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UGA LB Happy WIth New Coach

Georgia linebacker Darryl Gamble is about to be used.

Gamble is a fifth-year senior.  He started 11 of the Bulldogs’ 13 games last season.  He also said yesterday that he likes his new position coach more than his last one. 

That means that all of the Dawg fans who had prayed, screamed for, and demanded defensive coaching staff changes last offseason will use his quotes as proof that the last guys had to go… and that the new guys were the right replacements.

“I guess it’s like finding love for the game again because I was in a slump,” Gamble told The AJC.  He also said that he and former linebackers coach John Jancek “didn’t see eye-to-eye on a lot of things.  Having Coach (Todd) Grantham here just gives me an extra boost of energy.”

Grantham — UGA’s new defensive coordinator and outside linebackers coach — moved Gamble from inside to out during spring practice.  And now Gamble — through his comments — has become the perfect example of why last year’s coaches needed to be canned.

And let’s face it, something WAS wrong with Georgia’s defense the past couple of years.  The Bulldogs looked to have the talent, but they couldn’t achieve big-time results.  Mark Richt finally pulled the trigger on three of his defensive aides last winter.  The potential rewards seem to far outweigh the risk of change.

But that doesn’t necessarily mean that Gamble should be used as evidence by UGA backers looking to prove a point.  This is one player commenting on his relationship with one coach.  You notice we haven’t heard Jancek’s side of things.  Why is it the coach and player didn’t see eye to eye?  Was the problem really on Jancek’s end?  Or was the problem with Gamble? 

Jancek is now at Cincinnati, so it’s doubtful he’ll comment on his relationships back in Athens.

Two things always happen with a coaching change:

1.  The leftover players always say great things about their new coaches.  “Tougher practices.”  “Better communication.”  “More energy.”  It happens everywhere.

2.  The disgruntled players who were happy to see their old coaches go pipe up to the press.  Maybe their grumbles and head-to-head comparisons are perfectly legit.  But maybe they’re just sour grapes.  And the old coach rarely gets any space for a rebuttal.

There’s also a third thing that happens after the first two:

3.  Fans who wanted the coaching change say, “See?  I told you the last guys had to go.” 

But no one will know if the changes made were good ones — not even Gamble — until the season gets under way and UGA’s defense gets tested.

Until then, the fact that one player is dissing his old coach in favor of his new coach will make headlines, but it still won’t mean very much.


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