Fan talk: How many wins gets Mark Richt off the ‘hot seat’?

While we cross our fingers and hope that the widespread rumors of academic casualties prove to be nothing more than midsummer fan paranoia, let’s check some Junkyard Mail …

UPDATE: The bad news about Caleb King is official now. He’s been declared academically ineligible. I’ll have more to say later. …

How many wins do the Dogs need to save Mark Richt's job? (Associated Press)

How many wins do the Dogs need to save Mark Richt's job? (Associated Press)

Frank Johnson writes: Seems like every time I get together with my Bulldog buddies, the subject comes up of Mark Richt being on the proverbial “hot seat” and just how many wins this season it will take to keep his job. Looking at the Dawgs’ schedule, I think anything less than 10 wins will be disappointing and grounds for dismissal. What say you?

Only Greg McGarity can possibly say what number of wins would assure Richt’s return and he might not even have made up his mind at this point. Some folks think an 0-2 start could make it tough for Richt to survive the whole season, but I frankly don’t think that’s even a possibility. He could lose the first two and still turn it around. Surely 10 wins guarantees Richt’s continued employment in Athens, but is there any way a 10-2 regular season could be disappointing? Well, if the two losses were to SEC East rivals South Carolina and Florida, I’m sure there’d be grumbling. Still, 10-2 means Richt isn’t going anywhere. Nine wins seems to be the consensus pick for the minimum Richt needs, but, again, it depends on the losses. If they’re blowouts to top rivals, a nine-win season might only lower the temperature a bit on the hot seat. I have heard people make the case that Richt can survive with just eight wins as long as one of them is over the Gators. What do you think? Even with a victory in Jacksonville, four losses still would mean the Dogs lost to someone they probably ought to beat this year.

Daniel Tuohy writes in response to my “numbers” piece the other day: Hi Bill, I’ve seen this “regression to the mean” idea all over the place, and people appear to be a bit confused (as is often the case when probability is involved). So you had this: “if you win or lose an unusually high number of close games in a season, the odds are that you’ll do the opposite the next season to get back to the mean.” That’s not quite right. The point is that in close games luck plays a very important role, and if you lose a whole bunch of them then you were very unlucky. That, however, in no way implies that the opposite will happen the next year (i.e. that you will win the majority of close games). Luck in one season is completely independent of luck in other seasons. The point is that relative to an unlucky season, any other season is likely to be better in comparison. That’s “regression to the mean.” The mean is winning 50% of your close games. So if we won 0% of our close games 2010, then if in 2011 we just hit the mean (not get lucky, just be average) we’ll win 50% of such games and have a much more attractive ledger come December — relative to 2010.

Thanks for the clarification. Yeah, I oversimplified the concept. But I warned you about me and math.

Marion Campbell writes in response to “101 Reasons to Be a UGA Fan”: Saw the listing and did not remember the “Cowboy” and “Moonpie.” Could you elaborate? I grew up in Clemson. My brother played for UGA. I lived in Athens for 10 years. You might find it interesting to know that Clemson’s R. C. Edwards, one time president, was often just called, “RC” and his wife was called “Moon Pie” in reference to the famous country snack duo.

Guard Joel “Cowboy” Parrish and tackle Mike “Moonpie” Wilson were starting offensive tackle and guard on Vince Dooley’s 1976 SEC championship team. Parrish got his nickname when he arrived in Athens as a freshman wearing a 10-gallon cowboy hat. Dan Magill tried to start a legend that Wilson ate moonpies by the carton, but the player really couldn’t stand them. He got the nickname from his round face. Both were All-Americans that season. Parrish played for the Dogs 1973-76 and was named the SEC’s outstanding lineman by the Atlanta Touchdown Club in 1977. He played some pro ball in Canada. Wilson lettered 1974-76. He went on to play with the Bengals and Seahawks and is in the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame. They were a terrific tandem on the OL. Said Dooley: “We never had a better blocking combination.” A favorite memory is from the 1976 win over Alabama. The Dogs were running the veer option using tailback Kevin McLee and two quarterbacks, Matt Robinson (the passer) and Ray Goff (the runner). The massive OL was so good that when Robinson misread a signal from the sideline and ran an option into the strong side of the Tide defense instead of the weak side as intended, he still ended up in the end zone. It was that kind of day.

Dan writes: Bill, Need to mention [South Carolina's win being the] third straight NCAA baseball title for SEC and ninth overall. ACC still has only one (Wake Forest 1955). Miami’s four titles came before they were in the ACC. Speaking of futility, what two schools have the most appearances in the college world series without a title? Answer: FSU with 20 and Clemson with 12. North Carolina with nine is only fourth in futility — GTU, who seems to lose to UGA in the super regionals, has only three appearances with, of course, 0 titles. That ACC sure is a powerful well-rounded conference!

SEC! SEC! Seriously, it might be slight consolation for the Diamond Dogs, but being the team that knocked the eventual College World Series champion out of the SEC tournament provides a notable asterisk to an up-and-down season.

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340 comments Add your comment

dan

July 8th, 2011
10:42 am

As many as it takes to win the East!

just a fan

July 8th, 2011
10:42 am

9 and a win over florduh nothing less

Seth

July 8th, 2011
10:43 am

Two.

1 – In the Georgia Dome, against Boise State
2 – In Jacksonville, against Florida

me

July 8th, 2011
10:44 am

Mark Richt farewell tour 2011. Should have fired Bozo! This program cannot win as long as Mark Richt and Michael Adams are running the show.

just a fan

July 8th, 2011
10:45 am

Also I would like to say I want to win the Boise game but if we lose the game it doesnt matter the most important game at the begging of the season is USCeast we win that game we are in the drivers seat for the SECeast crown. Also the loser of that game has never played in the SEC championship game.

Somewhere over the Dwayne Bowe

July 8th, 2011
10:46 am

Who is GTU and why do UGA fans have to live vicariously through other schools?

Jerry

July 8th, 2011
10:47 am

I believe Richt needs to win 9 games this year for job security. After the first two games, UGA has a pretty manageable schedule. My new favorite website threw out an interesting stat today: Only 14 of Mark Richt’s 96 wins as a head coach have come against FCS or Non-AQ opponents with a below .500 WP%. So basically he is not just beating up on cupcakes. You guys really should give the 3 day free trial a shot. I am pumped for the season!!

http://coachesbythenumbers.com/coach-rankings/?reportId=30

bulldog steve

July 8th, 2011
10:50 am

Who was the last team to beat the CWS champs? UGA, and they beat them twice.

Somewhere over the Dwayne Bowe

July 8th, 2011
10:53 am

Do they give trophies or hang banners for beating the eventual national champion?

whatthedawg

July 8th, 2011
10:53 am

8 wins = new coach
9 wins = warm/hot seat, but another year in Athens
10 wins = significantly cooler seat
11 wins = significant partying
12 wins = Dawg fans asking who all the other crazy fans were who wanted Richt gone
13 wins = Same as 12, except with more hysteria
14 wins = statue of Richt with zero fans willing to admit they wanted him gone

JB

July 8th, 2011
10:53 am

I could stomach 4 defeats if they are hard fought and close. I know that’s ‘weak’ in some’s mind, but I do feel like there has been a wake up call in Athens. I’m pulling for Mark and the Dawgs to win them all, but lot’s of things happen during a season, good and bad. Murray could go down in game one. we could have a couple of academic problems pop up………Or the good Lord could shine down on us and everything go our way………..as with everything in life, we’ll see. Just enjoy the season.

mgdawg

July 8th, 2011
10:54 am

I think 10 wins get richt of the hot seat (this includes a bowl game). 9 wins (including the bowl game) may keep richt his job depending on the condition of the wins and losses, were the wins close and the losses blowouts or was it the other way around? Either way 9 wins without an SEC East title doesn’t take richt off the hot seat, at most it gives him one more year. 8 wins or less, without an sec east title, he’s gone imo.

I hope UGA has a real good season and richt stays for a long time.

schmeckdawg

July 8th, 2011
10:55 am

just a fan

July 8th, 2011
10:42 am
9 and a win over florduh nothing less

AGREED 1,000%!!!!!!!!!!!

Realist

July 8th, 2011
10:56 am

Richt loses to Boise and Carolina, is 2-2 going into his last game, the loss to Dan Mullin (UGA’s next coach btw) and Miss. State. Then Richt rides off to the next mission trip.

Jean Shorts Torture

July 8th, 2011
10:57 am

Richt can get away with winning eight games as long as one is in Jacksonville. However, if he wins nine and STILL loses to the Gators, he may be in trouble.

Florida is very vulnerable this year, maybe more so than last, so a FOURTH consecutive loss to the Gators might be a little hard to swallow.

1st in 10

July 8th, 2011
10:58 am

Eleven. and includes beating Florida Jean Shorts.

JB

July 8th, 2011
10:58 am

President Adams is a BIG Richt fan. It’s HIS call. He will give Mark every benefit of the doubt. Look for 8 wins to get an extension. That won’t set well, but that’s how I see it. 7 wins will get a new coach.

Jake

July 8th, 2011
11:00 am

How many wins keeps Richt off hotseat? Well, if Richt goes 0-6 against winning teams like 2010, he’s fired. Go 1-4 against ranked teams like he has gone 2-9 last 2 seasons, he’s fired.

Richt needs to show he can beat the best. He needs to beat Florida & South Carolina, or I suspect he’ll be fired.

Richt faces some solid teams, he needs to win 3 of these, including SC & Fla:
Florida, Boise, South Carolina, Miss State, Auburn

S Spivey

July 8th, 2011
11:01 am

He HAS to get 9 wins this year, especially considering how easy our schedule is.

JB

July 8th, 2011
11:02 am

Jake…………That is a good post and good insight.

GT BBall Fan

July 8th, 2011
11:02 am

3 wins – gets him all the way off the hot seat.

Bo

July 8th, 2011
11:03 am

I keep hearing that he isn’t actually on the hot seat. However, I think 9 wins with one being over FL definately means he will be here in 2012. I think he can get by with 8 wins if the team doesn’t look bad in the losses.

UGA Student

July 8th, 2011
11:04 am

Richt needs to take over play calling responsibilities if Bobo gets too predictable (as if he won’t). Head coach is a position of responsibility and Richt needs to accept that or retire to Honduras. It is admirable that he wants to devote time to helping people, but he needs to take care of his stuff here first.

JB

July 8th, 2011
11:05 am

Jake hit it on the head…There are only 3 or 4 real challenges this year. He needs to win a couple of those. Rosy wins over a lot of these cupcake teams proves nothing.
Boise
SC
Miss St
Fla
AU is winnable this year.

UGA_2001

July 8th, 2011
11:06 am

If we don’t win the East this year, Richt needs to go. Period.

If he doesn’t beat UF this year, he needs to go. Period.

Sick of the apathy and low expectations in this Ath Dept.

No one seems to care about anything except that Richt is a “nice guy” and a “good man.” Everyone else in the SEC laughs at us because we don’t judge our coaches on what really matters: WINNING.

RxDawg

July 8th, 2011
11:06 am

I don’t think it’s how many wins as it is who and how we lose. Losing to UF again will probably be the worse thing that could happen. In fact I think Richt could win the east and if he lost to UF than the hot seat talk would still carry on.

schmeckdawg

July 8th, 2011
11:06 am

What IF he only won the 5 SEC East games? We’d play in The SEC Championship Game and IF we won that, we’d play in a BCS bowl game and IF we won that, would 7 wins save him? Just throwing it out there as a hypothetical!

Flat Tire on I-95 in Jacksonville

July 8th, 2011
11:07 am

Bill

If Richt cant beat FL I could care less if he is 11-1, this program is going nowhere if you continue to lose to the same team that is in your Division and is 9 times out of 10 the team you must beat to win the East. Who kept Tenn out so many times in the 90’s, it wasnt us. It was FL

Are we a hope we can win an SEC championship or a hope we win 10 games program

If it is 10 games, then please write an article on why should UGA fans have to pay huge donations to get season tickets for such mediocre goals

Get a clue man

Spokesman for the SEC East

July 8th, 2011
11:08 am

The rest of the East hopes he gets a lifetime contract. Even Vandy and Kentucky have beaten him between the hallowed hedges.

Winning is not everything

July 8th, 2011
11:09 am

I say win 2 and Richt will be just fine.

get a life Dan

July 8th, 2011
11:11 am

SEC has no, I mean zero dominance on the Diamond. Those stats don’t prove anything except anyone can be beaten on any given day. Just another SEC Homer who thinks the SEC is the best at every sport. Wrong!

JB

July 8th, 2011
11:11 am

Flat tires post at 11;07 is one I hear a lot from Dawg fans. HOPING to win 10 and rubbing our hands over SC and Kentucky is were we seemed to have leveled out to. I know lot’s of Dawg fans that are not happy with that attitude. Write McGarity a letter on how you feel, especially if you’re Alum and have skin in the game with donations and tickets.

UGA Insider

July 8th, 2011
11:12 am

A few months ago I was hearing strong rumors that CMR basically had a 2 game season. Boise and USCe. However, UGA makes a pile of money on their athletic programs…. #2 in the nation per the latest report. I personally think that the most important stat to Mike Adams is…… How much money is in the checking account if you know what I mean. I bet CMR can win as few as 7 games and most of the staff will be kept. Which is fine with me. Fans need to remember… UGA is not and will never be Bama, LSU or UF. We will always be competitive but never a dynasty. That is not how we are built.

BG

July 8th, 2011
11:13 am

9 or 10 and he will be fine.

Winning IS everything

July 8th, 2011
11:13 am

Richt must pull out all the stops, spend his $180,000 wisely, and get to the promised land.

Sincerely,

Gene “Richard Nixon” Cheatzik

JDawg1785

July 8th, 2011
11:15 am

I won’t play the numbers game, but one of those wins HAS to be in Jacksonville.

$cam Newton

July 8th, 2011
11:15 am

If the NFL locks us out for the season, I’ll have my dad give Richt a call.

Love,

$cam Newton

BG

July 8th, 2011
11:15 am

Richt wanted the Boise game so I don’t think he is to worried about his job.

Hankie Aron

July 8th, 2011
11:16 am

9 wins and 2 of those wins has to be Boise State and Florida. I could stomach a close loss or two to South Carolina, Miss State, or Tenn

JB

July 8th, 2011
11:16 am

UGA Insider……………….With Adams at the helm, I regret I have to agree. If it’s not a goal of the President, it ain’t a goal. McGarity and Richt WANT to win, we’re just not.

OldFan

July 8th, 2011
11:17 am

Getting CMR off the hot seat and getting him off the sideline are two different things. I agree that 9 wins put him back in good standing and feeling cool again. But I bet that a winning season alone will keep him as coach, with the hot seat just turned up a few more degrees for next season.

JB

July 8th, 2011
11:17 am

Cam showed up at the work outs for the Panthers, and said, ” My friends call me Cash”.

what of it?

July 8th, 2011
11:20 am

“Regression to the mean” assumes it is luck and not incompetence (Bobo) that contributes to those losses.

I don’t care about number of wins. I just don’t want to lose to teams with a quarter of the talent that we field.

Do_Tell

July 8th, 2011
11:26 am

Only with a SEC Championship should Richt get to stay.

Chuck Allison

July 8th, 2011
11:27 am

I don’t think Mark should have to win any games to be secure in his job.
The UGA fans just need to learn that there are more important things than winning football games. And the fan base needs to expel from its midst those fanatics who think that they should have winning seasons every year or two. You can get just as drunk at a game you lose as you can if you win. Tailgating, drunkeness, cursing, trash talking, fighting, and littering go on just as effectively at UGA regardless of the score in the games. It is only the next day when they sober up that the UGA fans get unhappy about the score.

Jedidiah Snuffingpork

July 8th, 2011
11:27 am

Nice fake mail, Bill. Very clever…

mark

July 8th, 2011
11:34 am

It’s hard to put a number on Richt until we see how it plays out. We could be devastated by injuries and end up with six or seven wins and acknowledge great coaching held it all together. Without injuries I think it has to be minimum eight, probably nine with drastic improvement in penalties, turnovers, and effort. Also, the absolute coach killer would be a loss to tech…it just can’t happen again. As far a getting off to a fast start if you think about it we could go 0-2 and still end up 10-2. If we lose both of those but the staff holds it together they’ll still be fielding a better team than anyone else we play except maybe Florida (and we just don’t know what’ll happen there this year). On the other hand, if we somehow start 2-0 the pressure will really be on because there should be no reason not to be in a BCS bowl at minimum. All in all, I think we have to trust in McGarity to make the right call. We’re lucky to have Mark Richt but he does have to turn this around. I’m betting he will….this defense will be improved and could be downright nasty. Coach Tereshinki’s S&C program should also reap huge benefits.

BoxerJ

July 8th, 2011
11:38 am

If Richt doesn’t finish ranked in the top 25, he’s fired.

That means he MUST get to 9 or 10 wins.

But final AP rank is more important than a win total.

Must be relevant again.

Jeff Paulk

July 8th, 2011
11:38 am

IMO, we’d be fools to get rid of Mark Richt. The entire deal is cyclical. There are ebbs and flows. Look at every team in the conference over the last ten years, and it’s plain as day. You simply will not be great every year. Ain’t gonna happen. Who would you hire anyway? There’s not a lot of Knute Rockne’s out there. We could do a hell of a lot worse that Mark Richt. Stay the course with Richt and we’ll be just fine.

Bob

July 8th, 2011
11:38 am

Rather than wins, I would think a loss to any of these schools would be grounds for firing: Florida, Tech, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vandy, or Kentucky. And a loss to our Div 2 opponent or New Mexico State should be immediate termination.