ATHENS — The Xs and Os will fall into place for Georgia football as the competitions play out at the various positions in spring ball.

Kirby Smart is an expert at such things, entering his ninth season as the Bulldogs’ head coach riding an amazing string of regular-season victories that goes back to the 2020 season.

Georgia has won two of the last three national titles, of course, while producing more NFL draft picks than any program in that time period.

It’s the most elite college football program in the nation, even while Smart doesn’t get his full due, failing to be voted national coach of the year because some voters say he’s “supposed” to win.

Smart would rather invest time into team building than writing Twitter jokes or making weekly ESPN appearances, as other SEC media darlings have done.

Smart most recently revealed some of the meaning of the team’s new slogan, taken from Nike, to “Assume Nothing.”

Smart went into greater detail of the team slogan during his appearance at the Macon Touchdown Club on Monday night.

“For us, ‘Assume Nothing’ is as little as, ' Do you know everyone on your team’s name?’ " Smart said, sharing how he put one of UGA’s 5-star signees on the spot this offseason in a team meeting after bringing him in front of the room.

“I said, ‘You’ve been here three months, can you name the front row of this team meeting?’ " Smart said, sharing how the front row is made up of seniors.

“It’s not like he just got there; he’s been there three months, he’s been in workouts, he’s been in interactions , and he went down the row and he named about 10 out of 20.”

To be fair, Smart noted there are probably more new faces at UGA this spring than ever before with mid-term enrollee and transfer numbers trending up across college football as well as at Georgia.

But the point was made: Georgia’s connection has been at the root of the program’s success, enabling the Bulldogs to overcome adversity after losing to Alabama in the 2021 SEC title game, or trailing Ohio State by 14 points in the fourth quarter of the 2022 CFP Semifinal.

Smart shared that he has had his players stand up and share their names at meetings, and gave an example of how he would introduce himself to teammates.

“Kirby Smart, named after my grandfather, my grandfather went off and fought in a war,” Smart said, revealing his middle name, Paul, was from a parents’ college roommate.

“When you learn someone’s name, you learn something about them. Every person has a name for a reason …. when you learn that about them, you begin to connect to them, and connection is part of our DNA.”

Smart revealed how he learned that one of Georgia’s top draft picks in the 2023 class had an NFL team visit on which he was not able to remember the names of the franchise’s head coach or general manager.

“I reflected upon that as I failed that young man,” Smart said. “For all the stuff we taught him, his position specific stuff … financial advice, nutrition advice, career advice, somewhere in that you miss repeating someone’s name to yourself, or simply saying ‘Sir I can’t remember your name, what’s our name again?’ "

Smart said it’s critical to be transparent and connect with people to have success in the real world.

“I think back to Nike,” Smart said, “and they ‘Assume Nothing.’ "