Georgia football has one of the best defenses in the country despite losing its defensive coordinator to a head coaching job. After such a historic 2021 run and winning a national championship, not many expected this defense to be this good. This unit hasn’t really skipped a beat, even as young as it is.
Head coach Kirby Smart has instilled a culture other coaches dream of having for their programs. This culture is part of the sustained success that the Dawgs continue to have, and it’s a significant reason why the Dawgs are staying at an elite level on defense.
That culture is why changing defensive coordinators didn’t result in too many issues. The Dawgs have coaches that understand what Smart is trying to accomplish, and the players can adjust regardless of who coaches them.
Georgia football knows that culture helps sustain success.
Smart knows that implementing a good culture will allow his players to succeed not only in college or, eventually, the NFL but off the football field. That mentality is important to Smart because this bond between coach and player goes beyond the football field.
"“It’s just culture. That’s not going to change. What we do is not going to change. It doesn’t matter if one coach leaves or another coach leaves. That doesn’t impact our defense,” head coach Kirby Smart said ahead of the Peach Bowl. “We rep a lot of players at practice. We have a system set up to get our twos and threes ready. So the next cast of defensive players is getting ready just like they were last year. I think if you’ve got a good formula for getting guys ready, it prevents large gaps in seasons.”"
When that culture is in place, it does not matter who coaches the players. That mindset does not change because that is Smart’s touch on the program. Coaches that want to be at Georgia know this, and they must accept that culture before becoming someone who influences these young men.
Not to mention the way Smart recruits, it helps keep that defense sound. In the quote above, the way the practice also comes into play, but culture — that piece is what really makes Georgia great on defense. That mindset of knowing these players and coaches have each other’s back and support each other.
Culture may seem like a small piece to this massive puzzle, but it’s the glue — the stuff that keeps the success flowing. Smart has something special brewing at Georgia, and it’s evident that culture is a massive reason why it continues to come.