If you've been reading this blog for any amount of time, then you know that I attended the University of Maryland and am a passionate fan of their football program. I'm also from the state of Connecticut originally, so hopefully I can provide some perspective on their new head coach, Randy Edsall.
As a person who knows both parties, I feel that Edsall is the perfect fit for the Terps moving forward. There are people out there (most of you, actually) who are crying for Mike Leach or even Auburn's Gus Malzahn; but Edsall provides the perfect balance of experience and potential to bring the Terps to the next level for the next few years.
You know his story. You know that he was able to took a program that had trailers for offices and basically a high school level stadium and bring them to a BCS game within a decade. UConn might not always get the most attractive brand of football (unlike Leach) but they win more frequently then their talent dictates, and that's really all you can ask for in a head man.
And let's also talk a little bit about the talent Edsall was able to bring into UConn. He hasn't gotten the top recruits in the nation consistently, but he has been able to build a successful program in a state that has no organic football talent, at a university that doesn't really support its team. He works hard on the recruiting trail, and his success rate figures to go up with the added benefits of coaching at a bigger program like Maryland.
In comparison with Leach, who I'll admit I was pretty excited about as well, Edsall is a far superior candidate. You hire Leach for the press conference that Sportscenter will cut away to live and the national attention that will be paid to your offense, you hire Edsall to build a program and have sustained success into the future. Also, you can't look past Leach's baggage, while Edsall left the UConn program in much better position than he found it.
Something else to consider: Maryland might not be the most attractive job at this point in time. We just ran an alum who enjoyed moderate success out of town unceremoniously. Maybe the best coaching candidates (Malzahn) don't want to come to a program like that right now.
I would have been very happy if the Terps brought Leach in. But I understood there was enormous potential for it to backfire with Leach's grating personality and incredible baggage. The only thing Edsall brings with him to the job is a proven history of building a program and maintaining success.
Randy Edsall is a safe hire. That is not a bad thing like many have said. He might not sizzle like Leach, but I believe that he provides a greater potential for success over the long term. He has proven that he will run his program the right way, and will work hard to get the best players to come to College Park. That's all I can ever ask for in my coach.
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