UGA says nix to playing Tech in the Dome, and I understand

Next on MB's agenda: Tech-UGA hoops in Philips. (AJC photo by Pouya Dianat)

Next on the Bradley agenda: Tech-UGA hoops in Philips. (AJC photo by Pouya Dianat)

I understand why Damon Evans didn’t want to do it. He has a program to run and home games to protect/hoard. He’s not the president of the Atlanta Chamber of Commerce. He’s the athletics director at Georgia. Still …

It would have been nice. Just to try. Just once.

Dan Radakovich, who’s Tech’s AD, told me in Tallahassee he couldn’t see a Tech-Georgia game in the Dome as the 2011 installment of the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Classic really happening. I told him I couldn’t, either, even though I’d just written how much I’d like it. But I’ve got no dog (pun intended) in this fight. I’m just a guy who writes for the Atlanta paper and who gets in free. (Unless Gary Stokan threatens to ban me from covering a game, as once was threatened regarding the Chick-fil-A Bowl.)

It made way more sense for Tech than for Georgia, which is why Radakovich pushed, if gently, for it. Tech is the program looking to market itself and make more money. Evans presides over an athletics department that essentially mints money. To have thrown off the rotation of home games — especially seeing as how Georgia-Florida, which counts as a Bulldog home date every other year, is always played in a different state — wouldn’t have served Evans’ constituency. (Here’s the report of Evans’ demurral, as written by esteemed colleague Tim Tucker.)

Me, I’ve got no constituency. I just would have liked to see Tech fans and Georgia fans jammed under one roof for one night in August/September. Just once. Just to try it. But now we move on to my next doomed-to-fail dream:

Tech and Georgia moving their basketball game back to Atlanta, this time to Philips Arena. I miss the Cremins-Durham days at the old Omni. I suspect some of you do, too.

102 comments Add your comment

P Rose

October 13th, 2009
10:35 pm

Good! Let’s keep this tradition on real grass, in the open air, after Thanksgiving.

misterwax

October 13th, 2009
10:37 pm

Maybe Damon Evans get get our Marxist President to appoint him as President of the Atlanta Federal Reserve…..then he can print even more money……food for thought.

dawglover

October 13th, 2009
10:38 pm

I agree, for once the almighty dollar does not rule.

Matt Sterbation

October 13th, 2009
10:39 pm

well since this is out I guess this will open the door for Alabama to come to Atlanta and get all the Headlines again.

John Coctosten

October 13th, 2009
10:40 pm

This Tech fan agrees: Moving the bball game to Philips would be great But, moving the rivalry football game to the dome? No thanks.

truth

October 13th, 2009
10:43 pm

Truth is uga could not stand to potentially lose back-to-back games to GT

Mark Bradley

October 13th, 2009
10:44 pm

I think Georgia will eventually have to play someone in the Dome in the Chick-fil-A Classic. Can’t let Alabama make this a yearly showcase.

buzz is wiser

October 13th, 2009
10:45 pm

I would have liked to see the game at the Dome for at least on year as well. How is it that Mr. Evans agrees a couple of weeks ago to continue to have a home game in another state but not one in his own state capital. Money has to be the issue for the continual cocktail party, which benefits the state of Florida, why not get some of the money into the state. But right know he has other issues with his football program this year.

U Gotta B Kidding Me

October 13th, 2009
10:47 pm

Evans would have been stupid to move the game to the Dome with the stipulation that the following year the game would return to GT. Why give up a home game in Athens? Stupid demand by DRad so blame him for it not happening.

Mark Bradley

October 13th, 2009
10:48 pm

Here’s the key, Buzz: Georgia people love the Florida game in Jacksonville (even though they haven’t won there often of late), and they like the Tech game the way it is. Damon Evans is catering to his audience, which is smart on his part.

Mark Bradley

October 13th, 2009
10:50 pm

On Dan Radakovich’s part: Tech fans were afraid they’d give up a home game in which they’d be outnumbered by Georgia fans if they played in the Dome. That’s why Radakovich made the stipulation that Tech would move to the Dome only if Georgia would play at Tech in 2012.

buzz is wiser

October 13th, 2009
10:52 pm

I guess your right Mark, maybe its just that I wanted that game, for that year, so maybe I’m a little biased. Its just mind boggling to me that they would host a home game where if the team were to drive they would have to to 85 to 75 to 10. Doesn’t seem like much of a home field, especially with Jacksonville being Tebow and Gator country.

OedipusTax

October 13th, 2009
10:54 pm

I applaud the decision of UGA. The Dome is a lousy place to play football, as admitted by the owner of the Falcons, who wants a new stadium. I won’t attend another game there unless somebody gives me the tickets. Why should Georgia would leave a 92,000 person stadium to play at the Dome? Why? Makes no sense to me. Loyal UGA fans want the home game once every two years rather than playing 2 miles from the GA Tech campus, which really would make it an away game every year. Maybe Mark Bradley has an inside take on this, which will end up helping his pocket book, and maybe help the AJC in some way to stop losing readers?

Roswell Dawg

October 13th, 2009
10:59 pm

If you, Radakovich and others want UGA – GT in the Dome, why not play in the Dome when it’s Tech’s home game. Why should UGA give up a game in Athens for the convenience of Tech? UGA doesn’t need the Dome. As for playing the basketball game at Philips Arena, I was one of many who attended every game at the Omni but argued that it should be home & home. Why should UGA give up a home game in anything to play in Atlanta? We do give them a game at Turner Field every year for CHCOA.

Alabama Jack

October 13th, 2009
10:59 pm

I still think the best deal for Tech would be to open at Bobby Dodd with a strong SEC team that first Saturday with an ACC-SEC matchup in the Dome that night. Win-win for everyone.

buzz is wiser

October 13th, 2009
11:02 pm

Roswell Dawg, do you agree with having a home game in Jacksonville?

Alabama Jack

October 13th, 2009
11:02 pm

I still think the best deal for Tech would be to open against a strong SEC opponent at Bobby Dodd that Saturday and have an ACC-SEC matchup in the Dome that night. Win-win for everyone, with 3 out-of-town teams and Tech getting a great home game.

Native Atlantan

October 13th, 2009
11:03 pm

Mark, I think this was a bad deal for UGA all along. They already lose a huge SEC game every other year, and now they would be asking the season ticket holders to give away another big game.

UGA has suffered with some really bad deals lately: Willie Martinez, John Jancek, the group of clowns running special teams, an over matched OC in Mike Bobo and a Strength & Conditioning coach that apparantly can’t do either. Anyone notice how UT and LSU could run a simple dive play or lead play at UGA future NFL DT’s and get five yards while UGA struggles to make 3rd and less than 1? If it’s 3rd and 2, UGA has to pass because they are so weak on the line.

The basketball game at Phillips is not good right now either. I’d rather give Fox some time and build a program and increase the fan interest before making that move. At the OMNI, Tech would have 9K to 10K of fans while UGA had 5K to 6K.

Alabama Jack

October 13th, 2009
11:03 pm

Sorry for the double post. All this rain is playing heck with the phone lines.

GT76

October 13th, 2009
11:08 pm

Yes! Real grass, open air, Thanksgiving with Turkey not Chicken!

Da

October 13th, 2009
11:08 pm

Enter your comments here

wrf

October 13th, 2009
11:11 pm

Bama comes to Atlanta to play anybody and Georgia drive 60 miles to play Tech for a pre-season bowl game? WFT is wrong with UGA?

Native Atlantan

October 13th, 2009
11:21 pm

wrf, look at the out of conference schedules of UGA and Bama. Tide has three patsies of FL International, North Texas and the Moving Mocs of UTC. UGA only has one in Tennessee Tech. Eventhough VPI win was impressive, the rest of ALA’s OOC schedule is very weak.

Lee Roy Mercer

October 13th, 2009
11:24 pm

All i wanted to do was get this thing settled…….

natvatln

October 13th, 2009
11:29 pm

Mark: No matter what we Tech fans AND uga have to play in some of these games to protect our recruiting base.Of course in all honesty I believe this Saturday’s game is of much more critical concern. GO JACKETS

buzz is wiser

October 13th, 2009
11:29 pm

Native Atlantan, Mr. Evens choose to put those teams of UGA schedules in an attempt to make the UGA brand nationwide, or something like that, so why doesnt UGA add a couple more “patsies” and a kick-off game that gets national exposure

doc

October 13th, 2009
11:29 pm

wtf it is a sign of a desperate program going downhill not realizing it has to change to keep up. to allow alabama to waltz in and play and be afraid in any way of playing tech “because of its constituency” has a constituency too dumb to realize the benefit of playing tech there. i am not even suggestting they might lose as the issue. they are losing and too blind to see it right now. there are programs on the rise and a game of this magnitude might help them in the long run. instead alabama has the center stage for an early weekend to influence recruits out of uga’s back yard.

whatever

October 13th, 2009
11:31 pm

Native you are high as heck Az state is a punching bag Vandy will probably beat UGA. UGA sucks and they know there is no end on the horizon.

Bob

October 13th, 2009
11:34 pm

Actually Alabama’s OOC Schedule has been a joke for a long time and even though they are picking it up a bit, it remains far below Georgia’s in the future.

From 98-09 Bama has played 9 OOC BCS opponents. Four of those teams wound up ranked including Va Tech this year. Bama has played 2 games in opponents stadiums.

During the same period Georgia has played or will play 19. Eight of those teams wound up ranked with Georgia Tech and Oklahoma State likely to be ranked this year. Nine of those games have been in opponents stadiums.

Bama hasn’t remotely played the OOC schedule Georgia has. They have far more flexibility since they don’t play a non conference in state rival nor do they have a neutral field game with another SEC team. Bama tries to play one decent OOC team a year and the rest is garbage.

Native Atlantan

October 13th, 2009
11:37 pm

Buz, I understand where you are coming from but I don’t think you got my point with Bama. If you are going to talk big about scheduling out of the league, please do more than North Texas, UTC and FIU. Play three tough games out of the league instead of one and then you can talk.

Your suggestion is a pretty good idea, and I think Georgia would be very open to it if the UF game went home and home.

Buford T Justice

October 13th, 2009
11:41 pm

The idea of movin’ the UGA-TECH game to the Dome is pure and simple communism

buzz is wiser

October 13th, 2009
11:41 pm

Native Atlantan, I could be wrong but a couple of weeks ago AD Evans and whatever the president’s name a UGA decided to keep the game in jacksonville instead of a true home and home

MariettaDawg

October 13th, 2009
11:44 pm

I have an idea. Play the game in 2012 as a “home” Georgia game where Georgia get’s the lion share of tickets and revenue and Tech can always claim.. “well we were the visitors and only allotted the visitor’s share of tickets.” “Obviously” thats why they have fewer fans……Right?

Beautiful Monte

October 13th, 2009
11:46 pm

Why doesn’t Mr. Bradley ask Saint Mark if opposing defenses have “figured out” the UGA offense?

Native Atlantan

October 13th, 2009
11:46 pm

Whatever, you are calling me high? Hmmmm so you are putting Arizona State in the same class as North Texas, FIU and UTC. As for mentioning Vandy, the discussion was out of conference schedules and last time I checked, Vandy is in the SEC. I don’t understand your thought process, but we are all entitled to an opinion.

If you think UGA is really that bad, just remember this. Two years ago, Bama was losing to minor programs at home and barely beating a bad Colorado team in the Weedeater Bowl. Look where they are now. Point: You’re not as good as you think you are, and you are not as bad as you think you are.

Native Atlantan

October 13th, 2009
11:49 pm

Buzz, yes Evans and Adams decided to keep the UF game in Jax. How many other teams in major leagues have two neutral site games?

Ross

October 13th, 2009
11:50 pm

C’mon Mark this is simpleminded! Would you like it if your rivalry was converted into a corporate spectacle? The game belongs at the trade school and the agriculture academy.

MtnDawg

October 13th, 2009
11:58 pm

Good. Why would UGA give up a home game? Makes no sense. Atlanta is a terrible city. Athens is great.

sean

October 14th, 2009
12:01 am

Hey why not one year let the Dawgs and Jackets play in the Chick Fil A Bowl after the annual clash on Thanksgiving weekend? Just food for thought…….

Michael

October 14th, 2009
12:06 am

Not all Georgia people love that game in Jacksonville. It’s not the worst thing on the planet, but it’s not in a neutral area. You can’t practice in Athens in the morning and then bus to the game if it’s an afternoon or night game. You can do that in Gainesville. About the only reason people don’t want to change it is “tradition.” It literally means nothing, they just don’t want to see something change. Me, I’d like to see 92,000 people booing the heck out of Tim Tebow every play just once, but the old fuddy duds won’t let it happen. For the people who like it in Jax because it’s closer to where they live, it’s not my fault they moved four hours from Athens.

As far as the Kickoff Classic, I could definitely see UGA playing in it against someone. Maybe Clempson? The key is to not schedule three tough out-of-conference games in one year (GT is already one) since nobody else in the SEC will.

JonnyGT

October 14th, 2009
12:12 am

I was against this idea and am glad to hear it won’t happen, but you GA fans need to check your calendars and schedules. You host the rivalry game next year, and the proposed game would have taken place the following year in 2011. Then, the home-and-home cycle would have resumed with GT hosting in 2012. Neither team would have lost a home game; each team’s next home game would have simply been delayed a year.

Papa

October 14th, 2009
12:13 am

Don’t care to Dome it for football … but Mark, you are right about old Tech-uga hoop games … one of the greatest was Jacket triple OT win, what, like 20 years ago? an excellent evening of hollering and a great game both ways.

JoeDawg

October 14th, 2009
12:28 am

MariettaDawg quit makin us mutts look bad. The 2012 game is Lane Kiffen’s Vols and the woofies from Raleigh.

ToccoaDawg

October 14th, 2009
12:47 am

Again Mark you show your bug wings wanting UGA to come to the bug nest to play a game. No win situation for the dawgs.

Big B CH 99

October 14th, 2009
12:54 am

I think both AD’s the the right thing for their respective programs:
D-Rad shouldn’t be willing to give up a home game to play at the dome when no matter what the allotment was, it’s gonna be over 50% UgaY. But be willing to play at the dome & move the Tech home game to 2012.
Evans doesn’t want to give up a home game, & doesn’t want the game to be out of Athens for 2 yrs. UgaY arrogance says that Tech should give up a home game.

Go Jackets!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Metal Jacket

October 14th, 2009
1:10 am

Richt wants to play younger players, the poor guy just doesn’t get it.

RHW

October 14th, 2009
1:10 am

To me GA and GT playing early in the year makes sense because it is a great game that would garner attention nationally, it keeps the Alabama’s, Clemson’s, etc…from getting even more publicity in our own state, and with the emergence of GT in the last 2 years and GA’s run, it is in the interest of both schools to get this game done earlier in the season so even a loss doesn’t hurt as much on the national scene as playing this game at the end of the season.

Heath

October 14th, 2009
1:48 am

I’m sure Evans would agree to let Tech have it in the dome in their home years. This way, Tech could play in front of almost as many people as real college programs. Sure, half the fans would be for the other school, but how would that be different than any other game they play at home?

Frank

October 14th, 2009
2:00 am

Bradley, Tech is welcome to move the 2011 game to the Dome. The issue is not the idea, but the terms. It remains their home game in 2011. Why would UGA play in Atlanta two years in a row to make this happen? The Dome seats 20K less than Sanford. The Dome seats more than Grant Field. Let Tech play their home game there for one year, and then play in Athens the next year.

Larry

October 14th, 2009
5:01 am

Yes…please move the basketball game to Phillips!