Mark Richt was unceremoniously fired from Georgia last week, mainly due to the fact he didn't lead the Bulldogs to enough championships.
In addition to winning an average of 10 games per season in Athens, Richt managed to get his team to 'only' two SEC Championships and two BCS bowl wins along with six top-10 finishes. For all of his accomplishments on the field, Richt is most known by his players for how special he is off it.
That didn't result in the Bulldogs earning enough championship rings that the university felt he was worth keeping beyond this season. Richt knows this, but it still wasn't, nor well be his ultimate goal as a coach.
"Life is about people, not rings. Rings collect dust," said Richt following his firing.
Though it's a different sport and a different level of success, I couldn't help but think how much Richt's quote applies to what Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari is all about.
'People above rings' echoes the 'players first' theme Cal preaches.
"I coach for the names on the backs of the jerseys – not just the front. My players," Cal says of his coaching philosophy.
Another Cal quote:
"Institutions serve people, not the other way around. So as a servant-leader, I measure my success by the success of those whom I’m serving."
It seems like a simple concept that every institution of higher learning would be about, but sadly, we live in a world where wins, money and championships are often what coaches are defined by. It's good to see these two leaders of men know what it's all about and can serve as great examples for us all to look to be like.