Fox: Roundball Dogs need new mindset

Mark Richt and Mark Fox held a press conference before their appearance before the Rome Bulldog Club Wednesday night, and Fox talked a bit about what it’s going to take to turn the basketball Dogs into winners. The Rome News-Tribune has coverage, including some brief video clips.

Foremost, Fox said, is “we’re going to have to improve our offensive production.” He noted that this past season the Dogs had more turnovers than they did assists and said that’s something he’s going to have to address.

Beyond that, he said, the mindset of the team has to change in that they need to have the “expectation of success. … I’m not sure they had that last year.” 

It will mean a “change of culture in the locker room,” he said. “It’s not easily done, but fans can expect our team to play very hard every night.”

Again, something that wasn’t the case last season, though he didn’t come right out say that. 

As for Richt, he again made the point that last season’s spotlight on Matthew Stafford and Knowshon Moreno was detrimental to the team.

This year, he said, “the star of our team is … the team. Last year, the media wouldn’t allow that. When you’ve got Stafford and Moreno, that’s what they’re going to talk about. Now [the media is saying] we’re not going to be very good because those guys are gone? That’s a bunch of bologna.”

Looking at what’s ahead this season, though, Richt admitted at the press conference that “we have more of a schedule than most coaches would want,” what with Oklahoma State, Arizona State and Georgia Tech as nonconference opponents all in the same year.

38 comments Add your comment

OZZFEST

April 30th, 2009
1:39 pm

I am a season ticket holder, I laugh when I read “Ok State, Arizona State & Ga Tech” are more than a coach would want. Try pissing away my money to pay for tickets where 1/3 of our home schedule for the last 30 years has consisted of Utah State, NE La, & Ga Southern..etc… year after year. Richt needs to MAN UP, SHUT UP and get the Dogs ready to play. I might add that these are not even close to the opponents that most fans want…Texas, USC, or Michigan…etc… should be brought in AT LEAST ONCE A DECADE. (I am going to Blacksburg Sept 19 to see Nebraska play Va Tech…just to see how the other half lives.)
Woof, woof!

Whopper Dawg

April 30th, 2009
1:46 pm

UGA has probably the toughest non-conference in the nation. So, OZZFEST load back up on the Crazy Train and start heading to Blacksburg.

DawgGirl32

April 30th, 2009
1:52 pm

OZZFEST- UGA plays one of the hardest schedules in the country. What Coach Richt is saying is true; a lot of other coaches would hate our OOC schedule which is why they don’t schedule tough OOC games like we do(ahem Florida). He should be commended for what he’s doing. BTW, his OOC record 33-3 so I think he’s done a pretty good job of “manning up” and “getting the Dogs ready to play.”

DawginLex

April 30th, 2009
1:54 pm

and the fact that 2 of the 3 are on the road makes for a tougher schedule than any other SEC team has OOC

uga_b

April 30th, 2009
1:59 pm

I am cool with the we are a team now approach until we rush for less than a hundred yards in a game. And it was the defense team that didn’t perform. The O was quite prolific. I wouldn’t mind everyone talking about Rashad Jones, Justin Houston, Owen, and Curran like they were superstars. In fact, I am all for it.

Otto

April 30th, 2009
2:22 pm

Nebraska and Va. Tech is no bigger a game than UGA vs Az St. Nebraska has been down for almost a decade and Va Tech is a best of the rest type team. However I too would like to see some games outside of the SEC. I was planning to see Oklahoma vs Miami but the tickets fell through.

NewnanDawg

April 30th, 2009
3:11 pm

Ok, back to the other subject – We’ll have to wait and see when the games start, but so far Mark Fox has done everything right from an observer’s point of view. The mindset does need to change. Some of the games got downright strange last year; it seemed like the players were trying, but they looked almost shocked when something good would happen, especially if they won. These kids were all on winning teams before college, so they just need the right coach to bring that mentality back.

I also have yet to hear Coach Fox answer any question poorly. In addition to the press conference and meetings, he spent a long time on 790 the Zone the other morning and I was very impressed. He balanced talking about areas that the team needs to improve with compliments of their skills, potential, and attitude. He was asked about practices and he said that in the couple he was allowed to have before the summer, he did introduce them to what it will be like in the fall. He said that everyone seemed to be on board and worked hard, but he admmitted that the intensity he demanded “had a couple of them in the trash can.” Sounds to me like he expects a lot and knows how to get it out of his players. His overall demeanor in the interview was good too. He just sounds like he knows basketball and how to relate to players. We’ll see when they hit the hardwood.

Oh, and our OOC schedule is getting better/tougher every year, so no complaints. I’m really looking forward to visiting Oregon in 2015 (I think that is when they hit the schedule) and Tempe was a blast last year.

Go Dawgs!

NewnanDawg

April 30th, 2009
3:11 pm

Wow – didn’t realize how long that was – sorry

RedandBlack

April 30th, 2009
3:29 pm

Every team on the Georgia Bulldog’s schedule is tough. Each game is a challenge not only to play, but also to patch up from previous games and to prepare for the next one. The Dogs will hit them hard and often this year.

September is another day closer. It is great to be a Georgia Bulldog. Woof, Baby, Woof!! Go Dogs!!

athensdawg

April 30th, 2009
3:32 pm

There is so much emphasis on media these days…i’d rather have a coach who was boring as h*ll and got the job done (like Belechick) than some media darling. I’ll take substance over style any day.

All the great coaches view the media as a necessary evil that is a distraction from the job they need to do. If you want some real good insight into that, read Bill Walsh’s book on how he built the 49ers….

you or I could give an interview and say all the right things, if we were used to doing such a thing….We will find out how good Mark Fox is after the end of next basketball season.

as for Richt and his schedule “complaints….” I’d rather hear that than all the hype of last year. I grew up listening to VD and Munson talk about how we were in trouble because the cupcake we were playing that week had the best punter in the NCAA.

NewnanDawg

April 30th, 2009
3:53 pm

AthensDawg – I agree that we will have to wait for the season to really know about Fox, but I think he has done just the right amount of media – enough to let people know things are changing, but not bombarding us every day. And I hate to say it, but I have heard a lot of coaches who should know better say a lot of “wrong” things in an interview. Just ask a bunch of UT fans about their new football coach if you want a recent example.

I like your last comment – so true of Dooley and Munson…

uga_b

April 30th, 2009
4:10 pm

Well to be fair. Vanderbilt DOES have one of the best kick return games in the country.

uga_b

April 30th, 2009
4:14 pm

Athensdawg, I agree with your point on Walsh and Belichick, but I am not sure it is valid. They are pro teams that select players and can pay more for their services. Given the need to recruit and the types of kids recruited, high profile programs with high profile coaches do better. Look at USC in football and Calipari at Memphis for basketball.

Hopefully he is more like Carrol and slicked back Calipari.

AltamahaDawg

April 30th, 2009
4:36 pm

Texas, USC, and Michigan would probable appreciate as much notice as possible when we pick the date we are going to “bring them in”. They would be embarassed to have to call off somebody, when they learn of our decision.

You gotta be kidding?

April 30th, 2009
6:32 pm

UGA has the toughest nonconference schedule in the nation? What? Ariz. St is a joke. Did they even have a winning season last year or did they lose their usual 4-6 games a year? Ok St is the 4th best team in their own division, got rolled in their bowl game, and is an average 7-5 team most years. That leaves Tech which you have to play and which is always another very average team.

CMR was asked a year ago if he would ever schedule a “USC” like program in an AJC article and his direct response was “Uh, no. I don’t think we want to do that” He will continue to schedule ok but not great mid level teams from other bcs conferences but if you think he is going to “man up” and schedule a top tier out of conference program like a USC, TEXAS, OHIO STATE, or even a weaker bcs conference champion such as Va. Tech or West Virginia you have got to be freaking kidding. Quit acting like these 3 nonconcs are great teams. They are middle of the road average programs that will always be overshadowed by the elite teams in their respective conferences, the teams Richt refuses to schedule.

AltamahaDawg

April 30th, 2009
6:40 pm

Could we have a moratorium on using the term “is a joke” for a few weeks? I swear, that’s getting about as old as “doesn’t have a clue” as a substitution for being able to make an intelligent point. Continue……

You gotta be kidding?

April 30th, 2009
6:43 pm

And a further point you morons,

RIcht will schedule big names like Colorado when they are coming off a 2-9 season and he actually has a window to schedule a big name like Michigan while they are in a down cycle but he aint gonna do it. He’s just plain chicken.

Since 2000 I’ve seen LSU schedule big time noncons like perennial Big east champion Va. Tech, Bama schedule No. 1 OU in 2002 and Va. Tech this year and Penn State next year, Auburn schedule USC in 2002 and 2003 and West Virginia last year and again this year, Ark. schedule USC and Texas in 4 consecutive years 2003-06, Vandy play Michigan a couple of years ago when they were still good, Tenn. play Miami several years ago when they were still good and ND when they were winning 9-10 games a year, Miss. State play Oregon a few years ago and West Virginia the last couple years, and Ole Miss playing dangerous Texas Tech home and home.

CMR is a freaking coward. Always taking the safe route and playing some midlevel teams rather than manning up and playing elite ooc teams.

JP

April 30th, 2009
7:35 pm

“You gotta be kidding?” – How is Ole MIss scheduling Texas Tech any different than UGA scheduling Oklahoma State? We play at Boulder next year, so when “Richt” scheduled that one he had no clue how good they would be. We also play Oregon in 2011, just like Miss State did.

AltamahaDawg

April 30th, 2009
7:48 pm

Might want to check your facts about that Colorada series. That was scheduled in 2005 when they were coming off the BigXII CG for the 4th time in 5 yrs. But you have to admit it was pure genius to know they would go 2-10 the year we played them.

AltamahaDawg

April 30th, 2009
7:59 pm

BTW, how does those ‘elite” teams scheduling lower to middle tier SEC teams, really back up your thesis. Are you blogging on the Michigan sight telling them what a chicken turds they are for only scheduling Vandy. And I’m prettty sure it was USC that scheduled Ark, not the other way around.

I don’t think Damon Evans or (Mark Richt, as you would have us believe does all the scheduling) is having to run and hide every time USC and Texas keep calling. Incidentally, what was Penn State’s record when that deal with Alabama was struck?

Bo Williams

April 30th, 2009
8:23 pm

who had you rather have as your starting QB, TJ Yates, UNC (from Ga.), or Joe Cox (from NC)?

You gotta be kidding?

April 30th, 2009
9:19 pm

Alt dawg,

I saw USC play Ohio State earlier this year which is the class of the big 10. I saw Texas play Ohio State in 2005 but I guess this escapes you also. Do these facts escape you? USC actually tries to schedule the bigger time programs but few want to play them. Richt simply does not try and flat out admitted in that AJC article last year that he has no interest in scheduling top 10 caliber programs.

I can’t speak much for Bama but I do know Penn State has been in several bcs bowls in the last several years, the orange vs FSU, they whooped UT 2 years ago in a bcs bowl game, and last year they were in the national title hunt most of the season. They lost 1 close game and then got a whupping from USC as most people do when USC comes ready to play. Penn State picked Bama because they see Bama as being an elite team in a few years with Saban so obviously Penn State doesn’t dodge anyone. Also, I’ve seen Paterno schedule Nebraska when they were a national power, Bama when they were a national power, ND when they were strong, so obviously Penn State doesn’t dodge anyone.

As for Michigan they took on Oregon 2 years ago which has easily been the number 2 program in the pac 10 for awhile now. They also play ND which although they have been down lately they are still ND and can still put some talent on the field.

As for the Colorado series be for freaking real. CU was in the worst freaking division out of all the bcs conferences. Big 12 north is an absolute joke and u know it. Also, CMR may have scheduled them after they won their division but the fact is that they scheduled CU right after the huge mess with the sex, rape, alchohol, scandals and ensuing NCAA troubles. Several players transferred, they already had lost a huge senior class, and recruiting had been severely effected for almost 2 years while this sorded saga played out. The program was at its alltime low in morale. It was basically in shambles and if you knew 2 cents worth of college football you would know this.

SugarHillDawg

April 30th, 2009
9:47 pm

I am stoked that Okie State is ranked so high. We should have no problem getting ready and it will help us ALOT when we beat them!! GATA Dawgs!!!!

82dawg

April 30th, 2009
9:55 pm

Recruit, recruit, recruit. We have two signees for 2009, both 2 star players. That won’t cut it in the SEC. Bring in a couple of JC guys to at least make us competitive, then hit the Georgia roads and bring in some kids that can play in the following years! You don’t even have to leave the state.

AltamahaDawg

April 30th, 2009
10:12 pm

There’s that term again.

Gravy Train

April 30th, 2009
10:21 pm

You gotta be kidding yourself: Coach Richt does not make the schedules, the Athletic Director does. When the 12 game season was introduced, every team you mentioned as a so-called power, used that as an opportunity to schedule a low grade opponent. Example: Michigan vs. Appalachian State…or Ohio State vs. Youngstown State. You are very uninformed and biased about college football, as evidenced by your comments. Damon Evans has said on more than one occasion that he contacted several traditional power programs like the Michigans and Nebraskas. And guess what? They don’t want to play us. Sure. USC will pick on Arkansas or Ohio State but they are the ones dodging. You need to stop kidding yourself because your comments make you the joke.

You gotta be kidding?

April 30th, 2009
10:37 pm

Gravy Train,

CMR has a lot of influence regarding the schedule. He works with the athletic director in charting the course of the program. To say otherwise is foolish.

As far as Damon Evans scheduling elite, top tier teams actions speak louder than words. So Nebraska played USC back to back and now plays Va Tech which has won 3 of the last 5 acc titles but yet they don’t want to play UGA? You got to be kidding right? They’ll play USC and Va Tech but are scared of little ole UGA? USC will play OHIO STATE and Auburn back in 2002 and 2003 when Auburn was a good team but yet they’re dodging UGA? You cannot possibly be serious? Ohio State just played USC and played Texas back to back in 2004 and 2005 but they are also dodging UGA? I’m going to buy you a case of kool aid because you drink so much of it you gotta be running out.

AltamahaDawg

April 30th, 2009
10:58 pm

I can’t argue with who USC “tries” to schedule as I don’t have those contacts in the AD office as you obviously do.

I’ll can tell you “fact” that didn’t escape me: Even playing OSU, USC was still only #44 in the country as far as schedule difficulty. UGA was #4. All of those teams, USC, Michigan, Penn state, had very low SOS last year. Because thier conference schedule I suspect. It’s a great strategy to try to bolster that whenever possible. Just kinda hard to go up very far from #4.

Programs schedule OOC games for several reasons. Obviously to fill in home games for money is one. But when they reach out they do it to either 1. gain exposure to help recruiting OR 2. To balance thier conference schedule. I think every example you have layed out can be put in one of those categories. Sorry, I don’t buy the whole overly dramatic exagerated BS. It’s all just a calculated strategy.

Dustin

May 1st, 2009
2:04 am

You Gotta Be Kidding? You are retarded!!!

Ringleader

May 1st, 2009
9:28 am

Well, Who is the Nimwat that made the deal with Oklahoma State for UGA to receive the whopping 5,000 tickets for the game at Stillwater? Will Damon Evans own up to this nonsense. It will be quite different than last year when we were able to get 20,000 by picking up season packages cheap.

AltamahaDawg

May 1st, 2009
1:01 pm

Ebay. BTW, I dont think you can credit Evans for ASU having unsold season tickets, or blame him that OSU doesn’t.

anotherdawg

May 1st, 2009
2:30 pm

Everyone getting down on UGA shoulc keep in mind that teams like USC and Ohio State don’t play in a conferance like the SEC nor do they have to play a conferance championship. If I remember right, when we were ranked #2 two years ago, UGA wanted to play USC in the bowl game, but that wasn’t possible because the Rose is locked into the same weak matchup each year.

AltamahaDawg

May 2nd, 2009
9:00 am

The only “everyone” getting down on UGA about its schedule are a couple of folks who conveniently don’t want to say what school they favor (likely because of thier schedule) and whose critisism is based purely on a playground insults.

And hell yes, everybody wanted to play USC.

I-DOG

May 5th, 2009
6:19 pm

Ozzfest, are Nebraska or Va-tech supposed to be better than Okie State (the Dawgs opener). I think the Cowboys might be the best competition between those three teams for 09.

NE is a team that gave up 70+ points to Kansas. Even the Dawgs D was no where near that pitiful last year!

I-DOG

May 5th, 2009
6:30 pm

You Gotta Be kidding:

I believe that “little ole” UGA beat EVERY team that you mentioned the last time they played them other than USC and Nebraska which I don’t believe UGA has ever been matched up with.

Va Tech, Little Ole UGA beat them the last time they played

Ohio State, Little Ole UGA beat them the last time they played

Auburn, Little Ole UGA beat them the last time they played

Texas, Little Ole UGA beat them the last time they played

USC has been a very good program since Pete arrived, no question about that… but I don’t think Evans or Richt are afraid of playing anyone.

Nebraska, UGA has not played them in the last few decades. The NE program scares nobody at this point. 70 points to KS? 8 touchdowns given up to Colorado (all rushing??) several years back. I can’t think of a single quality win that NE has had in the last five years.

PHIL

May 6th, 2009
2:02 pm

OZZIE I suggest you get really mad and give up your tickets, there are only 10,000 people waiting for them. I think it would be OUTSTANDING if you STAYED in Blacksburg since you obviously care more about who you get to see play than what it takes to win title. Do you see FL playing TX, USC or MI???? give me a break. If “most fans” want to see those teams they should buy a TV. Anyone who knows anything about football wants to see championships. You can’t win one playing a bowl team EVERY week. Idiots. I swear AJC told me they were going to put in an IQ test for posters. Obviously you have more in common with Ozzie than just a name.

PHIL

May 6th, 2009
2:11 pm

YOU GOTTA BE KIDDING: YOU GOTTA BE KIDDING!!!! OH state plays 3 games ALL YEAR, ALL YEAR. Everything else is just a practice game. USC plays 3 games ALL YEAR and still they all manage to lose. Texas??? They usually play TWO games ALL YEAR. When these schools play in the SEC and schedule each other, THEN you can say they are doing something. Until then you gotta be kidding.

Steve

May 11th, 2009
2:08 pm

Guys the facts are that this year Fla and Ala play 3 cupcake games and one tough one in out of conf., while UGA plays 3 tough games and one cupcake. Anyone who thinks otherwise is simply an idiot, or looking at a different schedule than the rest of us. If the facts where different, I would man up and say UGA played the slacker schedule (we have before) and not the rest of the teams. Facts are facts. P.S. OSU being 4 in their division is disingenious. the other 3 teams were top 5 much of the year, so OSU is top 15 – thats not bad.