This wasn't Todd Grantham's fault.
Much has been made by some of the more cynical Georgia fans about the success (or lack thereof) that Todd Grantham had the last time he was a DC – for the Cleveland Browns. Though his record there had moments of brilliance (in 2005 they were solid), he was ultimately let go after three years of diminishing returns. While there is no correlation between NFL failures and college successes (see Saban, Nick and Spurrier, Stevie), this has nonetheless caused a small amount of trepidation among the more fatalistic branches of the fan base. To those people I must simply ask… When was the last time anyone was consistently good when they worked for Cleveland?
(Spoiler Alert: It was Marty Schottenheimer in the late 80’s)
Reading over some of their coaches, coordinators, and position coaches in the last 20 years, it’s a veritable Who’s Who list of solid and often remarkable coaches who knew how to bring the suck when they were in Cleveland. Some names:
Butch Davis (HC - .414 winning percentage in Cleveland)
Bill Belichick (HC - .450 winning percentage in Cleveland)
Nick Saban (His trusty DC during the 4 of those years)
Kirk Ferentz (Position Coach)
Pat Hill (Position Coach)
Al Groh (Position Coach)
Ken Whisenhunt (Special Teams)
Does the fact that these coaches went on to have successful careers (ranging from marginally to wildfully) in other locales mean that Grantham will be successful as DC at Georgia? No. Does the fact that the Browns sucked while he was there and he was ultimately fired say anything about his ability as a coach? Again, no. Because almost every coach that has tried to be successful at Cleveland has failed and the vast majority have been fired. The point is, no coach should ever be judged based upon their performance as part of the staff of the Cleveland Browns. If that’s your only reservation about Grantham, put your mind at ease.
How are the rest of you feeling about the hire?