It’s official: UGA’s Mark Richt is the World’s Greatest Boss

Deep pockets and a big heart: Some combination, eh? (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

Deep pockets and a big heart: Some combination, eh? (AJC photo by Brant Sanderlin)

Were I Georgia, I wouldn’t just “self-report” this “secondary violation.” I’d shout it from the mountaintops. I’d make it the first sentence in Mark Richt’s official bio, which would now read:

“Mark Richt, in his 11th season of coaching the Bulldogs, stamped himself the World’s Greatest Boss by paying staffers OUT OF HIS OWN POCKET!”

Excuse the capital letters, but sometimes major emphasis is required. This is one such moment. Some football coaches pay recruits. Georgia’s football coach dips into his personal finances to reward the guys who’ve worked for him. He committed a violation, all right. He showed the rest of us what it means to put (literal) money where your mouth is.

In so doing, Richt just made Georgia — unwittingly, but even unwitting actions have consequences — the program of choice should the Bulldogs ever have another opening for an assistant coach or a office go-fer. Richt felt so bad about firing Jon Fabris, a member of the defensive staff jettisoned in December 2009, that he gave Fabris $6,000 when he couldn’t find another job. Who does such a thing in this economy? Who does such a thing in any economy?

Some coaches have the reputation of being difficult to serve under. Richt just stamped himself as the coach you want to work for. We all knew he was a good guy, but this borders on sainthood. (”St. Mark of Athens, driver of Ford trucks and benefactor to unsung associates.”)

OK, it was technically a violation — a violation in the way that jaywalking to push somebody clear of a runaway bus is a legal misdemeanor. I think everyone can agree to let this one slide without penalty. Me, I’d consider giving Richt a raise for philanthropy, but that would kind of defeat the purpose, would it not?

By Mark Bradley

268 comments Add your comment

dawg tired

December 20th, 2011
4:09 pm

Mark Bradley

December 20th, 2011
4:10 pm

Kudos to dawg tired, which I am.

where do we go from here?

December 20th, 2011
4:10 pm

Benjamin

December 20th, 2011
4:11 pm

Great title. :)

It would defeat the purpose on the raise portion, too, but honestly, this shows that he’s a good man in my book.

Walker Dawg

December 20th, 2011
4:12 pm

“Give and it shall be given unto you, good measure, pressed down, shaken together and overflowing”. We are seeing CMR receive the benefit of walking his talk!

UGADAWG

December 20th, 2011
4:13 pm

UGA is Blessed to have such a wonderful guy at the helm! GO DAWGS!

Mad Mike

December 20th, 2011
4:14 pm

Joey

December 20th, 2011
4:14 pm

I wish he was my boss . . .

GTT

December 20th, 2011
4:15 pm

Right on, Mark.

Mark Bradley

December 20th, 2011
4:15 pm

I’m thinking that suggesting he might not be the man for Georgia anymore — which I did last season — might weigh against my employment opportunities on Richt’s staff. Bad luck for me, huh?

DawginLex

December 20th, 2011
4:16 pm

We beat this to death on Chip’s blog but the point remains solid.

Taco Meat

December 20th, 2011
4:17 pm

Agreed, Mark. CMR is an awesome man and us Dawgs are lucky to have him in charge.

The 99%

December 20th, 2011
4:18 pm

Did someone say handouts?

bjohndawg

December 20th, 2011
4:18 pm

What about UGA’s win at Southern Cal?
Someone at the AJC going to write about that?

Richt=DGD

Dawg48

December 20th, 2011
4:21 pm

Mark

Your article is almost as good, as Richt is a man!

GTBob

December 20th, 2011
4:21 pm

Richt is a good guy. There is no doubt about that. I don’t think his compassion is a positive in all situations though. Very few leaders with that kind of mind set have ever accomplished anything great.

DDPO

December 20th, 2011
4:21 pm

MB -

You have officially been ruled “not eligible for hire” by the crew in Athens…

DAWG ONE

December 20th, 2011
4:22 pm

Not only is he a great boss, but he is a teacher of integrity, principle and fairness to the young men who play for him, the coaches who work for him and the staff of people who support him and the program.

Young men should pay attention to this man. We are indeed fortunate to have him at UGA!

duronimo

December 20th, 2011
4:25 pm

Made himself look good …. Made his Scrooge-like bosses look like A holes …. and his coaches got the money he believed they deserved. He finished the drill. Well played indeed!

DP

December 20th, 2011
4:26 pm

I hope the benefactors of Richt’s generosity reported it as income in case the IRS looks into the issue.

“I’m thinking that suggesting he might not be the man for Georgia anymore — which I did last season — might weigh against my employment opportunities on Richt’s staff.”

I’m sure Richt has seen enough Bradley flip flops over the years not to take it personally, particularly since Bradley has been in the tank for Richt 95% of the time.

RunningDog

December 20th, 2011
4:26 pm

I’m damn proud to have Richt as my coach.

Herschel Talker

December 20th, 2011
4:26 pm

MB:

What can I say? The man has character.

HT

Trojan

December 20th, 2011
4:27 pm

I wonder if he would have stepped over a player needing CPR like Saban.

Great article and a great headline.

Pumpkin Eater

December 20th, 2011
4:29 pm

Still you can’t break the rules. Punishment will be forthcoming.

James Adams

December 20th, 2011
4:29 pm

Does anyone here think Paul Johnson gives his staffers some of his extra tartar sauce when they run out during the fish fries? Nope!

Jalex49

December 20th, 2011
4:29 pm

Coach Richt… The fact that you did this was amazing .. Thank you for being who you are and Georgia is lucky to have a coach of such class and compassion for others!

Bill Clinton

December 20th, 2011
4:32 pm

James Adams…LOL…..Now that was funny!……Don’t care who you are!

7576DAWG

December 20th, 2011
4:36 pm

Everybody was criticizing Cam’s Newton’s father for trying to get paid approx. $ 250,000 but what would keep a head coach from paying one of his staff $25,000 extra to make sure a family member was influenced to come to his school.
The staff member can say what he wan’t’s but if his family member chose his school as a 5 star recruit it would be hard to prove the extra $ 25,000 was because he deserved a raise according to the head coach but the AD didn’t feel that way , and not trying to influence the recruit to come to your school.

Bright Idea

December 20th, 2011
4:37 pm

A college coach with a conscience…how novel.

derrick

December 20th, 2011
4:43 pm

What does this say about the previous administration. For all the money the UGA football program made the previous years, we are talking a very small amount of money. Is this what has been holding the program back? Did the administration really have tne best interest of CMR at heart?

JanusOne

December 20th, 2011
4:47 pm

It’s Official:

richt ’s boss, AD McGarity is the cheapest boss in America (and worst AD).

Wouldn’t give Richt’s staff raises, so Richt had to pay out of his own po0cket.

Absurd, Richt needs an AD that’s more supportive of the top 10 winningest Head Coach.

Can McGarity.

Frank Lane

December 20th, 2011
4:47 pm

Mark, I do not want to diminish Coach Richt’s actions in any way, but every entrepreneur or person who owns their own business does this kind of thing every day. I’ve owned 11 different businesses and I have often paid others when I could not even make my own payroll. All bonuses always came out of my own pocket. And I am no saint. Such practice is how a good leader motivates others to work their tale off for “the company.” If you get a raise or a bonus, from even a corporation, that money is coming out of the pocket(s) of the owner(s). Still a note-worthy move by Richt.

coachx

December 20th, 2011
4:48 pm

CMR is a class act.

Every recruit and parent of a recruit should take notice of how much CMR genuinely cares for people in his life. No football coach will teach a young man more about life then CMR.

If you want your boy to just learn how to play football he go any where………..but you want him to learn real morals then there is no one better then CMR.

Bama Mike

December 20th, 2011
4:48 pm

A college coach with a conscience? Where? Would like to meet him or her.

Frank Lane

December 20th, 2011
4:48 pm

JanusOne, this happened under Damon Evans I believe.

BG

December 20th, 2011
4:49 pm

Richt is a good man.

Mark (another one)

December 20th, 2011
4:49 pm

7576DAWG: Just asking or do you know something? I would bet that the NCAA would not view payment of a propect’s parents as a secondary violation.

Richt has always been a class act, and his compassion for his fellow man is well known. This is just another example being forced into the public’s view by NCAA rules. He did it because he thought it was right and wanted to help. Richt’s actions speak louder than his words, and his words speak volumes. DGD.

Dalton Dawg

December 20th, 2011
4:49 pm

Mark is really to be admired for all he does. He knows the lord has blessed him beyond most common people and he has a big heart and is compelled in his convictions to do what his heart says. He’s refreshing when it comes to all the money hungers in the sports world. I to would love to have a coach or person in general that you could look up to and say such good things. When he is truly gone we will then see what a big loss the university as well as the whole state has lost. I for one hope he stays for as long as possible and even though national titles are great there’s way more to life than winning and winning in life is far more important. This is exactly why he wins over “recruits” because he is sincere to a fault. Great Dawg!

Huntsville Dawg

December 20th, 2011
4:50 pm

7576 Dawg…could you be more foolish??? Moronic words…

Richt, once again, shows that he walks his walk. I’m, again, proud to call this man my coach…and frankly, I don’t care if we ever win the NC if he’s our coach. Anyone every hear any former players talking about how Saban changed their lives???

Skitty Fritty

December 20th, 2011
4:50 pm

UGA beat UT, UF, Auburn, Tech and made it to the SEC championship game. It is truly a good year to be a bulldog plus we have a coach who isn’t in love with money & ego. Good luck in the bowl game and I can’t wait till next year.
Go Dawgs!

Doc Hollidawg

December 20th, 2011
4:51 pm

JanusOne…it was Evans, not McGarity.

Go Dawgs.

great contrarian

December 20th, 2011
4:52 pm

Wow. A wopping $6k from a guy who makes millions each year. Color me underwhelmed. Lets not discount coaches who help their assistants find jobs before/instead of firing them, which happens every year.

Mark (another one)

December 20th, 2011
4:52 pm

I won’t go overboard and say I don’t want an NC. I do. I also know Richt does as well and he knows how to coach a major college team. Richt the man is a man of character. Richt the coach is a winner and is continuing to push the Dawgs. I have confidence in Richt and want him at UGA for a long time.

Nick Saban

December 20th, 2011
4:54 pm

My assistants will get bread and water and like it!

Les Miles

December 20th, 2011
4:54 pm

I OWN Nick Saban!

Paul in NH

December 20th, 2011
4:54 pm

I agree that Richt did well (and good) in this case. The UGa AA should be ashamed of themselves though – all that money (for a non-profit no less) and nickel and diming the assistants.

hogmtndawg

December 20th, 2011
4:54 pm

Frank: Big difference. Gift (Present) vs. Paid (Compensation)

Paul Johnson

December 20th, 2011
4:55 pm

I am still smarter than CMR just find a way to beat him!

In theory...

December 20th, 2011
4:59 pm

the NCAA could come down on UGA for these continued infractions. Maybe UGA and Ohio St would be banned from bowls, and Jim Tressel could take a new job and be in a bowl in 2012.

Had enough

December 20th, 2011
5:02 pm

Ohio state gets in trouble for paying players,Georgia gets in trouble when the Head coach helps his staff out after they are told they are being furloughed .Boy that really tells me how bad the Ncaa rule committee wants to get Georgia.This is a non story.