Fox ‘excited’ new AD has known hoops success

A significant part of the reason Mark Fox came to Georgia 16 months ago was his belief that UGA President Michael Adams and athletic director Damon Evans were committed to building a successful basketball program.

Fox expects that commitment to continue under Evans’ successor, Greg McGarity.

“He’s obviously very prepared for the position, and he’s passionate about Georgia,” Fox said. “And from my perspective, he’s also been at an institution [Florida] where basketball and football have co-existed at a very high level, and he understands that part of it. So I’m very excited.

“I was very impressed [by McGarity's news conference Friday], and I’m really glad we have an athletic director as the school year begins because I think not having one would have taken energy and focus away,” Fox said. “Now the kids, the coaches, the staff –- everyone — knows ‘this is the boss, here’s our new direction,’ and it’s going to make life easier for everybody.”

Florida won three national championships in football (1996, 2006 and 2008) and two in men’s basketball (2006 and 2007) while McGarity worked as a deputy to UF athletic director Jeremy Foley.

Fox had not met McGarity before Friday, but he’d heard scouting reports on the person who was rumored all along as probably the leading candidate to succeed Evans.

“I’ve had a ton of calls,” Fox said. “A lot of people have called me on his behalf; he’s very respected by the people of Georgia. And I talked to Billy Donovan [about McGarity] back in July” on the recruiting trail.

Fox and Donovan, Florida’s basketball coach, talked again on Friday morning.

“Billy was very grateful for the help that Greg gave him in 14 years,” Fox said.

Although off to a promising start, Fox’s job of building Georgia’s basketball program has barely begun. “We can’t do this without the help of the administration; that’s just not possible,” Fox said. “So I’m more excited about [McGarity's] experience in our sport.”


On a different matter, Fox said he was surprised the NCAA Eligibility Center ruled that Georgia signee Cady Lalanne did not meet academic requirements for initial eligibility.

“We didn’t anticipate it,” Fox said. “Our people thought everything was going to be fine.”

The ruling means Lalanne, a 6-8 forward from Orlando, will not be allowed to enroll at UGA this fall.

The loss of Lalanne leaves three players in Fox’s 2010 signing class: guard Sherrard Brantley and forwards Marcus Thornton and Donte Williams.

30 comments Add your comment

Destin dawg

August 16th, 2010
6:10 am

Go Dawgs !!!

sic 'em

August 16th, 2010
6:17 am

woof woof woof woof

Frank Lane

August 16th, 2010
6:28 am

Would love to see success and national prominence in both programs.

Destin dawg

August 16th, 2010
6:32 am

good things going on in Athens… #1 college town.. breath of fresh air.. new attitude.. good recruiting class !!! Go Dawgs !!

[...] Georgia basketball coach Mark Fox is excited new AD knows hoop success, writes Tim Tucker of the AJC. [...]

Joe B.

August 16th, 2010
6:56 am

A symptom of not having an AD in place over the summer…obviously the compliance folks completely dropped the ball on Lalanne. To go from thinking he was in to then seeing him go to JUCO means that someone was not paying any attention at all. Pitiful job by the administration.


August 16th, 2010
7:17 am

Good morning to all my Tech and Gator friends…


August 16th, 2010
7:21 am

Glad to have McGarity aboard. There’s no place like home.


August 16th, 2010
7:25 am

I do wish Evans the best because he paid a huge price for his mistakes and I think he did a great job for UGA prior to his evening in Buckhead, but McGarity seems like an upgrade. I think this switching of Atheletic Directors may be a gain for UGA sports down the road. Go Dogs!!!


August 16th, 2010
7:32 am

Also, despite what many people think Hoops at UGA could be huge. Hopefully, Fox will build on last year and get even more support from McGarity. UGA hoops history, Tubby Smith should have stayed at UGA. He bolted for Kentucky but could have had the same success at UGA and been more appreciated by the fans and had a longer career. I will bet he realizes that now!


August 16th, 2010
7:32 am

UGA should have a winning season this year and compete for the SEC title and earn a berth to the NCAA basketball tourney. Next year, we will only have 2 forwards returning and 4 guards plus any new recruits that are signed for the 2011 season (so far only 1).
That means UGA will be short in height and experience in 2011 season even if Fox is able to sign a large recruiting class for 2011. Since you can have 13 players on scholarship, it means Fox could sign up to 7 players for the 2011 class, however, it would seem likely to balance recruiting classes between 2011 and 2012, that he would sign no more than 4-5 for 2011 and 3-4 for 2012 but he must sign a couple of big center/PF’s to remain competitive in those years. Big job ahead, plenty of playing time available in 2011 so Fox should be able to recruit some good players who have to come in and play early, no red shirts at UGA for the next couple of years.

Floundering Fox Hounds Batman!

August 16th, 2010
7:44 am

Mark Fox need not recruit midgets like his counterpart Mark Richt. McGarity expects winners and producers which should bring UGA championships. Fox will be on edge to win big…..

Floundering Fox Hounds Batman!

August 16th, 2010
7:47 am

tc… Damon Evans didn’t make a mistake he made a unwise choice. Big Difference!

Floundering Fox Hounds Batman!

August 16th, 2010
7:48 am


August 16th, 2010
7:52 am

Why did the NCAA rule “that Georgia signee Cady Lalanne did not meet academic requirements for initial eligibility”? What exacly was the problem?


August 16th, 2010
8:11 am

The Gators are better than the Dawgs in just about all sports so it’s probanbly a real good idea that we hired one of theirs for the top athletic job at UGA

Tim Tucker

August 16th, 2010
9:27 am

Remarkable: When the NCAA Academic Center rules an athlete doesn’t meet initial eligibility requirements, the reason often is that a particular high school course is found not to count toward the NCAA-required number of core courses. Fox said the problem in this case was with a course, but said he probably shouldn’t be more specific.


August 16th, 2010
9:38 am

I’m just glad to see that one of the things Damon was doing well (supporting men’s hoops) will continue or get even stronger under McGarity. Speaking of support for the program, it doesn’t look like enough progress has been made at the Steg to have it completed for the first game. Are they still saying it is on schedule? Looking forward to Fox’s second season and the continued return of some quality hoops at UGA.

college is forever

August 16th, 2010
10:06 am

http::// There is no reason why Georgia should not have a respectable basketball program. We should be able to make the NCAA tourney most years and at least win a game or two. We are not expecting the sweet 16 or beyond every year but good grief we suck, real bad. But at least the UGA classic tin lunchbox does not suck. Check it out it really is cool. Available in 62 Krogers metro wide or at the website. 19 days till kickoff, Go Dawgs!!!


August 16th, 2010
10:34 am

“So what are Fox’s impressions of Evans’ successor, Greg McGarity?”

I didn’t even need to read anything past this. What else is Fox going to say about his brand new boss? I’d expect to see nothing other than some nice butt kissing about how qualified blah blah blah, and how his leadership shall let UGA atheletics blah blah blah. Am I the only Dawg not really moved by all of this AD stuff? I’m happy for McGarity that he is back at his alma mater, but I’ll reserve my comments for him after he’s been on the job a bit.

Destin dawg

August 16th, 2010
11:32 am

Tubby knows he should have stayed at UGA…


August 16th, 2010
11:48 am

Tim, Does Coach Fox expect Lalanne to enroll in Winter or is he out of the picture @ UGA?

Tim Tucker

August 16th, 2010
11:58 am

OntheRise: Lalanne is out of the picture at UGA.

Fast Eddie

August 16th, 2010
12:04 pm

It appears that McGarity learned at UF that you have to provide the right facilities, budget, and expectations for a new coach. UGA has the right facilities (although Stegman is somewhat of a downer for impressing potential recruits) and budget. High expectations may not have been communicated. Apparently, Foley provided everything to his program heads (coaches) and demanded excellence across the board. Personal friendships with coaches appeared not to be a factor in his high expectations. I believe McGarity will do the same.


August 16th, 2010
1:47 pm

Interesting story on the other channel about how the City Of Jville managers are saying that McGarity getting hired at UGA all but guarantees the game to stay there well into the future. So for that alone I am a big fan.

But no, RX you are not the only one that doesn’t think he is bringing any magic. I think it’s a great story. As far as a dream come true, can’t get any better than this for him, and as far as putting the Evans story into the deep freeze, I am impresed with how well our Admin handled the entire event. Couldn’t have really gone any better, given the situation (although I did predict just such a thing). And this was a very smart move for Adams politically. I think any number of cadidates would have been fine, but this hire has some goodwill as a bonus.

I think he is a fine choice, will continue the excellence in the AD, will be a fantastic spokesman for the University, but as far as his “expectations”, same as the guy before him. Unless he can shoot the 3 or pancake a LB or knockahomer, winning the ball games is still going to require the same today as last week.


August 16th, 2010
5:58 pm

Hi all, I believe this a good choice and even Adams could not have fumbled this one. The High School needs to fire the Advisers because they were asleep at the wheel on the guidance of the student. A highly publicized case that now gives the school a black. Over all good blogs but Floundering Fox or what ever handle you are using this week your second post was correct as this was a series of unwise choices. However, you first post exposes some deep problems maybe related to short person phobia or a least smacks of penis envy. Just saying.

Beast from the East

August 16th, 2010
6:11 pm

Should be excited about Fox in Dawgland. I was very impressed with the effort he got out of his team last year. I would expect they will compete with UF an UT for second place in the East most years. Let’s face it, UK is the team to beat until Calipari decides to bail for the NBA and leaves behind a slew of NCAA violations at Kentucky in his wake…..just like he’s done everywhere else he’s been!

Cheaters R Us

August 16th, 2010
7:42 pm

Fox? What happened to Jim Harrick? I really liked him.


August 16th, 2010
11:33 pm

Tim, Why can’t Lalanne be a junior college transfer next season? Thanks.


August 16th, 2010
11:48 pm

AFDawg: He committed to UMass