Posted: 12:51 pm Thursday, May 1st, 2014

Richt, SEC coaches believe eight is enough 

By Chip Towers

ATHENS – Just to wrap up all this SEC football schedule chatter for a while (I hope), the league announced this past Sunday that it was essentially changing nothing, other than switching the permanent West “rivals” of Missouri (Arkansas) and South Carolina (Texas A&M) and requiring that every member schedule an opponent from one of the other four power conferences (ACC, Big 12, Big Ten or Pac-12), which most of them did anyway.

Yesterday, the SEC conducted its regular post-spring practice teleconference call with coaches and, as one might expect, the scheduling decisions dominated the discussions. Georgia and coach Mark Richt had been on record before about preferring that things stay the same — eight games, 6-1-1 format, Auburn as permanent West rival — and Richt reiterated that stance during Tuesday’s call.

“I had a pretty good feeling that was going to happen,” Rich said. “I didn’t know for sure, but I’m very comfortable with it. “I think the game with Auburn is important to our people, and I think it’s important to the South as far as rivalries go. I think it’s a big part of college football. So I’m fine with that. It really isn’t going to change much that we do. I think everybody is going to have a strong enough schedule. I think everyone is going to play enough tough opponents to not hurt anyone’s chances of playing in the Final Four.”

That was probably the most interesting aspect of Tuesday’s discussions, hearing the coaches talk about their belief that playing eight SEC games is plenty enough of a challenge regardless of what other conferences. I thought the most compelling points were made by coaches who remain somewhat new to the SEC after long tenures in other conferences.

Bret Bielema just endured his first season in the league after coming to Arkansas from Wisconsin and a long, successful tenure in the Big Ten.

“When I was in those conference meetings it was always about, what can we do to catch up with what was going on in the SEC?” said Bielema, whose 3-9 squad was winless in the SEC.  “… In all of my years in this profession and as a head coach, there’s no doubt in my mind the eight games we played last year on our conference schedule and, just on paper, the eight games we have scheduled this year, I don’t care if other conferences play 10 games, it’s not going to be to the magnitude of what this possibly is for the SEC.”

Said Missouri coach Gary Pinkel, who coached in the Big 12 for part of 11 seasons before the Tigers joined the SEC: “The league is so tough, the league is so difficult, that I think that separates it by itself, in terms of quality of play each and every week. That’s so significant …When you play nine, as strong as our league is, that could knock one or two teams out of bowls .. and there’s also the possibility of knocking somebody out of the top four. So I was in favor of it.”

Coaches and administrators were instructed not to share how how each team voted in Sunday’s meeting. But we now know the presidents and chancellors voted 10-4 in favor of the 6-1-1 format over the 6-0-2 format, with Alabama, LSU, South Carolina and Tennessee casting the dissenting votes. The 0-2 format would have eliminated permanent West rivals such as the Bulldogs have with Auburn but would have assured every school would play every other from the opposite division at least once over a four-year period.

LSU coach Les Miles, whose team retained Florida as its permanent East rival, has been the most outspoken critic.

“The scheduling did not go like I thought it should,” he said. “The rotation of opponents can only be the fair and right way. It gives everybody an opportunity to see the entire schedule, the entire conference, in four years. It removes annual inequity of scheduling. It’s a disparaging difference. To say that this is the fairest and ‘rightest’ way to pick a champion, I think that is flawed.”

Countered Florida’s Will Muschamp: “It isn’t all fair all the time and that’s part of it. When you’re in a league and you’ve got 14 universities being represented, that’s what Commissioner (Mike) Slive does. He and his staff make a decision on what’s best for the majority of the conference and whatever format they went with, eight games, I was going to be good with. We’ve got a great rivalry — and I’ve been on both sides of it — with Florida and LSU. It’s an exciting game, it’s a national game, and certainly a game that I know Les enjoys and I do as well.”

So that’s that. The question now is what happens out-of-conference scheduling going forward. And Georgia has been a leader in that regard.

The Bulldogs don’t generally get credit for their aggressive non-conference scheduling but they’re actually among the progressive. They’ve played two or more teams from another BCS conference in eight of the last nine years — including three in 2009. That’s been the case in 10 of the 13 seasons Richt has been head coach.

UGA Athletic Director Greg McGarity said Wednesday he will continue to seek opponents beyond Georgia Tech from what they’re now calling the Power Conference Alliance in the future. Currently none are set beyond Clemson this season.

“We’ll look to schedule games like that periodically,” McGarity said. “It just depends on when it can work out. There are a lot of factors that have to be considered.”

Like most SEC coaches, Richt believes the league slate plus one major opponent offers plenty of challenge over a 14-week regular season.

“I think we have to be a little bit careful how we do it,” the Bulldogs’ coach said. ” You don’t want to have too many seasons where you only have six home games,” Richt said. “I haven’t really looked at it, (but) if you get too many of those types of games you could conceivably only have five home games. I think we should have six, seven, even eight home games at times. I know that’s s lot of times that’s not gonna happen that many times because we play Florida in Jacksonville.”

Actually, Georgia has played fewer than six home games only once in Richt’s tenure (2011). The Bulldogs have managed to schedule seven home games only twice, when they had seven in 2002 and 2006.

And while all that is important for UGA’s bottom line, that’s not what’s foremost on the minds of fans, who are being asked to fill stadiums and sign up for the new SEC Network on their cable and satellite TV packages. They want to see their teams play the like of Notre Dame, Texas and Southern Cal.

“I think there’ll be some of those coming down the road,” Richt said

 

58 comments
Delusionaldog
Delusionaldog

Whatever dog just called The Herd touting Boxscore Murray is delusional. 

Delusionaldog
Delusionaldog

For dogs making bowl plans:


The Taxslayer Bowl (formerly Gator), which was played on Jan. 1 the last 19 seasons in Jacksonville, will move to Jan. 2, McMurphy reports, while the Heart of Dallas Bowl will also move from New Year’s Day.

The Sun Bowl is tentatively set for Dec. 27, according to McMurphy, after six straight seasons on Dec. 31. The Liberty Bowl will also move off New Year’s Eve.

ThomasBrown
ThomasBrown

Why don't you just go ahead and abdicate this UGA Sports' blog altogether ?  You have successfully, now, rendered it useless.  Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and presumably Monday this is what we're supposed to talk about ?  Something that came up LAST WEEKEND, Sunday, about 8 game SEC schedules, that you ENTERED a blog entry about THURSDAY.  Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday.


Good Lord.


Last night for example, there was an outstanding game between 2 Women's College World Series participants Kentucky and Georgia in front of a sold-out crowd on National TV.


Also on National TV, Georgia was playing # 7 South Carolina in baseball.


UGA Sports' blog to tell us won both ?


Asking too much, obviously, like when you took the week VACATION no articles saying you were going to the Masters with no articles on it either, the NIGHT BEFORE the G-Day Game.


Get with the damn program, son.

Delusionaldog
Delusionaldog

“The league is so tough, the league is so difficult, that I think that separates it by itself, in terms of quality of play each and every week. That’s so significant …When you play nine, as strong as our league is, that could knock one or two teams out of bowls .. and there’s also the possibility of knocking somebody out of the top four. So I was in favor of it.”


SECoward

Rick_James
Rick_James

Why does the same Tech troll dominate every UGA realated blog? If Tech could beat an SEC team he might have an argument..If Tech were one of the top teams in the ACC he could at least boast about that.If Tech could even beat Georgia I might understand his point of view.But hiding behind Texas A&M and Missouri I just dont get..

DawginLex
DawginLex

POAD thinks VT, UVA and Miami are a good as SC, Mizzou and Auburn?


WOW


and he calls us delusional

RxDawg
RxDawg

"But we now know the presidents and chancellors voted 10-4 in favor of the 6-1-1 format over the 6-0-2 format, with Alabama, LSU, South Carolina and Tennessee casting the dissenting votes."

So Bama and UT want to end their rivalry?   That's very shocking.

shamymax
shamymax

Yet Again the SEC and the UGA Athletic Association have given the loyal ticket holder the shaft. We already have to put up shifting game times to accommodate TV (what going to happen with SECTV!), 4 and 5 week mid-season gaps with no home games because of Jacksonville. We had hoped that a 9th game would provide more opportunities for exciting match-ups like the Carolina and LSU games this past season and the chance to play Alabama and LSU between the Hedges more than once a decade. So what are we left - a home schedule with Kentucky or Tech plus 2 or ,most probably, 3 cupcakes. Depending on how good Vandy is we will have, at most, 3 quality home games. 


Our AA could make it somewhat better by either making the Florida game home and home or alternate the game in Atlanta when the new stadium is built but for some reason they continue to give Florida an additional home game.


Kansas, Washington St., Iowa State, Purdue, and Colorado will be getting a lot of telephone calls in the next few years from the SEC schools and anyone who thinks Richt will schedule a Texas, Oklahoma or Ohio St. is delusional. He's  ecstatic that he now only has to play Alabama and LSU once every six  years.


Georgia's 2015 class is getting picked clean by AL, AU, Clemson, Tenn, and a slew of other non SEC schools.  Richt and his recruiters are having difficulty holding the line with the state's top recruits and going more and more out of state.


He needs the easiest schedule possible to get the 8, 9 and occasional 10 win season to keep that 4 million dollar job.

gtcaryd
gtcaryd

Maybe there should be a 4 game playoff in the SEC to determine who plays the best team out of the rest of the conferences. Maybe save all the trouble and name the SEC champ the NC, wait that didn't work last year. Never mind.

MoistDawg
MoistDawg

i dont get why people are so upset. we have made it clear that we will take on any one at any time and there isnt NO school we wont play. i just wish we could get more bama and lsu and less tenn and vandy and tech loosers.

gtcaryd
gtcaryd

Nobody's worthy, Nobody's worthy!!

Delusionaldog
Delusionaldog

nc dog and POAD,


I hope you two got a room. 

POAD2014
POAD2014

The SEC and UGa can't be that Big & Bad. Mizzou has been in the league 2 years and they already made it to the SEC CG. How many years did it take UGa to get in the SEC CG? How many OLD SEC teams have played in the SEC CG?

Texas A&M comes in the league and in year one they have a freshman tear it up and win the Heisman. How many years did it take Big Bad Bama to get their 1st Heisman winner?

HotDawg
HotDawg

Glory, Glory to ole Georgia and to hell with georgia tech

POAD2014
POAD2014

UGa schedule........vs...........TECH schedule

8/30 Clemson...............................Clemson

9/13 South Carolina.....................Va Tech

9/20 Troy.........................................Wofford

9/27 Tennessee............................Pitt

10/4 Vandy......................................Duke

10/11 Mizzou..................................UVa

10/18 Arkansas.............................NCSU

11/1 Florida...................................UNC

11/8 Kentucky................................Ga Southern

11/15 Auburn.................................Miami

11/22 Charleston Southern........Tulane

11/29 TECH...................................UGa


Tech plays as good a schedule as the dogs. TECH doesn't have more talent than it's opponents where as UGa has more talent than most teams they face. That is an Apples to Apples comparison of the schedules. SEC recruiting v ACC recruiting. Don't act like UGa is playing that much more of a difficult schedule when you compare TALENT to TALENT on the field.


NCDawg
NCDawg

Georgia Tech 2014

08/30/14 vs. Wofford Atlanta, Ga. TBA 

09/06/14 at Tulane New Orleans, La. TBA 

09/13/14 vs. Georgia Southern - Family Weekend Atlanta, Ga. TBA 

09/20/14 at Virginia Tech Blacksburg, Va. TBA 

10/04/14 vs. Miami Atlanta, Ga. TBA 

10/11/14 vs. Duke - Hall of Fame Game Atlanta, Ga. TBA 

10/18/14 at North Carolina Chapel Hill, NC TBA 

10/25/14 at Pittsburgh Pittsburgh, Pa. TBA 

11/01/14 vs. Virginia - Homecoming Atlanta, Ga. TBA 

11/08/14 at North Carolina State Raleigh, NC TBA 

11/15/14 vs. Clemson - Toy Drive Atlanta, Ga. TBA 

11/29/14 at Georgia Athens, Ga. TBA

LMFAO!  3 cupcakes in a row to start the season!  Well ok, Ga Southern may beat you so that may not be a cupcake.  And you still don't play FSU.  What a wuss puss schedule!


Any Tech fan that complains about Georgia's schedule is just out of the their mind.  That would be you sociopath.  Bat guano crazy.

NCDawg
NCDawg

@Rick_James it's the obsession.  It's why I always refer to him as the sociopath.  His behavior is text book sociopathological.  His rants blur into incoherent babble as often as not.  I think he'd die of a heart attack if you were to drag him onto the Georgia campus.  It is amazingly sad to see actually.  The guys in funny white coats need to visit him.

POAD2014
POAD2014

@DawginLex  you really can't read can you? Is that what I said?? NO Apples to Apples you maroon. Read and comprehend.

Delusionaldog
Delusionaldog

@gtcaryd  SC and Mizzou from the Least, Auburn and Bama from the West.  Dogs got o JAX or Memphis, Nashville if they're lucky.

POAD2014
POAD2014

@MoistDawg  that is why you guys decided to drop the H-n-H against Oregon because you play anybody anywhere anytime right?

C-Kirk
C-Kirk

@POAD2014  

That is why Texas A&M and Missouri was added to our Conference. We could have added two bottom dwellers like a lot of the Conference did but the SEC teams know they will be playing 5 to 7 to 25 teams every year not like other Conference who will only have 2 to 4 teams worthy of a top 25 ranking.

NCDawg
NCDawg

@POAD2014 you need help.  Looking at the schedules side by side GT has a tougher opponent when matched against the corresponding team on Georgia's schedule.  Miami is the only team that might stand any sort of chance in the SEC east.  You need to take your meds if you think otherwise.

NCDawg
NCDawg

@POAD2014 you are insane. Get help if you really think that any of those teams is the equal of UT or Florida.  Va Tech?  Gimme a break.  Miami might be in a couple of years.  UNC?  NCST?  OMG you are absolutely insane.

POAD2014
POAD2014

@NCDawg  And UGa used to do the EXACT same thing don't act like they didn't. Before Spurrier SC was a joke game surrounded by 2 OoC cupcakes.

We can't play FSU you idiot.

POAD2014
POAD2014

@NCDawg just for you.

After completely disregarding my set plan, changing my major four times, and doing every stupid thing a college freshmen could do, I began to look back at my time in this place. I have never experienced a moment of boredom, a moment of homesickness, or a moment of unhappiness because of Georgia Tech. My time at Tech has been the greatest year of my life thus far, and I’m sure very few experiences will ever come close to comparing to it. I’m now becoming afraid that I will never find a husband I can love more than I love this school. When people complain about its rigor, I only see people laughing, chatting, playing, enjoying life and say you will be thankful for this place one day. Georgia Tech is hard for a reason. It pushes us to our limits, shows us how much we can accomplish, challenges us to be better people and teaches us the value of perseverance. I have really learned to live by the motto: you can sleep later. I think my brain, my social skills, my leadership, my attitudes, and my passions have all been tested here, and to fully reap the benefits of this school I have to give it all I’ve got. You get what you put in here… literally. You can’t expect an A with out being excellent, you can’t expect to get into a club because of some award you won, you can’t kick your feet back and expect friends to just appear. You have to work for it. Georgia Tech instills the value of hard work deep into our core, and we will be successful in life because of it later on. I love how hard Tech pushes me. I love the feeling of being stretched to my limits, but I also enjoy having a life. I think the struggle stemming from maintaining that balance of work and play is where the negativity that sometimes fills the air stems from. It’s hard to work when you know there’s fun being had with out you. We look at our friends at other schools who seem to be out every night and never doing schoolwork, and jealousy begins to creep into our thoughts. We feel like were missing out on a part of the college experience when in fact we are simply getting it in another form. Have you ever seen college students up at 6am on a Saturday to run for cake or a tricycle race that half of campus shows up to? I have never heard of a school loving their mascot more than we love the Wreck and Buzz or students showing up in groves to hear Neil Degrasse or watch an invention competition. No other school has the traditions, the spirit, the history or the pride that we have. We are perched high above the rest.

POAD2014
POAD2014

@NCDawg UGa has HIGHER RECRUITING ranked teams than most of the teams they face but TECH has worse recruiting ranked teams than most of the teams we face....see APPLES to APPLES. Screw the SEC and what ACC teams could compete right now in the SEC. You and/or other dogs have said that Texas A&M gets better recruits now that they are in the SEC therefore so would those ACC teams if they were in the SEC you fool

POAD2014
POAD2014

@NCDawg  WHO gives a F about an ACC team in the SEC they are NOT in the SEC you fool.

I compared ACC recruiting of the teams TECH plays vs the SEC recruiting of SEC teams UGa plays. 

If you had a BRAIN you would know the teams I matched on each schedule are as difficult an opponent for each team. Stop being dumb and learn to read and compare talent to talent.

POAD2014
POAD2014

@NCDawg @POAD2014  WAKE THE F Up you moron. that is apples to apples you idiot. Can you not READ what I posted.

NCDawg
NCDawg

@POAD2014 LOL... you gripe about the years when the rotation makes it where Georgia doesn't play LSU or Bama but you don't say a word about not having to play FSU.  More of your irrational "bash Georgia no matter what" attitude.  You play FSU as part of the  rotation in 2015. So you can play them you just don't  have to this season.


Tech conference schedule is a joke.  The Dawgs play real teams.  UT, even when down, would finish higher than Tech usually does.  Vandy would have beaten Tech last year hands down.  The only team in the eastern division that Tech would beat with any regularity would be Kentucky.  Conversely, Georgia would waltz through the Coastal division and be the virtually permanent opponent for whoever comes out of the Atlantic.


Get back to me with complaints about scheduling when Tech actually plays a schedule better than what Georgia faces.  You'll grow old and die before it happens.


LMAO!

Grant1296
Grant1296

And neither could you Tard...

Grant1296
Grant1296

Cheer up POAD ...

I'm sure someday you'll find a husband you love more than tech...

Oh...wait...that can't be you...you can't get in Tech...

NCDawg
NCDawg

@gtcaryd @NCDawg@POAD2014 junior?  in what universe do you get off calling me arrogant or junior?  You don't like what I am saying so you get your panties in a wad.  That would qualify as juvenile.  Sorry but that makes you in no way qualified to call me junior.

I am stating facts.  FSU joined the ACC because Bowden wanted to affiliate with a conference that he could dominate.  That would be the ACC.  VT is a shadow of what they once were.  Miami seems to be getting back to being relevant after more than a decade.  Clemson is the only other team in the ACC besides FSU that is SEC worthy.  It isn't just my opinion.  This is near consensus of college football fans outside of the ACC.  And it is proven by what happens most of the time in head to head competition.

gtcaryd
gtcaryd

@NCDawg @POAD2014Your quite the arrogant little snot aren't you NC? Say what you want junior but i assure you if you were in the ACC you still wouldn't win anything. You might win the Coastal Div. maybe.

Grant1296
Grant1296

Hell...why talk about FSU and Bama POAD ???

Ga plays tech every year talk about that...

POAD2014
POAD2014

@NCDawg Tech has beat FSU the last 2 time we faced them how is UGa doing the last 2 times they faced BAMA?