AMELIA ISLAND — Mark Richt’s resume includes five months at Miami, 15 years at Georgia and 15 as an assistant at Florida State.
With all that coaching experience, he probably doesn’t have room for “commercial actor,” especially if he’s trying to keep his resume to a single page (as most career advisors recommend).
But it is part of his work history, we can confirm. When he was a redshirt senior backup quarterback at UM, Richt answered a casting call for students to appear in a commercial for Italian jeans.
Because the internet is a magical wonderland of useless entertainment, that commercial exists on YouTube.
Yes, the shaggy haired man in the blue tanktop, jumping rope at the 0:07 mark, is the future coach of the Hurricanes.
Richt appears in the video for three seconds — we think, because we don’t plan to verify if any of the hips-and-butts close-up shots are of him.
We unearthed this gem with the help of Michael Scott Sheerin, an FIU professor and former UM student who was also filmed that day in 1982 (he’s shown riding his bike at the 0:23 mark).
Sheerin, who reached out after seeing our previous post on Richt’s aquatic exploits, was nice enough to answer a few questions via email about the experience.
Enough preamble. Here’s the video:
Once Sheerin tweeted at us about the video’s existence, we had several questions for him. Here are a few of his thoughts:
What company is this?
The product was Jesus jeans, from Italy. Don’t remember the production company’s name, but the main players (producer/director) were from Italy.
Note: In hindsight, the brand name — Jesus — is ironic given the fact Richt became a born-again Christian in 1986, four years after the commercial, when he was a young graduate assistant at Florida State.
How did they find the actors?
There was a casting call among UM students. I was a lifeguard at the pool (where you mentioned in your story Richt and others might have snuck in late nite to dive. I certainly never did that [smiley face] and found out while working there. Just showed up and they picked a few of us.
Were they UM students?
I believe most of us were UM students.
Where was the shoot?
Most scenes were shot on the UM campus. The jumping rope scene was filmed near the old Rathskeller. I was filmed riding my bike along San Amaro Drive. Off-campus scenes including the People’s Gas plant in North Miami, among other local places.
Where did the commercial air?
I never saw it, or heard of it after the crew left town. When coach Richt was hired, I did a little YouTube research to see if it was ever posted, and, much to my surprise, there it was. First time I ever saw the edited commercial.
Is this the first commercial you and Richt did? Did you or he do others?
This is the only time I ever did a shoot with him.
I have done a few others, was an extra in a few low budget movies (King Frat, a copycat release around the time of Animal House, with many of my SAE fraternity brothers). Not sure of his cinematic resume.
What do you remember about the shoot? Anything Richt do stick out to you?
I remember helping him out with the cues for his scenes. And that the chicks paid him a lot of attention. I don’t think we got paid very much at all – didn’t even get to keep the jeans!
Did you know Richt before the shoot?
I knew who he was. Though he usually didn’t start, a UM quarterback is still a Big Man On Campus. I’d be surprised if he remembered me. As a UM graduate and fan, I know of his career at FSU and Georgia, and of course that he is now the head coach of the Canes. But not on a personal basis.
I understand you’re an FIU professor, is that right?
Yes, I’m an Associate Professor and Director of SJMC Online at FIU. Though I was a Medical Technology major at the ‘U’, I earned other degrees and now teach TV & Multimedia Production, Visual Design and Digital Media courses.
Are you a fan of Miami/Richt?
Big fan of the Canes. Season ticket holder for most of the 34 years since graduating. And as long as Richt wins, I’ll be a fan of his as well! [smiley face]
Do you think he’d remember this commercial?
Note: unfortunately, Richt and other football coaches departed the ACC spring meetings before we could show the clip — or ask if he’s appeared in any other ads, or what he remembers about it.
He should have a vague memory of it – he’s a smart guy. Wasn’t a big deal to me, but I still remembered shooting it, so I think he should have some recollection of it …