Richt: Spurrier didn't run it up on Dawgs

Reporter
Posted Sep 6, 2005


ATHENS — Anytime Steve Spurrier comes to mind, Georgia fans start thinking about running up the score, something they always claimed the South Carolina coach did.

Those fans might be dismayed to learn that their fifth-year head coach has the same philosophy about running up the score as Spurrier.

“I would say you’re running it up if you’ve got your first-team players in the game with five minutes to go and you’re up by 40,” Bulldog coach Mark Richt said. “If you’re still throwing bombs, maybe that’s running it up. I think it’s the defense’s job to slow people down anyway.”

The touchdown that has irritated Georgia fans for a decade -- Eric Kresser’s 8-yard pass with 1:10 left to surpass 50 points in Florida’s 1995 win in Athens -- certainly doesn’t fit Richt’s description of excessive. That pass went from a backup quarterback, who later left the program, to a redshirt freshman receiver.

“It was in the normal course of the game,” Spurrier said this week.

Richt pointed out that the Bulldogs threw a pass on the final play of their game Saturday despite being ahead 48-13. It was a 6-yard completion from third-team quarterback Blake Barnes to A.J. Bryant.

“If you’re subbing young people and giving them a chance to throw and catch and do the things you’d need to evaluate them doing, I just feel like that’s part of preparing your guys to learn how to be ball players,” he said.

Richt heard from Bulldog fans on his Monday night call-in show about running up the score against Spurrier on Saturday, he said, but he insisted that has never crossed his mind.

“I learned my first year, style points don’t mean anything, just win,” he said. “I promise you, I am not even fibbing a bit to say that I would just be tickled with a one-point victory right now. Even if it was 3-2, I think I could swallow that even with all the red zone questions I’d have to answer.”


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