Mark Richt remains interested in another coaching job and said Monday he will listen “to anybody who has interest in me” as he prepares for his final game as Georgia’s coach.
Georgia announced Sunday Richt will not return as coach in 2016. In making the announcement, athletic director Greg McGarity and University of Georgia President Jere Morehead said Richt had been offered another position at the school.
Richt said at a news conference Monday he appreciated that option but would consider other options. He said he expects to have other opportunities to coach, especially since he will not be on the road recruiting as he had planned during the break before bowl practice.
“I'll have the opportunity to look at a lot of options,” Richt said. “I think there will be a lot of options to weigh, so I’m blessed in that way.
“I’m not ready to say what I’m going to do yet, but it is very attractive to have the option to stay in Athens … and have the opportunity to help young people.”
McGarity met with Richt on Sunday morning. Soon after, Georgia announced the news that Richt was out as coach.
McGarity said he has had negative and positive feedback from fans.
“I expected it,” McGarity said. “I think decisions of this nature are very difficult. Our fans are passionate. Mark has tremendous support.”
McGarity said he made the decision following Georgia’s 13-7 win over Georgia Tech on Saturday to end a 9-3 regular season.
“It was a very quiet ride home for me to dig down deep and make sure that was what my heart told me to do,” McGarity said.
Richt’s status had been questioned following a disappointing showing against some of the Bulldogs’ top Southeastern Conference rivals. Losses to Tennessee, Alabama and Florida ended Georgia’s hopes for a SEC championship. Georgia had been favored to win the SEC East.
Georgia closed the regular season with four straight wins, but that was not enough to save Richt’s job.
Richt is 145-51 with two SEC championships. Only Vince Dooley (201) won more games at Georgia. Richt won 74 percent of his games, the fifth-best mark among active coaches, behind Urban Meyer, Bob Stoops, Nick Saban and Gary Patterson. Former Georgia coach and athletic director Vince Dooley, who hired Richt, attended the news conference.