Welcome to the latest edition of As Kirby Smart’s Possible New Staff Turns. Here’s what we know and can report as of Sunday morning:
- Jim Chaney: Offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. Chaney had been the offensive coordinator and QB coach at Pittsburgh.
- Sam Pittman: Offensive line coach. Pittman had been in the same role at Arkansas.
- Glenn Schumann: An undefined defensive assistant coach job. Schumann had been a player development coordinator at Alabama.
NOT OFFICIAL BUT PROBABLY HIRED
- Thomas Brown: Running backs coach. Brown was in his first year back at Georgia in this role, and he’s been actively recruiting this past week, informing at least one recruit he was being retained.
WHO’S DEFINITELY OUT
- Jeremy Pruitt: The former Georgia defensive coordinator took the same job at Alabama on Friday.
- Brian Schottenheimer and Rob Sale have now seen their jobs filled.. The question is whether they’ll still be with Georgia for the bowl. A couple players said they haven’t seen Schottenheimer around the building at all since the Georgia Tech game. Mike Ekeler, who was Georgia’s inside linebackers coach the past two seasons, has also laid low and is expected to latch on with another program, perhaps soon.
THE REST OF THE STAFF
That leaves five spots to be announced or filled. The big hire to come is defensive coordinator, which should lead to other openings being filled, and Schumann’s spot being assigned. There also remains a chance that Smart could hire a full-time special teams coach, though he hasn’t said for certain what he’ll do there.
Based on conversations Chip Towers and I have had with people familiar with the situation, along with some things we noticed at Saturday night’s gala event, here are some additional notes:
- Kevin Sherrer, who spent the past two seasons as Georgia’s outside linebackers coach, has been on the road recruiting for the Bulldogs the past few days. A few people who should know say they haven’t been told yet that Sherrer has been retained, but when you’re on the road for the staff that’s an indication of where things maybe going.
- On the other hand, Bryan McClendon, the receivers coach and interim coach for Georgia’s bowl game, has not been seen in any photos tweeted out by recruits this past week. The early indications after Smart’s hiring were that McClendon was likely to be retained, but now that’s not very certain at all. Miami coach Mark Richt – still feels weird typing that – didn’t want to get into any staff information when asked on Saturday night, but people familiar with his thinking say there would be a spot for McClendon in Miami if he wants it.
- Tight ends coach John Lilly would also seem a good candidate to join Richt, and for what it’s worth Lilly – along with McClendon – was at Saturday night’s gala, rather than over at Sanford Stadium at the recruiting event.
- One person not likely to fill Lilly’s spot would be former Minnesota coach Tim Brewster, now the tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator at Florida State. While one report said Smart had “targeted” Brewster, indications from those in the know at Georgia say that’s not the case.
- Another person who was at Saturday night’s gala was Tracy Rocker, who spent the past two years as Georgia’s defensive line coach. Rocker declined to say anything about his status when approached, but he also wasn’t over at the stadium at the recruiting event.