Georgia finished 6-6 this season, but Mark Richt blamed himself for the 1-4 start. Richt says his decision to eliminate tackling to the ground during the three August scrimmages, ended up really costing his team.
Richt said,"I started the season in camp probably not doing enough live scrimmaging and tackling to the ground. Ever since I've been coaching, that's all I've been around. But we've had a couple of years in a row. We had one season, we started the season we had 32 guys injured before the year even got started. And so I'm like, `Alright, this year, I'm going to do what some other teams do.”
“We were still going to scrimmage, you know have three big scrimmages, but we were going to try to go full speed but not go to the ground or not block below the waist to try to beat everybody to the gate."
"I definitely take the blame for the start because I didn't do a good job of getting them ready. I think it did make a difference and we did start to play pretty darn good after that. And I think has a lot to do with things turning around."
After ramping up a mid-season Monday practice, the Bulldogs began playing more like Richt had hoped. The Dawgs won 5 of 7 games down the stretch to become bowl eligible.
Georgia will play UCF in the Liberty Bowl on December 31st.