Georgia hasn’t enjoyed its games against Florida recently, which is unfortunate because everyone should enjoy the “World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party,” no? The Gators had won eight of nine and 15 of 17 since 1990.
And so it was that when the Bulldogs took a 7-0 lead in the first quarter, they went completely insane. Georgia Coach Mark Richt admitted it was staged — thank goodness his team wonÂ or that would have been really silly, as opposed to just silly — and he has since apologized for his actions.
“Two weeks ago when our preparation began for the Florida game, I told the team that we have got to have more energy and enthusiasm in this ball game or we are going to get whipped pretty good,” Richt wrote in his letter to Slive. “I said, as a matter of fact, when we score our first touchdown, I expect you guys to celebrate to the point where the official will throw a flag for excessive celebration. I admit this was inappropriate.”Â Â
If you’re scoring at home, that’s two apologies in two weeks.
That said, it’s a petty, though pretty clever ploy. You know the players were looking forward to the celebration and then wanted to make sure it held up. Richt is getting some support from his peers and one of his better friends in the coaching fraternity, WVU’s Rich Rodriguez, said Monday such things aren’t uncommon.
It sounds crazy, but these are kids and itâ€™s like they need woken up at times. It is such a business and such a drive on them that it seems like some of the kids aren’t having any fun at all despite the TV and the 80,000 fans. Last year, we were halfway through the season and it didnâ€™t seem like some of them were having any fun at all, so I made them all stand up and chest-bump each other and high-five each other before going out. Then they did that during the game, so that was neat.