It’s simple, when you’re a successful program and recruit at a high level, other programs are going to come after parts of your staff to try their best to duplicate or emulate that success. For the past few seasons, a very successful Georgia program has lost assistant coaches to promotions in the college football coaching ranks. Mel Tucker and Sam Pittman both left UGA to become first time head coaches, Shane Beamer went to Oklahoma with Lincoln Riley to become Assistant Head Coach and now he’s the Head Coach at South Carolina, and now another Bulldog coaching staff member has been plucked in now former Defensive Back Coach Charlton Warren.
Success begets success. Kirby Smart is growing quite the coaching tree in his 5 year stint at Georgia. Warren, who is taking the Defensive Coordinator position at Indiana, as we’ve mentioned, is not the first good coach for the Dawgs to targeted for a higher role at another program, and he won’t be the last. That is your goal as a Head Coach, or it should be. The Head Coach is a leader of men, not just the players, but their assistants as well and the goal should always be to see everyone have as much success and see as much growth as possible. The good news for Georgia is, this is as good of a time for any to lose a very talent coach and very good recruiter like Charlton Warren. The move didn’t happen during bowl preparation, the push for the early national signing period, or late in the spring when most quality coaches have already made their moves or decided to stay put. No, January is about as good of a time as any to lose a talented coach if you’re going to.
As far as the replacement for Warren, Kirby Smart has shown he’s not afraid to pluck coaches with NFL backgrounds. With the NFC and AFC Championship games looming, some of the best teams and staffs in the NFL have been eliminated and coaches looking for other opportunities will have time to talk to other programs and interview for jobs. While I wouldn’t say that going the route of bringing on an NFL quality control guy or a position coach is the way Kirby Smart will go about filling his new coaching vacancy, I certainly wouldn’t rule it out.
Of course there will be a plethora of coaches already in the college game connected to the job. Even coaches like Will Muschamp. Muschamp has a son that is a walk-on quarterback at UGA and is reportedly looking for a lesser role on a staff this season. Muschamp has been in a pressure cooker for some time now with his Head Coaching stints at Florida and South Carolina. It’s understandable that a man would want some time away from the grind that is coaching in the SEC, especially in a leadership position.
It’s well known and I’ve confirmed with 2 sources that Muschamp has been in Athens a lot since his firing at South Carolina. Serving in a role as an analyst or non-field coach, similar to Buster Faulkner on the offensive side, has long been discussed and quite honestly planned on, but now one former Georgia defender in Kirby Smart may try to convince another in Will Muschamp to come on board and coach DBs. Again, I wouldn’t bet the mortgage that this is the ultimate replacement strategy for Warren, but I’d rank it ahead of pulling an NFL guy in and Muschamp is certainly a name and proven commodity that brings energy and draws respect, similar to Smart’s Matt Luke hire.
I’d expect Georgia to move quickly on filling the position. Despite what the media and trolls might say about the Dawgs’ seemingly endless pursuit of another national championship, UGA is one of the top 4 to 5 programs in the country to coach at and they have the resources to match. Qualified candidates will be drawn in like moths to a flame. If Kirby Smart’s track record of replacing talented position coaches is any indication, expect a homerun hire to lead the young and talented Bulldog secondary in 2021.