Spurrier should take lesson from Richt on handling criticism

For two coaches of top ranked programs, Steve Spurrier and Mark Richt seem at opposite ends in terms of perspective and dealings with media. (Phil Skinner/AJC)

For two coaches of top-ranked programs, Steve Spurrier and Mark Richt seem to reside at opposite ends in perspective and their respective dealings with the media. (Phil Skinner/AJC)

Over the past few seasons, Mark Richt has had no shortage of reasons to put his fist through a wall, terrorize secretaries and assistant coaches or erupt in a news conference, as if Athens’ own little Mt. Vesuvius.

He has suspended players for poor academics, poor driving habits and poor choice of herbal supplements (in or outside of brownies). Several prize recruits have been excommunicated for assorted acts of dumbness. His job security has come into question. He works in a conference where five other schools have won BCS titles. And, on a lesser note, his athletic director was fired for drunk driving.

But notice something about Mark Richt? He seldom seems stressed. He isn’t storming out of news conferences when he sees a columnist he doesn’t like (really?), or blathering on the radio about making progress in trying to get a guy fired (fantasy).

As Richt said Tuesday, “I don’t think I’m totally Teflon, but there’s not much anybody can say that can get me bent out of shape.”

Richt lives in one universe.

Steve Spurrier holds his breath in the other.

It’s an interesting contrast of coaches this week. Georgia plays South Carolina. Both are 5-0 and top 10 teams. But Richt clearly is enjoying the moment – and he can be seen this week in a series of humorous ESPN commercials – while Spurrier is acting like a whining, petulant second-grader, carrying on a battle with local sports columnist Ron Morris, whom he’s convinced is out to get him.

Richt chuckled Tuesday when asked about Spurrier, saying, “I heard about him leaving the news conference,” but he generally refrained from comment.

But Richt will tell you that he has changed. Few college coaches have had more reasons to be stressed, but he seldom shows it. (He and I had a minor flare up several years back that was blown out of proportion — geez, I really hate the media — but it was cleared up that same day.)

“I know that most criticism is pointed toward the coach, not necessarily the person,” he said. “If I’ve ever felt something became more of a personal attack, there have been times when I’ve talked to people privately. Or if a guy beats up on a player more than I think he should, I’ll get sensitive about that once in a while. But in the grand scheme of things, it’s still momentary light affliction, like Apostle Paul talks about. It doesn’t last.

“I know when my wife had cervical cancer, if that doesn’t put life in perspective, what does? There are just things bigger than whether I’m the head coach at Georgia, or whether anybody thinks I’m smart or not smart, or a good coach or a bad coach. I know I’ve got a job to do, and I want to know that the process I go through in that job is one I can live with when I go to sleep at night.”

Richt and Spurrier both have their moral compasses. Spurrier’s just spins a little more.

He lost supporters with his constant enabling of former quarterback Stephen Garcia, who was “suspended” five times, yet somehow never managed to miss a game (until the university finally dismissed him). Spurrier was indignant when asked about the perception that he was soft on issues pertaining to alcohol. He told The State: “There is something that they can always pick at you about. … If the president and A.D. say, ‘Man, you are too soft on that,’ then they will get another coach here,” he told The State.)

His recent radio vent lost other supporters.

Spurrier’s objective, of course, is to unify his fan base and cultivate the us-against-the-world mentality. It’s not uncommon. His power and ego ran unchecked at Florida because he was winning SEC titles and seldom was criticized.

But when somebody’s constant response to any criticism becomes, “I’ll just [retire and] and go to the beach,” it’s clear he has lost all perspective.

Richt has been through the wringer of a 6-7 season, a 7-9 record in the SEC over two years and last season’s 0-2 start.

“I’m enjoying coaching more now — but, I mean, we’re winning a lot more,” he said.

Of criticism, he said: “When somebody critiques me, I try to filter the information, regardless of whether I think the person is mean-spirited or sweet-spirited, because the guy might be right. I may not give him credit from a pride standpoint, but sometimes there’s validity to it.”

It seems like a healthier perspective than threatening to quit or get somebody fired.

By Jeff Schultz

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372 comments Add your comment

Thomas Brown

October 3rd, 2012
3:40 pm

“kingdaddy and JB wrote it about the game Saturday night, that if Mark Richt does not win this game, they both want coaching change”

You wrote about the game Saturday night. Now, I know the English language is a 2nd language for you, but about the game Saturday night would be USCe – not about the vols’ afternoon game which would have read you wrote about the game last Saturday.

You know ?

Saturday night ?

The night after Friday night ?

The night 2 nights after Thursday night, tomorrow night ?

The night, 3 nights from tonight ?

Jeez Louise. And, I have problems ?

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Did you say this about the game we have Saturday night kingdaddy, sir ?
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kingdaddy July 2nd, 2012 9:56 am

”JB
If UGA loses to S.C. this year but wins the rest of the scheduled games, then makes it to the SEC-CG and is not competitive, then I see a major shake-up in our staff by McGarrity. UGA has to beat someone ranked this year in my belief. I don’t think CMR & CMB get a free pass this year just for beating unranked teams. This team has the talent to win, but do they have the coaching? Its too late to do anything this year, but ride it out…”
_____________________________________________

It’s not a trick question, kingdaddy, sir. Did you or did you not write this that you want major shake-up in the staff if we lose Saturday night (3 nights from now.)

My Lord.

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
3:41 pm

DawgNole
Jeff won’t let me comment on your comment. It was a real hoot too…

Thomas Brown

October 3rd, 2012
3:44 pm

It’s ok kingdaddy; you can say it. We all know you wrote this post. We all read it at the time and have commented on it since.

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kingdaddy July 2nd, 2012 9:56 am

”JB
If UGA loses to S.C. this year but wins the rest of the scheduled games, then makes it to the SEC-CG and is not competitive, then I see a major shake-up in our staff by McGarrity. UGA has to beat someone ranked this year in my belief. I don’t think CMR & CMB get a free pass this year just for beating unranked teams. This team has the talent to win, but do they have the coaching? Its too late to do anything this year, but ride it out…”
_____________________________________________

I presume you get some enjoyment out of having your post repeated ?

Thomas Brown

October 3rd, 2012
3:46 pm

ARdawg October 3rd, 2012 2:05 pm

“Thomas Brown YES. I said it. I meant it word for word. Thank you for attributing my remarks to me instead of other’s remarks you wish I had said.”
_______________________________________
There is a man. Unlike others not mentioning any names of any wuss like kingdaddy, kingdaddy.

Steve Crumley Toe Tapper

October 3rd, 2012
3:53 pm

Enter your comments here

Thomas Brown

October 3rd, 2012
3:53 pm

ARdawg October 3rd, 2012 2:10 pm

“kingdaddy

Thomas has had many monikers over the years but he is the same guy that has posted here for years. I know him well. I don’t believe him any less of a fan than I. I do believe him to be a man who let’s his hatred for Mark Richt eat him up inside to a point it isn’t about the Bulldogs any more. Only about Thomas’s ability to ramble incoherently and consistently. He has to remind himself over and over how much he hates Richt more than he needs to convince anyone here”
___________________________________________________________
Don’t contribute anything to you which you didn’t write, but do contrive whatever you want for me. Did I get that right, too, ARdawg ? Aren’t you the guy who had a blog at one time, where you edited one of my posts – no that was dawginduluth who edited the post whilst you out of town – and then reprinted my post on your blog with the WORDS you wanted on my post, not my post. No question mark on that.

If you want to know the TRUTH so help me God Above, I am fed up to here with you so-called Bulldogs’ fans who act like YOU NEVER SAID THIS CRUDOLA, when you have and have done so repeatedly, like only you can say Mark Richt isn’t a very good football coach, but a fine man.

You get any of that ?

How fitting that you and kingdaddy would team-up, since you BOTH repeatedly have bragged how NEITHER of you even go to the games.

Steve Crumley Toe Tapper

October 3rd, 2012
3:55 pm

One coach wants to win so bad that he can’t stand it…one coach doesn’t care very much about winning and losing. Guess which one has the national championship ring?

Thomas Brown

October 3rd, 2012
4:05 pm

The one who won last season when he made the Top 10 to make it 7 in a row the other has lost to teams making the Top 10 ?

Thomas Brown

October 3rd, 2012
4:07 pm

The one with the worse recruiting ?

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
4:08 pm

Thomas
You’re an idiot. For one thing Lulu, : you wrote this statement………..
“kingdaddy and JB wrote it about the game Sat night”… your writing is as clouded as your judgement. Why didn’t you say we wrote that 3 months ago you dingle-berry.I thought you meant last Sat night you troll. Try to be more precise while you bend the truth, AND if you paid attention to what was written, it clearly states, “if we lose to SC and… UGA has to beat someone ranked” …we still may beat SC, I believe we will and we still play UF who is ranked. Plus UT, Vañdy & Mizz. may all be ranked by the end of the year. You’re clutching at straws if you think I want CMR gone. Leave me out of your psychotic episodes. I am 100% behind Coach Richt…you should try it…

KINGDADDY, YOU WRITE THIS OR NOT SON ?

October 3rd, 2012
4:13 pm

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kingdaddy July 2nd, 2012 9:56 am

”JB
If UGA loses to S.C. this year but wins the rest of the scheduled games, then makes it to the SEC-CG and is not competitive, then I see a major shake-up in our staff by McGarrity. UGA has to beat someone ranked this year in my belief. I don’t think CMR & CMB get a free pass this year just for beating unranked teams. This team has the talent to win, but do they have the coaching? Its too late to do anything this year, but ride it out…”
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KINGDADDY, YOU WRITE THIS OR NOT SON ?

October 3rd, 2012
4:17 pm

That sure looks like your writing. 10 times 1 blog asked did you write it. 10 times no reply.

I’d say that pretty much covers it that you wrote it.

If you didn’t write it, you would have said heck no.

I never said if we lose to South Carolina 2012, if we don’t beat top teams 2012, that Mike Bobo and Mark Richt do not get a Free Pass for 2012. They have plenty of talent, averaging # 8 recruiting class to # 20 average Steve Spurrier recruiting rankings.

But, for the life of me, I cannot figure out your “Its too late to do anything this year, but ride it out…”

That was 2 months ago you wrote this, kingdaddy. Were you drunk and don’t know if you wrote it ?

Would you like the URL Link to see the other drunk posts that morning too so you can then determine if you might have written this, or not ?

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
4:20 pm

Thomas
When did you start lying so much? You used to just be crazy. Now you’re crazy and delusional. Call your Doc and tell him to up your meds. Whatever you’re on now ain’t cutting it…try to get some help. I enjoyed many games in Athens but I have never bragged about not going to a UGA game, ever. Quit worring so much, you’ll bring on a spell and they will have to get the men with the nets after you again…

KINGDADDY, YOU WRITE THIS OR NOT SON ?

October 3rd, 2012
4:24 pm

Sure you have both.

(1) Repeatedly bragged that you are DRUNK whilst you post here on AJ-C.
(2) Repeatedly bragged including on THIS BLOG RIGHT HERE that you don’t go to the games.

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
4:24 pm

Dumba$$, I mean Thomas,
if I said I wrote it, will you STFU? IT still doesn’t say I want CMR gone, lol…

KINGDADDY, YOU WRITE THIS OR NOT SON ?

October 3rd, 2012
4:25 pm

I see you also are trying to side-track the issue.

Is that your post you twerp ?

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
4:27 pm

If you’ll admit you’re crazy I will agree with you, lol…

kingdaddy, sir, you want to try to explain what this post says since none of us speak English, you know ?

October 3rd, 2012
4:28 pm

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kingdaddy July 2nd, 2012 9:56 am

”JB
If UGA loses to S.C. this year but wins the rest of the scheduled games, then makes it to the SEC-CG and is not competitive, then I see a major shake-up in our staff by McGarrity. UGA has to beat someone ranked this year in my belief. I don’t think CMR & CMB get a free pass this year just for beating unranked teams. This team has the talent to win, but do they have the coaching? Its too late to do anything this year, but ride it out…”
_____________________________________________

kingdaddy, sir, you want to try to explain what this post says since none of us speak English, you know ?

October 3rd, 2012
4:29 pm

CMR is clear enough in your post you wrote and admit you wrote.

kingdaddy, sir, you want to try to explain what this post says since none of us speak English, you know ?

October 3rd, 2012
4:33 pm

kingdaddy October 3rd, 2012 4:24 pm

________________________________________________________
“if I said I wrote it, will you STFU? IT still doesn’t say I want CMR gone”
________________________________________________________

Thank you for that explanation of what you said 2 months ago. I guess you felt that needed to be said, now, looking at what you wrote then about “CMR.”

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
4:35 pm

I really missed you looney toons. I have one question though and I thought you probably would know…You ever hear the phrase “He’s Crazy as a Bedbug!”??? Well just how crazy are bedbugs??? Come on, you can tell me…I’d also like to know if you are a normal person after the full-moon wanes???

Ed

October 3rd, 2012
4:40 pm

Spurrier is a strange duck. Even during his heyday as UF’s coach, when he was the toast of college football, he always seemed a little out of sorts and never particularly happy. He left UF at the height of his powers and has never returned to that level, so it doesn’t surprise me that he’s hyper-sensitive to criticism. He should know by now that it comes with the territory. You’d think millions of dollars and an Augusta National membership would make a man content, but maybe he’s not capable of it.

GOOGLE SEARCH - maybe you never thought of doing a google search on your words - see your post July 2 ?

October 3rd, 2012
4:42 pm

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
4:49 pm

July 2nd to Oct 3rd is 3 months goofy…
where does it say fire Mark Richt? …shake up the staff means just that. Don’t make stuff up, it’s ugly and you have enough problems…don’t you? ….
TB, please give your psychiatrist a call and get some treatment & counseling, maybe some therapy. We are really worried about you and Jeff Schultz wants his blog back. Plus, I’m tired of this game. You are boring …

LHarding Dawg

October 3rd, 2012
4:49 pm

I don’t think he got the Augusta membership. Maybe that’s why he is always upset.

Ed

October 3rd, 2012
4:50 pm

Earlier this year I heard an interview with Spurrier on Sirius Channel 91. To my surprise, he praised Vince Dooley as “a great coach,” rare praise from a man who hates all things UGA. Maybe he remembered the whippings that VD’s teams use to dish out to UF, including Spurrier’s ‘66 team.

But what struck me was the contrast between the two men. Dooley won with class and always went out of his way to praise and respect an opponent. Spurrier needles opponents, regardless of whether they are inferior, or superior like most of Bobby Bowden’s FSU teams in the 90s. The man could win 90% of his games, and I’d still say he’s no Vince Dooley.

And he’s certainly no Mark Richt.

Thomas Brown

October 3rd, 2012
4:53 pm

You are quite clear in your post what you said. Everyone can read it.

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
4:58 pm

Jeff Schultz
I apoligize to you for the detour and letting myself get off the article. Arguing with some people is like driving on a race track, you keep passing the same ol scenery over and over. Was it Pascal Perez that got stuck on I-285 and was late for a start? LOL that was funny. Anyway, I’m sorry and I will try to stay on subject…

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
5:03 pm

Tommy
The only thing clear is you’re an idiot-savant only good for complaining…have a nice day…

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
5:39 pm

Jeff
On an intentional facemask, is it just 15 yards or do they eject you?
Second Question…Can they throw q flag on Coach Spurrier the next time he grabs one of his own players by the facemask and jerks his players head around while he cusses him for jumping off-sides or making a mistake in the game? I’m serious…

Hillbilly D

October 3rd, 2012
6:06 pm

You have to give the Evil Genius credit; he really knows how to get into people’s heads.

[...] Spurrier Could Learn From Richt Like this:LikeBe the first to like this. [...]

shakazulu

October 3rd, 2012
6:30 pm

Anybody got some proof of Spurrier grabbing someone by the facemask on the sideline? I’d like to see it.

bamaguy

October 3rd, 2012
6:57 pm

Spurrier should take lessons from RIcht on how to handle ciriticism, and Richt should take lessons from Spurrier on how to coach football.

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
7:11 pm

Zulu
I don’t know how long you’ve been out of diapers, but you could probably Google it @ Spurrier triads on the sidelines. If that doesn’t work, try Spurrier’s rage on the sidelines. Keep trying with rants, fits or screaming, lol. One of those will work. I’ve seen it several times myself and wondered why anyone would let their sons play for such a pos…

shakazulu

October 3rd, 2012
7:16 pm

Long time out of diapers kingdaddy….I played for him and was just wondering where this came from as I’ve never seen anything resembling that. Thanks for your input. Now rants and tirades? Sure enough.

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
7:17 pm

Shak,
he grabs them by the facemask so they can’t look away from him while he is cussing them out for a mistake. I have watched him against UGA since he left the Dukies. Can you imagine him doing that to you in front of 90,000 fans AND NATIONAL TV???

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
7:30 pm

shakazulu
I don’t know you, but I can’t see how you aren’t aware of his sideline disipline. Maybe you didn’t need any of his justice. Everybody makes mistakes, even him…

Dawg-Gawn

October 3rd, 2012
7:40 pm

This video by Terrance Donnels a.k.a. LSUFreek, sort of matches this article, I thought it to be rather comical.

Link below:

http://bit.ly/Q28P5f

If this link does not work just google – Terrance Donnels monkey god of sec

Perfect description of coach Spurrier – hilarious stuff!!!

“BELIEVE” in the “G”

shakazulu

October 3rd, 2012
7:50 pm

Ha! LSUFreek is on top of his game, as usual. King, I had a coach grab me by the facemask once and jerk me around….he was the biggest son of a yatch I ever met and it did little to inspire anyone….especially me! He lasted two years and was gone. I think that really crosses the line and if you’ve ever had it done to you, you know what I mean. I would be surprised if he yanked the facemask, now if he got in somebody’s face and made some contact that way by happenstance, that’s another issue. Regardless, he is what he is and I reckon that’s what makes him quite unique and worthy of 20 page threads on message boards. Good evening all and enjoy the games….should be some blood-lettings.

kingdaddy

October 3rd, 2012
8:11 pm

Shak
Agreed, good luck…

Carolina girl

October 3rd, 2012
8:32 pm

As a minister, are you allowed to judge?

Wet Willie...keep on smiling

October 3rd, 2012
8:51 pm

Name one college that would have selected Mark Richt over Steve as HC. Spare us your BS regarding MR does it the right way.

Jimmy Ejide

October 3rd, 2012
11:07 pm

Jeff Schultz is evidently a tool for writing that baseless accusations and/or reporting substantiated with only lies are equal to criticism. Jeff’s piece equally reflects the common trend the so called journalists and bloggers of today use to easily disregard facts in their race to create or fan rumors instead of reporting news.

Here we go again..

October 4th, 2012
1:58 am

Works both ways doesn’t it Jeff? I remember you whining a couple of weeks back because Mike Smith wouldn’t give you some precious information. Are you a “whining, petulant second grader” also?

Thomas Brown

October 4th, 2012
2:12 am

“Spurrier should take lessons from RIcht on how to handle ciriticism, and Richt should take lessons from Spurrier on how to coach football.”

Thomas Brown

October 4th, 2012
2:45 am

Leading receiver Michael Bennett, speaking prior to his right ACL injury in Tuesday’s practice, opined that Aaron Murray does want to erase any doubts. Even if he doesn’t say it. Aaron Murray is 0-9 vs teams who made any top 25 and lost 2 more games to teams who did not any top 25 poll in his entire career at Georgia starting December 2008 here. This leaves Aaron Murray having to go 13-1 both 2012 and 2013 just to tie David Greene’s UGA Record of 43 wins as starting QB. Aaron Murray’s play against South Carolina every year has been a huge reason why The Dawgs have lost every year to Steve Spurrier. “I think he wants to prove himself. It’s a big game, and everyone wants to prove themselves in a big game like this,” Michael Bennett went on. “For whatever reason, people say he hasn’t played great in big games.”
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Neither has his coach, # 8 in The SEC during his tenure here against teams who made the Top 10 at 3 Wins only out of 16 such games over these 12 years to-date. And of course with South Carolina having games against Georgia, Clemson and LSU this season, there is no hope that South Carolina make it to the Top 10 this season – not with that schedule. Compare that schedule with our own of just only South Carolina 2012.

Mark Richt is down to just 66 scholarship players plus one transfer-in to play Saturday night. That’s the day after tomorrow to twerps.

Aaron Murray had this to say on the topic which he has frequently been quoted as saying himself that he does not have a Signature Win :

“Right now it’s a huge win for us to beat the No. 6 team in the country, to go into their home and beat them. It’s another SEC win leading to our ultimate goal of Atlanta and Miami.”

National Championship Quarterback Aaron Murray brags pre-game. These are bulletin board words pre-game by a guy whom South Carolina has OWNED. Right Aaron Murray, you’re the National Championship Quarterback, uh-huh with your 32 games started, 11 lost, 56 sacks, 1 yards per carry on 200 rushes to-date and 61 percent pass completion percentages with your own teammates telling you in your survey that you need to be a Better Leader On and Off the Field Is this an example of that, pre-game like your Tweet to Boise State last season that you are “headin’ down to the Dome to kick some booty.”

Thomas Brown

October 4th, 2012
4:34 am

The Bear

October 4th, 2012
4:47 pm

We all new Spurrie was and is a Cock!

Bill Davis

October 5th, 2012
9:09 am

So, the argument is: Our dude is better because he’s mellowed on Quaaludes, while the other dude stinks because he is totally a testy speed-freak? Don’t get me wrong: as a Dawg alum and a diehard ‘Skins fan, I hope nothing but the worst for Spurrier – especially as I spend the weekend in Columbia for my son’s travel baseball tourney. But Richt needs to, in the words of Samuel L. Jackson, “Wake the #@%! up!” How many arrests over the past 5 years as he scrambled to get athletes? How many bowl wins over teams not named Hawai’i? They want him in Columbia; let’em have him.