Offensive line coach Stacey Searels was on his way to Austin on Wednesday night, as a web site that covers Texas was reporting that Searels was set to be named to the Longhorns’ staff.
Officials at Georgia had no word on Searels status on Wednesday evening: Athletics director Greg McGarity and team spokesman Claude Felton both said they had yet to speak to head coach Mark Richt, who was on the recruiting trail.
Searels, a native of Trion, Ga., also holds the title of running game coordinator. He has been on the staff at Georgia since 2007, when he came over from LSU.
If Searels does leave, one person who could get a call from Richt would be Hugh Nall, the former Georgia player and offensive line coach at Auburn and TCU. Nall, who now is out of the coaching business and lives in Albany, Ga., said Wednesday night he wasn’t interested in getting back into coaching “unless my boss says I need to.”
Nall also said that, having coached in the state of Texas, he wouldn’t be surprised in Searels’ interest.
“I think anytime a coach anywhere leaves, it’s not a surprise anymore really. Especially with the money these days,” he said. “I coached at TCU for six years, and there’s a lot of lineman in the state, and Texas gets the pick of what they want.”
Georgia speaks to SEC over hoops non-calls
McGarity said Wednesday that he has forwarded concerns to the SEC over several calls in Tuesday night’s men’s basketball game against Tennessee.
McGarity said he was following a standard practice with the SEC, which isn’t meant as an official protest, but just to allow the league to know of a school’s concerns.
“I can’t really point towards one thing,” McGarity said when asked what specific calls he included in his message. “You have several things that you may bring to the their intention. The SEC reviews it, and it’s dealt with internally.”
This was the first time this season McGarity has forwarded concerns to the SEC office. He added that he wasn’t aware if head coach Mark Fox had done so after previous games.
Two non-calls by the officiating crew proved critical in Tennessee’s 59-57 victory:
- The game-winning basket, by Brian Williams, came after Williams reached over Georgia’s Chris Barnes for the rebound. Williams told reporters afterwards he was “surprised” a foul wasn’t called.
- A few minutes earlier, the shot clock appeared to run out before Tennessee got up a shot that tied the game at 57.
McGarity did not think any malfunction with the system at Stegeman Coliseum could attribute to the officials not seeing the shot clock expire.
“One could argue the horn could have been louder,” he said. “But as loud as it gets in that arena … There were no arena deficiencies that aided in that decision.”
Strickland passes on final year
Searels may or may not be around next year, but one of his offensive lineman is definitely leaving.
Tanner Strickland, a redshirt junior, has elected to leave the team rather than play his senior year. Strickland started three games at guard this year and played in all 13. But he has battled shoulder injuries, and missed the entire 2009 season after shoulder surgery.
“I’ve had troubles with my shoulder, and this past couple of years have been tough,” Strickland said. “And I just decided to move on from football.”
Crowell’s teammate commits to UGA
Carver senior linebacker Quintavius Harrow offered his verbal commitment to Georgia on Wednesday and plans to sign with the Bulldogs on Feb. 2, national signing day.
Harrow, who was offered a scholarship last week, is a teammate of tailback Isaiah Crowell, one of Georgia’s top remaining targets.
Georgia coaches were at Carver on Tuesday, and Harrow (6-foot, 180 pounds) will be taking an official visit to Georgia this weekend. He said he hopes to discuss several things with coaches there, including how the Bulldogs will use him.
"I liked the way they run their academics, I liked their workout facilities, and the coaches showed me a lot of love," Harrow said of Georgia. "Everything about Georgia I just love. The fans are crazy up there. It just looked like a lot of fun."