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Is Mark Richt as Good a Head Coach as Nick Saban?

A persistent meme holds that the Georgia Bulldogs' Mark Richt "can't win the big one," while the Alabama Crimson Tide's Nick Saban is a master tactician. How do the two coaches' resumes compare?

Georgia Bulldogs Hire Will Friend as Offensive Line Coach in Late Night 'Dawg Bites

Mark Richt has hired Will Friend to be the Georgia Bulldogs' offensive line coach. Catch up on the latest Red and Black news at Dawg Sports, which runs down the top stories in Bulldog Nation on Monday evening.

Stick a Fork in Conference Expansion . . .

. . . because it appears to be done. (Hat tip: SG Standard.) ESPN reports that Texas has announced its intention to remain in the Big 12, and school sources at Texas A&M are offering a similar indication. Gene Stallings certainly has backed off of his hardline stance in favor of the Aggies moving to the SEC. Frankly, I don't get it. I don't see how the Big 12 can negotiate a better television deal after losing the marquee program in the Big 12 North, the Denver media market, and the right to host a conference championship game. If, however, that is what has happened---and it certainly appears that it has---we all owe Dan Beebe a huge apology. After getting so psyched up over the ostensibly impending arrival of Texas A&M, I am disappointed at the loss of the opportunity to see the Bulldogs play a conference road game at what is (in my humble opinion) the most well-named college stadium in the country. At the end of the day, though, the twelve-team SEC has been an enormous success, and the prospect of twelve teams in the Big Ten and the Pac-10 does not threaten the long-term viability of the league. With neither the Big Ten nor the Pac-10 gaining a toehold in the Lone Star State, the SEC is not imperiled by failing to make such inroads. In the end, it looks like initial projections were correct, and we all got caught up in the excitement of what turned out to be much ado about not very much. Oh, well. It was fun while it lasted. Go 'Dawgs!

First of all, if I had my druthers I would wish that the conference did not disband. I'd like to...

First of all, if I had my druthers I would wish that the conference did not disband. I'd like to see everything stay intact. If it goes from 12 to 10, that suits me just fine. I would really hate to see A&M and its rivalries with Texas and Texas Tech and Oklahoma go away. I hated to see the Southwest Conference disband. I'm the sort of person who holds onto old values. I think there are some that would like to see Texas A&M competing in the SEC.

Gene Stallings puts conference expansion back to defcon four. Go 'Dawgs!

A&M has been in contact with the SEC for months, despite the longstanding assumption that the Texas...

A&M has been in contact with the SEC for months, despite the longstanding assumption that the Texas schools would hang together behind the wildly profitable Longhorn juggernaut. But former Aggie player/coach Gene Stallings, now an A&M regent, has taken control of the push for the SEC, where he won a national championship as Alabama's head coach in 1992. Stepping out of the back channels of Texas politics, Stallings didn't hesitate to distance A&M from the Longhorns on Alabama radio: "I think A&M is now big enough to stand on its own. We don’t need to piggyback on Texas." Truly spoken like a man with only a few months left in his term. If A&M opts out of the Pac-10 exodus, their crucial position as the 16th team could fall to Kansas or Utah; given the political ramifications and the cold shoulder in scheduling by everyone A&M has ever considered any kind of rival, the odds remain on the Aggies' following the original route to the West Coast – especially if the SEC invite is tied to their ability to deliver Texas, as well, which appears to be a complete nonstarter.

Dr. Saturday makes his case for why the Aggies will go with the flow and follow the Longhorns into the Pac-10. Matt Hinton may well be right, but, the longer this goes on, the better I like the SEC's chances. Even if you take seriously Texas's alleged threat never to schedule the Aggies again in any sport unless they remain conference mates (which I'm not at all sure I do), and even if you assume Lone Star State politicos with a long history of involving themselves in athletics decisions wouldn't compel Texas and Texas A&M to continue their rivalry on the field (which I'm quite sure I don't), the Aggies have longstanding rivals in the SEC (Arkansas and LSU) . . . and it isn't as though programs haven't sacrificed rivalries on the altar of conference expansion before. Pitt's entry into the Big East and Penn State's entry into the Big Ten all but killed that once-yearly rivalry. The expansion of the ACC and the SEC in 1992 made Georgia's battles with Clemson much more infrequent affairs. Earlier today, Nebraska essentially tossed the last handful of dirt onto the grave in which the Cornhuskers' rivalry with Oklahoma is interred. I'm not at all sure I believe the Aggies' entry into the SEC would sound the death knell of their rivalry with the Longhorns, but, quite frankly, more storied rivalries than that one have ended when leagues grew. It might be sad, but, to Texas, this is (to quote a line from the end of "The Godfather") just business. The 'Horns clearly want to call the shots, not just for themselves, but for everyone even remotely in their orbit. Let 'em do it. Maybe it's high time Texas A&M left Texas like Michael Corleone at the end of "The Godfather, Part II," on top of the world and increasingly cut off from everyone who got him there. Gene Stallings sold his alma mater short. The Aggies can't just stand, they can walk. I'm increasingly convinced that their movement will be east, not west. Cue the Jessica Simpson remake of the Nancy Sinatra classic. Go 'Dawgs!

Stallings on Finebaum show: Texas A&M "may have to stand alone and go our own way" in expansion.

Stallings on Finebaum show: Texas A&M "may have to stand alone and go our own way" in expansion.

(Hat tip: secgridirongirl.) Go 'Dawgs!

Official National Football Foundation Press Release

Note that Gene Stallings was a Veterans Committee selection. That means two of the four coaches enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame in 2010 came from the Veterans Committee. They declined Erk Russell's candidacy because . . . ? Go 'Dawgs!

How I Intend to Vote for the 2010 College Football Hall of Fame Induction Class: My Draft Ballot

As a member of the National Football Foundation, T. Kyle King of Dawg Sports gets to vote on the 2010 College Football Hall of Fame induction class. Here are the eleven Division I-A players and the two Division I-A coaches for whom he intends to vote.

Wednesday Night Dawg Bites: Mike Leach/Gene Stallings/Romeo Crennel/Billy Bob Thornton Edition

Should we side with Mike Leach or with Craig James? Are the Idaho Vandals coached by Billy Bob Thornton? Is Romeo Crennel a candidate to replace Willie Martinez as the Georgia Bulldogs' defensive coordinator? Find out in Dawg Bites.

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