Monday, January 11, 2010, is a date that will live in infamy as
the least productive business day ever in Bulldog Nation the day Mama called and Kirby Smart hung up on her. What have we learned?
I believe the lessons of this dreadful day are these:
There's a reason why Mark Richt got upset at the players for dousing him with Powerade before the clock showed a trio of zeroes against Georgia Tech. There's a reason why I never begin calculating the Mark Richt Victory Watch until the game is finished. There's a reason why I still blame my old friend Chad Tiller for calling me in 2003 when Georgia had a 24-0 lead over South Carolina (after the Bulldogs had beaten Clemson 30-0 to start the season) and asking me when the Red and Black last shut out both Palmetto State rivals. (The final score of the South Carolina game was 31-7. It's Chad's fault for jinxing it.) I will never
again write a "welcome!" posting for a coach before he is in the fold. Truly and totally my bad. I assume full responsibility for Kirby Smart's continued employment at the University of Alabama.
There's no reason for us to be angry at Coach Smart, who made a prudent career decision. It wasn't the one we wanted him to make, but I don't think he used his alma mater the way Bud Foster used Georgia. He's a native Georgian, his wife is a native Georgian, and both are former Bulldog athletes. (She played women's basketball for the Lady Dogs.) He's still a damn good 'Dawg.
Mark Richt was right to keep quiet about this whole thing.
As a rule, Alabama fans who visit Dawg Sports are gracious. Virginia fans have not earned similar praise.
Tracking airplanes is for chumps. From now on, we need to stick to reading David Hale's Twitter feeds and understand that nothing is real until he says it's real.
If we gave out a "commenter of the year" award here, MaconDawg and I would have to give serious consideration to DavetheDawg, whose butter-related comments during the Georgia Tech open comment thread are the stuff of legend, and who added to his oeuvre this afternoon when dubbing Nick Saban "The Armani Beelzebub." I don't care who you are, that's funny.
At this point, whomever we hire will be a letdown. Of course, not a lot of folks had ever heard of Erk Russell in 1964 or Brian VanGorder in 2001, so all hope is not lost, at least for those of you who did not abandon all hope months ago. In the meantime, if we failed, I'm glad we failed while daring greatly. Mark Richt's playing career in college and the pros put him behind Jim Kelly, John Elway, and Dan Marino; you can still be a pretty good quarterback and be behind those three. Likewise, you can still be a pretty good defensive coordinator and be behind Bud Foster, John Chavis, and Kirby Smart.