No, assistant coach Rodney Garner doesn't have any idea who head coach Mark Richt is leaning to as his new defensive coordinator.
But whomever it might be, Garner said after Monday's 44-20 win over Texas A&M that he looks forward to sitting down with the new Bulldog DC to see if he can still be a part of the Georgia staff.
"Obviously, that guy will be able to decide who he wants on his staff, so we'll just have to wait and see," Garner said. "But for him (Richt) to hire the caliber of guy that he needs, he has to give that guy the liberty to do what he needs to do. I'm appreciative to Coach Richt for the opportunity that he's given me and I want an opportunity to interview with the guy to see if I fit into the scheme or what-not."
Garner said he would be able to work with whomever Richt decided to bring into the position. He also said he's spoken with safety Reshad Jones in depth about the impending hire.
Jones is considering leaving Georgia early for the NFL Draft, but Garner said he wants the Atlanta native to wait and see who Richt hires before making any decision for himself.
Garner said he will take the same advice before making any rash decision regarding his future with the Bulldog program.
"I can work with anybody. I'm open to anybody, and it's like I told Reshad (Jones), I've got faith and trust in Coach Richt. He's going to go out and hire a very, very qualified coordinator," Garner said. "It's going to be a cutting-edge guy, it's going to be a guy who is proven, it's going to be a guy who has a great reputation and he's (Jones) is going to have to have that same faith and trust."
Garner said he anticipates the Bulldogs signing 25 players and said Georgia's recruiting class should be invigorated by whomever Richt decides to bring in.
"I don't think it's going to hurt the recruiting class at all. In fact, it's going to generate a lot of excitement around that hire, so if anything it may excite the recruiting effort," Garner said. "If it's a college guy, there may be some guys from another place who may all of a sudden be excited about Georgia. I don't see it being a detriment, period."
Whoever becomes Georgia's new defensive coordinator, Garner said there will be plenty of talent available, despite losing interior players Geno Atkins, Jeff Owens and Kade Weston, along with potentially Jones and linebacker Rennie Curran.
"Obviously, it's going to be a rebuilding year inside, but we still should be strong on defense. If Rennie comes back we'll be real strong at linebacker, and if Reshad comes back we'll be pretty good in the secondary," Garner said. "There are a lot of ifs, but I think there is a good nucleus of players and I think we've got good personnel going forward. So, whoever Coach Richt brings in will have a good nucleus to build around."
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