Richt: ‘I understand why everybody’s bent out of shape’

Mark Richt heard the pain of Georgia football fans on his radio call-in show Monday night and, near the end of the hour, said he understands it.

“I appreciate all the fans, even the ones that are really, really hurt and upset and mad, whatever it might be,” Richt said. “Georgia football is great because of the fans, and I understand that.  And I understand why everybody’s bent out of shape.

“I mean, we want our team to win. And when it’s not, everybody wants to know why and they want answers and sometimes they think they’ve got the answers and sometimes they just want to see us do a better job, period, and I understand that and I appreciate that.

“So to all the fans out there: I’m not happy. The boys aren’t happy. Our coaching staff isn’t happy right now. We’re not going to be until we start playing the kind of ball where we can win the games. . . . We’re going to keep banging away until that happens for us. I just hope everybody supports these guys through it all.”

With Georgia on a three-game losing streak for the first time in Richt’s decade as coach, several callers to the weekly show were particularly pointed in their questions and comments.  One caller said: “Coach, I’ve been watching Georgia football for 50 years, and I got to tell you, this program is out of control. Out of control off the field, out of control on the field.”  At that point, the caller’s line suddenly went dead. Another caller asked a two-part question, starting with Georgia’s in-state recruiting before adding, “And how about getting rid of Bobo?” Richt responded to the question about recruiting but ignored the one about offensive coordinator Mike Bobo.

Other callers expressed concerns about the Bulldogs’ tackling, the offensive-line play and tailback Washaun Ealey’s problem with fumbles. One caller called on the players to play harder.  “We do need to play harder,” Richt replied. “I think we’re playing hard, but are we playing as hard as we possibly can?”

Several callers offered support and encouragement to Richt. One said:  “I know you’re the right man for the job.” Another said: “Changing coaches is not the answer. . . .  We know you and the other coaches have not forgotten how to coach.”

One caller told Richt the Bulldogs are “in some uncharted waters” and asked: “As captain of the ship, what are your plans to get this ship back on course?”

“Right now what I’m going to do,” Richt replied, “is I’m going to keep working my tail off like the rest of this staff and these players. And we’re going to stay together, because I promise you if we don’t stick together we’ve got no chance whatsoever.

“We’re going to maintain a positive outlook no matter what happens around us, because that’s the only chance we’ve got to get back on track and get people feeling better about how things are going.”

484 comments Add your comment

DAWG CATCHER

September 28th, 2010
5:32 am

FIRST>>>DAWGS SUCK!!! Ya’ll think you are a top 10 program yet have finished there a couple times in the last 30 years? how many times has richt beat UF?

2-7 is just sad

September 28th, 2010
5:33 am

The boys always have our full support, the coaches not so much. Pay J. Green returning and a pretty favorable schedule make a few wins now very possible, so lets hold our water. Gotta say wasn’t a big fan of Murray, but he is a gamer, just don’t get him killed trying to make things happen. Coach Richt, take over play calling and let Bobo go back to QB coach where he belongs. Maybe I shouldn’t assume he belongs there either. Just saying. Coach Grantham, if your guys who have been playing football all their lives can’t figure out your system, or don’t fit in it, either give someone else a chance or go back to 4-3. It’s not freakin rocket science.

DAWG CATCHER

September 28th, 2010
5:33 am

yo uare number nationally in arrests though!!! !GOOOO DAWGGIES LOL

DAWG CATCHER

September 28th, 2010
5:36 am

YOU ARE NUMBER ONE NATIONALLY IN ARRESTS…BE PROUD

Douglas

September 28th, 2010
5:38 am

I like MR but he is clueless. Time to fire him and the whole staff — maybe keep Garner because he can recruit but that’s it.

how bout em

September 28th, 2010
5:39 am

whatever keep your heads high dawg fans i think richt deserves one rebuilding year. he’s been a great coach and will get the dawgs back on track. Besides, Richt is doing this on purpose…its all part of the master plan to beat florida haha. Like I always say, 1-11 season with a win against florida and i’m more than happy, so im not gettin upset till after halloween(not gettin my hopes too high either though)

Douglas

September 28th, 2010
5:39 am

I bet UT beats UGA too…wouldn’t that be ironic!

how bout em

September 28th, 2010
5:41 am

not gonna happen Douglas

JLowell

September 28th, 2010
5:46 am

I am mandating an across-the-board moratorium on barking on game day until we are back in at least the top 20 in the nation. I would say top 10, but I know that UGA fans have such an incredibly high tolerance for mediocrity, I’ve decided to not raise the bar to high. We are currently ranked 55 in the nation. Barking in public whether you are in Sanford Stadium, your living room or a sports bar is completely obnoxious and embarrassing for everyone. It will only tarnish the brand at this juncture…So please…Let’s all try to keep a cool head with this one and do what’s right for the organization. You can think about it….but don’t dare do it. So, once the Dawgs are ranked 20 or better, we can resume to the classic Dawg barking cheer and get on with our 29 year journey back to the National Championship. Thank you all for your understanding and compliance with this unpopular, yet responsible decision.

DAWGfanNAfghanistan

September 28th, 2010
5:46 am

Milk Toast, Rah Rah, no passion, win one for the Gipper talk aint going to get it done….. We are working our tails of. blah blah blah. Just win Baby. The road the %$@# is paved with good intentions. Never confuse actions and results. We aren’t getting the results and that should be what matters. I bet everyone listening to the show works their tails off at their job. The caller who said that the program is out of control is correct. applaud Richt for kicking arrest number 10 off the team but he would not come ot and say their was a zero tolerence policy. Are you kidding me? One kid, two kids arrested does not a pattern make… Ten kids and I believe 40 kids over the last several years..now that’s a disturbing pattern. We either are recruiting thugs or there is a lose of discipline and control. Or both.

Jim007

September 28th, 2010
5:53 am

Hope Richt understands the Bottom Line is:

1. He has lost Total Control of the Team

2. His coaches/ coaching is Very Questionable

3. He has recruited Many Thugs, thus the name Athens Correctional Facility.

4. He is a Hyprocrite with ” Multiple ” Team rules…..If Any !

how bout em

September 28th, 2010
5:54 am

JLowell…win or lose, im gonna be there every gameday barkin my head, im not a fairweather barker, id bark for the dawgs if they were 0-12, i love em and im gonna support em

how bout em

September 28th, 2010
5:54 am

barkin my head off*

Ray

September 28th, 2010
5:55 am

This ‘play harder’ racket is always the coach smoke for a weak system.

Richt runs this team as though it were an AAU basketball team – throw the kids out there and tell them to make something happen.

We need a system. We need players to do a job when they get out there.

When the players and the assistant coaches all underperform, it points to one guy.

jeff2u

September 28th, 2010
5:55 am

We’re sticking by y’all no matter what. For those “fair weather fans”, you’re not a fan, never was and who needs you. The door is wide open, Delta is ready when you are. GO DAWGS

DAWGfanNAfghanistan

September 28th, 2010
5:56 am

Milk toast, rah rah, working our tails off blah blah blah. Do you not think just about everyone in Georgia bust their tails at their job? How about paying hard earned money to see this product on the field? Imagine if we went to the boss who called us in and said you just aren’t producing and we said but…I am working my tail off? Think that would fly? The road to %$#@ is paved with good intentions. Don’t confuse work and results. Maybe Richt and staff are working on the wrong things? The caller who suggested the program was out of control was right. No discipline off the field translates to no discipline on the field. 10 arrests this year and something like 40 in the past several? How can any other conclusion be made than a loss of contriol? The five most frequently heard words in Athens are now- “May the defendant please rise.”

Student First-Football Second

September 28th, 2010
6:02 am

Please! Let’s not forget that these young men on the football field are not just at UGA to play ball. They are students first and foremost. So we may lose a few football games. It isn’t the end of the world! We are only invited guests because college football is for our entertainment. These players are students and must also focus on attending classes. Has anyone considered their games may be off because of concerns with their education? Everyone needs to take a breath and give these kids a break. I would rather them lose a football game than jeopardize their educational goals.

Sweat Socks

September 28th, 2010
6:04 am

@ JLowell:

What if we get an uncontrollable urge to bark? I mean, TRULY uncontrollable. I mean, just the thought of Colorado pulling a ‘blackout’ on US (!) makes me want to drop a “Goooooooo Dawgs! Sic ‘em!!! Woo–BUT I’ll refrain.

I mean it makes me want to drop it right now, at 6AM!!!

Do you realize what you’re asking?

My neighbors will appreciate it–but do you know what you’re asking us to do!?!

doggletinthecountry

September 28th, 2010
6:05 am

I think Richt is sincere, but how do you coach a bunch of thuggs? More w–ite women and side money? He has gotten himself into a mess—although, I think Florida hides their problems off the field and probably does not talk to the press about alot of it because I know it goes on there. Again, you have to establish the running game in the SEC and for some strange reason Georgia will not embrace a strong running attack. And as we all know without a strong defense in the SEC you are toast. Good luck to the Bulldog Nation and maybe the ball will bounce in a different direction soon. Sometimes God puts us in these places to see what we are made of——–do you have the will to win?

DAWGfanNAfghanistan

September 28th, 2010
6:05 am

Student – If a kids getting arrested I can almost bet he isn’t setting the world on fire with his grades or committment to education… Comment had to made in jest.

Spike

September 28th, 2010
6:07 am

Yes, it’s bad, but keep the faith.

www.firemarkricht.net

September 28th, 2010
6:07 am

http://www.firemarkricht.net

Thank you for your understanding.

17 of 20

September 28th, 2010
6:10 am

I still say coach Richt should open an Arthur Murray dance studio. That guy can dance.

Sweat Socks

September 28th, 2010
6:13 am

@ JLowell:

Sorry, man. I couldn’t not bark. I even woke up my neighbors. But it’s cool–they’re Gator fans.

Little does he know, but late last night someone replaced his Gator flag with a rainbow flag. Kids…

Joe B.

September 28th, 2010
6:14 am

It does not matter how hard one works if he is WORKING ON THE WRONG THINGS.

saban

September 28th, 2010
6:16 am

Hey you folks still have a number of beatdowns this year.

Enjoy the ride. Million dollar coaches, red panties, and a full Clarke County Jail.

Quite the program you ladies have there.

Loganville Dawg

September 28th, 2010
6:17 am

Spike, you are right if we can somehow suck it up and stick it out. Let the coaching changes take place at the end of the season, after some real hard searching for the right coach and coaches, HC or otherwise. The selection process is much more important than knee-jerk reactions to a really bad situation. Then there is always player recruiting to deal with.

saban

September 28th, 2010
6:17 am

Did I mention that Florida is playing their b team to keep the score close and Idaho State is favored by seven.

Inlet Dawg

September 28th, 2010
6:18 am

Richt is not getting one thing,it is not that they need to work harder is they got to work smarter.
I don’t care how hard you work when you keep trying to run the ball up the gut with a running back that is built like a 5th grader shows me you don’t understand the game as a whole.

Jacques Strap

September 28th, 2010
6:27 am

Man, you guys sure get up early for this.

If the team had this much enthusiasm, we’d definitely win a NC!

VA DAWG

September 28th, 2010
6:36 am

Mark Richt will right the ship…..at least I hope so. Its nice to see a lot of these people who’ve road the bandwagon are bailing. True Dawg fans support the team through adversity. The defense is keeping us in games, if we can just get a lead the playbook will open up and the players won’t play timid or afraid of making a mistake. The offense’s point production has really limited the defense’s room for error and allowed the opposing team to keep the pressure on us and offensive playbook wide open. WM defense cost us games, so far Grantham’s has kept it close. GO DAWGS!

Jacques Strap

September 28th, 2010
6:36 am

HEY DAWG CATCHER,

Your name smacks of lack of inspiration and perspiration…and thought. Don’t make me muzzle you–with mine.

In Shock

September 28th, 2010
6:39 am

While it is hard to believe we are where we are, I still think CMR should be given another year to turn it around. No doubt he took an overseer position and it has burned him. That said, how many of us hold ourselves to the same standard we are holding him to. While I hope he can right the wrong I don’t see how. Alabama has a good qb, two stud backs, and an all american wideout. We have a red shirt freshmen qb, two average backs, and our all american hasn’t seen the field. Face it, we don’t have the tallent and that is on CMR. I would rather give him another year less we forget Goff and Donahann.

Jacques Strap

September 28th, 2010
6:48 am

In Shock,

First of all, thank you for writing “right the wrong” rather than “right the ship,” as the analogy was getting old.

That being said, no one has forgotten Donnan and Goff. But do you realize that we’re right back to Ray Goff. And we’ll be lucky to get back to Jim Donnan!

mark twain

September 28th, 2010
6:50 am

LET ME DOCK MY RIVERBOAT SO I CAN VENT, NOW LETS BE HONEST, YES WE LOVE TO WIN, BUT I THINK THE BIGGEST PROBLEM OVERALL IS THE GUYS APPEAR TO HAVE NO DESIRE TO ACHIEVE ANYTHING, SO WHERE DOES THAT COME FROM, I THINK WE ALL KNOW. WHEN tech HAS A FEW MORE LOSES THEY WILL BE CALLING FOR PJS HEAD ALSO.

SickandTired

September 28th, 2010
6:51 am

The end is inevitable. The only question is when. McGarity needs to understand that Georgia is still Georgia. This fan base while irrational in it’s expectations is equally venomous when it comes to turning on a coach. I know of no example where a coach has lost the faith of his fan base in the SEC and recovered to lead his troops to greatness. He’s done, Kaput, finis, stick a fork in him. The Emporer has no clothes and he’s flailing about trying to grab a life preserver and the great Georgia fans as always are throwing concrete blocks at his head when he bobs up.
Georgia: The Purdue of the SEC (has dropped from Wisconsin)
Georgia deserves better.

ben

September 28th, 2010
6:52 am

dawg catcher is a great big dummy…..and she lives in her mom’s basement

Lowcountry Bulldawg

September 28th, 2010
6:52 am

What did some of you really expect him to say? This is Richt being being the moderate, calm figure he has been for 10 years. Not to high when things are great, not to bad while at its low. I think the Program needs a new voice, but Richt does deserve the chance to right the ship.

Buckeye

September 28th, 2010
6:52 am

I’ve always thought barking was one of the more intelligent things coming out of your collective mouths……

GT HIGH SCHOOL

September 28th, 2010
6:59 am

BOBLOW sucks but if you are a fan be a true one good times and bad.

In Shock

September 28th, 2010
7:00 am

Jacques Strap, It’s hard not to agree, but I know the man hasn’t forgotten how to coach. I don’t know all the X’s and O’s but it’s apparent we don’t have the players. Like I said it isn’t going to be easy but I think CMR should be given the benefit of the doubt.
Just two years ago we scored 35 to 45 points a game. Staff and Kno (good players) can make any cordinator look good is my point.

dawgfan

September 28th, 2010
7:03 am

More motivational psychobabble and very few specifics on what his plans are for turning things around. We don’t need a great heart tugging speech coach. We need a freaking plan. Its becoming more and more apparent that he doesn’t have one. I think he’s simply run out of ideas. We’re in deep crap.

GaGator

September 28th, 2010
7:07 am

Here’s the bottom line, Florida lost 11 players last year to the NFL that were better than any player Georgia has, except Pay J Green. If you have noticed the Gators are playing at a much higher level than the dawgs. What’s the difference, COACHING! Richt is a fine man but he has no fire, he sounds more like a preacher than a football coach.

I assure if he is fired, he will never be a head coach again and lucky if someone hires him to be a QB coach and Bobo, come on, who would hire that clown?

Suches Dawg

September 28th, 2010
7:09 am

If CMR were the CEO of a publically held corporation , he would do the following at this point :
1)Meet with the Chairman of the Board (McGarity) and committ to 3 wins in the next 4 games.
2)If this doesn’t happen, CMR would agree to submit his resignation to the AD at that time for consideration. McGarity would either accept his resignation after 8 games or wait until the end of the year to reconsider.

Promises, promises… we have to respect ball security; cut down on penalties; cut out off field arrests; play smarter, etc. CMR is a good man with integrity whom I have been proud of to lead our team for 10 years. Unfortinately he has lost control of the team and appears lost when trying to evaluate talent and (lack of) coaching. If we do change coaches and get nothing but dedicated , disciplined young men who put the team ahead of me and don’t embarrass themselves or their school, we will have have earned a measure of respect and we can go from there.

Jacques Strap

September 28th, 2010
7:13 am

BUCKEYE,

Get a real schedule. You guys are the most-hyped, overrated pack of “football players” in the history of the game.

Instead of red and grey, I think Girl Scout Green fits you better–like a snug sweater vest.

I’ll take a box of cookies while you’re at it, sweetheart…

Tony L. Davis

September 28th, 2010
7:17 am

Funny how all you Dawg fans make up all those excuses for your slightly above average coach. Yall say we don’t have the talent that other SEC teams have. HUM BUG! Year after year UGA is blessed with a top tier recruitment class. What happens to all of this talent? Year after year they fall below expectations and never can win a big SEC game. Face it Dawg fans yall are stuck at being mediocre and will always be as long as you continue to hire mediocre coaches. Ray Goff was bad, Mark Ricth is mediocre. Good coaching starts with discipline. He can’t control his players on or off the field. On the field, they are the most penalized team in the SEC, off the field they have the most arrests of any team in the SEC. Nobody cares what his overall record is. Ask him what his record is against opponents ranked first to 15. However, what are your options? There’s slim pickings out there when it comes to finding a coach that can win in the SEC.

AltamahaDawg

September 28th, 2010
7:18 am

Exactly what sort of specific plans did you want him to chalkboard on a damn call-in show. Plus when fans ask broad sweeping questions that they should know don’t have a short and precise answer, what did you expect to hear?

“Uh coach can you address the line play of both the offensive and defensive units as well as the RB, and perhaps the WRs too. I’ll hang up and listen you your answer, and please have a specific plan for those areas that you can discuss in 90 seconds”

Seriously “and how about get rid of Bobo”. Yea fan, brilliant question there! I’m sure he’s going to jump all over that on the radio.

BOBBY CATHEY

September 28th, 2010
7:18 am

what! a year! sure would be nice to win a few i thoght after last year no way can it get worse but there it is

Munson's Toupee

September 28th, 2010
7:21 am

What Would Damon Do?

Texas Dawg

September 28th, 2010
7:27 am

“Bent out of shape” sums up Richt!!!! We are not “Bent out of shape” we are madder than hell! Disgusted by the lack of emotion by the coached and the players! The DC acted fired up game one but I what has happened since……someone shut him down. Bobo must GOGO!