Kirby Smart continues to round into the leader that Georgia needs

Kirby Smart continues to round into the leader that Georgia needs
FILE – Georgia head coach Kirby Smart speaks to reporters before the team’s first scheduled NCAA college football practice Friday, Aug. 2, 2019, in Athens, Ga. (FILE – AP Photo/John Bazemore)

DAN MATHEWS
680 THE FAN, ATLANTA –
COVID-19 has been a very trying time for us in this country. 

This has also been an opportunity for people to step forward and lead people who are looking for a strong voice. I think that Kirby Smart has done that with this Georgia football program.

Yes, Smart is not as open with the media, as was his predecessor Mark Richt. But, I also think that he has done a great job of being transparent on things that he needs to be and mum on the information that does not need to get out of his program.

Case in point, with keeping the COVID-19 test results private within the program. It is his choice, in regards to keeping the health of the players as his business. Clemson, LSU and other schools have made their decision to allow that information to leak. It’s their choice, but it’s honestly not anyone else’s business.

Before you think that he’s keeping that information private, because it could be a bad look for the program? Think again…

Earlier this week, Smart joined the ‘Herbie and Pollack’ podcast on ESPN Radio. He like every coach in college football, is trying to navigate the world that has been provided by dealing with this pandemic.

One way that he is getting the players to follow proper guidelines surrounding the mitigation of the disease, is through a hands on approach. You heard the saying, “leave it the way you found it?”

“They actually clean the weight room themselves,” Smart said. “Because, we think that makes them understand the importance of it. Now, it doesn’t mean we don’t have it professionally cleaned. We still have it professionally cleaned, on top of them. But I think making them aware that I’ve got to clean this, when they go home, they think the same thing. When they step out of our building, they’re understanding of when they’ve got to have masks on and when they don’t. That’s very unusual.”

This is all fine and good. But, Smart still has to lead this program to meaningful wins on the field. He has won, but still has room to grow the program.

Have you heard (sarcasm), that Georgia has not won the national championship since 1980? Have you heard (again), that Kirby Smart won an SEC Championship in the same amount of time that it took Mark Richt to reach a similar goal?

These facts are not lost on Smart.

“We haven’t gotten where we want to go,” Smart said. “ We know that. I think everybody understands that in this building. Part of this organization, we try not to let the outside noise effect us. We know our goals. We know our aspirations. We know the capabilities we have and we try to maintain focus on that.

“I’m not looking backwards at the things we’ve done. Just like I’m not trying to look way out forward either. I’m trying to look day by day at this thing, as we go through.

“I certainly have enjoyed it. I’ve been very proud of a lot of the work we’ve done.”

Dynamic recruiter? Smart is that and then some. He even talked about using the efficient approaches that Chick-fil-A has in rapidly serving their customer, in regards to how he handles recruiting.

Smart is the right man for this job. He’s shown that during this very difficult time in our lives.

As for the goals they have yet to accomplish? Give him time. I know that is something that Georgia fans would say they’ve been hearing for way too long.

Let’s just say this… You’re much closer to reaching that ultimate goal, than you would be without Smart in charge.

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