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Morning Commute: A Different Side Of Ralph Friedgen

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When I think of Ralph Friedgen, I think of a guy that's fiery, hard-nosed and always yelling at his players. I think of stories like this one that sum up the man as well as I could.

They've also begun recounting their favorite Friedgen stories, such as earlier this year when a cellphone kept ringing during a pregame meeting, driving the coach into a rage until he realized it was his own device that was going off.    

Going insane over a cell phone ringing like that is quintessential Ralph Friedgen. He wants things done his way, or else. He's a no-nonsense guy that molds teams to his personality, even if it means losing some talented players.

But sometimes, you take all this for granted and assume he'll handle his departure with the same kind of anger that he handled the cell phone incident. Whether Friedgen deserves to be fired or not, it's pretty much a given that Maryland could have handled the situation better. Friedgen has every right to be angry for how things went down.

Instead, as Patrick Stevens and others have noted, he's sad and emotional. It's honestly a little jarring to see a guy like Friedgen say something like this.

"Being with the players for the last time, it's pretty special," Friedgen said Monday before his team's final practice. "You know, it's kind of like you died and it's a slow death. Everything you experience is for the last time. It's been a very stressful week for me, especially from an emotional standpoint. I'm looking to go out one more time with the players."

I guess this is what happens to a person when he "dies a slow death."

Today's must-reads from around the SB Nation network:


Today on SB Nation D.C.: Stay tuned for Chad Dukes' second column, coming later today.