My blog has moved!

You should be automatically redirected in 6 seconds. If not, visit
and update your bookmarks.

Friday, February 25, 2011

A few minutes with Georgia's newest assistant football coach ...

Kirk Olivadotti grew up around football, which meant a lot of moving as his father Tom embarked on a long coaching career. Not that he wanted his son to follow him.

“My father always told me he was gonna punch me right in the face if I became a football coach,” Kirk said on Friday afternoon.

But during his sophomore year of college, at Purdue, Olivadotti decided to go into the family business. He changed his major to education, and soon enough he was coaching at places like Maine Maritime.

Olivadotti was hired last week as Georgia’s new inside linebackers coach, after 12 years in various coaching positions with the Washington Redskins. Here’s a few tidbits from an informal session Olivadotti had with the media assemblage on Friday:

- Olivadotti said he’s known Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham for about six years. As the new Georgia assistant put it, Grantham “worked with my old man” with the Houston Texans.

During the interview session, Olivadotti came off as rather laid-back and informal. But he said his philosophy with his new players won’t be to sit back and wait.

“They’re gonna run to the ball and they’re gonna hit something,” he said. “That’s what I told them the first meeting at the first day: You’re gonna play if you can run to the ball and hit something.”

The Redskins were primarily a 4-3 team during Olivadotti’s tenure, but they switched to a 3-4 just last year.

- Special teams duties are yet to be ironed out. Warren Belin, whom Olivadotti is replacing, coached the kickoff coverage unit, which ranked first in the SEC.

“We’re still sorting that stuff out,” Olivadotti said. “I’ve done pretty much everything on special teams, so that won’t be much of a transition for me.”

- Olivadotti said he’s spent the week since he was hired watching a lot of tape of returning players and incoming recruits. He didn’t want to get into personnel talk just yet, including whether Jarvis Jones will play inside or outside.

“We’ll figure all that stuff out,” he said. “That’s out of my pay rate right now. You can ask the higher-ups.”

- How long was Olivadotti with the Redskins? He coached under seven different head coaches, the first being Norv Turner.

“I’m not sure it’s weird for me because it’s just how it went,” Olivadotti said.

He said he’s talked “from time to time” with one of those former Redskins coaches, Steve Spurrier.

Not that his long tenure in Washington was perfectly continuous: He said he was asked to pack his office up a couple times, thanks to the coaching changes, only to be called back later. Marty Shottenheimer made him re-interview, and Olivadotti was only retained after a six-week hiatus.

- The Redskins had two former Georgia players on defense, and Olivadotti knows each well. He has texted back and forth with Philip Daniels – who warned Olivadotti that one of his complimentary texts about “coach O” had gone viral. Olivadotti also saw Kedric Golston at Redskins Park the day he took the Georgia job.

“He was all excited,” he said. “Kedric and I we go back a little bit because he was one of my first players when I was the defensive line coach. So if you ever want a Kedric Golston story we can get into that at a later time.”


Anonymous said...

Pssst, it's Kedric.

Anonymous said...

Nice article thanks for insight Seth

Rich said...

Thanks Seth...I know it's not football season, but this is the SEC and we are all crazy.

Anonymous said...

Psst, it's Olivadotti, not Olividotti.