Georgia’s Mark Richt refuses to look into future; focusing solely on Georgia Tech

By RYAN BLACK
For the AJC

ATHENS — In case there were any questions, Mark Richt is focused on Georgia Tech.

Period.

Multiple times during his teleconference with the media Sunday, the Georgia coach was asked about what Saturday’s events — top-ranked Kansas State and No. 2 Oregon both losing — meant to his team. With the losses by the top pair, it is assumed that if the No. 3 Bulldogs can win out, they will clinch a spot in the BCS National Championship game on Jan. 7 in Miami.

Richt didn’t want to hear any of it.

“Right this minute, all I can think about is Georgia Tech,” he said. “Does anybody want to talk about Georgia Tech?”

Avoiding distractions this week shouldn’t be a problem, Richt said. His team is well aware of what the Tech game means for the program. Richt went on to list the various stakes riding on Saturday’s outcome, such as the Governor’s Cup, which goes to the game’s victor. Another benefit is being able to use a win for recruiting leverage over the state’s top prospects. And plain, old-fashioned bragging rights are on the line, too.

But Richt felt it was most important to win for Georgia’s seniors, who will be playing their last game between Sanford Stadium’s hedges.

“The winning team gets a trophy and I know our guys would love to have that,” he said. “I know as a head coach, I’d love to have one myself, because it has all the names of our seniors on it. It’s something we take a lot of pride in and I know Georgia Tech does as well.”

One aspect of the Yellow Jackets’ offense that has become more worrisome to Richt compared to previous years is the improvement he’s seen in their passing game. Every time Richt has watched or read about Georgia Tech this season, the uptick in its aerial proficiency seems apparent.

“I usually try to see how they did every week throughout the year and you hear that they’re throwing touchdown passes and that type of thing,” he said. “They’ve always had a tremendously high yards-per-completion coming into this game and it (seems) they’re throwing it a little bit more and better than they have the past couple of years. So that’s just one more thing to deal with.”

Georgia has an advantage of spending more time fine-tuning its game plan with school out for the Thanksgiving holiday. That means the NCAA’s 20-hour practice limit will not be in effect. The Bulldogs could practice as long as they want or stay in the film room all day.

Neither scenario is likely, of course. Richt cautioned “more isn’t always better.”

“We’ll at least not have to worry about counting every minute and if a player like (quarterback Aaron) Murray or whoever wants to spend a little more time with Coach (Mike) Bobo watching film, that’s not a problem,” he said. “That’s going to be real helpful.”

Etc.

After Tennessee fired coach Derek Dooley Sunday, Richt expressed sympathy for Dooley, given his relationship with Vince and Barbara Dooley, Derek’s parents. Though Richt said the dismissal was “part of the business,” he believed Dooley wouldn’t be out of a job for long. “He’s a highly intelligent person and a tremendous coach and I know he’s going to land on his feet and have something great happen in the future.” . . .  Richt was informed the Bulldogs received one first-place vote in the USA Today Coaches Poll. He said he didn’t cast the vote. “I guess somebody thought we were No. 1, so I guess that’s good,” he said. “But right this minute, it’s not all that important.” . . . There were no major injuries reported following Saturday’s 45-14 victory over Georgia Southern. “Usually if it was something big, I’d know about it by now,” Richt said. “So I doubt there will be anything that will show up before (Saturday’s) game.”

124 comments Add your comment

Greg

November 18th, 2012
11:08 pm

Good for UGA and Bama having a couple of bye weeks before the SEC title game.

Athensdawg

November 18th, 2012
11:13 pm

Great attitude if we do not take care of business against GT then the SEC championship game will mean little.

L.A. BULLDAWG

November 18th, 2012
11:24 pm

GO ‘DAWGS! BRING ON TECH!

Joe

November 18th, 2012
11:25 pm

Put in Timeout by Ken Suguira,Filtered by Mark Bradley, Banned once by Bill King & Chip Towers but only slightly loved by Jeff Schultz.

November 18th, 2012
11:46 pm

Maybe he should WORRY about somebody calling McGarity about talking to BOBO for an open SEC head Coaching Job……Hahaha right like anybody wants BOBO.

DSGB

November 18th, 2012
11:48 pm

State championship this week! Red and black vs triple floption. hunker down you dirty dogs!

Win baby

November 18th, 2012
11:51 pm

Georgia is SOFT, I repeat Soft!

now that i have said that. Go Dawgs!

manateedawg

November 19th, 2012
2:03 am

Put in Timeout…. you must really have a miserable life to spend it trolling all the UGA articles to spew hate and make an a$$ of yourself. What a sad little man you must have… err, must be! I bet your wife hates you, your kids disowned you and that rat of a dog just pi$$e$ on your leg…. so you come on here just to spread your love. Sad indeed…..

Jimmy

November 19th, 2012
4:22 am

manateedawg,

You just gave ‘Put in Timeout’ waaaaaaaay too much credit. Wife? You think that Tech loving sweet boy has a wife??? Buahahahahahahaha. More like a “life partner.” Not that there’s anything wrong w/ that of course. Buahahahahahahaha.

OLD JUNKYARD DAWG

November 19th, 2012
5:12 am

HUNER DOWN YOU HAIRY DAWGS, AND GET SOooooooooEM!

BobDawg

November 19th, 2012
6:19 am

Glad CMR is focused on Tech…. That’s all that matters this week….

FB

November 19th, 2012
6:35 am

I think it would be very easy to lose focus. I hope CMR can communicate this to his team. It helps having a Senior Safety that wants to win his last game between the hedges!

The Other Lake Dog

November 19th, 2012
6:52 am

I still think it’s amazing that we’re 10-1, given that our headcoach is washed up, our OC is incompetent, and our QB is not any good. Imagine how good we would be if only one of these experts on this blog were the coach.

Voyager Dawg

November 19th, 2012
7:04 am

Right now it’s a two game season. Leave it all on the field boys because these types of opportunities are few and far between. GATA every second and beat Tech. Go Dawgs!

Jeff Schultz I am a blogger not a journalist

November 19th, 2012
7:14 am

No Black OUT, GATA Every Play, Every DAY,

DawgPound

November 19th, 2012
7:15 am

I think we should be favored against Bama. Bring on the Tide!! Tech outcome will be similar to Ga. Southern. Let’s focus on the real game.

Neutral

November 19th, 2012
7:22 am

@the other lake dog
You forgot to mention CTG and the water boys. Let’s get rid of all of them and hire an unproven college head coach!!!! Oh yeah……and bench Murray!!!
Dang it’s fun to act like a know-it-all idiot for a few minutes!!! Go DAWGS!!!

te29wr

November 19th, 2012
7:26 am

The other lake dog

I could not have said it better We need to get rid of all who know nothing and talk alot about what they know

Destin Dawg

November 19th, 2012
7:28 am

#1 and #2 got upset last weekend….. that’s the only reason we’re having all this National Champ talk… so Richt is focused on GT… that’s great… it is never easy in rivalery games… Go dawgs !!!

Buckeye

November 19th, 2012
7:40 am

Since 2008, the Bulldogs are 6-15 against teams that were ranked at the time of the game.

IMPRESSIVE!

Buckeye

November 19th, 2012
7:41 am

The SEC! SEC! November scheduling is a fraud.

Dawg Fred

November 19th, 2012
7:44 am

I wish my Dawgs and other SEC school would play more of the west coast teams. Jump out of the SEC and play other top programs!

Buckeye

November 19th, 2012
7:45 am

Top Row Dawg

November 19th, 2012
7:48 am

The best part of this season will be finishing ranked in front of Ohio State and denying them the AP championship even though they are undefeated. A long overdue payback from 1942.

44

November 19th, 2012
7:54 am

Sympathy for Derek Dooley? Are you kidding me? The guy gets a 5 million buyout morons. Why would Tn hire someone that had a losing record from La Tech in the first place? All of a sudden, he was going to win? Good you hire him UGA,,.Bunch of suckers on that one

Jerry Jones

November 19th, 2012
7:57 am

Let’s go Dawgs! Lets all wear our black and lets send these seniors out right! Predicting 55-18 rout

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7:59 am

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Buckeye

November 19th, 2012
8:01 am

Why are we on probation?

tell me again

November 19th, 2012
8:01 am

I don’t believe Dooley was brought in to rebuild the program – his credentials gave no indication he could resurrect an SEC program ( sorry Barbara ). He was brought in to CLEAN UP the program and get rid of the garbage left by Kiffin. And he got paid very well to do it.

tell me again

November 19th, 2012
8:05 am

Bergamot, when you’re talking about booze drinking, wife beating , low rent trailer trash you do realize you are describing Alabama and not Georgia, right? Did you make that mistake typing because you were still hung over from the moonshine festival in the woods outside Tuscaloosa last night?

DawgFan

November 19th, 2012
8:09 am

Will everyone who carries a genuine HATE for Tech reply TUCK FECH

DawgInHeat

November 19th, 2012
8:11 am

DIT

November 19th, 2012
8:11 am

People, don’t believe for a second Saturday’s game will be a cake walk for the Dawgs. On paper, yes, Dawgs should kill tech. However, we all know how the Dawgs play down to the level of competition and with the SEC CG the following week it will all too easy to look forward.
This game makes me very nervous because tech has nothing to lose and the Dawgs have everything to lose.
Dawgs must come out on fire and take the air out of tech’s hope. Leave tech hanging around and it might come out pretty bad.
Focus Dawgs, Focus!!

DawgFan

November 19th, 2012
8:16 am

Agree DIT. It can only help if you really hate those bugs. Good, Clean, Old Fashioned Hate

RAMBLIN MAN

November 19th, 2012
8:25 am

As a GT fan, this will be a difficult game to win this in athens. We have put up a lot of points all year even in our losses with the exception in blacksburg at VT. This game comes down to defense. If UGA puts 8 and 9 in the box like they did last year and dare GT to throw the ball, then we have to hurt them in the passing game which vad lee surely can. We threw the ball all over north carolina and must use the passing game to force uga to get those safeties out of the box then we open up the perimeter with our running game.

Our defense will not stop uga so it comes down to us being able to score at will and outscore uga in a shootout. Our defense has not stopped anyone all year really so i don’t expect that to change saturday. If we execute like we did on offense vs unc using our passing game where they had no idea what we would do next, then we have a chance and this could be close. I think uga wins 45 -31. Just my opinion. Looking forward to the game!

GS-VSU

November 19th, 2012
8:28 am

LOVELY THOUGHT……….GEORGIA BEATS TECH……GOES TO SEC CHAMPIONSHIP AND LOSES TO ALABAMA……..GEORGIA DROPS TO THE OUTBACK BOWL AT 11-2…DUKE BEATS MIAMI AND TECH GOES TO ACC CHAMPIONSHIP AND BEATS FLORIDA STATE WINDING UP IN THE ORANGE BOWL AT 7-5….ALABAMA PLAYS FLORIDA IN CHAMPIONSHIP GAME……

Oh Well

November 19th, 2012
8:29 am

((((((((((((((BLACK OUT))))))))))))))))))

BOR

November 19th, 2012
8:39 am

“Georgia has an advantage of spending more time fine-tuning its game plan with school out for the Thanksgiving holiday. That means the NCAA’s 20-hour practice limit will not be in effect. The Bulldogs could practice as long as they want or stay in the film room all day.”

This is a HUGE advantage in disguise for the dawgs as tech only gets Thurs/Fri off instead of the whole week. Football will always determine the outcome of the UGA academic decisions.

Steve

November 19th, 2012
8:41 am

HOW FUNNY is it that Tech is in the ACC Championship game? Talk about BACKING IN! They get to play in the game even though they did not deserve it? So funny. What will be more funny is watching what UGA and FSU does to Tech. Tech will be 6-7 going to a bad bowl game which they will lose, as we all know. 6-8 season!

Virgin Island Dawg

November 19th, 2012
8:54 am

Came to spend the holiday with family and got a treat to see the Dawgs last week and this coming GT game.. Dawgs always exciting to watch. Will be cheering for them . GO DAWGS

Fenaleyess

November 19th, 2012
9:02 am

It would be hilarious if we get a better bowl game with a worse record, that’s what you get for playing in the all mighty SEC, THWG!

GaTruth

November 19th, 2012
9:03 am

@Buckeye – just for the record, the Dawgs are 1-0 against the most over-rated team in history – The Ohio State Buckeyes. BTW, Archie Griffin did NOT deserve his junior year Heisman. Anthony Davis got ripped off because they didn’t want to give it to ANOTHER USC tailback.

GaTruth

November 19th, 2012
9:06 am

@Buckeye – Oh yeah, and that victory gives us bragging rights until you beat us. So, exercising those bragging rights – we whipped you, took your lunch money, kissed your girlfriend, and sent you back to that nasty city up north with another SEC footprint on your behind. Don’t bother replying – you haven’t earned any bragging rights.

Buckeye

November 19th, 2012
9:15 am

tom brown,

Where you at?

Woodstock Dawg

November 19th, 2012
9:33 am

Rol Tide Roll around the bowl and down the hole!

mark

November 19th, 2012
9:40 am

Why are idiot, uninformed fans, always on Bobo? Do they not know that Bobo’s offensive schemes have broken every school record offensively? Do they not know that he has produced the most points, yds per game, 3rd down conversions, 1st downs, yds per pass, time of possession?? Why are these idiots always on the best offensive coordinator in UGA history…..

Bulldawgman49

November 19th, 2012
9:49 am

I think Richt is right you cant look ahead assume anything .
The so called experts are already putting ND and Alabama in the BCS championship game, and after this pass weekend games u never know right. It would be nice for GT to rest their guys and focus on the ACC Title game . We just have to play the game and hope for the best GO DAWGS !!!!

Joey

November 19th, 2012
9:52 am

In ‘02, UGA was poised to get in the Big Game going into Jax, unbeaten and ranked ahead of OSU. Richt went conservative with his play calling, and a pretty weak, Zook-led Gator team upset the Dawgs.

I hope Richt learned from that, and turns Bobo loose in these last 3 games, instead of playing “not to lose.”

It’s exciting that things have fallen into place for Richt and the Dawgs, I just hope Richt goes for it now, instead of being cautious.

Put in Timeout by Ken Suguira,Filtered by Mark Bradley, Banned once by Bill King & Chip Towers but only slightly loved by Jeff Schultz.

November 19th, 2012
9:56 am

@mark……. BOBO’s game plan and Murray is the greatest UGa QB ever………Hahahah……..Look Who UGa has played the last 3 years and you can understand why those numbers look impressive but really. Bobo’s game planning & Murray is 3-9 against top 25 teams? I would say there is nothing great about either.

Buckeye

November 19th, 2012
9:57 am

Is the dog game on locally again on Channel 2?