What are key fixes Dogs must make for Richt to keep his job?

Stacy Searels' underperforming offensive lines have been a big problem for the Dogs. (Georgiadogs.com)

Stacy Searels' underperforming offensive lines have been a big problem for the Dogs. (Georgiadogs.com)

The list of things Mark Richt and his staff have to fix for the coming season in order to keep their jobs at UGA is pretty long. Chances are they won’t be able to get it all done, even under the best of circumstances.

But while the Dogs might not be quite as “close” as Richt touts them to be, they do have Aaron Murray and some other talented players, and if a few things break Georgia’s way a turnaround to challenge for the SEC East is certainly within Richt’s reach.

But in order for that to have a chance of happening the head coach and his staff absolutely have to get a few key things done. And those keys are:

Line play has to improve on both sides of the ball. On defense, if Georgia can land JUCO beast John Jenkins, who recently pulled out of his commitment to Okie State, it will be a big step toward fixing one of the major weaknesses of Todd Grantham’s defense: the lack of an effective nose guard. On offense, Stacy Searels has seen his troops badly underperform for most of the past two seasons. It’s time for him to prove he’s the coach UGA thought it was getting when he was hired away from LSU.

The Dogs have to develop an effective running game. The offensive line play has been a big negative factor here, but Georgia’s backs also just haven’t gotten it done. Caleb King can’t seem to stay in the lineup and Washaun Ealey seems more concerned with running his mouth than developing consistency running the ball. (It doesn’t help that Mike Bobo favors that running-back-by-committee thing and tends to insert little Carlton Thomas at the worst times.) Signing Isaiah Crowell definitely would be a game-changer for the Dogs.

Get the defense off the field on third down. Georgia ranked dead last in the SEC this past season in third-down defense efficiency. Plugging the middle with a big man like Jenkins no doubt will help in that regard, but the Dogs need more pressure from the linebackers and smarter play in the secondary. Time for Grantham to earn that big salary.

Georgia has to be stronger and better conditioned. Getting pushed around on the line and fading in the fourth quarter will pretty much guarantee you don’t win the close games. Richt is betting that “old school” Joe Tereshinski can whip the Dogs into shape by putting the focus more on hard work than mentoring. It’s a good sign that Christian Robinson was tweeting yesterday about having just been through the “hardest workout ever at Georgia!” Let’s hope there’s more than just talk there.

Any other “must” fixes you see in order for Richt and company to still be around in Athens in 2012?

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543 comments Add your comment

susan

January 14th, 2011
9:28 am

Fire Grantham and get another defensive coordinator like Van Gorder is first priority. Second, fire or demote Bobo. We did much better when Richt was calling the plays! It’s a tough time in DAWG nation.

Dawgfan

January 14th, 2011
9:36 am

Remember when the UGA Defense was called the junkyard dogs for a reason? We need to get back to that physical type game on both sides. Richt needs to get more involved in the play calling as well. I agree the team may be better next year without AJ. They have a lot of talented players and now maybe they will get more chances to show it instead of basing everything around AJ.

The Man

January 14th, 2011
9:44 am

Wally Butts

January 14th, 2011
9:58 am

Get Well Larry Munson… We need you….He was our good luck charm..our11th player .. Did you notice that the dogs took a tailspin when Larry retired.I’d take Larry just sitting in the radio booth.Making only a couple of comments.At least he made radio fun to listen to on Saturday afternoon..
Yes he was Mr Bulldog..Hunker Down Larry.

rbirealty

January 14th, 2011
10:11 am

Depth at wide receiver is pretty important too. The lack of any kind of threat without AJ Green just showed that we have no other receivers that can add pressure to a defense. Durham was a good servicable receiver, but there was a major drop off after that. Would have thought T. King would have been further along and Wooten has had time in the system to be stronger. Understandibly, we lacked a running game to take pressure off Murray but we used the tight ends less than we should have to open up the outsides. Some of this does amount to play calling which I thought was predictable too many times. Murray also needs work on his play action fakes…he never gets close to the running back which doesn’t sell the fake at all.

Alabama Jack

January 14th, 2011
10:27 am

Never happen. All the dawgs can expect is a repeat on the Fulmer Cup.

rural dawg

January 14th, 2011
10:58 am

I’m tired of hearing about Richt’s success in his early years…He did it with Jim Donnan’s players..some intelligent motivated kids..The kind Richt doesn’t know how to recruit or coach…Will Richt be around in 2012? Yes, if he buys tickets…

Armydawg

January 14th, 2011
11:47 am

How about not kicking FG’s when it is 4th and inches on the opponents 2 yard line! WUSS!

virginia dog

January 14th, 2011
11:49 am

i noticed the Mad Hatter dumped his Offensive coordinator. You got to a cold hearted sob to make it in this world. No room for friends in important roles. RESULTS RESULTS RESULTS.If CMR had a clue he would bring Ralph Friegin (sp) in for a year or two. After all there is no chance that a bright and rising star would want a position on Richt’s staff since it is a sinking ship.
The fridge runs a simular style offensive and would make murray a star.

Gerald

January 14th, 2011
11:51 am

Look’s like thwe same person, using all his fake names, is posting here about 10 pages so far.

Fire Bobo, Grantham, and Richt, we got it. Thanks a lot for your professional input.

Ok, on to Georgia fans.

Not much to “fix” when you lose 4 games by less than 7 points. Just run the ball 2x more and get a big NT or develop the guys at NT you got to plug the run, and should be 9-4 minimum.

JDAWG

January 14th, 2011
11:58 am

Gerald

January 14th, 2011
12:03 pm

“JDAWG/Virginia Dog’ and all your other fake names. We get it, you hate Georgia. Enjoy another 7-5 season at Florida.

Gerald

January 14th, 2011
12:03 pm

Richt’s #5 winningest coach in NCAA.

Gerald

January 14th, 2011
12:04 pm

Richt had finished in the top 10 20 out of his 25 seasons as a coach.

Gerald

January 14th, 2011
12:04 pm

Richt has more guys in the NFL than any other coachn in the NCAA.

Gerald

January 14th, 2011
12:04 pm

Richt averages 9.6 wins a season at UGA.

Gerald

January 14th, 2011
12:05 pm

rICHT HAS ONLY HAD 1 LOSING SEASON IN HIS 25 SEASONS.

Gerald

January 14th, 2011
12:09 pm

uga’S OFFENSE WAS #1 IN SCORIGN IN sec eAST.

DEFENSE WAS RIGHT WITH sec east leaders in scoring in Grantham’s 1st year.

Gerald

January 14th, 2011
12:12 pm

Scout ranked UGA #23 after going 6-6.

Still a top 25 team folks, top 35 in scoring on offense and defense.

Mean Machine

January 14th, 2011
12:26 pm

Win the SEC, and beat Florida in the process. If UGA does not accomplish those two things next year, Richt should be fired.

Gerald

January 14th, 2011
12:28 pm

Mean Machine/Virgina Dog, JDAWG, we get, you think Richt will be fired. FAine, buzz off. Go back to your 7-5 Florida team.

Quit posting under so many fake names or you’ll get banned from this blog.

I am reporting you to the AJC editor, 10 pages of your hogwash is enough.

FRED

January 14th, 2011
12:29 pm

DENVER DOG IS RIGHT ON TARGER. CMR CAN DO NOTHING WE WILL NEED TO GO THROUGH ONE MORE PAINFULL YEAR THAN THERE WILL BE CHANGE.

Mean Machine

January 14th, 2011
12:30 pm

By the way Gerald, all those cute little stats are nice, but the only one that matters is championships. And 2 in 10 years (0 in the last 5) is unacceptable!

Gerald

January 14th, 2011
12:31 pm

Send your e-mail to AJC editor jriley@ajc.com if you’re sick of this poster using all his fake names.

Mean Machine/JDAWG/Virgina Dog, all the same person.

Mean Machine

January 14th, 2011
12:31 pm

I love Mark Richt.

FRED

January 14th, 2011
12:32 pm

JUST KIDDING, RICHT IS AWESOME.

Alabama Jack

January 14th, 2011
12:33 pm

UGA is an excellent team with a great staff. Expect 11 wins in 2011.

Armydawg

January 14th, 2011
12:33 pm

99.99% of Richt’s decisions are perfect.

rural dawg

January 14th, 2011
12:34 pm

Richt was a top 5 coach in first 5 years win wise, and top 20 past 5, both are superb.

susan

January 14th, 2011
12:35 pm

the defense improved in almost every way under Grantham. He should get a raise.

FRED

January 14th, 2011
12:39 pm

DENVER DOG IS RIGHT ON TARGET. CMR CAN DO NOTHING WE WILL NEED TO GO THROUGH ONE MORE PAINFULL YEAR THAN THERE WILL BE CHANGE.

wildbill

January 14th, 2011
1:22 pm

CMR needs to do 2 things immediately:
1. Write a letter of resignation.
2. Sign and deliver said letter before 5 pm today.

yogii

January 14th, 2011
2:11 pm

Hire George O’Leary. He has proved to be a better coach

UGA Entitlement

January 14th, 2011
2:20 pm

Lemme get this straight — 3 of the 4 areas of improvement can be solved with 2 recruits: Jenkins and Crowell. And the fourth by finishing the drill in the weight room. Sounds pretty simple to me.

Jim 007

January 14th, 2011
2:25 pm

Really don’t think anything he does will work long term & save him.

Look how many changes have taken place in recent years and we end up with the same old results

Face it CMR is near a .500 record in the SEC and has become a Bottom Dweller as a SEC coach

Ed (The Original)

January 14th, 2011
2:51 pm

Ditto the need for better conditioning: the picture of Searels and the two lineman shown are Exhibit A.

Cuz mentioned calling the plays (assume he means Richt). I thought Richt calling the plays in addition to all of his head coaching duties was the reason cited for Georgia’s offensive production problems in ‘06 and the resulting switch to Bobo. Even during the glory days of Richt’s first 4 years I don’t recall Georgia lighting up too many scoreboards. Those were teams dominated by great defense. But Richt needs to shake things up and maybe that switch is as good as any.

My gut feeling is that Richt is toast because he mailed it in several years ago. He’s just not the same guy he was from ‘01-’05. My dad’s theory is that Richt (like all high profile coaches these days) is so incredibly wealthy that he’s lost his hunger for the rigors of being a big program head coach. I think the old man might be on to something.

Georgie

January 14th, 2011
2:53 pm

Georgia should fire everyone, all the players need to leave, stop the football program, yes, it’s that bad, and head over to Florida.

Riche

January 14th, 2011
2:54 pm

My gut feeling is Richt will be at Georgia until he retires.

Massey

January 14th, 2011
2:55 pm

Richt’s win % is .762, good for #4 among all 120 programs.

Jessie

January 14th, 2011
2:56 pm

Richt needs to do things:
1- Rub a genie
2- do it before 5 p.m. today

Frederick

January 14th, 2011
2:57 pm

CMR is the best coach in America. No other coach has coached for 24 years straight wihout a single losing season.

CMR had UGA finish in the top 10, 4x in a row, something the likes of Miles, Saban, Meyer, can’t do.

Edward

January 14th, 2011
3:19 pm

Sports Illustrated has UGA #21 in their pre-season poll. Why? Talent.

Edward

January 14th, 2011
3:28 pm

cbs sports has UGA pre-season #21 too.

why? murray + 9 returners on defense.

how2fish

January 14th, 2011
3:45 pm

One thing they have to do is score over 30 points on 8 opponents just like the class of…..oh that’s right we never did that before..you guys are right the offensive coordinator has to go…scoring over 30points 8 times in the SEC is frigging EASY…with a bad O line and a first year starter at QB…EASY!!!

Gorgan Zola

January 14th, 2011
4:04 pm

I’ve never been a fan of RB by committee, because it doesn’t allow a back to establish a feel for the game or the defense. This is the fault of Richt… he was a huge proponent of RB by committee when he was running the offense. It wasn’t until we had Knowshon that they essentially went to a one back offense. If Crowell is all that and a bag of chips, he’ll have as many carries as he can handle.

The other area that needs improvement is the Secondary. They’re slow to react, can’t tackle and loaf. This has been a consistent weak spot for the last 4 years and must be fixed. Lakatos is running out of credits after only one year.

THE (G) ON THE MUTTS HELMET STANDS 4 GAY

January 14th, 2011
4:11 pm

THE G ON THE MUTTS HELMET STANDS FOR (G)ET RID OF MIKE BOBO!

deandawg

January 14th, 2011
4:28 pm

Absolutely no more Ford Truck commercials …. he has given my F-150 a bad name….as in w
WEAK!!!!!

CMR is damaged goods….he either cannot see the forest for the trees or will not see it. I don’t think he is capable of making the changes in his attitude to correct the marid of problems he has let creep into this program. He needs to quit and write a book on how lucky he was to parlay Jim Donnan’s recruits and program into a few winning seasons.

HS Coach

January 14th, 2011
5:50 pm

Coaches around the state understand the problem at Ga. CMR can recuit in only the top 25% of graduating HS graduates because of grades,

sat, etc. Until changes are made in UGA admission policies to allow anybody that meets NCAA requirements to be admitted Ga prospects will be going to FSU, SC, Tenn, Al, Fla. and others. SC now has over 30 Ga. boys on their roster. Ga. sooner or later will be what Vandy and Duke are now. Face it dawg fans.

cmr can recruit only the top 25% of grraduating

Snake Plissken

January 14th, 2011
6:03 pm

@ JDAWG

January 14th, 2011
11:58 am
As promised: http://isportsweb.com/2011/01/14/the-georgia-bulldogs-2010-season-in-review-coaching-edition/

Nice articles at this web site…real good if you agree with their thought process…just keep asking myself; Self, I say, how can anything be different if none of the personnel has changed! Reminds me about “Rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic” (a futile or pointless activity in a losing situation)
Think about it objectively, what company would allow it’s “BRAND” to fall so far from grace without making some moves, to at least give the impression that things will change.

Snake Plissken

January 14th, 2011
6:09 pm

@ THE (G) ON THE MUTTS HELMET STANDS 4 GAY

January 14th, 2011
4:11 pm
THE G ON THE MUTTS HELMET STANDS FOR (G)ET RID OF MIKE BOBO!

Green Bay wants the DAWGS to quit using the “oval G”