Georgia’ latest hire generating buzz

Published 3:40 pm Tuesday, February 25, 2020

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This has been an exciting offseason for Georgia fans.

Following right on the heels of pulling the nation’s No. 1 recruiting class and the hiring of a new offensive coordinator, the Dawgs have made another hire that is sending waves through the college football landscape. Kirby is great at flipping recruits, but this new hire might be his greatest flip yet.

Alabama strength and condition coach Scott Cochran, famed for his loud, gravelly voice and unbridled enthusiasm for getting players in shape for SEC football, is the new special teams coordinator for Georgia. Cochran was one of the last two remaining members of the original Nick Saban coaching staff from when he started back in 2007.

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He is beloved by the program and its fans, even going so far as to star alongside Saban in commercials. Videos and soundbites of Cochran are played during Bama football games. News features have been done on his passionate approach to player conditioning, A.K.A. the animalistic persona he takes on to get his players to perform their absolute best, both in the weight room and on the field.

Kirby tried to steal away Cochran when he was hired to coach Georgia in 2016. The two are good buddies and were close while at Alabama, and Kirby knew how important it was to have the best strength and conditioning staff. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out at the time. Since then, Kirby has hit a home run with Scott Sinclair training the players. Cochran was obviously holding out for something a little bit bigger.

With the recent departures of Sam Pittman, James Coley and Scott Fountain on the Georgia staff, Kirby had some holes to fill. Matt Luke and Monken were absolute slam dunks. Cochran will now fill that third spot as an on-the-field coach, exactly the opportunity he has been hoping for. I am thrilled to see what Cochran will do for the Dawgs.

Being one of the few nationally known strength coaches, he will be a beast on the recruiting trail. Inspiring players and bringing out their best performances can sometimes be tough on special teams, where a lot of the kids playing are simply waiting their turn for a more glamorous position to open up. If anyone can light a fire under them, it’s Cochran.

Cochran was a key piece for Alabama. Finding a replacement won’t be easy, but I don’t doubt that Saban has kept a shortlist of names on hand over the years. Will this have any measurable effect on the Crimson Tide’s program? It’s way too early to tell, but probably not. Alabama is still going to be Alabama. Georgia will play them week 3 of the season in Tuscaloosa, and I expect it to be a tough brawl. Hopefully, these offseason hires and good player development these next six months can give the Dawgs an edge.