Four men, all named after saints. Two led their respective teams to conference championships in their second seasons. One played for a national championship in his fourth season. The other has been in place a little over a year and has stirred enthusiasm where none existed.
For Georgia, two Marks: Richt coaches football, Fox basketball.
For Georgia Tech, two Pauls: Johnson coaches football, Hewitt basketball.
For you, one question: Which pair would you rather have?
It’s not an easy call: Johnson just took his Jackets to the ACC championship, and Hewitt’s Jackets just played for the ACC title. Richt’s Bulldogs haven’t graced the SEC title game since 2005, and Fox’s Hounds — sorry, still can’t resist — finished last in the SEC East.
Were I picking the best pure coach of the four, I’d pick Johnson. Were I picking the coach who has known the most sustained success at the highest level, I’d pick Richt. But that’s not today’s exercise.
Think of this as an alternate-shot tournament in golf. If you take PJ of GT, you also have to take Hewitt. And the same on the Georgia side: If you choose Fox, you have to take Richt. And that said …
I’d pick the two Marks over the two Pauls.
I’d pick the Marks because I believe Richt’s team is about to get really good again, and I’m not sure Hewitt’s ever will. And, as noted yesterday, I like what Fox is doing with Georgia. (He’s already 1-0 against the Jackets.)
But that’s just me, and I’ve been known to be wrong. And this isn’t as much about me as about you. So here’s your chance.
On Election Day, please cast your vote. And just this once, ticket-splitting is not allowed.