Consider the source of reports bad-mouthing UGA coaches

Secondhand sniping at Mark Richt isn't worth worrying about. (University of Georgia)

Secondhand sniping at Mark Richt isn't worth worrying about. (University of Georgia)

This seems to be a week for second-hand knocks on UGA’s football coaches.

First we had the much overblown report that Nash Nance, a quarterback whose main claim to a scholarship at the University of Tennessee appeared to be that he was the best friend of highly recruited receiver Da’Rick Rogers, told the Knoxville News-Sentinel that Rogers reneged on his commitment to Georgia because “the [UT] coaches are a lot more professional. He had a lot of bad dealings with Georgia coaches.”

Nash didn’t provide any specifics on those so-called bad dealings, but the natural suspicion among many in the Bulldog Nation is that what’s at the heart of Nash’s blast is that the UGA coaches wouldn’t guarantee to Rogers that they’d give his buddy a scholarship as well.

Whatever. Sounds like mean-spirited post-recruiting sour grapes.

But on top of having his professionalism questioned by a kid who UGA snubbed, Mark Richt has also gotten some blowback from a source reportedly close to former Georgia safety Makiri Pugh, who decided after spring practice to leave UGA apparently because he didn’t think he was going to get much playing time.

Pugh plans to transfer to Colorado, his high school position coach has told The Athens Banner-Herald. That in itself isn’t all that interesting since he’ll have to sit out a year and so won’t be playing against his former teammates. And Pugh is free to go to whatever school will have him since Richt gave him an unconditional release, as is his custom with transfers.

But John Kranish, one of Pugh’s former coaches at Independence High School in Charlotte, told the ABH that Pugh was “very disappointed” in Georgia because he says that some of the other Division I schools that Pugh contacted did not get a return call from Richt or former Georgia defensive coordinator Willie Martinez, now on the staff at Oklahoma. Kranish says North Carolina State and some other ACC schools wanted to talk to UGA about the circumstances behind Pugh leaving.

What Martinez does or does not do is, fortunately, no longer our concern. But Kranish’s implication is that Richt didn’t care enough about Pugh as a player to help place him at another school.

First of all, let’s acknowledge there’s always the possibility that the picture Kranish paints is incomplete or even completely inaccurate. This is another second-hand account, with nothing directly from the player involved.

But assuming that calls to Butts-Mehre about Pugh did indeed go unanswered, what can we take from this?

Richt could have put restrictions on where Pugh transferred, as some other coaches do, but he didn’t. Beyond that, does he really owe Pugh anything? The head coach of a major school is a pretty busy guy. Should he be expected to spend time trying to place a guy who has bailed on his program?

And there’s another way of looking at the situation, as the Senator touched on in Get the Picture: Perhaps this falls in the “if you don’t have anything good to say about someone, don’t say anything at all” department.

It could be that Richt decided Pugh’s chances of landing at a decent program would be improved by him not honestly discussing the reasons the player wasn’t getting much time on the field at Georgia.

So we have a disgruntled player from another school who didn’t get recruited by Richt and a disgruntled former player who mostly rode the bench bad-mouthing the UGA staff.

Stack that up against the nine years of evidence that Richt is probably the nicest and most caring guy in the SEC coaching ranks and the beaucoup testimonials from the many players who’ve stuck with his program and thrived, and I don’t think anyone in Athens needs to lose a wink of sleep over this “bad” publicity.

237 comments Add your comment

TybeeDawg

June 8th, 2010
5:27 pm

Just curious Bill…do you get paid to write this blog?

Reality

June 8th, 2010
5:28 pm

Dawg 84…your team has to win more than 8 games for a member of the team to qualify for the Heisman…will not happen with UGA this year.

chazzo the retard

June 8th, 2010
5:31 pm

typical dumb redneck georgia fan. win something loser.

Bama fan

June 8th, 2010
5:32 pm

Dawgster,

Is that all you got? You gonna talk about one fan throwing a brick through Bill Curry’s window 20 years ago when the office was closed? Is that it? You can talk about something from 20 years ago and I’ll talk about the 2 18 year olds who went to UT who were getting death threats.

Which is worse? One fan throwing a brick through the window of an office when nobody is there or numerous fans calling 18 year old kids in the year 2010 and making death threats?

1eyedJack

June 8th, 2010
5:32 pm

fishtales

It won’t take long to alienate a LOT of High School coaches using that sort of Scholarship Management. How many Louisiana players you got on your roster?

RT

June 8th, 2010
5:33 pm

59…you do realize that some players graduated during those three years right? That will dent your 85 a lil’ bit.

When will UGA win another NC?

June 8th, 2010
5:34 pm

or something.

Zeier Fan

June 8th, 2010
5:35 pm

well said, big dawg!

Zeier Fan

June 8th, 2010
5:36 pm

and by big dog i mean you, mr. king. seriously, bravo.

GR82BAG8R

June 8th, 2010
5:38 pm

Perhaps the reason Georgia’s staff is not talking to others about the transfer is to not convey negative information. Perhaps there is more to this than a player simply wanting more playing time.
This is big time football. Players get recruited with high expectationsw of themselves that sometimes don’t pan out. Then, perhaps facing reality, they use poor judgement in their reaction. Perhaps Richt is doing the transferee a favor by not talking.

Bama fan

June 8th, 2010
5:39 pm

How2fish,

Are you so desperately worried about Saban that you keep bringing up the tired old line about him going elsewhere. Where I come from actions speak louder than words and Saban’s actions are speaking pretty loudly. Lets see:
1) He asked for earlier this year a contract extension and we gave it to him. Does that sound like someone who is leaving?
2) His daughter started as a freshman last year. Do you honestly think he would abandon Bama and leave his daughter there while a handful of people would be upset at Coach Saban. Obviously you didn’t think that one through.
3) He committed 1 million last year to be distributed to the general scholarship fund over 10 years. Sound like someone who is leaving???
4) When the USC and ND jobs came open there was never one peep about the possibility of Saban going to either. Why? Cause he’s not a candidate you dolt.
5) His job hirings were a series of logical job promotions from Toledo to MSU to LSU to the pros. He didn’t like the pros and so he took a 1 million dollar pay cut to return to the college game which he enjoys more. Why is that so hard for you dolts to understand?

Gatorman

June 8th, 2010
5:39 pm

The GATORS are the team to beat this year. Get ready Bama. Floridas gonna beat you and Saban down this year. Its gonna happen and we’re gonna shut all you rednecks up and show you who the best coach in the country is. The Bama rednecks don’t have a chance.It won’t be close.

When will Tech win another bowl game?

June 8th, 2010
5:40 pm

or something

fishtales

June 8th, 2010
5:40 pm

Enough to win a title.

Bill

June 8th, 2010
5:42 pm

You are absolutely correct in your assessment of Makiri Pugh, without knowing any more about the situation than his former high school coach. Coach Richt is the most ethical and talented coach in college football.

1eyedJack

June 8th, 2010
5:46 pm

GR82BAG8R

You could be right and it’s good to get a different and civil perspective from time to time. But the fact is this kid was the 66th rated safety in his class. I don’t think CMR would promise him playing time and all the kid could possibly (or realistically) hope for would be to be a career backup and special teamer.

Now, if he’s not doing his offseason work or showing up in the weight room, then CMR should tell him to explore his options.

GT Robber

June 8th, 2010
5:48 pm

Sweet Home Alabama –

–if a guy and girl in Alabama get married, move to Mississippi and get divorced, will they still be brother and sister?

– What does a 15 Alabama girl say when she gets done having sex? Get off me daddy your crushing my cigarette….

– Alabama – where the men are men and the sheep are nervous…..

1eyedJack

June 8th, 2010
5:51 pm

Where are all the Gnats bragging about their baseball team?

Eisendawg

June 8th, 2010
5:53 pm

Who cares if or when Saban will leave? Who cares about Tech? Who cares about the Vols or Gators? Last I checked this is a UGA blog; it’s pathetic you children don’t have anything else to do. Let me give you some suggestions:

Bama fans – go make out with your sister
Gators – go look for some gay shorts
Vols – go rub old smokey
Tech – just go

Bulldog59

June 8th, 2010
5:53 pm

GT, correct, and graduation is factored into the 85 “rolling total” that the NCAA mandates.

My point is, compare Alabama’s 85 signees to UF during the same 3 years. UF signed 66 players. (2007-27, 2008-22, and 2009-17) Georgia signed 67 players (2007-23, 2008-24, and 2009-20.)

Bama signed 21 more players in a 3 year span. That is an additional ENTIRE recruiting class.

The NCAA is supposedly reigning this in thanks to Houston Nutt’s super-classes of 2008 consisting of 31 players, followed by 37 players in 2009. I believe the new rule going in is supposed to limit a school to 25 players a year, but I’m sure there will be a list of exemptions/exceptions.

Bama fan

June 8th, 2010
5:56 pm

1eyedjack,

You have a problem understanding scholly #s while Saban does not. Saban signed 32 players his first full recruiting class? Why did he oversign? Because 2 players ended up going pro baseball, 3-4 players ended up not making the grades to get in for the fall semester, 2 players were booted off the team for committing felonies, and a couple of players went on medical scholarship with career ending injuries. When it was all said and done we actually came in 1 player under the scholarship limit of 85 when the season started. Shows how much you know about our scholly #s.

Saban oversigns because when its all said and done there may be one or 2 players who have to delay enrollment one semester and they are told of this possibility beforehand. This happened last year as one player had to grayshirt. Contrast that with AU who played the season with only 72 scholarship players and UT who played with only 68 scholarship players. The coaches at those 2 programs failed to account for natural attrition and so at when it was said and done those programs were left playing with half a deck and at a disadvantage. And on top of that is 17 scholarships left open for young men at one school and 13 at the other that were left unfilled.

Is it more unfair that one or 2 players grayshirt every year because a coach oversigns or is it more unfair that 17 and 13 scholarships don’t get used at 2 schools because the coach failed to adequately sign enough players and adequately account for all the attrition that normally happens. That’s 30 wasted scholarships and 30 kids that missed the opportunity for at least one seasonto live the dream of playing major college football. Answer that one for me jack.

joe robby

June 8th, 2010
5:57 pm

Look, this is a tired old story. Lots of people don’t get into UGA and they become bitter about it. It’s a character issue. “I’m not good enough, well, they aren’t either.”

The bad thing about this Nash thing is that his high school coach supported both he and Rogers when they changed their minds. Now Nash is throwing his coach’s son under the bus? Yet another character issue.

If Rogers had a problem with UGA coaches (and he had nothing but good things to say about Richt and UGA on signing day) then it should come from him, not from the guy that just wasn’t good enough.

Character, some people have it and some don’t. Nash is one of those that don’t.

One, two, free, fo, fi, dem der Gator don't take no jive!

June 8th, 2010
5:59 pm

As a Gator fan, I have to admit this is just a BS story. Should be a non-story. From what I’ve seen and heard about Richt, he wouldn’t ignore those phone calls unless he just felt that was in the kids best interest. Kids transfer all the time over lack of playing time. How in the world is it Richt’s responsibility to find this kid a place to play? He gave him a place to play and the kid didn’t want to stay!
Can we have an article about FOOTBALL….not all this he said she said crap from a bunch of teenagers that feel they got “dissed”! Grow up!

UGAgrad71

June 8th, 2010
5:59 pm

It should be a requirement that your date of birth and/or IQ score be posted with your comments. Based upon some of these postings, there are people blogging who are under the age of 12 and have an IQ equal to or less than the number of fingers and toes on their bodies. Even in the 1960,s at UGA we had players who transferred. Nothing new in the Pugh story. Had he had 50+ tackles last year, he would not be transferring.

Bama fan

June 8th, 2010
6:03 pm

Bulldawg59,

See my previous post and also understand that Saban already knew that he was going to ask several players to transfer due to recurring discipline problems. These weren’t guys who weren’t playing. These were starters like Prince Hall, Brandon Fanney, Jimmy Johns, etc. as I stated earlier Saban doesn’t put up with undisciplined behavior. If you don’t do the classroom work and you keep breaking team rules you are gone. We don’t wait for the frequent run ins with the law to get rid of problem players. We nip it in the bud with the breaking of team rules because we are not going to be embarrassed with numerous player arrests like Zach Mettenberger.

How2fish keeps bringing up the 5 football players who were abusing the textbook distribution system to get free textbooks for friends who were having trouble affording them. What he fails to mention is that all 5 players were suspended 5 games which is not a light penalty.

One, two, free, fo, fi, dem der Gator don't take no jive!

June 8th, 2010
6:05 pm

Eisndawg,
Last I checked it was a free country.
This is an ATLANTA newspaper (not Athens). Atlanta is a melting pot.
The page is titled UGA and the SEC (not just UGA). Tons of SEC fans from all over the region reside in metro Atlanta.
Either realize that and deal with it or go to the Athens paper.

Marnie

June 8th, 2010
6:12 pm

The events of the last couple of years are pretty damning for Richt. The outrageously high arrest rate and the number of penalties make it very clear that he has little or no control over his players.

And frankly, how can UGA keep getting a top five recruiting class year after year and not even win its conference division?

The facts are clear on Richt: a nice guy who can’t coach. It’s past time for him to go.

DawginLex

June 8th, 2010
6:12 pm

Anybody from toothless hillbilly land want to post the scores of the UGA/UT games from 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005 and 2008?

UGA went 6-4 this decade vs UT but don’t let facts get in the way of your venom.

Yaz

June 8th, 2010
6:18 pm

As a Dawg fan, I’ve reached the point where I agree that it’s time to fire Richt and get a coach who can outcoach Urban Meyer and Nick Saban. Richt is not being paid millions of dollars to lose every year. There has to be some viable candidate out there, and Damon Evans needs to be looking for him now.

Bama fan

June 8th, 2010
6:22 pm

Bulldawg59,

The sec instituted a rule last year that sec schools can only accept 28 commits. The rule was instigated by AU in response to Saban signing 32 his first full year and then 29 the next year and also because of Nutt taking 37 commits which is just crazy. Oddly enough AU ignored the rule this past signing year when Chizik took 32 commitments. Even more ironic is that AU played this past year with only 72 scholarship players because they had undersigned in previous years and failed to adequately account for attrition.

In regards to Bama signing 21 more commits than Florida or Georgia over the past 3 years your point is completely irrelevant. It is irrelevant because when the season starts Bama is at 85 scholarshipped players which is the same as everyone else. The attrition that Saban knew was going to happen for all sorts of reasons-transfers, medical scholarship, failing to qualify academically, pro baseball, etc. is irrelevant to fans of other schools and quite frankly is none of your business. Everyone plays with 85 scholly players when the season starts. Except programs like UT and AU who played with 68 and 72 players because they undersigned in previous years.

HOUDAWG

June 8th, 2010
6:23 pm

True story — This reminds me of an employee situation years ago. Decision was made to move our call center / help desk to another faciltiy ( about 20 minutes away from existing location ). An employee that lived 5 mins from current one came storming into my office & asked what I am going to do to get HIM another job (!). He just couldn’t drive another 20 mins away ……. my answer was zip ; zilch ; nada. Good luck on finding another job …… P.S. He stayed with the company another 10 yrs. CMR has no responsibility in placing Pugh & I’m sure he’s not done anything to negatively affect the kid’s future. People should let this go …….. it’s a non-issue.

Bama fan

June 8th, 2010
6:31 pm

“CMR has no responsibility in placing Pugh & I’m sure he’s not done anything to negatively affect the kid’s future. People should let this go …….. it’s a non-issue.”

Sorry but I just thought it would be a matter of decency to help the kid move on with his life by taking 5 minutes to talk to other coaches to help find a place for the kid. Or maybe that’s a little too much to ask from such a Christian guy who wears his religion on his sleeve.

It would be hard to believe that meany ole jerk bad guy Saban does this for players who want to transfer due to lack of playing time but the nice guy Christian Richt won’t go the extra step for his players that want to transfer cause they are buried on the depth chart.

joe robby

June 8th, 2010
6:33 pm

Can we please start an Alabama blog on this website. Take that crap somewhere else. No one here gives a damn about Alabama.

Now back to UGA sports……..

HOUDAWG

June 8th, 2010
6:43 pm

Maybe he has ……. how would you ( or anyone else ) know …… get off your high-horse.

Bama fan

June 8th, 2010
6:55 pm

joe robby,

We only come on occasionally when folks like JB and How2fish start ranting about Alabama when the blog in fact has nothing to do with Alabama. I think Bill could write a blog on the price of tea in China and inevitably some dawg fans would find a way to start talking trash about Alabama. Perhaps if several dawg fans could refrain from dragging Alabama into a conversation that should have nothing to do with Bama then I wouldn’t have to come on here and reply to them.

Hmmm...

June 8th, 2010
6:58 pm

I don’t know, Mark Richt is kind of weird to me. I mean all coaches have tough seasons, but I don’t understand how you can be a good head coach early in your career to so mediocre 2 years later. I mean when Mark Richt’s teams perform well, they’re as good as anyone in the country. But man, when his team perform poorly, it is seriously some of the worst football I have ever seen UGA play: like Ray Goff bad or worse!!

Richt has always, in my mind; had a bridesmaids mentality in regards to success. It’s like he’s driven to win conference titles but in regards to National Titles he’s kind of like ” Well if it happens it happens.” Well hell coach, you took a proactive approach in reaching and winning the SEC championship! You clearly didn’t leave it to fate then so why do it when your team is on the verge of contending for a National Title? This sort of mental sabotage can wreck a coach and a team. If you AS THE HEAD COACH, don’t make winning the National Title a priority, then your team has no clear cut goal to shoot for! Players will rise to the level of expectations that are put out for them. If they feel that they are part of a championship program, they will play to that level. I don’t think Richt has to sacrifice his personal convictions to win a National Title. But he does need to realign his focus a bit to at least make it a goal!

joe robby

June 8th, 2010
6:59 pm

Bama fan, I don’t care. Someone doesn’t like your team. Boo hoo! Go visit Slimebaum’s website because UGA fans certainly aren’t. He’ll tell you exactly what you want to hear over there. Besides, I’ve seen MANY Bama fans start all kinds of crap here. I’m tired of sifting through that garbage. This is a UGA blog. Period.

HOUDAWG

June 8th, 2010
7:04 pm

That would be Bama fan of course ……. ( my earlier response ).

Bama fan

June 8th, 2010
7:07 pm

joe robby,

boo hoo! Its a 2 way street. If you can dish it out you should be able to take it too and quit boo hooing yourself.

turkeycaller

June 8th, 2010
7:19 pm

SAM, Great post at befinning of this blog. The pure D truth.

Tim Rupert

June 8th, 2010
7:50 pm

Glad Rogers went to Tennessee, he and Nash, or what ever his name is they would not have fit in at UGA. If these kids were talking about another Coach, you might need to consider the chances of it being true but this is Ga and the coach is Richt. Richt won’t oversign and he treats people with respect. It’s not like we’re talking about Auburn or Alabama.

Bama fan

June 8th, 2010
7:54 pm

Tim Rupert,

You are correct. Richt does treat people with a lot of respect. He treated Urban Meyer with a lot of respect when his team was doing the endzone celebration. He also treated AU with a lot of resepct when his players were doing the soulja boy dance at the Auburn players. That’s a really classy and respectful bunch ya got there.

dan

June 8th, 2010
8:04 pm

Hey Dawg Trainer

I’m surprised people from Tennessee know how to count. But how about this.

2000- 21-10
2001- 26-24
2002- 18-13
2003- 41-14
2005- 27-14( which really should have been 27-7)
2008- 26-14

That is 6-4 vs.the Vols in THIS decade! Richt still owns ya’ll and will get back to doing so this coming season because your team will be an absolute joke now that Monty Kiffin isn’t there and most of your talent on defense has moved on to the NFL. Have fun losing 6 games AGAIN! These truths are self evident, you huckleberry imbred!

GoDOGS1

June 8th, 2010
8:07 pm

Peyton Manning never won a National Championship…..morons!

Spike

June 8th, 2010
8:09 pm

This Nance kid is really full of himself. What a putz.

the truth

June 8th, 2010
8:20 pm

Who cares? Honestly this is too much information about a nothing.

I keep wishing

June 8th, 2010
8:41 pm

for a coach that knows how to win championships like that coach at bama,lsu,florida,ohio state,southern cal….we have a coach who is all talk…can’t deliver and get all those recuits that cmr coaches down.

Bulldog59

June 8th, 2010
9:11 pm

Not looking for an argument, just stating the facts. If UGA and UF sign 66/67 players over 3 year, and Alabama signs 85 players, the additional 18-19 players were cut lose somewhere along the line, for various reasons. Bottom line, so far, Saban has “gone thru” a lot more players than some other schools. It will be interesting to see if, over the next 3-4 years, he maintains the high turnover rate.

dandydawg

June 8th, 2010
9:22 pm

What’s up with the “Bama Fan”? You are posting on this site like Alabama is the best thing that ever happen to America and your Nick Saban is a true god that treats all people the same.. well, save the crap… we all know who he is and it won’t be long before the kids find out about him. So, stop trying to talk down about our coach and worry about the mess that coach of yours will have Bama in the the next few years…

fayncdawg

June 8th, 2010
9:50 pm

I mean wouldn’t ANY top-25 college coachn take nash nance over Christian LeMay? Hey one star is better than five stars,isn’t it?? Nance is going to be the next Peyton Manning, right?? Well darn! How come somebody didn’t tell CMR take nance and let LeMay play for Urban Crier?? (Note: somebody’s name is spelled w/lower-cased letters for a reason).