The name of the former head coach wasn't even mentioned Monday night. It didn't need to be, really. It was another sign the changing of the guard has actually happened in Athens, as there is a new sheriff in town.
Kirby Smart is nothing like the former head coach. He doesn't need to be like the man who held the job for the past 15 years. Smart just needs to be who he is, and it is a stark difference from what has been in place as the new chapter starts in Georgia's football history.
Smart was full of energy in his first real speech in front of football fans. It wasn't just Georgia fans he was speaking to, but fans of many teams as the Macon Touchdown Club gathered for its huge jamboree. And what an impression Georgia's new head coach made in Macon.
"Do your job" was Smart's message to not only the prospects and young players on hand, but to the fans as well. He learned that mantra when he visited the New England Patriots' team complex a few years ago. Smart has not only gained knowledge from Nick Saban at Alabama, but he went to peek at what Bill Belichick does in New England.
Smart didn't seem nervous, which might have been expected. Instead, Smart looked like he was home. He looked comfortable in his own suit, like he had been the head coach for a couple of years instead of just a couple of months. He was genuine and personable, but matter of fact in the job he has to do.
Work ethic is usually what is mentioned when you ask someone about Smart. Smart admitted he usually gets to the office around 7:15 in the morning, and it's doubtful he's home much before supper. This is a man with a lot to do, and he's smart enough to know the honeymoon will last only so long.
Wins will be the ultimate test, and while the Georgia fan base must be patient this year, we all know that patience will only last so long. Once the freshman quarterback is a junior and the head coach is no longer new, Smart will have expectations that will make what he had in Alabama look miniscule.
We have continually heard Smart's former boss at Alabama talk about the process. That's what Smart is doing right now in his first 100 days on the job. He's getting the process rolling, and it's a non-stop effort to have the wheels in motion to make sure once the pigskin is kicked into the air on a Saturday afternoon everything that is supposed to happen does.
Smart replaced a man who won a lot of games, so this was as much about changing the culture as anything. Smart seems to be doing that, with a different tone compared to the previous administration. His speech was serious and direct, and the message was pointed to not only future players, but to the people who will fill the seats at Sanford Stadium to support his team.
Smart is not kidding when he says he wants 93,000 people in Athens for G-Day. He's expecting it, and why wouldn't the fans want to see a sneak preview of what's to come in this new era of Georgia football?
At some point during the past two months, it has had to hit Smart. "Holy cow, I'm the head coach at the University of Georgia." It has got to be a thrill for a kid from Bainbridge who played between the hedges to know he's now in charge.
But for some reason it seems he'll live the slogan he preached Monday night. Smart will do his job, and that's all one can ask from a new head coach.
Listen to "The Bill Shanks Show" from 3-6 p.m. weekdays on WPLA Fox Sports 1670 AM in Macon and online at www.foxsports1670.com. Follow Bill at www.twitter.com/BillShanks and email him at email@example.com.