Richt: Important Dogs ‘focus on daily process’ now that they lead East

Here’s a somewhat raw transcription of Sunday night’s media teleconference call with Georgia coach Mark Richt:

How does it feel to control your own destiny and how excited is the team?

“Well I haven’t talked to the players yet. This is their day off. I didn’t really get a lot of text messages or anything like that from the guys. But I know they understand what’s at stake and the fact that we are in a better position now. We do control our own destiny. We’ve been fighting like mad for that ever since the moment South Carolina beat us. But the thing that’s gotten us this far on a weekly basis is just trying to take care of business. Again, that’s got to be our focus, for every man to do their job, starting tomorrow and not waiting until Saturday. Everybody’s got a job to do, scout teamers and special teamers and coaches. So we’ve got to focus on that and just focus on the process and we feel like good things will happen if we do.”

Where he watched the game and what was the scene when Arkansas won:

“My wife and I were just kind of sitting side-by-side on the couch. It was just us. I think we both were kind of tired. We were awake and we were interested and we were excited, no doubt. But we didn’t jump up and dance or anything like that. But we were happy no doubt

Watch any of Alabama-LSU?

“When there was a commercial break I was checking it out. Then when the [Arkansas-South Carolina] game was over, I finished up watching that game.”

What happens with the return of tailbacks Isaiah Crowell, Ken Malcome and Carlton Thomas?

“I think they’ll be very thankful to play. All last week — and y’all saw just a taste of it — they did a lot of extra work. They did some extra work early in the morning, they did a lot of extra work during practice and they were pulling the sleds and sprinting and lifting more weights this past week. Maybe in some sense they’ll be in better condition and be even more ready to play because they missed an opportunity. I don’t think they’ll take anything for granted. I think they’ll be hungry to prove to everybody — well, maybe not prove anything — but maybe try to make up for what they’ve done by trying to play hard this week. I hope that will be the case.

Will Crowell return to starter?

“We haven’t thought about it. If Richard [Samuel] was not injured it certainly would have been a good competition. Right now I would have to say everything’s a little competitive, but I’d say the first snap we take Isaiah would be the No. 1 tailback. In practice I’m saying.”

More playing time for Harton?

“We liked what he did. There’s no doubt about that. We would definitely, with Richard out, I’m not going to say with certainty he would be at worst the No. 3 back but he’ll certainly be battling for that spot if not a No. 2 guy. We’re just going to have to play it out this week in practice real hard and see who we think is best suited to play. We also used our Brandons and they both had big plays, which was great. I’m sure we’ll have a way to get the ball to those guys again, too.”

Auburn-Georgia not only an old rivalry but a fierce one. Any concerns of spill-over from last year’s game?

“A lot of people have been asking me about that and I guess I just have a short memory. I don’t think about those things much. I’m just so focused on this season and what’s important right now, I haven’t even thought about last year and what might have happened. I think one thing that may have helped us a lot this year is we’ve had very few issues with personal fouls. We just haven’t had much extracurricular stuff after snaps or kicks. The Vanderbilt game certainly was an exception to that, but other than that we’ve had very, very few personal foul penalties. As I watched our guys recently, this game and the Florida game, in particular, we had none of that. That was a point of emphasis. We wanted to be very disciplined in that way. We want to play as physical as we can during the snap but, when it’s over, get off the field or get back to the huddle. That’s what we want to continue to do. We don’t want anything to take our focus off the game or do anything that could hurt us as far as penalties or worse like an ejection or something like that. We don’t want anything like that.”

What’s up with WR Israel Troupe?

“I think the lack of playing time and balls coming to him has been a combination of injuries and the competition level. I think the young guys have come in and really competed well. I think that Israel’s injuries here and there, whether it’s missing practice time or not being 100 percent for games and stuff like that, has certainly hurt him. I just hope he’ll continue to practice hard and, if he’s called upon, he’ll make something big happen. He certainly helped us in a game or two. Last time we were at home against Auburn, A.J. got hurt and he made a big play. So he’s had his moments and hopefully he’ll have another one or two before it’s over.”

Do you think Malcolm Mitchell will be able to play against Auburn?

“We do, we do. [Monday] is a very light practice. I think he’ll be practicing at the tempo we go with tomorrow. We don’t really go break-neck speed. Tuesday will be more of competition day. We’ll have our two-on-two drill where he pulled a muscle last time and we’ll have one-on-one routes and 11-on-11 stuff. We may or may not let him go in those. We probably on Tuesday, I’m just guessing, have him just do the scout-team work, which is competitive but not nearly as full speed as one on one. The tempo will be just a little less and it will be safer for him. Wednesday we’ll see how he’s doing and we may let him go full speed by then and let him compete in some 11-on-11 and some one-on-ones.

Championships always seem to go through Auburn or Georgia

“There’s no doubt it’s because of where it’s placed on the schedule. Usually you have to win in November to get into a championship game or to win a championship. I know, historically, listening to people who know a lot about the series, how many times Georgia didn’t make it because of Auburn and how many times Auburn didn’t make it because of Georgia. So there’s a spoiler element to this series over the years.”

Impressions of Auburn RB Michael Dyer:

“You know what, I’m very impressed with him. I really am. He’s very strong, his lower body strength is different than most guys. A lot of guys you hit them low and he’s going down. He breaks tackles just out of sheer power of the legs that he’s got. He’s more elusive than I think some people want to give him credit for and he’s got more speed than most want to give him credit for. He’s one of the best backs if not the best back in the league right now. I think a year ago as a freshman a lot of people thought he was benefiting from having Cam [Newton] back there in the backfield because that’s where the focal point was. But he’s been the focal point this year and he’s been producing in a big way. I’ve been very impressed with him.”

How’s offensive line playing?

“It really was a clean day in the pocket for [Murray against New Mexico State]. Our line created a lot of space for Aaron. There were no issues with the protection. There was one time where we had a quick-game protection and our back kind of got knocked into his lap a little bit. He certainly had to feel that, but it certainly didn’t affect his throw. . . . The line did a really good job, the number one line. I tell you what, the second-team lime in the second half did a very good job. I think we had one sack in the second half.”

What was the strategy on special teams.

“We were trying to mentally erase anything that had happened, especially anything negative. We wanted to go back to fundamentals and being aggressive with what we want to do. For me personally, I think it was about just allowing our teams to just go play ball, whether it was kicking it deep or whatever we do on our punt return or whatever. I didn’t want to to call the game any different because of anything we’d done this year. I wanted to call the game as if it was the first game of the year and see what we’ve got and try to build momentum for the future. Because we knew we had to improve. I think we took a step in the right direction both fundamentally and I think we changed some things around a bit that’s going to help us, too.”

On Missouri joining the conference:

“I think it’s great. I think it’s great because I have an awful lot of faith in our leadership in this league to make the best decisions for our league. So I’m all for it.

Will it be strange having Missouri in East?

“I think it makes the most since because we’ve already got 12 teams and 6 traditional rivalry games. If you start taking one from the West to the East or the from the 12, then all of the sudden everything gets blown up. so it probably made the most sense for scheduling and for traditional rivalries not to get messed with. I thin it makes good sense. Nowadays the travel is not going to be that big of a deal.

“Up until about a year ago, we’d bus to Atlanta and fly out of Atlanta. Nowadays  we can probably get to Missouri quicker than we could get to Nashville going through Atlanta and through security and all that stuff. Travels pretty quick and it won’t be that big of a burden at all.”

– Chip Towers

275 comments Add your comment

maddawg 913

November 6th, 2011
8:11 pm

I think Conley and McGowan both deserve more time too.

maddawg 913

November 6th, 2011
8:13 pm

Those 2 backs looked great…I hope it wasn’t just due to the competition.

A person SMART enough to know......

November 6th, 2011
8:13 pm

Vegas

November 6th, 2011
8:14 pm

has the dawgs favored by 12.5pts…..??? WHAT!!!! somebody please double check that..

DougsMugsCoffeeDOTcom

November 6th, 2011
8:15 pm

I wish we had added FSU or Miami instead of Missouri.

We should put them in the west and move Auburn or Alabama into our league. Maybe move both and move Vandy into the West. :-)

A person SMART enough to know......

November 6th, 2011
8:18 pm

maddawg 913 of course it was because of the competition. You don’t think so you must be drinking on Sunday night.

Classof92

November 6th, 2011
8:18 pm

Take care of business boys and we will battle in the Atl. God Bless CMR – real Dawgs believe in you and are glad your are our leader.

DougsMugsCoffeeDOTcom

November 6th, 2011
8:21 pm

Even as a Dawg, I am a TEBOW fan. I hope he continues to prove his critics wrong. Go Tebow! Go Broncos!

45ACP

November 6th, 2011
8:24 pm

Good info Chip. I like hearing what CMR has to say and GO DAWGS!!!

Still@theKool-aidBAR

November 6th, 2011
8:33 pm

Richt was just at home with the wife watching the games! Interesting. I thought maybe some of the players and coaches might be watching together.

maddawg 913

November 6th, 2011
8:40 pm

smart enough.

I am drinking on a Sunday night and I know some of it was competition. I have no visions of them doing that against an SEC team but I’m thinking they could at least provide some spark at times in the game. I thought Kempolaris showed nice field vision and Harton looked a lot like C Thomas.

suwaneedawg

November 6th, 2011
8:49 pm

Wow, who woud have thunk that we would be in this position after the SC game? Boy, that Richt is a terrible coach. Now all you haters can sh*t out your comments all week. And that is about what they are, sh*t.

maddawg 913

November 6th, 2011
8:49 pm

smart enough,
If you think Tebow will stay healthy running like that in the NFL your drinking more than me.

mike addington

November 6th, 2011
8:49 pm

Crowell is a girl

jaglaw

November 6th, 2011
8:50 pm

I was at home with my wife too…..but we weren’t watching tv. Haha.

More of the same

November 6th, 2011
8:52 pm

The usual meaningless bullcrap babble from Richt.

He’s already puckered up thinking about how being destroyed by Auburn may cost him his $10,000 a day job.

BlabbyDawg

November 6th, 2011
8:56 pm

Any team led by Richt will have big discipline issues. Mrsec.com has counted 80 miscues so far, so plenty for Richt to work on and correct, no that he will, just plenty of areas to improve from penalties, interceptions, a whole lot of self inflicted woulnds under a Richt led team, as we’ve all come to expect.

teewest

November 6th, 2011
8:56 pm

Hey Chip did you see Malcom Mitchell part 2? The kid from MLK!!! Mitchell, Conley, Blake Tibbs. What a future!!!

Fridawg

November 6th, 2011
8:56 pm

With Mizzou in the East we avoid playing Bama next year. Looks like 2012 could be a memorable season!

BlabbyDawg

November 6th, 2011
8:59 pm

I think mrsec includes areas like:
1) missed field goals
2) sacks allowed
3) penalties
4) big plays given up

Richt’s team has given up 80 self inflicted mistakes in just 9 games in 2011. Amazing the team has won a game.

http://mrsec.com/2011/11/mrsecs-fife-rankings-11111/

Gender Studies

November 6th, 2011
8:59 pm

@mike addington: “Crowell is a girl.”

What gave it away for you? :-)

Eric C.

November 6th, 2011
9:01 pm

Think about the RB situation this year…Ealey and King gone before season, 4 backs out this past week, so it’s pretty impressive that the Dawgs still put up 49 pts in one half…the most ever in UGA history.

Bank on IT

November 6th, 2011
9:05 pm

WOW! Mark Richt is now in the Nick Saban” Process” School.

The ultimate compliment is when a Head Coach mimmicks anothers words.

Process Process Process…now if CMR can learn to coach like Saban we may have a winner.

bart

November 6th, 2011
9:08 pm

I’m thrilled with our situation. We now have to take care of business against Auburn, the best team we’ve faced since South Carolina. Even though we have won 7 in a row, we have not beaten anybody good, so the Auburn game will be a real test. I’m nervous about it. Go Dawgs!

Bank on IT

November 6th, 2011
9:10 pm

Nothing is impressive about beating N. Mexico St. Sorry, but a bottome feeder in BCS they have a hard time beating a FCS team. Impressive the team stayed together

Eric C.

November 6th, 2011
9:14 pm

Bank on IT, NMST is harldy the worst team to every play in Athens. And 42 pts in one quarter IS impressive against any FBS team…especially when your top 4 RBs are out.

Summit Dawg

November 6th, 2011
9:15 pm

Was it just me or did BooBoo actually change his offensive strategy to compliment the new young backs?????? If so, he needs to continue doing so!!!!

Hit A Single

November 6th, 2011
9:29 pm

Give credit where credit is due. Bobo called a great game yesterday. I personally thought Ala and LSU OCs did a poor job. Pressure got to them. I agree that both defenses were great, but why did Ala. keep trying to run between the tackles. I would have like to have seen the toss to Richardson or passes out in space for him. But they know alot more than I do. It is hard to argue with their success.

hop

November 6th, 2011
9:29 pm

Dawgs are on a roll! what is so special about this team is the depth throughout the team!

The team continues to insert capable players to replace ones who cannot play.

That is a huge plus that we have not had in the past.

This team is developing into one that could be awesome in the future.

DAWGS have a great team that will continue to be a top tier one

and competing for championships in upcoming years.

Bank on IT

November 6th, 2011
9:29 pm

Just to Clarify…

New Mexico St. is ranked by Sagarin at 126- 5 spots below Harvard.

JB

November 6th, 2011
9:31 pm

Richt says ” I haven’t really thought about the Auburn game from last year. Maybe I have a short memory”…………………Maybe Richt is lying, not very Christian like, or maybe that’s what’s wrong with this team………….And you can talk about 7 in a row blah blah blah, but we ain’t beat nobody. Auburn and Tech will present challenges. Maybe if Tech stays ranked and we beat them, it’ll get that monkey off his back going back to 2009. We all pulling for him and the team.

Studmuffin

November 6th, 2011
9:34 pm

I know everyone wants to focus on the SEC championship (me included)! But I hate Auburn now more than ever because of the incredibly DIRTY way they played last year. I implore our team to remember and kick in their teeth. Please!

Larry Ware

November 6th, 2011
9:34 pm

Thanks to the rebirth of the UGA defense under Todd Grantham we are starting another era like 2002-2005 in which we are favored to win the east each season…..just beat Auburn.

JB

November 6th, 2011
9:35 pm

Dawgs on a roll………………..Bobo called a great game yesterday……………….Please, I love the Dawgs, but don’t get carried away. Buford high could of beat that New Mexico team Saturday. Really, they could of. If Richt was a SOB, he could of hung 100 on them. I’ll feel better when we beat a good football team.

Brewmaster

November 6th, 2011
9:44 pm

BlabbyDawg = Marcus = Moron

Viking fan

November 6th, 2011
9:47 pm

Yes just beat Auburn!!!!!!!

Brewmaster

November 6th, 2011
9:49 pm

Hey Blabbydawg Marcus-Moron, why don’t you enlighten us with one of your Hutson Mason should be starting rants ?

Even

November 6th, 2011
9:53 pm

Eric come on –that team could not have beaten MLK or Stephenson

Buckhead Bulldog

November 6th, 2011
9:57 pm

BCS:

Dogs 15
UsC 12
Hogs 8
Tide 3
AU 20

Bill Stanfill

November 6th, 2011
10:01 pm

Missouri will join the East division. This is fitting: the stronger academic universities are clearly in the East. Vanderbilt, UGA, Florida have much higher admission and academic standards than schools like Miss. State and Auburn and the other West schools. No way the presidents of the East universities let somebody like Auburn move to the East.

On our way back to the dome

November 6th, 2011
10:02 pm

I hope Isaiah Crowell has a big game against Auburn & we put it on them in the second half like they did to us last year. We also need our d line to step up big with their rbs playing well this year. I was ay the Auburn Clemson game & they def do have lots of speed in the backfield for us to worry about. I expect a big game out of Malcolm if he’s 100% also. Go Dawgs

Weak Side--the East

November 6th, 2011
10:06 pm

Prediction– UGA and USC both lose this weekend. Makes the Kentucky game all that more improtant. Dawgs back into the SECCG– and lose.

Doobie Brothers

November 6th, 2011
10:07 pm

You ain’t ask Richt if Crowell smoked some weed over the weekend ?
You ain’t ask him if Blair Walsh can kick straight ?
You ain’t ask him if offensive & defensive starters will be on special teams ?
You ain’t ask him why Beamer can coach special teams but he seem to can’t ?

Eric C.

November 6th, 2011
10:12 pm

Bank On It and Even, lol…NMST beat Minnesota at Minnesota just a week before MN nearly beat USC. That must count for something??? :-)

Eric C.

November 6th, 2011
10:14 pm

Weak Side–the East, maybe so, but I’ll take Missouri over Texas A&M any day! ha

GA DAWG

November 6th, 2011
10:15 pm

Yeah, Kentucky and South Carolina are really strong academic powers?? IF you look at admission SAT/ACT standards etc…it goes like this now…Vandy,Texas AM, UF, UGA, Missoui, AU, UT, Bama, South Carolina, Arkansas,Kentucky, Miss St, Ole Miss, LSu….

Generally Stronger academic schools in the East but AU has much higher standards than we dawgs fans say with a average ACT of 27 in this freshman class…I know this because my daughter is going there next year…Kids in the ATL that can’t get into UGA,GT,AU now go to Bama and Ole Miss……….GO Dawgs…..

Still@theKool-aidBAR

November 6th, 2011
10:16 pm

Eric C. it means Minnesota was looking forward to USC maybe.

ole dawg

November 6th, 2011
10:16 pm

Still… just because you wife will not spend any time with you on Saturday night does not mean everybody is in your boat!

AltamahaDawg

November 6th, 2011
10:16 pm

aside from misquoting that, how is that “what’s wrong with this team” JB?

Eric C.

November 6th, 2011
10:21 pm

Still@theKool-aidBar, actually…I had that backwards, NMST beat MN “after” MN nearly beat USC at USC, so it was probably the hangover effect.