It was the safe decision, but was it the smart one?

Kirby Smart

Kirby Smart

Having spent most of my day off today (I’m now working Tuesday-Saturday) away from the computer, I checked back in to find that the rumor one of my brothers had called me about earlier today is true: Kirby Smart isn’t coming home.

It’s disappointing for Bulldogs fans, of course. Smart had been the sentimental favorite for the defensive coordinator job dating back to, well, actually long before Willie Martinez got fired.

But it’s not really all that surprising. When you consider to the move from Tuscaloosa to Athens, what was really in it for Smart? More money? Doubtful. If Alabama hasn’t already matched Georgia’s offer, it likely will.

A chance to make a name for himself away from the shadow of Nick Saban? Well, yes, that was the biggest selling point Mark Richt had going for him.

That cuts both ways, though. Smart wants to be a head coach one of these days. By going out on his own at Georgia, he might have been able to build a strong case for himself. But there was an element of risk in that scenario that probably made Smart gunshy. What if the Georgia job hadn’t worked out as well as what he already has at Bama? Where would that leave him?

Staying with the Crimson Tide, where most people assume Saban is the force behind the defense, probably won’t allow Smart to develop a reputation on his own the way running the defense at Georgia would have. But the safer, more conservative approach for Smart is to continue to ride on Saban’s coattails.

Only time will tell if Smart played the odds correctly or blew his big chance.

381 comments Add your comment

gomdawg

January 11th, 2010
6:22 pm

If Alabama loved him so much why are they now wanting to pay him ????
WRONG MOVE KIRBY SEE YOU AT THE SEC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME.

Mike

January 11th, 2010
6:23 pm

This whole DC search has become a goat rope.

The Red & Black

January 11th, 2010
6:23 pm

gomdawg

January 11th, 2010
6:23 pm

STAY UNDER NICK’S SHIRT TAIL

merbertmoover

January 11th, 2010
6:27 pm

man kirby be drinkin that crazy gatorade, know what im sayin? tuscaloosa be boring….athens where its at…..

BIG DAWG 1980

January 11th, 2010
6:27 pm

How do you not want to return to your alma mater? I had a lot of respect for you Kirby until now. UGA was gonna double your pay and give you an opportunity to put a stamp on your career and set you up to be a head coach, possibly at UGA. I hope we can meet you in the SEC championship game and shove it down your throat!!!

collegeballfan

January 11th, 2010
6:28 pm

He has one ring and is the favorite to win again next year, that would make two rings. Two ring guy has a better resume’ than a one ring guy.

He made the Smart move. Alabama is a win – win.

merbertmoover

January 11th, 2010
6:30 pm

don’t matter much baby…we had the worst DC in the SEC and still did OK this season….we’ll get someone good then put the hurt on the rest of these suckers, like pouring gravy on a baby, you know what im sayin?

joe bob

January 11th, 2010
6:31 pm

kirby and i attended uga at the same time. i wish kirby and his family well. couple of questions: first, do we think richt had a choice but to offer smart the job? in other words, did the alumni base make it clear that richt was to go after smart? was it richt’s decision? second, who is the next target? grantham? anyone else?

JP

January 11th, 2010
6:32 pm

Probably was best move for him. Saban isn’t going to retire as Alabama’s HC and when he leaves, Smart would be next in line. If he leaves UA, it will be for a HC job. Why go as DC and then not have success? That kills your chance at a HC job later on.

Michael G.

January 11th, 2010
6:34 pm

I hate that Kirby isn’t coming to Athens, but he’s a smart gut and he knows that in all likelyhood, Saban won’t be there 5 years from now. And that will create his opportunity to get a head coaching gig.

Bride of Chucky Knapp

January 11th, 2010
6:34 pm

Prez Adams gonna DC this team hisself! Man knows how to dig in hiz heels and fight. Whole Board o’ Regents gonna be his D-line. They ain’t never gonna pry his a** outta the gravy train.

norman

January 11th, 2010
6:34 pm

Smart will be the next HC at UGA within two years!

Not Saint Simons

January 11th, 2010
6:35 pm

(((((30-24 hahahahahahahahahahahahaha)))))

I have nothing constructive to add. After all, Saban’s the defensive genius. We simply don’t know how good Smart is, really. That’s not a dig. Saban’s defense at LSU was pretty good without him. I wish Kirby the best and hope we find an up and coming defensive coach who’s ready for the chance at a DC…

MadMike

January 11th, 2010
6:35 pm

Why don’t we just let Rodney and the 2 Grad assistants stay on. We already know they’re no worse than Crazy Willie.

gomdawg

January 11th, 2010
6:36 pm

MadMike

January 11th, 2010
6:38 pm

I mean we wouldn’t look any worse than we already do.

ward

January 11th, 2010
6:38 pm

We just cannot start to panic as a fanbase… I have faith that Richt will get the guy that we are meant to have and he will succeed here. I am not sure if it will be. Grantham or not, but I do think that we need to offer Manny Diaz a job as LBs coach, offer Tresey from USF a job coaching DBs, and then look at bringing in a guy to groom Diaz a little more than being DC at Middle Tennessee has… I would really like us to make a run at Wilcox, from Boise State. I think his unit plays fast and smart… I am not ready to say that Grantham is the man for the job, but I will support whomever the hire is at UGA… We have won 90 games the past 9 years, 2 SECOND titles, and have gone to 3 BCS games. We may not be thought of like Florida, Alabama or Texas right now, but we are still one of the 10-15 best programs in the nation and a great place to live.

Gene

January 11th, 2010
6:38 pm

bad move there smart…they say you haven’t lived till you leave mom and dads…you should have come to uga….

rentaldawg

January 11th, 2010
6:39 pm

I am just mad because I know his heart was not at UGA. We now know he has more respect for Saban than he does for UGA. That’s fine and I can live with that but it dissappoints me!

MadMike

January 11th, 2010
6:39 pm

Richt would never hire Muschamp. The first time he said BOOM MF Richt would probably pee hisself.

DAWG ASS KICKER

January 11th, 2010
6:40 pm

“Big chance”?? HA

Dawgs2010

January 11th, 2010
6:40 pm

I hope Kirby Smart drops dead.

dawggawn

January 11th, 2010
6:41 pm

It had to be Saban teaching his safetys to put your hat on the opposition, Smart dam sure never left it on the field. He let up just like Prince Miller almost every time. We need a DC who will teach our DBs how to punish people each and every chance they get.

TheBiggestDawq

January 11th, 2010
6:45 pm

He’s old news now… If he don’t want to be in Athens, we damn sure don’t want him in Athens. We’ll get the right man, and all this will be a distant memory. And when the time comes… we’ll kick his defense’s ass the next time we play.

What Yokels

January 11th, 2010
6:45 pm

Amazing how the smartest DC in the country turned into an idiot as soon as he turned down UGA.

kydawg

January 11th, 2010
6:46 pm

Norman you’re nuts!!! Surely UGA would not hire him as a HC the way he played them for more money. This is gonna kill this recruiting class!

And then not step up to the mic himself…

nodoubt

January 11th, 2010
6:46 pm

You are SPOT ON dawggawn, they both remind me of Deon Sanders, all slackARSSES, hit some FREAKIN body every chance you get

DP

January 11th, 2010
6:48 pm

Way to keep things in perspective Dawgs2010.

dawggawn

January 11th, 2010
6:49 pm

Everyone commenting on how KS is a Saban ass kisser is wrong, he would kiss his butt if he didn’t have to stick his head in there

Scout Dawg

January 11th, 2010
6:52 pm

Go Coach Richt, get us a stud NFL Coirdinator and let’s get back to JUNKYARD DAWG Defense!

Valdosta Dawg

January 11th, 2010
6:53 pm

Smart will never be the Head Coach at UGA, he had his chance and let’s remember folks he was the 3rd CHOICE behind Foster and Chavis! 3rd, Mark would love to have Muschamp but he has that coach in waiting title on him at Texas. We need to get that guy from Air Force, he does a ton with no talent!

Delbert D.

January 11th, 2010
6:54 pm

Absolutely the right decision. Why take a lateral when a HC job offer can be expected in the near future? He certainly would be stuck behind CMR, who I presume isn’t going anywhere. Can’t see him as the Hollywood type of guy.

SEC fan

January 11th, 2010
6:56 pm

Stay in Bama and keep every dog fan who pulled for the TIDE. your all a bunch of toothless losers!

SadDawg

January 11th, 2010
6:57 pm

The options are beginning to run thin, but I can’t say that I didn’t see this coming. If Kirby is half the coordinator that $700,000 warrants, then he probably would have only been here 2 years anyways.

Dusty Rhodes

January 11th, 2010
6:58 pm

Let’s see build a resume under Saban or build a resume under Richt? Do you clowns, particularly you Bill, think it’s better to do that under Richt than Saban? Are you nuts?

Alpharetta Dawg

January 11th, 2010
7:05 pm

Sure it ws a smart move. I don’t blame him or have ill will toward him for the decision. I do think he is loser for stringing his school out for over a month and then letting Saban deliver the news since he does not have the guts to do it himself…makes be beleive we may be better off without him. Again, I have no problem with the decision but take great exception to how he handled leaving CMR holding the bag after over a month. Smart is a no good carpet bagger!

da'bear

January 11th, 2010
7:06 pm

Thanks for loving us so much. You will like it better here too. We win a lot,a whole lot.We won the big prize this year. In fact, We are gonna win it all again next year as well. We are # 1. Ya got to love the fresh air here in Bama. Athens smells like a frat house toilet. Traffic ain’t bad, and the girls are just the same.(hehehe, if ya know what I mean) We would love to have ya,it’s not a latrial move. It’s moving UP!!

Gratefuldawghead

January 11th, 2010
7:14 pm

Saban told Kirby he couldn’t go to UGA and Kirby said “Yes Sir”

Lets get a real Man to coach the DAWGS!

buzzDawg

January 11th, 2010
7:20 pm

I wish Smart well. It was a tough decision. There are still good prospects out there and I have no doubt Richt will secure a good Defensive Coordinator for the Dawgs. There are some on here who seem to think it was a life or death decision. The wailing and gnashing of teeth is unseemly. Tebow was right. It is just a game. I enjoy college football but some folks need to gain a little perspective. If the commentary reflected in the blogs online are any indication, they need to get a grip. Go Dawgs. Richt, you have my support.

matt

January 11th, 2010
7:22 pm

How about either the DC from Air Force or the guy from TCU? I am sure that either would be a top notch coordinator and I am sure we could outspend either of them…

2 years?

January 11th, 2010
7:28 pm

Even though people feel it’s Saban’s defense, KS still won the Broyles Award and was already mentioned for Texas Tech and USF. I don’t know if he would have even made it two years before finding his head coaching position somewhere. Again, why do we need a movie star, every time? How about an up and comer? How about someone who we would give a raise and it wouldn’t be matched? How about someone who would be here longer than one or two years?

CatsFly

January 11th, 2010
7:31 pm

Wise up UGa close-minded fans, UGa is not the do-all/be-all school that you think it is. There are many similar football-greater-than-god schools. UGa is coming across as a school for “football heads”, thus constraining its academic potential. Smart athletes do not want to be branded with this perception, and once more athletes wise up and start making better grades, they will gravitate toward schools with good academic credentials, because they will want to be viewed as being smart, and not just a dumb jock. It’s already happening in some sports. Athletes who do not have a future in professional athletics will take a scholarshsip to Duke, UVa, UNC, etc., over the “dumb jock schools”. (Those schools whose followers’ ego are quantitatively comparable to the number of seats in their stadiums.)

BamaCLT

January 11th, 2010
7:33 pm

See you at the SEC CG? Yeah, when? You couldn’t beat UT or UF if you wanted to. Stop thumping your chest and win some games. I think Smart has already proven himself BY WINNING THE BROYLES AWARD and the BCS NC. Only idiots outside of college football offer up stupid hypotheses about Saban and Alabama. The entire nation respects Smart. The entire nation knows he’s a great DC. He just didn’t care to take a step back to UGA. Don’t hate on Alabama because it is a better program than thuggish GA. Hate your program, AD, and current coach for letting you slip into mediocrity. If you had a good coach and AD, a DC wouldn’t be the crux of your search. Wake up. Your program is the 4th best in the east. That’s sad.

tidechampionsagain!

January 11th, 2010
7:34 pm

Well let’s see….1st ole Bud stays at Va Tech….2nd the coach that UT fired (Chavis) turns down the puppies and 3rd…this has to really take the bit out of the puppies they can’t even get one of their own to come back to his old school…..ouch! Roll Tide!

Tim

January 11th, 2010
7:35 pm

I am disappointed in you Dawgs to turn on one your own shameful. Maybe just maybe Kirby was smart by not taking the job, what if you under achieve again next year then you’ll be looking for a whole new coaching staff. And to the guy that said you’ll see Mr Smart in the SEC championship not unless you buy a ticket to watch UF and Bama go at again.

aubietiger

January 11th, 2010
7:36 pm

Wow….you can’t even get an alum to come home! Sad.

Troup Dawg

January 11th, 2010
7:39 pm

The DC from the AF Acad. or Doug Plank…I saw Doug on TV for one of the games last week. He’s DB coach now for a team that I can’t remember….Damn it!! When Doug was HC for the Georgia Force, they were a team to dealt with.

FalconUGAFan

January 11th, 2010
7:39 pm

You know there are plenty of us that respect Coach Smart’s decision. Stop focusing on the hateful comments. Plenty of us giving him our best wishes! Stop piling on.

Be Reasonable, UGA Fans

January 11th, 2010
7:39 pm

This doesn’t make us look bad at all…we’re the only school in the country that had a chance at Smart, because he played at UGA – I seriously can’t see him even considering any other school after one BCS championship and the likelyhood of a good run at one next season. The National Championship game was Thursday, he thought about the offer over the weekend, and now we know. This is the earliest we could have known in any event. It just so happens that our top target made it to the Nat’l Championship game, and so we’re finding out later than we otherwise would have. I’m sure we are in negotiations with other candidates as we speak.