4 worst head coach hires in Georgia basketball history

Michael White is trying to rebuild the Georgia basketball program after a run of some of the worst head coach hires in program history all over the past 30 years.
Georgia Bulldogs head coach Tom Crean
Georgia Bulldogs head coach Tom Crean / Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
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1999-2003. 2. Jim Harrick. . Jim Harrick. player. 527. . Record: 45-22. Jim Harrick

Jim Harrick was widely successful at UCLA, winning the 1995 National Championship, the 31st in school history. However, he was fired just two years later after paying for a dinner that included two of his players, Cameron Dollar and Charles O’Bannon. It was a ridiculously nonsensical thing to be fired for, but then, it’s the NCAA. 

So, Harrick rebuilt his reputation with two seasons at Rhode Island, making the NCAA Tournament both years. Georgia decided to take a chance on Harrick and after a 10-20 record in Year 1, he made the tournament in back-to-back seasons and won the SEC regular season title in the 2001-02 season. 

However, Harrick’s son was caught by the NCAA for paying $300 in expenses for one of Georgia’s players, Tony Cole, and for giving Cole and two other players on the team an A in a basketball strategy class that they never attended. 

Georgia self-imposed a postseason ban in 2003, Harrick’s last season, and was placed on probation by the NCAA for four years. The growth of the program was stunted by the violations. 

While the academic fraud component was not great, can we all agree that the impending death of that sham organization is long overdue? So two kids got dinner and Tony Cole got some expenses paid… who cares? And as far as I’m concerned playing SEC basketball is the best basketball strategy class that those players could get. 

Harrick needed to play by the rules of the time, so by that standard, he hurt the program which was forced to vacate most of the wins from his two most successful seasons, so he deserved a spot on this list, but the rules of time were archaic and frankly criminal. The NIL era isn’t perfect, but I’d take it over the NCAA’s tyranny 100 times out of 100.