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Got to watch about 30 minutes of the SEC luncheon earlier today. Dave Neal was emcee and asked Coach Saban and Richt some pretty generic questions while I was there. Saban spoke at length about how Barrett Jones is a model student-athlete and ambassador of the University. He specifically mentioned Barrett’s relief work in Haiti and the fact that “he’s never made a B” in college, then wrapped up by saying “one of you guys in the crowd should hire this kid at your company… I would hire him.”
Richt was asked about Jarvis Jones and mentioned how he started out at USC but was medically disqualified, then transferred to UGA after getting a second opinion. He mentioned that Jones called him during the transfer process and complained about how he couldn’t find any “sweat tea or BBQ out there…” Richt also explained that Aaron Murray has taken a larger leadership role on the team and even passed out a survey to all his coaches and teammates over the summer asking them to critique his leadership skills. Apparently people didn’t hold back because at one point Richt smiled and said that Murray received some “positive criticism.”
Saban chimed in at one point with his own story about Aaron Murray. Apparently, Saban was at his lake house “piddling around” in the back yard when he saw 2 jet skis heading his way. Turns out it was Aaron Murray and UGA’s “starting center” heading his way. They beached in Saban’s back yard, hopped off their jet skis and yelled “we’re going to see you in Atlanta next year.” Saban said he laughed and gave them a “bring it on” shrug. All three ended up shooting the breeze in Saban’s back yard for about 15 minutes. Pretty cool story.
What really stood out to me was when the coaches were asked about their leadership philosophy and organizational structure. Saban explained the “process” and how “consistency in performance defines success.” Richt, on the other hand, explained how the UGA seniors approached him over the summer with their own thoughts/recommendations for leadership on the team. As a result UGA now has leadership groups within the team that are led by seniors who essentially function as a leadership council.
Hearing the two different approaches was very interesting. You could tell that Saban had a plan, knew how to implement it, and was constantly seeking improvement. Richt is more of a “let the players take ownership of their team” type of coach. Definitely made me realize that I am sometimes guilty of taking Coach Saban for granted. Not sure if it’s because we hear about the “process” so often, but his badasssery really stood out in this interview format because of the direct comparison to Richt. To put it mildly: Saban operates at another level. We are very, very lucky.
TRADITION IS THE FOUNDATION GREAT PROGRAMS ARE BUILT UPON.
Thanks for sharing.
"BINGO! That was a goody!" - Coach Bryant on Sunday afternoons with Coca Cola & Golden Flakes
Great post, thanks.
Thanks for posting this...excellent!!
This post was edited by luvmybama 17 months ago
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