UGASports - Video: Schottenheimer presser
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Video: Schottenheimer presser

Mark Richt introduced new Georgia offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer to the Bulldogs Nation on Friday. In the half hour interview with the beat reporters, Richt and Schottenheimer answered questions about the interview process, what each one is looking for, the status of the offensive line coach hire and who was the better collegiate quarterback.
Also, Richt explains how he had to correct the former Gator quarterback on use of the terms "Gatorade" and Florida-Georgia" game.
Head Coach Mark Richt
Opening Statement…
"We appreciate the support and enthusiasm for our program. We just want to say
that we're very excited to announce, or maybe not announce but present, to you
Coach Schottenheimer. Brian is a guy that we've got an awful lot of faith in to
come in and run an offensive team. We're thankful that he has decided to work
his way into the college ranks and choose Georgia. So with that, I'm going to
give Brian a second to say a little something and then can start letting you
guys ask whatever questions you want.
Offensive Coordinator Brian Schottenheimer
Opening Statement…
"I'm just thrilled to be here. This is kind of a dream come true to get back
into the SEC and to an elite program. I appreciate Coach Richt and everybody
giving me the opportunity, and I'm really excited about it."
On why he decided to return to college football…
Schottenheimer: "Obviously, college is something I've looked at the last
couple of years. When I left the Jets, I had an opportunity to interview with
Coach Saban down at Alabama and ended up choosing to go to Saint Louis. Last
year, I actually interviewed for the Vanderbilt head coaching job and came up
short with that. But it's been something I've been looking at for a while. I
played in the SEC. I love college football. When we're on the road, we obviously
get an opportunity to watch some guys. I'm always tuning in to the Saturday
afternoon game. (I'm excited about) the chance to come to an elite program like
this. Obviously, Coach Richt is a huge part of the attraction for me. What
they've done here, the history and the tradition were a big part of it."
On the difference in working with professional athletes and
student-athletes…
Schottenheimer: "It all starts with just the relationship. I look forward to
getting to know these guys. I think they'll find out about me. I'm an upbeat,
positive guy. But at the same time, there's going to be work that has to be
done. We'll roll up our sleeves and get to work. But I look forward to that
part, I really do. I look forward to getting a chance to mentor some of these
young men. I have two small children of my own and, again, I take very seriously
the fact that I believe that I'm a good person with high character and morals,
and I try to pass it on to people. I look forward to working with these young
men and helping them become better student-athletes."
On Georgia's returning quarterbacks…
Schottenheimer: "I'm just kind of getting into the process now. I spent
quite a bit of time on recruiting film, to be honest with you. But talking to
Coach Richt and the staff, obviously we know there are a couple of guys starting
to stick their nose in. I just met Brice (Ramsey). I can give you some more
information on that in the next little bit."
On recruiting after nine years in the NFL…
Schottenheimer: "It's certainly different. Obviously, the technology has
changed a lot. I think it sounds like that's a good thing for both the schools
and the student-athletes. But the biggest thing, again, is developing
relationships. The university here speaks for itself and what they've done here.
It's time-tested. I'm looking forward to getting into it. The exciting thing for
me is I'm coming into a situation with a great staff and a lot of guys already
in place. That's a big benefit for me."
On transitioning from the pro level to college…
Schottenheimer: "It seems like wherever I've gone, there's always been young
quarterbacks. With that comes a challenge. But at the same time, it's fun.
That's a passion of mine. I love working with quarterbacks. I love developing
quarterbacks. Drew (Brees) has become one of my best friends in the world. We
spent a lot of time together both on the field and in the classroom, and we've
certainly had some success. Again, that's a passion of mine and something I
think I'm pretty good at and look forward to trying to continue that tradition
down here."
On the process of hiring Brian Schottenheimer…
Richt: "I was having a lot of people pursue this job over time. During the
time that the team was in Charlotte is when Brian's name first surfaced or at
least began to resonate with me. As you can imagine, there were just a lot of
texts, a lot of calls, a lot of emails, people shooting things to the office,
just an awful lot of interest. And then you have people calling for people,
people texting for people, people emailing for people, who they would like to
get in front of Georgia, in front of my attention. It seemed like right in the
middle of that (is when his name came up)."
On the process of becoming Georgia's offensive coordinator…
Schottenheimer: "This is a place that I've been monitoring. You see a guy
like Mike (Bobo) get the chance to move on, and it was certainly something that,
as I've been watching college football, caught my attention. When I was at
Florida, this is one that I kind of had my eye on. So, again, I was very
interested and just happy it worked out."
On his approach with Georgia's successful offensive…
Schottenheimer: "It's about sustaining that success. I think that's the
goal, that's the objective. The good thing about me is I'm coming into a
situation where there are a bunch of really good coaches on the staff. We're not
going to reinvent the wheel. I think philosophically, that's one of the things
Coach Richt and I see in this program. We see things the same way-the pro-style
offense. We're going to run the football. Obviously, that's a big part of what
we're doing. And so it was really kind of an easy fit, an exciting fit because
not a lot of teams in college football are doing it that way."
On a new offensive system…
Schottenheimer: "I really believe it's easier for me to come in and learn
what they've been doing. I think that's what is going to allow these guys to
play fast. Certainly, there will be some things that will have my fingerprint on
them. But I'm excited about coming in and trying to sustain the success that
these guys have had here. That's a big part of it. We had the chance to sit down
and talk and visit. It's really not a big difference from some of the things
that we were doing (at the Rams). It's really going to be a pretty easy fit, I
think."
On a new offensive system…
Richt: "I think the terminology is really just a matter of semantics, a
matter of how you call something. One of the greatest attractions for me in
looking at Brian is just the fact that we do think a lot alike philosophically -
how to run the football, how to throw the football, how to protect, formations
and run combos at the line of scrimmage. We are still believing it's a two-back
running game, but we also need to be able to spread out and go with three- and
four-receiver sets, take advantage of formations and motions and be able to
protect in a way where we can get four or five guys out. We do things very much
the same, although we may call it just a little bit different, the big thing is
the guts of it are going to be very similar. I'm not going to sit here and say
that it will be exactly what we did because we do want to know the things that
Brian knows and that can help us grow as an offensive football team, but we also
didn't want to just totally stray away from the success that we've had and the
style of play."
On what separated Schottenheimer from other candidates…
Richt: "I think it was really the thought of having a guy that was, again,
very similar in thought, very similar in scheme, very similar in philosophy. We
do run a pro-style attack. A lot of teams across the country are spreading and
doing a lot of zone-read with quarterback run and protecting certain ways. It
just really hasn't been what we're about. We're still very serious about running
the ball a certain way and having the diversity in the passing game to be as
sophisticated as anybody in the country with our protections and with our route
concepts. We're not just throwing four verts and some smash routes here. We have
a pretty intricate passing game and protection scheme. We put a lot on our
quarterback to make decisions at the line of scrimmage. I just think
philosophically, we're very much the same."
Who was the better college quarterback…​
Richt: "You'd have to ask my mom on that. We probably had similar careers. I
will be honest, there were a couple of things that have come up already that we
had to get squared away right off the get-go. Somehow the term Gatorade got
brought up and I said we are actually PowerAde here. And then we talked about
the game we have in Jacksonville and he did refer to it as the Florida-Georgia
game. I said that's rule number two, it's the Georgia-Florida game. Obviously,
we think it's a really good fit. We're excited."
On NFL head coaching interviews, ultimate career objective or goal…
Schottenheimer: "Again, obviously I would love to become a head coach at
some point. I've also realized that the most important thing for me now is to be
in a good spot; a place I believe in, a person I believe in. In this case, I'm
thrilled about college football. I see it as a new journey, a new start. I'm
really excited about it and I see myself in this game for a long time."
On having the same offensive staff…
Richt: "Right at this moment that's where everybody is. I don't see anything
changing. You never know what tomorrow will bring for anybody. But right now,
we're solid."
On hiring of new offensive staff…
Richt: "Offensive line coach obviously, we've got to make that hire. Talking
with Coach Schottenheimer reminded me of when I first became offensive
coordinator at Florida State. I think every coordinator who is a quarterbacks
guy wants to make sure he's got the right offensive line coach with him, and
knowing how important that hire is for not only the coordinator but for the team
in general. So we're just trying to do a good job of finding the right fit. We
have, quite frankly, a wide range of candidates as far as some college guys,
some with more pro experience, some with a little bit of college and a little
bit of pro experience. I think one of the biggest things that we're agreeing on
is that this guy must be a great fundamentals coach, a really good teacher of
the run game and a really good teacher of the pass game. We think schematically
we can get done what we need to get done. We just have to make sure that whoever
is the line coach is going to be able to get our boys to execute. Just like we
talked in the bowl game when we talked about Coach Lilly calling those plays, we
know the plays. It's just a matter of, is it a good play because of the call or
because of how well we execute it. We've got to make sure we can execute and
that will be a big part of the process in bringing in the line coach."
On the opinion of NFL and his family on moving from the pros to Georgia…
Schottenheimer: "They're excited for me. I mean, they really are. I think
they see that my heart is really here at Georgia. Obviously there are a lot of
guys I trust and respect. I've gotten so many calls truly saying what a great
place Athens is and talking about Coach Richt and his personality. I think it's
important in this profession that you not only believe in the people you work
with but that you respect them. I have a lot of respect for him and the program,
the way that it's carried itself. Everybody that I've talked to, truly the
people that I care about, think it's a great move for me and my family. My
family is thrilled. My wife is actually here probably spending money right now
looking at houses and things like that. We're all in excited and ready to go."
On his dad, Marty Schottenheimer's reaction…
Schottenheimer: "He trusts my instincts. He just loves the profession of
coaching. I think he's really excited that I'm going to another great place.
He's always seen himself as a teacher and I do as well. I think starting to
train 17- and 18-year-old young men, student athletes, is an exciting challenge
for me that he is really excited for me; he is very fired up."
On whether or not he's always wanted to be a coach…
Schottenheimer: "I really wanted to be a golfer. Then I started playing
football and my hands started getting beaten on and I couldn't really play quite
as well. Around the age of 18 or 19, actually that's why I transferred from KU
to Florida, I wanted to go down (to Florida) and kind of learn the pro-style
offense from Coach (Steve) Spurrier. From that point on, I've never looked back.
Coach Richt and I have laughed quite a bit just about that process of going
through it and figuring out what you want to do. Some people always ask my dad,
'hey, did you ever try and talk Brian out of getting into coaching.' He said,
'well, I thought about it but the fact that he wanted to do it means that I made
it fun for him, that it's a great profession and something that he wanted to
follow my footsteps in.' I'm very proud of my father, obviously, but also
excited about kind of carving my own path."
On his timeline from being interviewed to being hired…
Schottenheimer: "After I saw that the job was open and it became a
possibility that there was mutual interest, I got a chance to visit with Coach
and the staff. When you sit down and do these interviews, sometimes it seems
like a natural fit, and I was hoping I would get a call from Coach and that it
would be something he felt as good about, the interview and the connection
between not just the two of us but the staff. I was very pleased when he did
call."
On keeping the continuity…
Richt: "It was important that we found someone that was like-minded. If
Coach felt real strongly about using every bit of his terminology just as long
as it translated to what we know, that's one way to go. He felt like it might be
wise for him to learn a lot of our terms that mean the same thing that he did in
the League, it's just more familiar for our guys. He felt like it would probably
be wiser for one guy to learn it rather than 60 people to learn. Again, we're
talking about doing the same blocking scheme and one guy calls it an ace and one
guy calls it a slip. It's those types of things. It's just like every
off-season, we would go and visit a guy like Coach Schottenheimer and say, how
can we grow this system? What do you do in the red zone that might be good?
We're always, as a staff, trying to grow. Now we've got a guy like him in the
house who is going to be there with all of his experience. There are going to be
new route concepts and probably some new ways of running the ball. We may change
how we do a two-minute drill or a four-minute drill or whatever it is just using
the vast experiences that he's had. The core beliefs and the core system are so
similar that that was one of the main attractions, other than his success and
his ability to communicate. Quite frankly, he won over everyone on our staff
throughout the interview process that took about four or five hours. He was
outstanding."
On how his cancer scare 10 years ago affected him…
Schottenheimer: "It scared me in the beginning. My wife was pregnant at the
time with our son, Sutton. It kind of caused me to pause a little bit, but
truly, other than taking two pills a day to replace my thyroid that's no longer
there, it really hasn't changed me at all. I have a strong faith, so that
probably goes back to that as well, but I'm aware of it. My wife actually
reminds me of it more than anybody else if I go out and have a big meal and
throw a little too much (salt) on some food or something, but again, I'm
obviously very healthy now and blessed that it really wasn't that big of a
deal."
On how important it was to have a coach with an NFL pedigree…
Richt: "Oh there's no doubt he's a great teacher of quarterback play. I
asked a few basic fundamental quarterback questions to hear how he would
communicate that to a young quarterback. Once you get a guy who is NFL caliber,
you're not teaching him how to take a snap from center necessarily. You might
say this guy knows what he's doing in certain areas, but that's one of the first
points he made. He said, 'you know, we start from ground zero every camp on
every fundamental that is important to quarterback play.' We talked a little bit
about how you teach the fundamental of throwing from point A to point B and I
just wanted to hear him articulate that. He was very precise yet very simple to
where guys could understand it, so I really enjoy the fact that he has coached
some great ones. I think it is exciting to our guys, currently, and I think it's
exciting to quarterbacks of the future that are looking at Georgia. But not only
that, when you're the coordinator and not just the quarterbacks coach, you've
coached this receiver, that receiver, this tight end, that running back, these
offensive linemen over the years and have competed against players that our
recruits idolize and look up to. I think most players aspire to be in the NFL
and they want to be developed to get there. Well now they know that in Brian,
he's been there and he knows what it takes and he knows what it takes to stick
there. So all of that's a real positive thing for recruiting, no doubt."
On leaving the Rams after a season in which his starting QB was injured…
Schottenheimer: "Obviously I'm proud of the things we were able to do. We
certainly had our fair share of adversity. St. Louis is a great team and Coach
Fisher has obviously been great to me and my family, so that's the bittersweet
part of it. In terms of losing Sam [Bradford] the last couple of years, it was
difficult, but it's the next man up philosophy you have to understand in this
profession that we're in. But again, it wasn't as much about St. Louis as it was
about this opportunity, and this place, and the chance to come here and coach
with this guy [Richt] that really got me excited. The great thing about this
profession, whether it's coach-to-coach or coach-to-player, is those
relationships with the guys you go to battle with each week; the guys you work
with so closely. Those relationships never go away. You hold onto them tight and
when you see them out on the road or compete against them down the line at some
point it's great to go and just check in and ask about families and things like
that. So some great memories, obviously, but I'm really looking forward to this
new chapter."
On the biggest difference between the pro and college games…
Schottenheimer: "Well I think obviously recruiting is the biggest
difference. I mean, football is football. Like Coach talked about, we could sit
here and talk about running schemes and pass protection schemes, and regardless
of what you call it, that's not a huge difference, but the recruiting part of it
I'm really excited about. And I mean really excited about. Obviously being at a
place like this, they almost sell themselves. So again, excited to get here.
Richt: "We spent a lot of time on the phone last night just trying to get up
with a lot of the offensive players we've got committed and the others that
we're working on, one of the first things we've done is get going on the
recruiting end."
On what can be done recruiting-wise so far…
Richt: "He came in and took the test, passed it, and was able to get on the
phone. Nowadays you can DM or direct message a kid and ask him to call. I had
already tweeted everybody about the hire. I asked if they had heard about it and
[told them] if they wanted to know more about it they could give me a call. That
was a couple of days ago, and when Brian was in last night I told them, 'he's
sitting right here with me if you want to meet your new offensive coordinator
and say hello to him to give me a call,' so a bunch of guys took me up on that."
On whether or not he had to see anything in the interview process to make
him feel comfortable that Brian was going to be able to hit the ground running
and recruit well…
Richt: "Well he's a great communicator, there's no doubt about that, and his
experience has got to be exciting for any young player to want to gain knowledge
from a guy like Brian who has all of these experiences in the NFL and at the
collegiate level. I think you can even just read the comments from some of the
recruits on what they think about it and there's been nothing but a positive
spin and a lot of excitement on that. But I think recruiting is about
relationships. I think recruiting is about communicating. Recruiting is about
being honest with people, and like I mentioned before, building those
relationships and trust. And then also, people have to believe you are competent
at what you do. They have to believe that somehow the University of Georgia and
this coaching staff can help me develop into the best player, the best person,
and the best student that I could possibly be. And that's what we've been
selling since 2001 and that's what we'll continue to sell. Brian was very
sincere, because we asked him some questions as a staff about making the
transition, and I think Brian is very sincere about wanting to be significant in
the lives of young people. And that's what has kind of kept me at the college
level my entire career. You know, early on could I have moved on to the NFL? I
had opportunities, but I always felt like this age group of guys are still
teachable and moldable and I think we can make a difference in their lives. And
I think that's what Brian articulated to the staff with his desire to come back
and wanting to bless his family through the process, but I think that's what
helped solidify for me that he was serious about coming to this level of
football. Because it is more than just X's and O's when you deal with college
athletes.
On whether he had any prior relationships with any of the coaching staff…
Schottenheimer: "No I didn't. I think I met Coach [Richt] last year when
we came and worked out Aaron [Murray] here. I think you [Richt] were stuck
somewhere and had to drive up, so he wasn't real friendly at the time because he
had been in the car for a while, but no, again, it was a real natural fit. It
really was. I'm not just saying that. Sometimes you sit in an interview at a
place and you can't wait to get out of there, but this was not the case. It was
great give and take, and I felt great about the people Coach has surrounded
himself with. I think they will be easy to work with and that gets you excited
about coming to work and walk shoulder to shoulder with these guys. And I'm just
thrilled."
On whether he called Mike Bobo or any other assistants that had been
here...
Schottenheimer: "I've talked to the assistants that are here. Coach Bobo
reached out to me which I really appreciated. He sent me a text. That just shows
you the kind of person he really is. He just said, 'hey good luck, you'll love
it,' but again, getting to know the guys today has been great, and I look
forward to those being long and meaningful relationships."