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Posted at 11:29 AM ET, 12/23/2010

DC Don Brown: 'I know I've got a lot of good football in me'

By Steve Yanda

Like every other Maryland football assistant in the past week, second-year defensive coordinator Don Brown's immediate future became significantly more muddled in the aftermath of the school's decision to fire Coach Ralph Friedgen following the Dec. 29 Military Bowl.

Brown, 55, figures to land on his feet. Depending on the preference of Maryland's next football coach, he may even remain in College Park despite the regime change. Right now, Brown isn't really certain what's going to happen. He's just trying to focus on the task at hand -- preparing to face East Carolina.

"We’ll see," Brown said Wednesday. "It’s hard to say what the future’s going to hold. I’m at the point now, and I’ve been in this game a long time, I know I’ve got a lot of good football in me. I know that. I know I’m going to be coaching somewhere. But, you know, I’m also going to make sure that I’m selective and that I find the right thing that fits me and go from there. Maybe that’s the veteran in me. But I know I’ve got a lot of football in me."

Maryland finished the 2008 season ranked No. 9 in the Atlantic Coast Conference in scoring and rushing defense. The Terrapins ranked No. 10 in total and passing defense. And while Maryland's defensive performance took a step back last season, during Brown's first campaign with the Terrapins, the unit demonstrated considerable progress this fall.

In 2009, Maryland ranked No. 6 in the ACC in rushing defense, No. 11 in total defense and dead last in passing and scoring defense. The Terrapins finished 2-10, and their defensive showing was a main reason why.

This season, Maryland ranked No. 5 in the ACC in rushing defense, No. 6 in scoring defense, No. 7 in passing defense and No. 8 in total defense. The Terrapins finished the regular season 8-4, and their defensive showing was a main reason why.

When asked whether, if given the opportunity, he could see himself remaining at Maryland under whoever is named the program's next coach, Brown said it's "premature" to go down that path.

"I’ve haven’t even gotten that far," Brown said. "The thing I have to do is just stay focused on what’s there. These are great kids … We’re getting there. I’d like to finish what I started. At the same time, I realize it’s the nature of the profession, and you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do."

By Steve Yanda  | December 23, 2010; 11:29 AM ET
Categories:  Football  
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Next: Weather, tradition top Ralph Friedgen's list of concerns for coming week

Comments

Yanda, not sure where you are getting your stats, but every single one of the stats you listed are not only off, but way off.

MD's total defense was 4th in the conference, not 8th
MD's rushing defense was 2nd in the conference, not 5th
MD's passing defense was 5th in the conference, not 7th
MD's scoring defense was 7th in the conference, not 6th

http://www.theacc.com/sports/m-footbl/stats/2010-2011/confonly.html

Posted by: Barno1 | December 23, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Steve is exactly right. One need to look no further than the Navy game to see how much this defense has matured. They may give up quite a lot of yardage, but they have kept this team in a few games. Kenny Tate has shown himself to be a stud at the safety position (hope he changes his mind about going pro). Don Brown deserves a lot of credit for the improvement of the Terps this season. Whether or not he will stay on depends on who the next coach will be, because that person will most likely bring on their own staff.

If it's Leach, he'd be smart to keep him on. Texas Tech may have been great on offense, but their defense was awful. They had to rely on the offense to outscore their opponents. The Terps will need somebody experienced in there to help guide the defense.

Posted by: ecglotfelty | December 23, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

ecglotfelty, where did you hear Tate had decided to go pro? I think you're wrong about that. He hasn't yet decided.

Smith on the other hand, if he wasn't gone already, the firing of Friedgen put the nail in the coffin. He's gone.

Posted by: Barno1 | December 23, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Yanda, not sure where you are getting your stats, but every single one of the stats you listed are not only off, but way off.

Posted by: Barno1 | December 23, 2010 11:57 AM

Your numbers are stats for conference games only. Guessing that Steve used stats for ACC teams based on all 12/13 games.

http://www.cfbstats.com/2010/leader/821/team/defense/split01/category10/sort01.html

http://www.cfbstats.com/2010/leader/821/team/defense/split01/category01/sort01.html

http://www.cfbstats.com/2010/leader/821/team/defense/split01/category02/sort01.html

That West Virginia game (and Navy's running game) put a dent in Maryland's overall defensive number.

Posted by: Kev29 | December 23, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Yeah I figured that was the only way he could be so off was including non conference stats as well, which isn't an accurate way to do it, since teams play vastly different non conference schedules.

I prefer to look at the in conference stats when comparing to other ACC teams.

Posted by: Barno1 | December 23, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Barno: his name came up in the rumor mill about the possibility of going pro along with Smith. I was hoping that with the lock-out looming, everyone would stay put, but with the upheaval going on, who knows? I may have been mistaken; if so, my bad...

Posted by: ecglotfelty | December 23, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Yanda's stats are correct.

They include all games played during the season, which is the usual way of recording these kinds of stats.

Using "in conference" games isn't more accurate, as even in conference, different teams are played.

Anyway, it doesn't matter, as he was demonstrating an improvement using comparable stats from different seasons.


Posted by: Benson | December 23, 2010 1:05 PM | Report abuse

I last heard that Tate was likely to stay. Who knows how the possible coaching prospects will affect that decision. It seems like there's a decent chance that Don Brown will stay, which would be good for Tate. And who knows, maybe he will actually want to graduate.

Posted by: crabcakes | December 23, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

I last heard that Tate was likely to stay. Who knows how the possible coaching prospects will affect that decision. It seems like there's a decent chance that Don Brown will stay, which would be good for Tate. And who knows, maybe he will actually want to graduate.

Posted by: crabcakes | December 23, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Hire Don Brown as Head Coach!
He is a proven winner at every level and has had a tremendous impact in turning around the Terps program since his arrival.

Worried about hiring someone without previous Div. IA Head Coach experience? Ask Oregon how that is working out. ... And realize that Coach Brown's defense shut down Chip Kelly's offense while he was at UMass and Northeastern and Kelly was at UNH. His system Works!

Posted by: mj44 | December 23, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

I would love for Brown to stick around as the DC. However, you don't get rid of a competent coach like Fridge to hire Brown. You need to hire someone who can take the program to the next level. There is one realistic candidate, Mike Leach and any other hire is a failure in my book.

Posted by: Chief2 | December 24, 2010 12:58 AM | Report abuse

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