Kirby Smart

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Vince Dooley says he would not have fired Mark Richt at Georgia

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There was a bit of a shock when Georgia decided to move on from former head football coach Mark Richt last year. Richt had been a model of consistency in a profession that sees that becoming more and more a rarity and he did so in a conference bubbling with as much pressure as any conference has from top to bottom. Regardless, it was time to try something new if the goal was to get Georgia over the hump of being a perennial SEC East Division contender and more of an annual SEC championship and College Football Playoff contender.

If the decision were up to him, former Georgia head coach Vince Dooley says he would not have fired Richt. This is something you might expect to hear from the man who brought Richt to Georgia in the first place.

“He had to make to real tough decision in changing coaches,” Dooley said to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, referring to Georgia Athletics Director Greg McGarity and the decision to fire Richt. “Mark Richt, I hired him and, well, you have this loyalty when you hire someone that you’re going to go the extra mile. If I’d have been the athletic director, I probably would have sat down with Mark and said ‘next year is very important,’ and I probably would’ve gone another year with him.”

That’s fair, of course. But it is also worth noting Richt had plenty of time to win more at Georgia and was never able to prove he could for one reason or another. At least, not to the extent others in the SEC have raised the bar during Richt’s tenure. Keep in mind how many SEC programs won SEC titles and national titles during Richt’s tenure at Georgia (Urban Meyer, Les Miles, Nick Saban among them). With all of the resources and the talent pool to recruit from available, it is easy to argue Richt should have accomplished more on the field than he ultimately did. That is not to suggest Richt was a failure at Georgia overall, because that simply would not be true at all. But when you have to compare rings, Georgia was lacking in one critical department.

And don’t think that Dooley is against current Georgia head coach Kirby Smart. On the contrary, Dooley is very optimistic and positive about Smart as the head coach of the Bulldogs.

“He’s got a great background,” Dooley said. “He knows what it takes in this league. He’s a Georgia man. He played here but then he had his training under a guy who is a proven success in Nick Saban. He’s got a good staff and the recruiting has been great. So I really think that the future is really bright.

Richt didn’t take long to land on his feet once being released by Georgia. Richt was named the head coach at Miami and is already building the Hurricanes up the way he did with Georgia. Entering the 2017 season, Miami appears to be trending upward, and we’ll see if they can keep that theme going for an entire season. In the meantime, we’ll keep dreaming about the possible collision course Richt thinks Miami and Georgia are on.

Report: Foot injury puts Georgia WR Riley Ridley on sideline for spring

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Georgia wide receiver Riley Ridley has not been practicing this spring, but it has nothing to do with his offseason misdemeanor from a couple of weeks ago. Instead, a foot injury appears to have sidelined Ridley for the spring.

According to a report from Gridiron Now, Ridley has been out due to the foot injury. When the foot injury occurred is not reported. Even if his foot was not injured, it remains unknown if Ridley would be participating int he spring, at least at this point. Georgia head coach Kirby Smart has said Ridley will be internally disciplined for his misdemeanor pot possession from earlier this month.

“He’ll receive discipline,” Smart said. “We are very disappointed in his decision. We do not condone that behavior. I think Riley is going to learn a valuable lesson from this mistake.”

When Ridley may be available again remains unknown, as does what exactly the punishment to him will be from Smart. A one-game suspension is the expected result for Ridley according to the university’s student-athlete handbook.

Georgia Bulldog sent to pound following traffic charges

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Georgia cornerback Juwuan Briscoe spent about an hour in a county jail Saturday night due to a pair of traffic violations.

University of Georgia police arrested Briscoe Saturday night for failure to have a license and not wearing a seat belt. Both charges are misdemeanors and he was released on a $500 bond.

Briscoe’s arrest is the fourth by a Georgia player under new head coach Kirby Smart. There has been no statement regarding Briscoe’s arrest, and as of now there has been no change to his status with the program as a result.

Georgia freshmen football players charged for BB gun possession and damage

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A pair of Georgia freshmen were arrested and charged for their possession of a BB gun and responsibility for property damage. Defensive back Chad Clay and defensive tackle Julian Rochester (pictured) were charged for second-degree criminal damage and possessing a weapon in a school zone. Both are considered felony charges.

“I’m disappointed with the poor judgment of Julian and Chad,” Georgia head coach Kirby Smart said in a released statement. “We expect full compliance with the policies of the University and of our football program from all our student-athletes. Information is still being gathered but they will be disciplined in an appropriate manner.”

The Telegraph reports both players were booked overnight and early reports suggest the BB gun was possessed inside a dorm room. This brings the arrest total at Georgia since the hiring of Smart up to four. Earlier this spring Georgia defensive end Jonathan Ledbetter was suspended for the season opener against North Carolina for an alcohol-related arrest. Defensive lineman Chauncey Rivers has been suspended for the first three games of the season following a marijuana-related arrest last December.

Georgia DL Jonathan Ledbetter arrested for pair of alcohol-related misdemeanors

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Time to hit the reset button on the arrest counter on the side of the site.

Georgia defensive lineman Jonathan Ledbetter was arrested on a pair of alcohol-related misdemeanors early Sunday morning. According to a report from Dawg Nation, Ledbetter was charged for presenting a fake ID and underage possession/furnishing of alcohol. He was released on bond roughly an hour after being arrested early Sunday morning.

Ledbetter played in seven games last season, in which he recorded four tackles. Ledbetter is in line for competing for a more involved role on the Georgia defensive line this spring and summer under new head coach Kirby Smart. No update on his status with the team has been provided at this time, and it is unknown if Georgia will hand out any extra form of punishment to Ledbetter.