Read the opposing argument from Babe Ruthless.
Back in late September we had a debate surrounding the status of UGA head coach Mark Richt. Both Optimist Prime and Bleacher Fan presented compelling cases as to what the university should ultimately do with Richt. Thanks to our loyal readers, that was one of our most popular debates in our still short history. I was the judge of that particular debate and ultimately decided that Richt deserved to keep his job. New athletic director Greg McGarity agreed with me and has said that Richt will be back in 2011. However, despite the supposed vote of confidence, that does not hide the disturbing fact that 2010 has to be categorized as a huge disappointment.
Fair or not, and realistic or not, Georgia Bulldog fans don’t expect to be 6-6 at season’s end. They don’t expect to have to win the last game of the season just to become bowl eligible, jus to go to some lower-tier bowl game. They expect to play for SEC championships. They expect to play in bowl games on New Year’s Day. That didn’t happen this season… or last season, for that matter.
The season didn’t get off to a good start at all. Perhaps the Dawgs should have seen it as an omen when then-athletic director Damon Evans got arrested over for the summer for a DUI. Then player after player kept getting read their Miranda rights read to them. When all was said and done, eleven players were arrested throughout the course of the year. All-American candidate A.J. Green, arguably the best wide receiver in the country, was suspended the first four games of the season because someone apparently thought an Independence Bowl jersey was worth $1,000… and Green was stupid enough to take it since he needed some spring break shopping money.
The season was just set up to fail from the first snap… and it did.
Starting out a season 1-4 is inexcusable. Especially devastating was the fourth loss, which came at the hands of the Dan Hawkins’ led mighty Colorado Buffalos (side note… Mr. Hawkins is no longer the coach of the Buffs). At mid-season UGA managed to rebound to 4-4 and had a chance to climb back into contention in a down SEC East with a win over a weak Florida Gator team. But once again, the Dawgs couldn’t get over the hump against their neighbors to the South, losing in overtime. Losing to Auburn, in which many UGA fans still claim three weeks later was a game ridden with dirty plays by the Tigers and shouldn’t even count due to the Cam Newton scandal, was just icing on a cake that really didn’t taste all that good.
Next season is a big year for Richt, and he knows it. He made a small change in his coaching staff yesterday, naming a new strength and conditioning coach. I’m not sure the splash from this move is going to cool off his hot seat anymore. He does have Aaron Murray, who was outstanding as a redshirt freshman quarterback this season. He’s going to need more from Murray next season with Green likely headed to the next level.
A record of 6-6? That has to be disappointing at a school like UGA, doesn’t it? Or, maybe, as Bleacher Fan has hinted off the record, UGA just isn’t what it thinks it is. The fans may just be off-base. Maybe it truly is that “seven” who comes to the party thinking it’s a “ten.” Whatever the case may be, 2010 has to be considered hugely disappointing on all fronts in Athens.