushing drivel and calling him a douche. Classy.
A different opinion is one thing, but blogging that he’s an idiot for writing trash and inventing conspiracies is quite another.
Amazing what comes from one’s mouth (mind? keyboard?) when we’re all at our desks imagining that we’re big and tough, and are never wrong.

DYNAMICBIGBOY

November 16th, 2011
11:11 am

Looks like you want to make more out of this than Grantham. Go back to doing what you do best, the food section -sorry, I mean the sports pages.

MikeInValdosta

November 16th, 2011
11:12 am

This post is all drivel we could’ve done without.

gbal

November 16th, 2011
11:13 am

SHULTZ —

Do you think Grantham or his agent called Chip Towers to start that MS talk?

NO…. Chip called asking the questions and he just got answers. The agent said ther have been inquiries…. and that TG wants to stay at GA.

Grantham himself has said he is focused on coaching.

THE PRESS IS 1005 RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS AND HERE YOU WANT TO BLAME IT ON TG. IRRESPONSIBLE SLUTZEY REPORTING. ANOTHER JAB AT THE UGA PROGRAM. YOU DISGUST ME.

GulfShoresDawg

November 16th, 2011
11:16 am

@ TG & the gator trolls…whiners! Grow a pair! CTG has not embarrassed UGA, but shows he is a DGD and I wish he would have smacked Franklin and his sissy bodyguard…WHINERS…show some fire CTG, show some fire…just don’t look stupid like the gator HC in doing so….HC’s delegate that to the Asst. C’s…all the way to the DOME! BABY!

Honky Talkin

November 16th, 2011
11:16 am

Georgia has only beaten one team with a winning record. That’s pretty embarrassing to have a schedule that weak.

Just The Facts

November 16th, 2011
11:16 am

FYI Jeff – Todd Grantham does not give a $%^& what YOU think he needs to be worried about nor do the UGA fans/grads that read the AJC. Get over yourself!

Jeff Schultz

November 16th, 2011
11:16 am

WDM — If you believe a coach’s agent said things without the coach’s knowledge and/or approval and or/direction (or possibly all 3), then we’ve got nothing to talk about. And tell me when the Easter Bunny shows up on your front doorstep.

SugarHillDawg

November 16th, 2011
11:19 am

Comrade Schultz, did you not read the Chip Towers blog?When Grantham was asked about his contract, he said we and he needs to focus on Kentucky. Am I missing something??

Delbert D.

November 16th, 2011
11:19 am

This might be the peak of Grantham’s coaching career so far, and I can understand his agent pulling out all the stops. I don’t know who the candidates are for college head coaches or for NFL DCs, but he most likely get some interviews. Turning around a disaster of a situation to one that is the strength of the team is laudable.

Jeff Schultz

November 16th, 2011
11:19 am

JB — You’ve probably brought this up before. So let’s make this wager: I will bet you $1 million that I have never written Mark Richt should be fired. If you prove me wrong, I will give you $1 million. But if I’m right, you pay me. Take the bet? Please? Pretty please? Just let me know because it significantly impacts my business and investment decisions over the next few years. Come on now, JB. Don’t be shy. Let’s see you step up.

Bill Stanfill

November 16th, 2011
11:20 am

Jeff

Don’t you think it’s likely that Grantham will return to the NFL as a defensive coordinator?

Or is it possible that he really enjoys working with college kids and in the college/SEC atmosphere and will want to stay at UGA and create something really special?

GaBuck

November 16th, 2011
11:21 am

Well it’s good to see Jeff S. is back to cheapshotting UGA football again. I was pretty sure that that the guy who wrote his column Sunday was an imposter.

gbal

November 16th, 2011
11:21 am

ok shultz –

Is it your real opinion that TG is showing thru his actions… that he is more focused on a contract extension that the remaining season?

Or are you just following up on a different angle to Chips earlier story that was just as irresponsible?

Straight answer please?

Honky Talkin

November 16th, 2011
11:21 am

Georgia has played 3 teams this season that currently have a winning record. They’re 1-2 against those teams. Pathetic.

OkieDawg

November 16th, 2011
11:22 am

Enter your comments here

Jeff Schultz

November 16th, 2011
11:22 am

Gbal — “Do you think Grantham or his agent called Chip Towers to start that MS talk?”
… I know that answer to that question. But it’s not my position to share that publicy. That’s up to Chip and/or the agent. But let’s say I feel comfortable writing what I wrote.

UGA Insider

November 16th, 2011
11:22 am

Dawg fans don’t worry about crap like this. McGarity will do the right job and UGA is LOADED with money.

Jeff Schultz

November 16th, 2011
11:23 am

GBAL — By the way, what’s “MS”?

Flat Tire on I-95 in Jacksonville

November 16th, 2011
11:23 am

Jeff

How about an article on why cant Bobo ever consistently call a game like he did against Auburn

SillyPosters

November 16th, 2011
11:27 am

What do you goobers think a sports writer does in the 24-7 age of the media? They write about topics that come up. You think they shouldn’t report on it because you don’t like it? This is the world, get used to it.
P.S. UGA still has a fan base of rednecks hillbillies. Go Jackets, we don’t win much but basketweaving is not on the diploma list.