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Posted at 12:35 PM ET, 12/21/2010

How the coaching change will affect Maryland football recruiting

By Steve Yanda

Maryland's decision to terminate the contract of Coach Ralph Friedgen generated an immediate and strong reaction from at least one member of its prospective 2011 recruiting class. Point Pleasant Boro (N.J.) High tight end Ryan Malleck de-committed from the Terrapins on Monday after Maryland announced Friedgen would not coach its team in 2011 or beyond, according to this report.

Whenever a coaching change takes place, recruits are going to reconsider how they view a program, and the fallout at Maryland will be no different. But according to Mike Farrell, the lead football recruiting analyst for Rivals.com, don't expect a mass exodus from the recruits in the 2011 class from which Maryland already has garnered oral commitments.

"A lot of them don’t have a ton of options," Farrell said Tuesday in a telephone interview. "It’s late in recruiting. These aren’t five-star kids who had 50 offers and who anybody would take. There’s only one four-star kid in the group, and the rest are threes and twos who had five or six offers. Some of them had no other offers. I don’t think the class itself will be affected that much. They’ll lose a few guys."

According to Rivals.com rankings, Maryland's 2011 recruiting class currently ranks No. 7 among Atlantic Coast Conference schools. The Terrapins have gained oral commitments from one four-star recruit (offensive lineman Nathaniel Clarke) and 15 three-star recruits.

When asked about the direct recruiting impact of the departures of Friedgen and former head coach-in-waiting James Franklin, Farrell, unprompted, brought up the name of a man widely considered to be the leading candidate to become Maryland's next head coach.

"Franklin obviously was the guy that did a lot of their best work in-state," Farrell said. "Before he went off to the NFL, he was the guy that helped them keep a lot of those kids home. And then when he left it fell apart. Everybody came in and started raiding. So his loss would have been huge whether Fridge stayed or not. Losing Fridge loses stability. There’s a comfort level that people in the area had with the program.

"But it’s going to depend on how Coach Leach staffs his program here. He’s got to get guys that can recruit this area. To my knowledge, he doesn’t have ties to the area. The only tie that I’ve found is Under Armour. So it’s going to be difficult, for sure."

Farrell is referring, of course, to former Texas Tech Coach Mike Leach, who, as you might have heard, has been linked (by many, many, many outlets) to the now-vacant Maryland head coaching position.

And indeed, as Farrell noted, Leach does not have strong ties to the Maryland area, other than his reportedly strong ties to Under Armour, which is based in Baltimore.

"Moving forward, though, it really depends on who he gets on his staff," Farrell said, referring to Leach. "If he doesn’t get guys who are familiar with this area and have ties to Maryland, it could get really rough. And then it all comes down to winning. If he doesn’t win in his first couple years, then, you know, things are going to be very difficult for him."

First-year Maryland athletic director Kevin Anderson acknowledged Monday that Leach is one of the names on his list of potential candidates to take over the football program. Anderson did also note that neither he nor anyone on his staff had yet been in contact with Leach and that "right now, there is no leading candidate."

Um, right.

So anyway, Farrell described Leach's recruiting style thusly:

"He’s always been known as sort of a quirky guy. Very confident guy. Sort of a, 'If you want to come here and play for me, that’s fine. We want players who will play for me.' And he was very good at fitting what he was doing, as far as systematically, especially on offense.

"But the recruiting only started picking up after he started winning. And that’s the key. Texas Tech is a lot like Maryland in the ACC, whereas it’s not a top tier program. Obviously, when you think of the ACC, you think of Virginia Tech, Florida State, Miami and then probably Clemson. And then you go to that second tier. In the Big 12, it was even more so, because you’ve got Texas, Oklahoma, Nebraska and then you’ve got the second tier there.

"He’s used to recruiting at that level. I just don’t know how his demeanor will be received on the East Coast. The East Coast is different than Texas. His recruiting classes were never highly ranked, but I don’t hold that against him, because you’re always picking third or fourth in the state of Texas at Texas Tech. Always."

Farrell compared Leach to Rich Rodriguez when he was at West Virginia and Tom O'Brien when he was at Boston College in that those coaches in those situations found players that fit their respective systems.

"They may not be the highest-rated guys, but they find guys that fit what they want to do and turn them into football players, and they win football games," Farrell said. "And that’s what Maryland has to hope he can do."

Farrell said it is imperative, at least as far as the 2011 recruiting class is concerned, that Maryland name its next head coach as soon as possible -- preferably, he noted, before the Dec. 29 Military Bowl -- and that said head coach, who he believes will be Leach, quickly hires a top-flight recruiting assistant with strong ties to the Maryland area.

"Short of that, closing strong is going to be really hard because everybody’s in flux," Farrell said. "Nobody knows who’s going to be maintained on the staff. I don’t know why it’s even taking this long for them to come out and say it. It still hasn’t officially been announced that Leach is the head coach, right?"

By Steve Yanda  | December 21, 2010; 12:35 PM ET
Categories:  Football  
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Comments

Recruiting in Texas and recruiting in Maryland are entirely different animals. They live and breath football in Texas.

Leach won't fair any better then Fridge around here. Kids don't want to go to Marlyand to play football, they go to Penn State or VT.

Fridge always did the best with what he had. This is something that the new AD will soon find out, and Fridge will be somewhere else winning games.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | December 21, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Fridge did the best with what he had, and so did Leach at TT. I don't want to anoint Leach as the coach without a proper vetting process, but the man is widely regarded as one of the top offensive minds in college football. He did better at TT than Fridge did here, against stiffer competition and roughly equal talent to work with.

Posted by: kbless77 | December 21, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

I would hope that Leach/Anderson would be able to keep Don Brown on staff. His defense made significant improvement over the past season, and I'd hate to see all these talented player have to go through a year of learning a new system. I would also hope Locksley is the Plan A for OC/recruiting coordinator. He's been terrible for New Mexico, and something tells me his days are probably numbered down there after two horrible seasons. He could come back to Maryland and revitalize hometown recruiting, assuming he can get along with Leach.

Solazzo's days are probably numbered unless Plank asks Leach to retain him. This year's class was already weak because of the Fridge/Franklin situation, and with so many kids already committed, there's not really much a new HC is going to be able to do. We'll see how good Leach is next season, because it's probably going to be feast or famine next season depending on how the players buy into this new system, and how many of them actually stay at Maryland.

Posted by: Russtinator | December 21, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Ray,
I hear what you're saying, but the one thing that may mitigate your point is that Leach never had great recruiting classes at Tech -- he took guys who literally no one else wanted and made them into a winning team. It's his system, which you can get away with in college. Of course, his defenses weren't great so he will need help with getting better players on that side of the ball.

Robert Anae coached the offensive line and recruited for Leach at Texas Tech. The key to their success (and Leach's spread system) is the offensive line. Anae was just let go from BYU as their coordinator so expect him to be reunited with Leach at Maryland. Hopefully the Terps persuade Don Brown to stay too.

Posted by: Shas | December 21, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

The Fridge leaves MD with the 7th best recruiting class in 2011 so Leach will not get the Vanderlinden boost that Friedgen received.

Posted by: nativedc | December 21, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Enough of the inane comments about recruiting in the east vs. Texas!

Yes, they live and breath football in Texas! So what? The overwhelming majority of the top tier TX talent heads to Texas, TX A&M or Oklahoma. The rest of the bunch is loaded with DII and DIII caliber players (i.e., plenty of heart, but undersized and/or slow).

If the mid-Atlantic is such a backwater, why does Penn State, Va Tech and even Notre Dame hit the area hard?

Posted by: MerlinTerps | December 21, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

I would also hope Locksley is the Plan A for OC/recruiting coordinator. He's been terrible for New Mexico, and something tells me his days are probably numbered down there after two horrible seasons. He could come back to Maryland and revitalize hometown recruiting, assuming he can get along with Leach.

Posted by: Russtinator | December 21, 2010 1:02 PM

Word on Locksley is that he's too expensive for New Mexico to fire...

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncf/news/story?id=5875992&campaign=rss&source=NCFHeadlines

So for Locksley to come to Maryland, he'd have to quit his head coaching position and take a (probably) big pay cut to be an assistant again. I don't see it happening - at least until 2012.

Posted by: Kev29 | December 21, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

College football programs in coaching turmoil don't tend to do that well.

It takes a while to get that recruiting momentum back.

Leach's approach to spreading out an offense is inspired, but not exactly genius. It improves average players stats by being "different" and confusing defenses, but after a while defenses catch on.

They should have kept Friedgen, but since they didn't, I guess the chips will fall where they may.

If it costs them O'Brien, it will be a disaster.

Posted by: Benson | December 21, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

He did better at TT than Fridge did here, against stiffer competition and roughly equal talent to work with.

Posted by: kbless77 | December 21, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse


Not so fast my friend. Are you saying the 2nd tier recruiting class from the state of MD is equal to the 2nd tier recruiting class in the state of TX? Cant say I agree with that one.

Posted by: ged0386 | December 21, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Enough of the inane comments about recruiting in the east vs. Texas!
Yes, they live and breath football in Texas! So what? The overwhelming majority of the top tier TX talent heads to Texas, TX A&M or Oklahoma. The rest of the bunch is loaded with DII and DIII caliber players (i.e., plenty of heart, but undersized and/or slow).
-----------------------------------------

You have no clue what you're talking about. Over 300 kids a year in Texas sign DIVISION I scholarships to play football. DI, not DII or DIII. Leach had to recruit against OU, UT, LSU, Nebraska, Bama, A&M and every other big name school in the country. Greg McElroy - QB at 'Bama, Texas kid. Ponder, QB at FSU, Texas kid; Luck at Stanford, Texas kid; Jevan Snead at Ole Miss, Texas kid; LaMichael James, Oregon - Texas kid; Darron Thomas, QB at Oregon, Texas kid; JaQuizz and James Rodgers at Oregon State, Texas kids; Burkhead, RB at Nebraska, Texas kid; That's what i could think of off the top of my head in 30 seconds. There's a reason Freidgen never poked his head in Texas to recruit, he didn't stand a chance.

It's obvious you have no clue what you're talking about when it comes to recruiting.

Posted by: sleastacks | December 21, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Leach's offense rarely use a tight end, so if Malleck is assuming that Leach is getting the job, it makes sense for him to go elsewhere.

A large part of recruiting is assistant coaches. Locksley and Franklin were very good recruiters for Vanderlinden and early in the Fridge era. When they left, they were not replaced by strong recruiters for a number of years and the talent has suffered. The lack of assistants strong in recruiting was the biggest problem of the Fridge era and has only been corrected recently.

Ranking recruits for football is so overrated. In basketball most of the top players attend the same summer camps or AAU tournaments and play against each other head to head. Football is much more subjective. The Vanderlinden classes that produced a lot of quality players were not highly ranked, but Locksley and Franklin were good at identifying talent. In addition, in a spread offense like Rich Rodriguez or Leach, players that are excellant fits for their systems may not be highly regarded for conventional systems.

Maryland's staff has gotten much better at recruiting the last few years. Franklin, Brown, Hull and Bankins are strong recruiters. The last few classes have brought good talent. Assuming there is not large turnover, Fridge is leaving his successor in pretty good shape.

Posted by: Chief2 | December 21, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

As I said, Sleas, the OVERWHELMING majority end up at TX, A&M and OU. Check me on that, Mr. Fung.

Bottom line: It's not as though TT has OR has had their pick of the Texas schoolboy litter. HOWEVE, a winning Terp program w/Leach at the helm could very well have the pick of the mid-atlantic recruiting base.

Posted by: MerlinTerps | December 21, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Quirky and indifferent will not work at MD. at some point folks in this area seek intelligence and straight forwardness. if at any point folks think he is dumb, act or not, he's going to get run out of town. the dude is desperate to take this offer.

Are we all forgetting that Leach was fired under a storm of controversy. it was alleged, not only by Craig james son but others that he locked kids with concussions in a shed near the field. If that couldn't fly in Texas just watch what happens here in the DC area when the questionable stuff starts. wait for that unsanctioned practice

As for Maryland lacking talent. the other day i noted the number of UMD DBs in the NFL. they may not be shut down dudes, but they are there. MD has a notable amount of players in the NFL. The defensive line is the one area they have been lacking and it shows with all their 4th qtr melt downs.

Posted by: oknow1 | December 21, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Sorry MerlinTerps, thought you were saying something else, like there was little D1 talent in Texas AND Leach couldnt get any of it. He had no experience before Tech, went to 10 straight bowls, winning seasons every year. He needs a strong d-coordinator though, especially that can recruit top-notch D players. Leach has been misrepresented as not caring about D, fact is he couldnt get the D talent UT, OU or LSU could get. He didn't have a "spread defense" that could make the most out of marginal talent.
------------------------------------------
Quirky and indifferent will not work at MD. at some point folks in this area seek intelligence and straight forwardness. if at any point folks think he is dumb, act or not, he's going to get run out of town.

oknow, the dude holds a Masters from BYU and a law degree from Pepperdine, he has more than enough intelligence. He tells it like it is, go search youtube for his "fat little girlfriends" tirade. The doctor that examined Adam James testified that being in a cold dark shed did no damage whatsoever. Here's something to ponder, Mark Mangino and Jim Leavitt were fired for basically the same thing as Leach, mistreating players. Have you heard anything from those 2 coaches? Neither is suing their school or fighting a very public battle to clear their name. Wonder why?

Posted by: sleastacks | December 21, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Mike Leach will find out that the level of talent in the area is vastly different. Texas is football and football is Texas not so much here in DC-MD-VA area, Big Ralph did well in this area and outside of it, the new AD should have been smarter about this coaching change.

Posted by: dargregmag | December 21, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Don't want to belabor the point, but here goes:

Texas has GREAT football, but please DON'T discount the Mid-Atlantic or portray it as north central South Dakota.

Check the stats on top-tier 'cruits from North Carolina, Virginia, MD, DC, PA and Jersey.

Staggering.

All well-within a DOB backyard toss...

rest assured, the Pirate knows this...

Posted by: MerlinTerps | December 21, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Coach was under-rated, especially by the new BOSS. Maryland will be a bottom feeder with no fans. Just one opinion.

Posted by: CTaylor42 | December 21, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Mike Leach will find out that the level of talent in the area is vastly different. Texas is football and football is Texas not so much here in DC-MD-VA area, Big Ralph did well in this area and outside of it, the new AD should have been smarter about this coaching change.

Posted by: dargregmag | December 21, 2010 4:27 PM

EXACTLY. It's good to see that some have had some time to digest this completely unnecessary disaster. Only wish our new AD hadn't acted in such haste, to say the least. Mike Leach, Nick Saban, Tom Osborne, or Bear Bryant would have no chance to have any significant impact on the local recruiting front. Not because they aren't smart, passionate, and persuasive. But because on average, the top high school recruits want to play for a program where they are guaranteed to be the ONLY SHOW IN TOWN. That has/is/never will be any public school in the middle of a major metro area.

Ralph Friedgen was overachieving as coach of UMD...something the AD will realize 3 years from now when he is fired.

Posted by: tomfoley1 | December 21, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

But because on average, the top high school recruits want to play for a program where they are guaranteed to be the ONLY SHOW IN TOWN. That has/is/never will be any public school in the middle of a major metro area.

What about the following programs over the years:

Atlanta: Ga. Tech
Seattle: U Wash
San Fran: Cal/Stanford
Chicago: Notre Dame
Miami: The U
Los Angeles: UCLA and USC

Posted by: MerlinTerps | December 21, 2010 5:11 PM | Report abuse

What about the following programs over the years:

Atlanta: Ga. Tech
Seattle: U Wash
San Fran: Cal/Stanford
Chicago: Notre Dame
Miami: The U
Los Angeles: UCLA and USC

----------------------------------------

Exactly, it's a cop-out to say he can't compete w/ the pro sports in town. Instill a little excitement and pride in the program and the kids will come. It only takes a few to get the ball rolling in recruiting. If he can lock down the top talent in MD, that's a start. Baby steps from there. All you have to do is read this article to see level to which Maryland's recruiting has fallen.

Posted by: sleastacks | December 21, 2010 5:22 PM | Report abuse

MerlinTerps,

Yes, GTech is a perfect measuring stick for our program. It is PUBLIC and loc in the middle of a major metro area. Under Fridge, UMD had essentially the same record as GT and was 3-2 against them.

Udub - they have had more success than Fridge?! Hardly.
Cal - see comment above?
Stanford - PRIVATE
Notre Dame - PRIVATE and PATHETIC
U - PRIVATE and pretty pathetic
UCLA - As Lefty predicted, ironically we are the UCLA of the East (in football not basketball)!
USC - PRIVATE

Posted by: tomfoley1 | December 21, 2010 5:22 PM | Report abuse

sleastacks,
You're looking at it the wrong way. It's not the pro sports that are our competition.

But rather, it's the lack of ANYTHING going on in places such as Blacksburg, Norman, Tuscaloosa, State College, Columbus, etc. etc. that attracts top recruits. There is no substitute for the idol worship and adoration these recruits receive in these towns. CP hasn't/isn't/never will be anything like these places. Oh well, at least we got a sick bball program and HAD an overachieving fball pgram!

Posted by: tomfoley1 | December 21, 2010 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Before 1970 Maryland was a football school. Friedgen? Good coach but not great... Really bad graduation rate... Leach always among the top 10 in grad rates! Don't leave out Bears line coach and ex-head coach and alumni Mike Tice from the mix.

Posted by: Marksg11 | December 21, 2010 5:37 PM | Report abuse

I swear tomfoolery has to either be a parody poster or the absolute most out of touch Maryland fan that I have ever seen. As I recall this was the same guy ranting about what a detriment Greivis was to our basketball team last year. Simply stunning.

Anyone who even remotely has a clue understands that while this may not be totally fair to Friedgen, this is a business and this is an absolute home run of a hire for Anderson. If you are going to take a chance to bring excitement and take things to another level this is your ticket right here.

Leach coached 10 seasons at Texas Tech - a school on the same level as Maryland but in a much tougher conference. He had a winning record there every single season and nearly took his team to a national championship appearance. He is widely regarded as one of the top coaches and offensive minds in the nation. At the very least, all of our games will be sold out next season. Do you ever get tired of being so wrong about everything all the time?

Posted by: elowe2 | December 21, 2010 5:38 PM | Report abuse

My pops just says to me "I bet they wouldn't have fired Friedgen if he weren't so overweight."

At first you think, nah it can't be that. But think about it. Ralph Friedgen deserved to be a head coach long before Debbie Yow finally gave him his chance. I don't think there's much question that his size/weight played a role in why he wasn't a head coach sooner. For all the talk about race and gender discrimination in this country, there may be no discrimination more prevalent than the kinds of hurdles obese and or homely people face in employment.

TerpfanMA used to say he thought Friedgen's appearance hurt his recruiting efforts. I don't know if that's true or not, but if it is, is it so hard to believe his appearance cost him job opportunities as well, including keep this job once the only AD to ever hire him as head coach left?

Posted by: Barno1 | December 21, 2010 5:44 PM | Report abuse

"At the very least, all of our games will be sold out next season"
--------------------
And as you've admitted countless times b4, no thx to you. Seriously, unless you actually leave your mom's basement, you shouldn't be allowed to comment.

Posted by: tomfoley1 | December 21, 2010 5:45 PM | Report abuse

"At the very least, all of our games will be sold out next season"
--------------------
And as you've admitted countless times b4, no thx to you.

And btw, so you're admitting that all this fire n hire is about is getting those 10,000 fickle fans like yourself outta their mom's basement and to the games for an "exciting" season...until it goes back to the underachieveing prgram is was before Fridge. Elowe you should go work for our AD dept....u would fit right in!!!

Posted by: tomfoley1 | December 21, 2010 5:49 PM | Report abuse

My pops just says to me "I bet they wouldn't have fired Friedgen if he weren't so overweight."
-------------------
I thought Boomer E. more/less said (10 yrs ago) that had to be the reason Fridge never got a HC job...but a great nickname instead. Didn't Boomer essentially beg Yow to give Fridge a chance?

Posted by: tomfoley1 | December 21, 2010 5:58 PM | Report abuse

From a recruiting perspective, Texas as a state is overrated. Per capita, the top states in the country are Virginia and Florida. Pennsylvania's also very strong. If Maryland can keep its elite in-state players at home and poach its share from talent rich neighbors Va. and Pa., it's over.

Posted by: randysbailin | December 21, 2010 6:09 PM | Report abuse

randy,
interesting map showing recruits/capita:

http://www.tulsaworld.com/includes/article/relatedphotos.aspx?articleID=20100129_222_0_Ascoll743798

Posted by: tomfoley1 | December 21, 2010 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Not only will Mike Leach bring in local talent but he will bring in top recruits from across the country. There have already been one of the top QB's from the class of 2012 from Cal. This man will keep 70 to 80% of the top talent from the metro area. And for all those haters check and see how many players are in the NFL from the DC area I promise it will surprise you.( Dematha has more NFL players than any other high school in the country)

Posted by: pikedawg | December 21, 2010 6:21 PM | Report abuse

Even though that map would indicate otherwise, I actually think in theory there is "enough" talent in this area to improve the program, not make it a national champion contender, but a more consistent Orange Bowl contender. In theory.

However, the problem with this theory as it always has been around the Delmarva, is that there is not ENOUGH talent around here to make up for all of the top local talent that goes to State College, Columbus, Morgantown, Blacksburg, Talahassee -- all of which are strictly college towns where these players are worshiped. The new AD and Mr. Under Armour obviously suffer from delusions of grandeur if they think we are in any way competitve on the football field with those towns -- and not to mention with a coach who has zero ties to this area.

Posted by: tomfoley1 | December 21, 2010 6:47 PM | Report abuse

LOL at tomfoolery. How awful was Vasquez last season again? Can you tell us more about that?

And I'm sorry but, generating fan interest and revenue is important. You can complain about fickle fans all you want but bottom line is that they do exist and this is business. This hire will create much more buzz among not just fans, but among potential recruits.

Also, do you hate winning? All Leach has done is win much more at a mediocre school in a tougher conferece while playing a way more exciting brand of football. Tell me more about why Anderson would be fired over this? Clown.

Posted by: elowe2 | December 21, 2010 7:52 PM | Report abuse

It's not that great of a class, anyway. Happy trails if they leave.

Posted by: SirPelleas | December 21, 2010 8:28 PM | Report abuse

If Anderson really has a search committee...I hope the committee puts Mike Tice name high on its list of candidates.

Former Terp with NFL head and asst coaching exp.

Posted by: johnbecka | December 21, 2010 8:33 PM | Report abuse

Good Riddance elowe. It's hardly surprising that a fickle fan such as yourself - one who has admitted to receiving this manufactured baseless "buzz" as a reason to go to Byrd for a game this season -- would be so enamored by GV's supposed "skills." For the records, I'm happy for GV, really. I was shocked to see him drafted in the 2nd round. Then I saw who drafted him. The same team who traded Pau Gasol for Kwame Brown! I'm not going to spend any more time talking about GV than the less than 1/2 min he's averaging in the NBA. But I'll let you digest this.

Last year, there were 7 upperclassman in the ACC running the point. Guess which one had about TWICE as many TURNOVERS than all the others?

elowe, put the koolaid down. It's all hype and it's bad for ya!

Posted by: tomfoley1 | December 21, 2010 9:42 PM | Report abuse

Ralph's weight definitely played a role in all of this, from his hire to recruiting to his termination. You have a 63 year old guy who lost 100Lbs last year and still weighs 300Lbs. While Anderson will never admit it, how could his age and health (read: weight) not play into the decision to extend him?

On the recruiting point, MD has over 30 guys on NFL rosters this year. Ralph recruited almost all of those guys. You might not believe Rivals rankings, but you can believe NFL selection: Ralph had lots of talent and none of it was from Texas.

MD's natural recruiting area (within 200 miles of CP) includes VA/MD/DC/PA/NJ. I think that area produces enough Texas-type talent.

Posted by: WheelsRI | December 21, 2010 10:58 PM | Report abuse

Merlin, your list of metro teams actually proves the point that it is hard to win if you are not the only show in town. There is no NFL team in LA and USC had to cheat to win. It is only worth looking back 10 years because so much has changed in college football regarding recruiting, exposure and # of scholarships allowed. The other schools you listed are not powers year in and year out.

Posted by: garrett4 | December 22, 2010 8:16 AM | Report abuse

The claim that programs that are the "only show in town" have a decided advantage is patently absurd.

How is it that having the NATION'S Capitol, Annapolis and Baltimore in UM's backyard is to be viewed as being a recruiting deterrent?

A sampling of "only show in town" programs:

Nebraska -- tough sledding for several seasons before Bo rolled into town
Texas -- brutal stretch under Mackovic and weren't even bowl eligible this season w/all of their 4 and 5 stars
FSU -- marked degradation in Bowden's final years at the helm
PSU -- some good/some bad
Michigan -- hello?

Posted by: MerlinTerps | December 22, 2010 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Merlinterps,
Wow, might be time to seriously put that toxic koolaid down and give your brain a rest! Your list once again proves our point. You just pointed out that those prestegious programs have struggled RELATIVELY SPEAKING at times, but our prestegious program is not allowed to struggle EVER -- even though it currently isn't! LOL!!!

By the way, deterrent is not the right word. How about barometer? Look at the map I posted above. Do you see how lightly shaded the DELMARVA is with top recruits? The new AD + Under Armour are living in a fantasy world if they think we can actually prevent local talent from going to places like Columbus, Blacksburg, State College, and Morgantown where they are treated like gold.

Oh, and Michigan is PRIVATE. Hello?

Georgia Tech, UCLA, and Cal are the three programs that the AD should measure us against. Under Fridge, we had more success than all three.

Posted by: tomfoley1 | December 22, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

The University of Michigan is a public university, tomfoley1. I'm not sure what you're point is in all of your posts, but the simple fact is Maryland has slid back under Fridge. His first 5 years were his best, he did not build on that momentum. Leach's first 5 years were his worst, going 39-25, last 5 years he went 45-18.

Look at the recruiting class Fridge has verbally committed, it won't blow you away. Recruiting rankings are not an exact science but it's no coincidence that the teams at the top are in the hunt every year. I don't know what i'm saying, just give Leach a chance if he is indeed hired.

Posted by: sleastacks | December 22, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

I just saw a national high school ranking that listed Good Counsel, the top team in the D.C. area this year, as the 100th best team in the country. Sure, you can point to talent that migrates out of state, but the bottom line is,the D.C. area does not possess a wealth of really good football players and never has. Then again, neither does Nebraska or Idaho, the point being that Maryland needs to attract talent from other areas if it is ever going to compete on a national level.

Posted by: redhotCAPSaicin | December 22, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

TF

"prestegious"

UMich

c'mon Man! You gotta come strong to the keyboard or not at all.

Posted by: MerlinTerps | December 22, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Good call sleas, Mich is public, d'oh! The general point is the AD needed to have a legitimate reason to not keep the ACC COY, and an alumus who restored respect to a moribound program. Taking this program to the "next level" as the AD states as his goal, sounds really great, and admittedly will get some extra fickle fans in the seats (not the luxary boxes) for at most a season, but it is hype, nothing more. The potential marginal gains from firing one of our own (and selling our soul) in exchange for Mike Leach, Nick Saban, or Bear Bryant are hardly worth it -- that is the point.

What the AD should have done is appreciated what he had (which would have required research) and improve the game-day taligait experience.

Posted by: tomfoley1 | December 22, 2010 12:29 PM | Report abuse

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