UPDATE: All-world defensive back Branden Smith chose Georgia tonight during the Under Armour game. Word on the street was that Coach Garner was the primary coach recruiting him. Read into that what you will.
"Good program, good academics. You know, I had that good connection with the coaches."
- Branden Smith
I am reminded of how excited I was when Reshad Jones committed. The graveyards are full of indispensable men.
When Jim Donnan was pushed out, it was absolutely crucial to keep Rodney Garner on that staff. It was Coach Richt's best hire, with the possible exception of bringing Dave Van Halanger with him from Florida State.
Coach Garner is still one of the best when it comes to southeastern recruiting, and I think this blog is on record valuing Coach Garner.
But he's made it clear over the years that he's interested in moving up. Like Coach Richt, I think the Bulldog Nation supports him in that. He's worked hard for us here, and if we don't have what makes him happy, Coach Garner should go with our blessings and an invitation to return.
And, though I'm more than happy with Coach Garner, I'd be excited about an opportunity to add new blood to the coaching staff if he leaves. I never thought we needed to fire Coach Martinez, I just thought we needed one new guy on defense.
Someone who will put safeties in a Darth-Vader-style choke hold if they try to shoulder tackle, and punch defensive linemen in the face until they're All Americans.
Should Garner leave, I'm sure we'll be fine in recruiting. Georgia Tight Ends Coach John Lilly was Florida State's recruiting coordinator from 1998 until he joined the Georgia coaching staff in 2008. That's not FSU's highest cotton, but it's nothing to sneeze at.
And when you win 10 games a year, and Coach Richt and his very stable staff have had 8 years to get to know high school coaches around the state, recruiting gets a little easier.
By the way, if I can make a general prediction on who Coach Richt might bring in if Coach Garner does decide to leave...