Football, Sports

Miami officially announces hire of head coach Mark Richt

It’s official. Former Hurricane Mark Richt is returning to Miami as the head coach, the school announced Friday morning. Richt will be introduced at a press conference at 10 a.m. in the Shalala Student Center.

“Coach Richt embodies the competitiveness, the integrity, the passion, the abilities, and the experience to lead our young men to ACC and national championships and help them become men of character and success long after,” James said in the press release. “His passion for the game of football and for his student-athletes is evident in everything he does and we could not be more excited to welcome Mark and Katharyn and their family to Coral Gables.”

Richt played for the Hurricanes from 1978-1982 and was a star quarterback at Boca Raton High before coming to UM. Miami’s new head coach was fired by the University of Georgia on Sunday after 15 successful seasons, leaving Georgia with a career record of 145-51 and two SEC championships.

“We are blessed to have the opportunity to come to a world-class institution and world-renowned city and play a role in the life of the campus and community,” Richt said in his first public statement since getting the UM head-coaching job.  “Returning to The U is truly an honor and I am humbled by the responsibility of leading our storied program. I can’t wait to get started.”

Below is the full press release from the school.

University of Miami Director of Athletics Blake James announced today the hiring of Hurricane alumnus Mark Richt as the 24th head football coach at The U.

Richt will officially be introduced to the public at a news conference at 10 a.m. Friday in the Shalala Student Center.

“Coach Richt embodies the competitiveness, the integrity, the passion, the abilities, and the experience to lead our young men to ACC and national championships and help them become men of character and success long after,” James said. “His passion for the game of football and for his student-athletes is evident in everything he does and we could not be more excited to welcome Mark and Katharyn and their family to Coral Gables.”

Richt, born in Omaha, Nebraska, and raised in Boca Raton, Florida, returns to his alma mater after leading the University of Georgia football program for the past 15 years, compiling a 145-51 overall record and an 85-40 mark in Southeastern Conference play, winning two SEC championships, six SEC East titles and nine bowl games and finishing the season in the Associated Press Top Ten rankings seven times.

“We are blessed to have the opportunity to come to a world-class institution and world-renowned city and play a role in the life of the campus and community,” Richt said.  “Returning to The U is truly an honor and I am humbled by the responsibility of leading our storied program. I can’t wait to get started.”

University of Miami President Julio Frenk said Richt “understands that at this University, student-athlete success is measured both on and off the field.

“I am convinced that we have found in Mark a leader who knows how to win, and who is committed to setting an example for his players and for all of us in the Miami community,” Frenk said.

The U’s decision to hire Richt comes as the university works to combine a top athletic department with a world-class education. Last week, UM announced Dr. Steven M. Altschuler was recently brought on board as the UHealth CEO and senior vice president of health affairs. That followed the April announcement  of the hiring of Frenk, UM’s sixth president and former dean of Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Richt’s .740 winning percentage ranks fifth-best among active FBS head coaches and he is tied for ninth among the winningest head coaches in SEC history.  Richt is one of only seven head coaches in SEC history to record four straight 10-win seasons (2002-05).  During his tenure on the sidelines in Athens, 77 of Richt’s players were selected in the NFL Draft over the last 14 years, including eight chosen in the 2002 and 2013 NFL Drafts – the most Georgia players ever selected in a single year.

Off the field, Richt places a strong emphasis on academics and 292 Georgia players earned their degrees during his tenure.  Richt was the 2013 recipient of the Stallings Award given for commitment to humanitarian and community service efforts, and in 2010 he was named to the American Football Coaches Association Board of Trustees.

Prior to his arrival at Georgia, Richt spent seven seasons as the offensive coordinator at Florida State.  In his time in Tallahassee, the Seminoles finished in the nation’s top five in scoring offense on five occasions, top 12 in total offense five times, and top 12 in passing offense five times. The 2000 team, which played in the National Championship game against Oklahoma, finished the regular season ranked first nationally in total offense (549.0 ypg), first in passing offense (384.0 ypg), and third in scoring offense (42.4 ppg).

Richt sent six FSU quarterbacks into the NFL between 1987 and 2000. In 2000, Richt coached Chris Weinke to the Heisman Trophy, and in 1991 he coached Casey Weldon to runner-up for the Heisman. His teammate at FSU, Brad Johnson (now Richt’s brother-in-law), was a Pro Bowl selection for Washington in 2000 and led the Tampa Bay Bucs to the Super Bowl title in 2003. Other Richt pro protégés include Danny Kanell (New York Giants), Danny McManus (Kansas City Chiefs) and Peter Tom Willis (Chicago Bears).

Richt played quarterback for the Miami Hurricanes under legendary head coach Howard Schnellenberger. He spent most of his career at Miami as a backup to former Buffalo Bills star Jim Kelly. In one of Richt’s years at Miami, his teammates included Kelly, Vinny Testaverde and Bernie Kosar and quarterbacks coach Earl Morrall.

Richt is married to the former Katharyn Francis of Tallahassee. The couple has four children – Jonathan, David, Zach and Anya. Jon was married to the former Anna Cearley, in May 2010.

Mark Richt Bio

College: University of Miami, ‘82

Birthdate: Feb. 18, 1960

Birthplace: Omaha, Neb.

Wife: Katharyn Francis

Children: Jon, 3/11/90; David 12/1/94; Zach 5/15/96; Anya 2/13/97

Coaching career

Florida State (graduate assistant), 1985-88

East Carolina (offensive coordinator), 1989

Florida State (quarterbacks), 1990-93

Florida State (offensive coordinator/quarterbacks), 1994-2000

Georgia (head coach), 2001-2015

Record

145-51 overall

85-40 SEC

Title and Notes

2 SEC Titles

2-Time SEC Coach of the Year

14-Straight Bowl Games

9 seasons with 10 or more wins

7 AP Top-10 Finishes

6th-Most Wins Among Active Coaches (Saban, Snyder, Stoops, Tuberville, Meyer)

Bowl Wins (9)

Sugar (2)

Capital One (3)

Peach

Outback

Independence

Belk

Career vs. the ACC

19-3 Overall

9-3 vs. AP Top-25; 10-0 vs. Unranked

Georgia Tech 13-2

Clemson 3-1

Florida State 1-0

Louisville 1-0

Virginia Tech 1-0

December 4, 2015

Reporters

Mark Singer


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