Hines Ward Interested in Joining Kirby Smart’s Staff?


Hines Ward spoke with SEC Network’s Paul Finebaum about possibly joining Kirby Smart’s staff at Georgia should Smart officially accept the UGA job offer.

Hines Ward is a beloved football icon with two teams. He won two Super Bowls in his 14-year NFL career playing for the Pittsburgh Steelers (1998-2011). Ward also starred as a wideout, running back and quarterback at the University of Georgia (1994-97).

Ward, who works as part of the broadcast crew for Sunday Night Football on NBC with Al Michaels, Chris Collinsworth, and Bob Costas, spoke with the SEC Network’s Paul Finebaum on Wednesday about the assumed hiring of Kirby Smart as the next head coach of the Georgia Bulldogs.

-= Related: Georgia Bulldog: 5 Potential Bowl Matchups =-

Hines Ward and Kirby Smart were teammates at the University of Georgia from 1995 to 1997. Ward told Finebaum that the news of the Smart hiring in place had him hankering to possibly leave the broadcast booth and get into coach as a member of Smart’s new staff at their alma mater.

More from UGA Football

Since retiring from the NFL in 2011, Ward has been in the broadcast booth and doesn’t have any experience as a coach. However, there isn’t a prospective college prospect that hasn’t heard of or watched Hines Ward. Ward could stand as a stellar recruiter for the Dawgs. Imagine Hines Ward walking into some teenager’s living room to talk about Georgia football while simultaneously brandishing his Super Bowl rings. It’d be hard to not buy what Ward was preaching.

While many expect Kirby Smart to keep many of the current members on the Georgia staff, could a spot potentially open up for Hines Ward? A source close to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution stated late Tuesday night that DL Coach Tracy Rocker would certainly stay and that Smart could keep WR Coach Bryan McClendon, OLB Coach Kevin Sherrer, and RB Coach Thomas Brown.

Live Feed

Dylan Raiola will be fine wherever he lands, and so will Georgia football
Dylan Raiola will be fine wherever he lands, and so will Georgia football /

Dawn of the Dawg

  • Georgia Football: Rumors swirling that Dylan Raiola will flip to NebraskaDawn of the Dawg
  • Georgia Football: College Football Is Dead, and I Don't Feel So Good MyselfDawn of the Dawg
  • Taking a look at the SEC Blueprint at SyracuseSouth Bound & Down
  • The Georgia Bulldogs were robbed of a spot in the College Football PlayoffSouth Bound & Down
  • Ranking every Georgia College Football Playoff game of the four-team eraDawn of the Dawg
  • McClendon and Brown are both former players at the University of Georgia. Rocker is a legend at defensive tackle for the Auburn Tigers in the late 1980’s. Sherrer served on Smart’s defense while both were part of Nick Saban’s staff at the University of Alabama.

    Since Kirby Smart is more of a defensive minded coach, he’ll likely keep McClendon and Brown in good faith as they are all from the same alma mater, but would let his new OC decide the rest of the offensive staff.

    Georgia needs to figure out QB, OL, and OC before thinking about bring Ward on as a top assistant. Keeping both McClendon and Brown might make it difficult to find a spot for Hines Ward, as I would see him as either a wide receivers or a running backs coach, both occupied by former Dawgs.

    To me, I don’t think Ward would leave NBC for anything less than a position coach’s gig with the University of Georgia. However, I don’t now the strength of the relationship Hines Ward has with Kirby Smart and that will play a significant part in the two former Georgia Bulldogs possibly pairing up again Between the Hedges.

    Could Hines Ward come in and become a great offensive coach right away? Probably, but if Georgia wants to contend immediately out of the gate in the first year of the Kirby Smart Era in Athens, they can’t have a former player with no coaching experience hold a major role with the offense, especially since the incoming head coach is a defensive minded one.

    Next: Kirby Smart: The Next Head Coach of the Georgia Bulldogs

    However, getting a Canton bound NFL player like Hines Ward preaching great things about Kirby Smart bodes tremendously well for recruiting. Georgia sells itself, but having a ringing endorsement of its next head coach from a Super Bowl Champion does more than we think. Perhaps Hines Ward may leave the booth and get back on the turf. Go Dawgs!