Georgia Bulldogs head coach Mark Richt reacts during the third quarter of the 2012 SEC Championship game against the Alabama Crimson Tide at the Georgia Dome. (Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports)
WATKINSVILLE, Ga. -- He is one of the most recognizable names in the state.
The University of Georgia's head football coach Mark Richt and his wife Katharyn form a powerful "one-two punch" in the recruiting wars.
Married since 1987, they have had their share of ups and downs.
She has successfully battled cancer, they've adopted children, and have experienced the wild world of SEC football.
This is the same couple that sold their vacation home a few years ago and donated the money to children's charities.
Both of the Richts are of great Christian faith. And it would seem that the Richts have found their groove in Georgia.
"I guess when we first came here we didn't know how long we would be here; we had no idea. And now we sit here and say 'Wow!' We've been here 12 seasons. That's amazing!" said Katharyn Richt.
And this season past was the most amazing of all: 12-2, 5th in the Coaches Poll. And five yards and a few seconds away from a BCS National Title appearance.
Alabama survived the SEC title game inside the Georgia Dome 32-28.
"How many times during the course of a day does someone come up to the both of you and start talking about the last play of the SEC title game?" Jeff Hullinger asked the Richts. "Have you grown weary of that?"
Mark Richt: "Do you get it?"
Katharyn Richt: "I get it a little, not so much."
Mark Richt: "I haven't got it in a long time. What I hear, since the national championship game, all I hear -- that was the real national championship."
On a cold winter's afternoon with hip replacement surgery and national signing day closing in, Mark Richt's home fires are burning. The symbols of his Christian faith and the faith of his wife Katharyn frame their living room and kitchen.
This is a different time. Little more than a year ago, hot seat talk was swirling.
Mark Richt: "Pressure is what you make of it. You can't listen to what's swirling around or pay attention to those other things -- you have to pay attention on what's important."
This month the Georgia Athletic board is expected to give Richt a raise. Keep this in mind, Vanderbilt's football coach makes more than Richt. And of course the NFL always beckons with money successful coaches.
Mark Richt: "I'm not interested in recruiting young men and walking into a team meeting and saying 'Hey fellas, I really appreciate helping me get to where I want to be.' There is no other place I want to be. Georgia is where I want to be. "
The Richts like the college life.
On this night and day they were hosting recruits and their families.
Katharyn Richt: "I don't have to cook. That's huge. Ha! It's a lot of fun having people here. They love to come and see who we are and how we live. We are just like them, we are just in the limelight because of football."
Does it get bigger in Georgia than the title of head football coach at UGA? Nope. The Richts are the template for partnership. But as far as extra coaching -- with a record of 118-40, Mark doesn't really need any.
Katharyn Richt: "I was going to say, I don't coach him or anything like that. You're crazy (Mark)! I don't ever say anything like that!
Mark Richt: "No. Only my mother tries that. Ha! "