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Posted at 5:07 PM ET, 12/16/2010

James Franklin-to-Vanderbilt deal appears near finish

By Eric Prisbell

James Franklin appears to be leaving his post as offensive coordinator and head coach-in-waiting at Maryland to become the head football coach at Vanderbilt.

A source close to Franklin with knowledge of details of the search said he'll be the next coach at Vanderbilt, and the Nashville Tennessean is quoting search committee member John Ingram as saying, “We’re about to have this all wrapped up.”

UPDATE, 10:07 p.m.: Franklin is expected to travel to Vanderbilt on Friday, the source said. He has offered positions on his staff at Vanderbilt to four Maryland assistants, according to a source.

By Eric Prisbell  | December 16, 2010; 5:07 PM ET
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Next: What James Franklin's departure means for Maryland


Great news.
Good recruiter. We will find a replacement.

That I have read, sufficient criticism has not been placed on the Terps for not being able to develop a strong offensive line. We've had this problem for 3 years straight, with a combination of seniors (3 years ago) and freshman/sophmores the last two years.

Three seasons ago, with the senior leadership, the O line was terrible.

The last two seasons, the line has been terrible.

In my opinion, this falls on the O Coordinator for not developing the talent. Or we brought in poor talent. Both of these, I believe, fall at Franklin's feet.

The play calling, in my non-professional opinion, has been mediocre. Terrible decisions and inability to generate yards.

We have a very good QB. I think a good part of this is owed to Franklin. But Franklin is not out there making the throws. DOB is. DO will be great without Franklin. What he needs is a good line, a good running game to make the defense respect the offense, and good receivers to throw to.

Franklin has served his time well. This is the best news for Terps fans.

Posted by: MiamiTerpNut | December 16, 2010 5:43 PM | Report abuse

Why must this "source" be anonymous? Will he or she be fired from their job for telling you that a coach is leaving the Terps? The "one source" story writing throughout the nation this fall in other publications/websites (re: Cam Newton, etc.) is discouraging as far as where journalism is headed. When did the Washington Post move away from the policy of no less than three sources? This (one source) is what led to the Sunday false report about Gus Malzahn getting the Vanderbilt job over Franklin. My guess is, Franklin was the source in that he said he wasn't getting the job, so that meant Malzahn was getting it. But he didn't take it. Big uh-oh there. Is this source today James Franklin? James Franklin's wife? Or some other relation? I can't understand why we have one-source stories, and why they continue to be published when the last "source" was wrong.
That aside, good luck Coach Franklin wherever you go.

Posted by: jimharris9692 | December 16, 2010 5:59 PM | Report abuse

We could have one of the strongest O-lines in recent Terps memory next year. Part of the problem the last few years has been our best linemen going pro early. First it was T Rex Gaither, then it was Bruce Campbell. On top of that we lost seniors like Jamie Thomas and Phil Costa and Edwin Williams to the NFL.

Posted by: Barno1 | December 16, 2010 6:01 PM | Report abuse

From the Tennessean... "Maryland offensive coordinator James Franklin is about to be named Vanderbilt’s next football coach, Vanderbilt Board of Trust and search committee member John Ingram said Thursday afternoon.

“We’re about to have this all wrapped up,” Ingram said.

Vice Chancellor of Athletics David Williams has not returned multiple calls today."

Posted by: petecard | December 16, 2010 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Congtrats to Franklin. Always the sign of a program on the upswing when your assistants move on to head coaching jobs. Now the Fridge needs to find a lockdown recruiter and bring him in as OC.

Posted by: aviscardo | December 16, 2010 6:48 PM | Report abuse

Ralph needs to determine who should be the OC and who should be the lead recruiter. They don't have to be the same person and one or both may already be on the staff....

Posted by: petecard | December 16, 2010 6:53 PM | Report abuse

Finally we get rid of another yow mistake save a million get rid of the medifast fat man and get someone with great(up to date offensive mind) tub of lard you are next..need to wait one more yr...

the cards are starting to fall in place

bye bye franlin,,good luck cause you are going to need it

Posted by: carolina1 | December 16, 2010 7:26 PM | Report abuse

Another genius post from carolina1. Yes, can't wait to get rid of the ACC COY. Genius!

Posted by: aviscardo | December 16, 2010 7:40 PM | Report abuse

Why must this "source" be anonymous? Will he or she be fired from their job for telling you that a coach is leaving the Terps?

Source is obviously Franklin and while I highly doubt he would lose his job for it, it certainly wouldn't be a good start to his career in Vandy if he were telling the press before the school even made the announcement official.

Not exactly rocket science buddy.

Posted by: Barno1 | December 16, 2010 7:48 PM | Report abuse

ESPN SEC and ACC correspondents report a deal is imminent, but quote Vandy official who's comments very guarded, to say the least. Sounds like heavy lifting in negotiations is not over and neither Vandy or Franklin dares even a small step out on a limb.

CBS also reports a deal is expected this weekend.

Good luck to Franklin.

AD Anderson, this is the chance to put your stamp on this program for the next 10 years. I hope you are successful in your objective to move the Terps from 'good to great' and wish you the wisdom, courage and ability to do so.

Posted by: RITerp | December 16, 2010 9:42 PM | Report abuse

aviscardo....thanks for the genius really made my evening..why dont ya go to bentlys and have a beer,,o thats right you sit in your apt with the washington post,towel and tube of ky intense..hooraaahh
i am surprised that yow did not hire him at state as the coach in waiting...osorry you are a yow supporter as in jock strap

Posted by: carolina1 | December 16, 2010 9:44 PM | Report abuse

The OL played well this season. I think they gave up the least amount of sacks in ACC games. If you remove (or reduce) the 8 sacks given up against WVU, MD would have been a top team in sacks against in the country. Given the numerous injuries sustained on the OL, it's a credit to the OL coach (Brattan?) that MD even had an offense at all.

The only thing the line struggled with was running the ball. Before DOB became the starter, Franklin didn't trust Robinson to throw the ball. Teams could load up on the run and make MD one dimensional. The WVU game represents the pinnacle of Franklin's inability to keep defenses off balance. MD had more depth at WR than any ACC team, yet Franklin couldn't figure out how to get the ball. He's just not a creative play caller. He doesn't get off script too well.

To Franklin's credit, however, once DOB emerged as a thrower, he rode the hot hand. For as much as people mock this year's version of the bubble screen (I think MD called it the smoke screen), teams couldn't stop it. That play become MD's running game. It opened up the rest of the passing game. It got the ball into the best playmakers hands.

I hope Ralph doesn't take over OC duties, even for the bowl game. The couple of years he filled in after Taafe left were brutal. Predictable. Set offense back a decade. 3 yards and a cloud of dust. This team can't play that way. They have too much talent at WR and too little at RB, especially since the OL hasn't run blocked well since the first 2 drives of the Navy game.

But who else can call plays? Brattan's bio says he was OC at W&M for 7 years...two decades ago. Lee Hull is the WR coach, so maybe he can call plays.

Uhg...that's it. Looks like Ralph will be calling plays in the bowl game. Not good.

Posted by: WheelsRI | December 16, 2010 10:05 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Danny will call the plays in the bowl game :) I think he's smart enough, but probably too soon for the freshman. Definitely going to be Ralph. Does anyone else think Danny might be the Maryland head coach in 20 years?

As for replacing Franklin, seems like a tough situation to hire a big name. Anyone good wouldn't want to come for possibly only a single season. Maybe Ralph should get a 2 year extension. That would allow the new OC at least 3 seasons before any coaching changes. If the new guy is good, maybe he could become the next coach (without the dreadful HCIW contract of course). I also really like Don Brown and he has head coaching experience. Speaking of Don Brown, he was Ralph's last big hire so maybe Friedgen can make an equally good hire for OC.

Posted by: TerpFan2001 | December 16, 2010 11:24 PM | Report abuse

Time to part ways with James "useless" Franklin. His offense was impotent. Over the past couple of years, the offense has not been able to beat tough competition. And, the play calling has been mediocre at best.

Time to give a shout out to clean house, and bring some proven and branded position coaches.

For a OC/QB coach, I think we should give a shout out to Frank Reich, QB coach of the Colts.

It would be awesome if we get John Gruden or someone in as the OC, and HC in waiting. This is wishful thinking!

Posted by: mi6-007 | December 16, 2010 11:52 PM | Report abuse

What concerns me most is the possibility of other assistants following Franklin. What the program needs most is stability if for no other reason then the negative impact a wholesale staff change will have on recruiting. How is it that VT has minimal staff changes and are consistently the cream of the ACC crop and I say this with reluctant admiration as a "Terp for life" in the heart of VT country.

Posted by: generalike | December 17, 2010 12:23 AM | Report abuse

One reason is that VPI (like it's ACC Championship Game foe, FSU) only competes in 16 sports, so they plow all their money into the football program and pay their assistants well. The ACC in all of it's haste to get the likes of VPI and FSU to join, did not establish any real guidelines. Kevin Anderson will come to realize that unless Maryland improves it attendance drastically, and probably joins a better conference with more TV money, they will no longer be able to support 27 sports.

Posted by: Terps85 | December 17, 2010 1:38 AM | Report abuse

If coach Franklin stayed, it was good. If he leaves, it's an opportunity for Fridge to bring in someone who can recruit as good if not better, and someone to call plays as good, if not better. But when a school has budget constraints, it definitely makes things tougher.

I wish Coach Franklin well, although 2, 2, 7, 5, 4, 5, 2, 2, 2, and 2 3 wins these past 10 years does not bode well for him. Getting waxed year after year in the SEC will take its toll on his career IMHO.

Posted by: terptek | December 17, 2010 11:59 AM | Report abuse

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