Tag:Ralph Friedgen
Posted on: February 9, 2011 2:46 pm
Edited on: February 9, 2011 2:49 pm
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Terps not relying on Edsall to sell tickets

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

When Maryland athletic director Kevin Anderson announced that Ralph Friedgen would not be retained as the Terrapins' head football coach, he confirmed what many had already been saying about Anderson's thought process: that it was a "business decision" as much about reviving the flagging interest in the program and increasing attendance in College Park as wins and losses.

Which is why many were left scratching their heads when Anderson ultimately hired Randy Edsall, a big winner for UConn but hardly the sort of name who would cause the Terps' casual fans to sit up and take notice. And sure enough, it appears the marketing professionals in the Terp ticketing office aren't expecting Edsall's presence to be a boon in the sales department, at least not judging by this e-mail pitch passed along by the Washington Post's Dan Steinberg:



If you're ranking the biggest reasons offered by this promo to buy Terp season tickets this year, it would look something like this:

1. They're cheap
2. You can watch quarterback Danny O'Brien
3. They're cheap. You'll $ave!
4. There's seven games in the package, including appealing tilts with Clemson and Miami
5. Did we mention they're cheap? No interest!

Noticeably absent from that list, of course, is the man who's just been hired to become the face of the program. As Steinberg writes, he's not totally M.I.A. from the pitch:
The sender's name was "Randy Edsall," but his name appears nowhere in the actual ad itself. Yes, there is a photo of him below, promising a "Behind the Scenes" signing day video, but it's maybe a third the size of the Danny O'Brien image.
If hiring Edsall was a "business decision," it seems like it might be one even Anderson's own athletic department isn't entirely on board with.

HT: DocSat

Posted on: February 8, 2011 10:06 am
Edited on: February 8, 2011 10:11 am
 

Report: Shannon interviewing for Maryland DC

Posted by Chip Patterson

The coaching carousel has slowed since the regular season ended in December, but there are still several pieces shuffling back and forth, particularly in the ACC and Big East.  After moving Connecticut into the FBS and all the way to the Fiesta Bowl in 2010, Huskies head coach Randy Edsall departed to take Ralph Friedgen's vacant seat at Maryland.  Maryland's offensive coordinator, James Franklin, accepted a head coaching position at Vanderbilt while defensive coordinator Don Brown was retained.  Just before Edsall was ready to round out his staff by hiring Andre Powell, former running backs coach at Clemson, to the same position in College Park, Brown shocked the Terps fan base by bolting to Connecticut, Edsall's former employer.  

Confusing, I know.

Now former Miami head coach Randy Shannon has emerged as a candidate to replace Brown at Maryland.  ESPN.com's Bruce Feldman is reporting that Shannon will be in town on Tuesday and Wednesday to interview for the defensive coordinator position.  Shannon served as defensive coordinator for the Hurricanes for six years under Larry Coker before being promoted to head coach.  Shannon also is a highly-touted recruiter, with deep ties to the schools in the Miami-Dade County area.

Also in the running for Don Brown's job in College Park is former Maryland assistant Kevin Lampa.  Lampa spent four seasons as a secondary coach under Ralph Friedgen, and interviewed for the position on Friday.  Shannon's services are not being tied exclusively to Maryland, either.  With UCLA awkwardly ridding itself of Rocky Seto thanks to a Facebook flub, Shannon has also become a target for the Bruins.

While the biggest moves are made in December and January, these shifts of assistant coaches could be some of the details that can make or break the 2011 season for these teams.  Shannon is a well-respected coach and recruiter, and seasoned enough to jump right in with little transition.  He will likely be coaching in 2011, and he will be a great addition to whatever staff he joins.
Posted on: February 4, 2011 3:51 pm
 

Maryland DC headed to UConn

Posted by Tom Fornelli

When Randy Edsall came to Maryland from UConn, he decided to keep Maryland defensive coordinator Don Brown on his coaching staff. Well, it doesn't seem that Brown was all that happy with the idea, because according to a few reports, Brown is on his way out of Maryland to take the same position at...wait for it...UConn.

So, in a sense, it's as though UConn traded Edsall to Maryland for Brown and an undisclosed draft pick.
Brown, who came to Maryland in January 2009 as part of former coach Ralph Friedgen's staff, was retained by new Maryland coach Randy Edsall when he was hired earlier this year from Connecticut. The Huskies hired former Syracuse coach Paul Pasqualoni to replace Edsall.
Brown has extensive experience as a coach in New England. From 2004 to 2008, he was the head coach at Massachusetts, and before that spent four seasons as the head coach at Northeastern. He also was an assistant at Brown, Yale and Dartmouth.
This could prove to be a big loss for Edsall and Maryland. Brown only spent two seasons at Maryland, but he did a nice job with the defense in that time. The Terps defense ranked 39th nationally in total defense. The team's rushing defense was 21st in the country, and only eight teams kept opposing quarterbacks to a lower rating than Maryland did in 2010.
Posted on: January 24, 2011 4:26 pm
Edited on: January 24, 2011 4:26 pm
 

Gloria Friedgen talks some smack about Maryland

Posted by Tom Fornelli

You know, Ralph Friedgen isn't the only member of the Friedgen family that is going to need to make some adjustments in life. Yes, it will take Ralph a lot of time to get used to not having to go to work everyday, and devote so many hours to running a football program. Well, Ralph's wife also has to adjust to having her husband around the house a lot more too.

It can be pretty stressful. When you've been married for such a long time, and you get used to a routine, when that routine is disrupted it affects everything. Which may explain why Gloria Friedgen was on edge during an appearance on the radio this weekend, deciding to take out her frustration on the man who replaced her husband at Maryland.

"It was a pretty emotional exit, let's just say," Gloria Friedgen said in her radio appearance. "You know, not only did Ralph graduate from Maryland with two degrees and coach there three times, if you will -- as a graduate assistant, then with Bobby [Ross] and then now. I mean, I got my degree there, my two daughters got their [degrees] there. I kind of chuckle when I see that if you're just a fan, it makes you a real catch to Maryland. I guess people who drive by also could be the head coach."

Just as long as that person driving by isn't Mike Leach.

What Lady Friedgen was referring to was the fact that Randy Edsall said Maryland was his dream job, and his vast connections to the school include attending his first college football game there and having a brother who has called a few technical fouls on men's basketball coach Gary Williams. Not exactly the type of connection that her husband had to the school.

Still, though she used Edsall as an example, I'm sure her remarks were directed more at the school that kicked her husband out the door. I don't blame her for it, either.  Ralph Friedgen was an extremely loyal employee to the school who got a raw deal at the end.
Posted on: January 19, 2011 4:45 pm
Edited on: January 20, 2011 12:05 am
 

Headset Reset: Reviewing new SEC and ACC hires

Posted by Chip Patterson

"Headset Reset" is the College Football Blog's series reviewing the 22 new head coaches in the FBS and what they'll need to accomplish in their new jobs to succeed. In this edition: the four new head coaches in the SEC and the ACC.


WILL MUSCHAMP, Florida

Why him? Urban Meyer blindsided the college football community by stepping away from his gig as the head coach at one of the biggest football programs in the nation. So naturally, Florida poached the highest profile assistant coach from right under Mack Brown to lead the Gators into the new decade. For 2011, Muschamp needs to: Win the SEC East. By bringing in Charlie Weis as the new offensive coordinator, Gators fans will expect that many of the offensive woes that plagued them in 2010 will be eliminated immediately. But despite all their downfalls, Florida still came one game from winning the division. There will be no excuse not to reclaim the East in 2014. By 2014, Muschamp needs to have: Won the SEC Championship. Urban Meyer won two national championships in his first four seasons at Florida. Muschamp needs to at least win the SEC crown by 2014, presumably meaning the Gators are also in the national title discussion. Chances Muschamp gets what he needs?: There is no reason to think that Muschamp, a coach who carries a strong reputation in several major recruiting hotbeds, cannot continue to bring in the talent to Gainesville to build his own dynasty. I'd say chances are pretty good.

JAMES FRANKLIN, Vanderbilt

Why him? After Bobby Johnson retired less than two months before the start of the season, Vanderbilt scrambled to promote offensive line coach Robbie Caldwell to head coach. After Caldwell's 2-10 record in 2010, he stepped down as well. For 2011, Franklin needs to: Beat Elon and win at least one conference game. After two straight 2-10 seasons Franklin at least needs to equal that win total, even with a difficult non-conference schedule. The bar isn't too high, but the Commodores need to find at least one non-conference and one conference win in 2011. By 2014, Franklin needs to have: Made the postseason. Again, the bar is not too high (Vanderbilt has only 2 bowl appearances since 1980), but Franklin would likely land himself a long-term contract and cement his own place in Vanderbilt history by adding a postseason win to the school's resume. Chances Franklin gets what he needs?: Have you seen the SEC? Not great.

RANDY EDSALL, Maryland

Why him? New athletic director Kevin Anderson clearly had plans to get rid of Ralph Friedgen before he went on to win 8 games and be named ACC Coach of the Year. Despite the biggest turnaround in school history, the coach was removed in favor of Randy Edsall, the perennial coaching search smoke-screen. For 2011, Edsall needs to: Equal or improve from Friedgen's 8-win regular season in 2010. With many Terps fans and players sad to see Fridge shoved out the door, Edsall will immediately be compared to his predecessor. Fortunately, Edsall inherits a young and talented team led by ACC Rookie of the Year Danny O'Brien. By 2014, Edsall needs to have: Won the ACC Atlantic. Anderson's main reason for buying out Friedgen's contract was to take the Maryland football program from "good to great." After coming one game from winning the division in 2010, the only way to improve would be an appearance in the ACC Championship Game. Chances Edsall gets what he needs?: Not very good. The ACC Atlantic is getting stronger with Jimbo Fisher bringing Florida State back to national relevance, Dabo Swinney beefing up his coaching staff, and Tom O'Brien turning N.C. State into a perennial threat in the conference. Thinking that Edsall will be able to take the Terps to their first ACC Championship Game by 2014 is a tall order. But if it happens, it will be because of the play of O'Brien.

AL GOLDEN, Miami

Why him? After another year of poor attendance from a disinterested fan base, not to mention the failure to compete within their own division, Miami decided it was time for a change. For 2011, Golden needs to: While Shannon failed collect any hardware on the field, he certainly did his part recruiting during the offseason. Golden realizes the importance of recruiting in-state, and has hit the trail running. With only two weeks left until signing day, Golden is in the middle of his 45 scheduled visits for the month of January to solidify his 2011 class. Many recruits, including ones in-state, have expressed how impressed they were with Golden and his new staff. Golden won't be expected to win the division in 2011, but Hurricanes fans will be far less forgiving if they see a drop-off on national signing day. By 2014, Golden needs to have: Won the ACC Coastal. After years of dominating the Big East, Miami boosters have been disappointed to see Miami fall out of the conference race each year since joining the ACC. Golden needs to take the Hurricanes to their first ACC Championship Game by 2014, or else an occasionally unstable administration may get trigger happy once again. Chances Golden gets what he needs?: Golden faces an uphill battle as a coach with no experience south of Charlottesville, VA, but what progress he has made so far has been pleasantly surprising. He still is competing against Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech, who have combined for every ACC Coastal crown since the division formation in 2004. I'd put the chances of Golden taking Miami to the ACC Championship game right at 50-50.
Posted on: January 18, 2011 10:27 am
Edited on: January 18, 2011 10:56 am
 

What I learned from the ACC (Bowl Edition)

Posted by Chip Patterson

1. Florida State is an early favorite for 2011
- After dropping back-to-back games to North Carolina State and at home to North Carolina, Florida State looked like they had not completely shaken the consistency issues that have plagued the Seminoles in the last couple of seasons. In order to have a shot at the ACC title, Florida State would need to win out the final month of their ACC schedule. Not only did first-year coach Jimbo Fisher get his team to the ACC Championship Game, but they put up an impressive performance against Virginia Tech then followed it with a convincing win over South Carolina, the champions of the SEC East.

If one of the chief concerns for the Seminoles in 2011 is replacing Christian Ponder, then fans should feel very confident in their chances with E.J. Manuel at the helm. Manuel filled in for Ponder on three different occasions near the end of the season, culminating with his Chick Fil-A Bowl performance that helped seal the 26-17 win for Florida State. Additionally, all three of Florida State's top rushers (who combined collected 1,863 yards rushing and 17 touchdowns) are all returning next season. Florida State not only looks like an early ACC favorite, but perhaps a national favorite as well heading into the 2011 season.

2. If Russell Wilson is done, he went out in style - Russell Wilson was assumed to be as good as gone by many at the conclusion of the 2010 season. The junior quarterback has already been drafted by the Colorado Rockies, is engaged, and would be able to graduate in May if he chooses to do so. But after N.C. State's 23-7 victory over West Virginia in the Champs Sports Bowl, Wilson hinted that he may have interest in playing football professionally as well.

"I want to be a starting quarterback in the NFL one day, and I want to be a starting second baseman in Major League Baseball one day," Wilson said to reporters after the game. "No matter what, I work my butt off every day to try to be the best and that's my mindset."

The January 15 deadline to declare for the NFL draft has come and gone, and if Wilson decides he wants to rejoin the Wolfpack after participating with the Rockies in Spring Training he will still have that option. Clemson quarterback Kyle Parker did the same thing heading into the 2010 season with the Tigers. However, if Wilson decides to join the Rockies and start cashing in on his baseball career, he will wrapped up his college football career with a nearly flawless 275 yard, 2 touchdown, 0 interception performance that earned him Champs Sports Bowl MVP honors.

3. Virginia Tech can't shake the big game curse - The Hokies have been incredibly dominant in the ACC since joining the conference in 2004, but they have struggled to match that superiority with big-time wins on the national level. Virginia Tech has won the conference title four times in the last seven years, and appeared in four of the six ACC Championship Games. But against teams ranked in the top 5 nationally, the Hokies are 1-27 all-time and 1-19 during Frank Beamer's tenure in Blacksburg. Many figured that the Orange Bowl would be a chance for the Hokies to shake the stigma of failing to perform against top teams, and at halftime it looked like they might have a chance to pull the upset.

But in the second half Andrew Luck picked apart Bud Foster's defense while Stanford held Tyrod Taylor and the Virginia Tech offense scoreless while the Cardinal ran away with the 40-12 victory. However, it is important that Hokies fans don't dwell on the failures against the top 5 heading into 2011. With the kind of turnover Virginia Tech is expecting on both sides of the ball, defending their conference title will be a difficult task on its own.

4. ACC Coastal dropped the ball - This is more of a season-long lesson, but the ACC Coastal continued to be the less impressive division through the end of the bowl season. In the preseason polls, there five ACC teams in the Top 25, with four highest ranked teams (Virginia Tech, Miami, Georgia Tech, North Carolina) all coming from the Coastal Division. Not only did the balance of power appear to shift towards the Atlantic Division during the season, the bowl records from the postseason also indicate that the Atlantic may be the superior division.

Coastal teams went 1-3 during the postseason, with only North Carolina squeaking out their double overtime win over Tennessee in the Music City Bowl. The Atlantic, on the other hand, saw Florida State, Maryland, and N.C. State all pick up impressive victories in their bowl games. With the talent that Florida State and Maryland are bringing back, it would be surprising to see the media side with a new division heading into the 2011 season.

5. Ralph Friedgen left Randy Edsall a winning squad - Friedgen had an emotion al final game as Maryland's head coach, as his team bludgeoned ECU 51-20 in the Military Bowl. The players dedicated the beatdown to their head coach on his way out, capping off an impressive finish to the season that saw the Terps climb one game away from an ACC Championship Game appearance. But the time has come and gone for Ralph Friedgen fans to be upset with his dismissal from Maryland. Former Connecticut coach Randy Edsall has been hired, and the Terps are moving forward. What Friedgen did leave was a young and talented Maryland squad that will be a real threat in 2010. Edsall was a safe hire for athletic director Kevin Anderson, and the former Huskies head coach brought in some firepower with offensive coordinator Gary Crowton.

The last couple seasons have not been pleasant for Crowton, catching the blame from LSU fans for an offense that ranked near the bottom of the SEC in 2009 and 2010. But he saw his most successful season in his first year with Matt Flynn under center, and Terps fans will hope that a talented quarterback like ACC Freshman of the Year Danny O'Brien will recreate that success of the 2007 LSU offense under Crowton's direction.

Posted on: January 11, 2011 3:08 pm
 

Report: Mark Whipple to be next UConn coach

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Hey, did you know that there are other coaching searches going on right now besides the one at Michigan?  I'm serious, there are!  UConn still needs to find a head coach since Randy Edsall decided to leave following the Fiesta Bowl and take over for Ralph Friedgen at Maryland.  Though it's starting to look as though the job vacancy in Storrs has been filled.

Reports out of Florida say that former Miami offensive coordinator Mark Whipple, now out of a job following the firing of Randy Shannon and hiring of Al Golden, will be named the new head coach at UConn.

If the reports turn out to be correct, and the 53-year old Whipple lands the UConn gig, it will be his first head coaching job on the FBS level, and his first head coaching job anywhere since he left UMass in 2004.  While at UMass he won a Division-IAA national championship in 1998.  Whipple has spent the last two seasons as Miami's offensive coordinator, assistant head coach and quarterbacks coach.  After a nice 2009 season that saw the Hurricanes score the most points they had in a season since 2002, things took a big step backwards in 2010.  Of course, that could be the fault of Jacory Harris throwing interceptions like they were going out of style more than it was Whipple's offensive system.

Either way, to lose a job as an offensive coordinator only to find yourself getting a job as head coach at another BCS program is a pretty nice turn of events for anybody.
Posted on: December 31, 2010 12:04 pm
 

Leach interviews with Maryland 'went well'

Posted by Tom Fornelli

We're only two days removed from Ralph Friedgen's final game at Maryland, a 51-20 throttling of East Carolina in the Military Bowl, and it seems as though Maryland is on the verge of finding its next head coach.  Mike Leach had been on campus both Wednesday and Thursday, looking around and interviewing with both athletic director Kevin Anderson and school president Wallace Loh.

While the Baltimore Sun say that no offer has been extended to Leach as of yet, according to the Washington Post the interviews "went well," and a report from College Football Talk says that an offer "could and should" be extended to Leach before the weekend is over, and he "appears to be the front runner" at the moment.

Which means that we may be only a few days away from everybody's favorite pirate returning to the sidelines.

Of course, Leach's name isn't the only one that has come up in connection with the Maryland job.  While he may be considered the odds on favorite to land the gig at this point, names like Gus Malzahn, Kevin Sumlin and Randy Edsall (is there a coaching vacancy in which Edsall's name doesn't come up?) are also considered candidates for the job.
 
 
 
 
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