Updated 10:05 p.m.
So tonight we find out who is college football’s national champion, and soon we should find out who is Georgia’s new defensive coordinator.
There’s always a possibility of a Mark Fox-type hire, meaning a hire who doesn’t get mentioned in the rumor mill until the deal is done. But if that’s not the case, then the recent course of the process suggests that one or more of the remaining candidates have been sort of busy lately.
Kirby Smart has been busy preparing Alabama’s defense for tonight’s national championship game. Todd Grantham has been busy preparing the Dallas Cowboys’ defensive line for Saturday’s NFL playoff game against Philadelphia.
Smart has acknowledged talking with Mark Richt, although he said Tuesday they hadn’t talked “much” and that “he’s not offered me anything.” If that’s the case -– and of course it might be semantics – you’d think they’d have a lot to talk about in the next couple of days.
There was a report this afternoon by a Dallas radio station — ESPN 103.3 FM – that unnamed sources said Smart would interview for the vacant head-coaching job at Texas Tech soon after the national-championship game. But shortly after the radio report, Texas Tech athletics director Gerald Myers told the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal: “That’s something that I’m not aware of. I know he’s a good young coach and a good young prospective coach, but at this point we haven’t made any plans to contact him.’’
Grantham has been on Richt’s radar since the failed pursuit of Virginia Tech’s Bud Foster. Not coincidentally, Grantham started his coaching career with the Hokies and is highly regarded by Foster, among others. As you’ve heard, the word from Cowboys camp is that Grantham has been approached by Georgia. The Cowboys are an interesting situation, with head coach Wade Phillips‘ job security not completely clear despite making the playoffs.
There’s a recruiting “dead” period for the national coaches’ convention next week, but when Georgia returns to the recruiting trail on Jan. 15 for the final sprint to signing day, Richt obviously needs to have his new DC in recruits’ homes. (Of course, if the hire were Grantham and the Cowboys were to go to the Super Bowl. . . . )
Still no word from Rennie Curran on whether he, like 17 other UGA underclassmen since 2001, will enter the NFL draft early.
Curran did attend a UGA team meeting on Wednesday, an indication he hadn’t made a final decision to leave. He said last week that he’d like to talk to the new DC before deciding, and maybe he’ll have a chance to do so. Underclassmen have until Jan. 15 to declare for the draft.
Two more notes:
– Georgia tight end Orson Charles today was named to the Football Writers Association’s Freshman All-America Team.
– And as expected, freshman offensive lineman Kolton Houston and JUCO-transfer safety Jakar Hamilton enrolled early and began classes at UGA today.
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