Georgia coach Kirby Smart is very familiar with former Auburn coach Gus Malzahn for a variety of reasons, from his days on the sideline at Alabama, to now in Athens, to recruiting battles.

At his Monday press conference, Smart shared his thoughts on Auburn firing Malzahn, and the industry as a whole since 3 annual opponents on Georgia’s schedule have fired coaches this season.

“When you get let go like that it can be tough. I’ve got a lot of respect for Gus, he’s been a good friend of mine for quite a while, I know that he and Kristi will land on their feet and he’s going to be successful no matter what he does,” Smart said.

Smart said coaching in the SEC has gotten increasingly tougher as the sweepstakes have gone up to win and generate revenue through things like television contracts.

“It’s put a higher expectation,” Smart said. “I think across the board when you look across the SEC, it’s a conference that everybody wants to be in until they’re in it. They realize the toughness that it creates not only on the field, but in the recruiting world, going out, trying to win on the recruiting field, trying to win on the grass, it’s an every day grind.”

Smart added that it’s also stressful on the families of coaches on staffs across the league.