ATHENS — Glenn Schumann rarely speaks with the media, as it usually only happens in August or in the run up to the College Football Playoff.
So when Schumann speaks, whether it be about the importance of being multiple in the Georgia defense or how some of the newest defenders are doing, it is important to listen.
Schumann met with the media for about 18 minutes on Tuesday afternoon. Below is a full transcript of what the Georgia defensive coordinator had to say.
On Brock Bowers saying Chaz Chambliss is one of the hardest players to block and how far he’s seen Chambliss come this offseason:
“Let’s start with your original question that you asked Brock. I think when you talk about somebody being hard to block, a lot of that is relative to strain. Chaz strains both in terms of his competitive nature and, like, his physical willingness to battle with people. So that makes him a hard guy to block by nature. The guy works extremely hard in all areas, whether it’s walk-throughs, meetings, on the field, individual drills. He’s one of the most common people to stay after practice to work on his own, and so naturally when you work like that and you focus on your process, you grow. I think he buys into that and does it every day. He has continued to progress, and we’re really pleased with him.”
On preparing for individual offenses and defining your game plan:
“So I think you start — first of all, when you go into fall camp right now, we try to challenge the guys with a lot of volume and you try to anticipate problems that are going to arise in the future because right now what we do have is time to get reps, to teach, to correct. And so I think you need to be really forward thinking in terms of what issues are going to be presented in the future, and you build a library of options to pick from so that when you get to a game plan — I always compare it to being in the kitchen as a chef, right? If you go in there and you have a fully-stocked pantry, fully-stocked fridge, you have all your seasonings and spices, you can make about whatever dish you want depending on who you’re cooking for, right? So each offense that you play, hey, you need to cook a little different. Hey, when we’re focusing on us, that’s like preparing food for your wife and kids at home. Like, hey, Bryson better get some chicken nuggets, right? That’s what he needs.
And so, that’s our identity. Hey, what are we good at? And then the extra fluff in there, we need to build a library so we can pick from it. And that makes the game-planning process easier because we know what we have and we know what we can do well.”
On interviewing with the Philadelphia Eagles and keeping up with former players in Philly:
“You try to the best of your ability to keep in touch with all your former players. I have a unique vantage point being here going on eight years now where the relationships are consistent because of where I am. I’m still at the place where they played. Obviously the guys that played in my room, I think I have the best opportunity to stay in touch with them because we spent the majority of our time together. That extends to everybody else on the defense. Mostly this time of year it’s text message-related because everybody — they’re short on time, we’re short on time. But Kelee sent me a text the other day, and there was just a little back and forth about things that are going on with him. You try to do the best job you can to keep in touch with everybody there.
In terms of that process with the Eagles, I think when you’re successful, opportunities come for everybody. Opportunities come for players, opportunities come for coaches. It was an honor to be considered and to be reached out to by them. You know, I appreciate it, and it’s about all that I went through that process and I’m glad to be where I am.”
On helping Jalon Walker grow the most at inside linebacker while he can also do other things on defense:
“Yeah, you do not start them in a small box, especially not a guy going into Year 2. We want to challenge him to be as versatile as possible, to go back and forth between being an edge rusher in our third-down packages and playing inside linebacker on first and second down. That’s probably — more than you guys realize — we’ve done that with a lot of guys over the years. Maybe they didn’t end up being in that role on gameday. He was able to do that for us last year. And we want to find out how much each guy in the defense can do right now, and so we’re challenging them day to day. You have to play inside linebacker on first and second down and even challenging them to do it some on third down because there’s other guys that are good edge rushers as well and figuring out who the best 11 are.”
On why he’s stayed at Georgia as long as he had and not looked for something new elsewhere:
“So I always define — there’s a lot of ways to define quality of life, right? One, you’re responsible as a husband and a father to do what’s best for your family and their well-being. And my family’s extremely happy here. Two, quality of life in this profession is generally tied to winning, and I’ve been very fortunate between both being here and at Alabama that we’ve been extremely successful. So I have high expectations and standard for what I want to achieve in my career.
Beyond that, I think a lot of men, women, people in general — people always talk about the grass isn’t always greener. When you look at it, there’s been a lot of people who have been extremely happy and they tried to become happier, and they ended up miserable. So, you know, I’m extremely happy here. I love the people I work with, I love the players I get to coach, and I love where I live. There’s a lot of reasons why to still be at Georgia.”
On Jamon Dumas-Johnson, Smael Mondon and their continued growth:
“Going back to this spring, uniquely for those two guys, they had a lot of success early. A lot of times people are going into their third year and guys are having to compete and scratch and claw to create their role or earn respect. Those guys were fortunate enough to have earned it at an earlier age. So there was a brief lull there. From that point forward, they accepted that challenge and they have elevated their game.
I’ve been incredibly pleased with Pop through this early part of camp - his leadership and how vocal he is. His overall effort and approach to practice on a day to day is consistent, and we need that from him. He wants to be significantly better than he was last year, and he’s practicing like that’s what he wants to do.
Smael, obviously from being out there y’all know he’s limited, but he’s working extremely hard. I’ve talked to Ron Courson, and he says, ‘This guy is doing every single thing that he’s being asked to do,’ which is hard to do in treatment. Sometimes that means you’re getting treatment three times a day. Whatever that is, he’s doing a great job, and right now that’s all we can ask of him. The training staff will decided when it’s his time to return, but he’s doing everything he needs to do as a vet in that way.”
On keeping a standard:
“The thing about a standard is, once you set it, you have to uphold it every single day. When we go out to practice today, we’re not worried about the results that are going to come when we play our opponents this fall. We’re worried about how we can uphold the standard today. We constantly measure things to hold guys accountable: our results as a team defense in the prior day’s practice, we show it to them. When we fall short, we have to be accountable for that and man up and be better the next day. We chart things in terms of individual measures, things that really matter to playing great defense. The effort that you play with - you have to out hustle people to play great defense - the physicality you play with - you have to out hit people to play defense at a high level - and your competitive nature, we were talking about it earlier but you have to out compete people. The number one way we’re going to uphold the standard because schemes change year to year based on who our best 11 players are, best 15 players are, we’re going to measure, ‘Did we outhit people, did we out hustle people, did we out compete people?’ If we do that, you’re successful at just about any level of football.”
On the LBU Olympics:
“It’s become an extremely fun tradition, especially now that my daughter Whitley is two now, Bryson will turn four in September. I remember being a coach’s kid, and my dad’s players were my heros. He spent some much time with them that when I got to see them, they seemed larger than life, even though he was never in a program like Georgia where some of these guys really are larger than life and will go on to do unbelievable things. It’s been great on my end to get to see my kids interact with all of our players. Not only that but Juwan Taylor who played linebacker here, his kids were there. Blaine Miller who’s also support staff with the linebackers. It’s a chance for all of us to come together outside of football to compete and relax and break bread together.
It came about because we had that hiatus during COVID where we were apart from each other. There’s a lost piece of connection with our meetings on Zoom, so I wanted to do something different. Once they were cleared to come back to campus and had decided we were going to play football, I wanted to do something unique to create an opportunity for us to be together because there had been so much time apart and remind each other that we’re all in it together. We’re a family now that we’re here because we spend every day of the year together for the most part with a few exceptions, and hopefully the relationship stays for the rest of our lives. So, I don’t want our only experiences together to be on the football field or in a meeting room. That’s kind of how it came about, and it’s taken on a life of its own.
Technically my wife was undefeated at the end, we just called it because the guys had obligations the next day. It might have taken a while for them to beat her.”
On playing multiple positions, different packages, and how much that has changed over the years:
“Well you have to have a home base. A home base for a guy like Javon Bullard, the safeties and the STARS, the nickels, a lot of times they’re together if the whole secondary isn’t together in terms of drill work, in terms of meeting rooms, things of that nature. Obviously there’s skills different there than they are at corner. So you have to have a home base and you have to become strong in your home base first and then grow what you can do otherwise. It is a big piece because when you talk about the question about game planning, how can you fit our defense to what we need to do for that opponent? You want to have guys that you don’t feel can only do one thing because now not only do you as a staff feel like, okay, maybe we have to protect this guy or maybe we can only use him this way, the other team knows that as well.
“In terms of opponents attacking us, the more versatile our players are, they can’t necessarily say, ‘we’re only going to get this front to this formation or this coverage,’ or ‘this player is only going to line up at a nickel or is only going to line up as a safety, corner. Are they playing left and right corners or are they playing field and boundary?’ There’s a big difference. Or are they just getting up and playing ball based on where they are and they’re interchangeable? Because a lot of football is matchups and if we can change the matchups by having versatile players, its extremely helpful. For their longterm career development for after college if they’re fortunate enough to be able to do that, they don’t necessarily have a say in what they’re able to play at the next level. So the more we can train and prepare our guys to be able to do multiple things gives them a chance to have longevity in their football career. Natrez Patrick played inside linebacker for me and was able to have two years active roster in the NFL as an outside linebacker for the Rams. He was able to cross train. He played third down in some packages for us and then he was able to do that at the next level so we’re also helping their careers long term if we teach them how to do more than one thing and how to become a well-rounded football player.”
On how volume of install changes with early enrollees as opposed to guy who come in later:
“When you look at it, there’s so many more opportunities afforded by the rules in terms meetings when your not in actual practice time. So it’s really important to create a schedule of, ok here’s our allotted times of meetings and football for this part of the year. We give an introduction to scheme. Then when you get into practice time when you obviously get a lot more meeting time, you get reps, you get walkthroughs. Okay, now we’re going to ramp it up. Then when you start over in the summer, it’s back to basics with the time allotted. Then it ramps up for fall camp. So you can actually teach a defense in some form or fashion four times a year and we try to cycle it that way. It helps with their acclimation process. We had over 20 midyears on the team this year so think about that. By the time they get to the first game they may have learned, whether its offense or defense, this system in some form or fashion four different times. Now they only get to rep it during spring ball and fall camp but I think that helps.
“It’s really important to be a good teacher as a coach. I always want to say, hey, whoever their best teacher was -- to every coach on our staff -- whoever their best teacher was, why was that teacher successful in reaching them. Probably they weren’t stale in how they presented. They engaged the room. There was interaction and so you can get guys acclimated in terms of scheme, add volume if you take pride in being a teacher and not just go put a playbook sheet on the board and say, ‘hey, here’s your assignment. It’s your job to know it.’ It’s our job to teach it and that’s how we’ve kind of approached it and I think it has been successful for us. It has helped guys like Malaki (Starks) and Mykel (Williams). Last year they were able to be successful and I think part of that is one, they’re very talented, two, they worked really hard to acclimate themselves, and three, we created a plan to teach and they took advantage of it.”
On youth at OLB and the three guys brought in and how close they are to contributing:
“So today is practice six. It’s the first official day in full pads although we’ve been in shells, we’ve been in shoulder pads. The game changes when pads come on. It changed a little bit when we went from spiders to shells and it’ll change more today. Consistency decides who is able to help us. So being on practice six, everybody -- no matter how experienced they are -- still has a long way to go to the consistency we expect and the standard. Those guys flash. Those guys have ability. They have traits whether it’s in pass rush or in run defense and they are embracing what we’re asking of them. But practice six, I couldn’t have told you for sure on practice six of last year. We still have two scrimmages, really 25 practices before the first game. About 18 of those are camp style so we’re a third of the way. I’ll be better able to answer that question after two scrimmages and those 18 practices.”
On inside linebackers, the qualities that caused Schumann to recruit them:
“I prioritize outside of athletic ability because, in my opinion, they’re very talented in terms of their athleticism, in terms of being versatile in their skillset. They’re not limited to doing one thing. That’s what attracted me to them when I watched the tape. Speed is a premium. Ability to play in space is a premium. What rally made me want to sign those individuals and why I’m happy they’re here is they’re extremely competitive, extremely hard-working, they love football, they’re good people. You check those four in addition to your skillset, those are guys you want to coach. That’s exactly who they’ve been. They’ve been competitive, hard-working, love football, extremely attentive, they want to learn and they’re great people. That’s what I can tell you about them.”