Tom Crean’s UGA recruiting pitch: ‘There’s plenty of room for statues’
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Tom Crean gives his recruiting pitch on Pardon My Take
There’s an unprecedented energy around the Georgia men’s basketball program and it’s all because of Tom Crean. Since he was hired in March, the Bulldogs’ new coach has been seemingly everywhere preaching the gospel of Georgia hoops and trying to drum up excitement in the team.
His latest stop on this tour was a fiery interview on the popular Pardon My Take podcast, where he talked about his year away from coaching spent as a member of the media, his decision to take on the gig at Georgia and his recruiting philosophy.
You should listen to the entire interview, but it’s that last part I want to bring to your attention. In a single quote, Crean explains why he thinks a major recruit should sign with Georgia, a program that has consistently underwhelmed and struggled to meet anything close to its potential. It’s not an original thought. In fact, it’s something I’ve talked about with Georgia hoops fans for years.
Except, with a simple turn of phrase, Crean is able to deliver it more eloquently and concisely than I’ve ever heard it put.
“What’s not here?” Crean said. “You can come and be a part of winning. You can come in here and help us win. There’s plenty of room for statues around this campus, so we can build some of those along the way.”
There’s plenty of room for statues.
Just let that sink in for a second. I was already pretty in the bag for Crean, but hearing that statement reinforced my belief that he’s the coach to right this ship and help the program finally live up to its potential.
Crean, like most Dawg fans, understands that Georgia doesn’t have the legacy of an Indiana or Kentucky or even Florida. It’s easy to see that glass half-empty, but Crean sees it half-full. It means there’s an opportunity to create a legacy, an opportunity to create history. Georgia basketball’s best days are still in front of it. If Crean can get the right people in place and keep building this excitement, those days may come sooner than we think.
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Hurry up and wait
The SEC spring meetings are in Destin, Fla., this week, which means it’s time once again for Georgia fans to rehash one of their pet topics: the Dawgs’ back-to-back visits to Auburn in 2012 and 2013.
Georgia bit the bullet back then and made consecutive trips to the Plains to help the SEC sort its schedule as it expanded to 14 teams. Ever since, Georgia fans have waited for some satisfaction in the form of a return to the status quo, which, in this case, would be Auburn traveling to Athens for consecutive seasons. Despite a desire from both Kirby Smart and Gus Malzahn to return to the old schedule, UGA athletic director Greg McGarity noted that a reversion is unlikely. From Chip Towers of DawgNation:
“When Missouri and Texas A&M joined the conference, three schools had to move some traditional dates in order to make the schedules work,” McGarity told reporters. “Auburn and Georgia were two of those schools. It was to make the 6-1-1 work.
“If we hadn’t done that, a bunch of other schools, many more than three, would have had to make all kinds of changes. To undo it now, again, you’d need a much larger [group] of teams make changes, many more than three.
“So, it’s one of those things where it might not have been the best for Georgia, but it was best for the conference.”
Odds & Ends
- These are very good times indeed for UGA athletics
- UGA recruiting: How hard is it to keep multiple young QBs on the roster?
- UGA star has strong reaction to QB’s transfer decision
- Georgia Football: 2018 Bulldogs Preview and Prediction (Athlon)
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