Former UGA football coach makes history - - Jackson, MS

Former UGA football coach makes history


It’s one of the toughest, yet most rewarding, jobs in college football.

Bryan McClendon has made a career coaching in the Southeastern Conference.

“I hate losing,” he said. “I hate losing so I’m a terrible loser.”

After playing wide receiver at the University of Georgia, he became an assistant coach with the Bulldogs for eight seasons before getting the opportunity of a lifetime.

“I really learned how important it was to do as good as I can at doing my job” McClendon, now South Carolina’s Offensive Coordinator, said.

In 2016, McClendon was named Georgia’s interim head football coach for the final game of the season after the departure of longtime leader Mark Richt.

“I do think it’s special,” he said. “Anytime you get a head coaching position in the SEC, it’s one of the premier jobs in the country.”

Not only did he lead the Dawgs to a 24-17 victory over Penn State in the Taxslayer Bowl, McClendon became the first and only black head coach in University of Georgia football history.

“Anytime you get stretched outside your comfort zone, I feel like it’s an opportunity to grow. The only thing I wanted to do was just be steady. I wanted to be as steady as I could just for everybody else around.”

McClendon’s shining moment landed him a coaching job with the University of South Carolina, where he was just named the Gamecocks’ offensive coordinator.

“Worry about doing a great job at your job,” he said. “And others notice how good you’re doing your job. I think other opportunities will come.”

His will to win began at a very young age, growing up with two brothers. Losing was not an option.

“Everything was a competition,” he said. “Everything was a competition. If you could name it, we’d turn anything into a game.”

Through it all, McClendon learned that the key to success is being yourself, and for him, his success is not measured by making history as UGA’s first black head football coach.

Instead, it’s about being there for the kids he coaches.

“There are some dudes that I don’t think would ever graduate that I kind of helped them get there, and those guys graduated and those are the highlights for me.”

Copyright 2018 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

Connect with CBS46

Powered by Frankly