edsall dec 29 ap photo matt york Edsall Leaving UConn for Maryland

AP Photo Matt York


BALTIMORE (AP) _ Randy Edsall, who diligently worked to build the Connecticut football program into a winner, has been hired to pull off a similar feat at Maryland.

Edsall was picked Sunday to replace Ralph Friedgen, who was fired after a 10-year run at his alma mater.

Edsall spent 12 years at Connecticut. He guided the Huskies out of Division I-AA (now FCS) and into the Big East, where he won a pair of conference titles and earned postseason appearances in each of the last four years.

Connecticut lost to Oklahoma in the Fiesta Bowl on Saturday night.

fc0a7340 d711 45ec b5b4 aa3813305e56 big Edsall Leaving UConn for Maryland

AP )Photo Chris O'Meara

The 52-year-old Edsall emerged as a surprise candidate for the job over the weekend. He beat out former Texas Tech coach Mike Leach, who was considered the favorite when the search began on Dec. 20.

Edsall, the 2010 Big East coach of the year, led the Huskies to eight or more wins in each of the last four seasons. He finished with a 74-70 record at UConn.

Edsall did not accompany the team on its charter flight back to Connecticut, and players said he told them nothing of his coaching plans after the Fiesta Bowl loss to Oklahoma.

Players said when they landed they began receiving text messages about reports Edsall had been hired at Maryland.

“We had a meeting in the locker room after the game with a bunch of farewells,” defensive tackle Twyon Martin said.

uconn edsall Edsall Leaving UConn for Maryland

AP nPhoto Tim Larsen

“If  Edsall already had this decision made, we’re kind of shocked he wouldn’t have said anything then.”

Maryland announced the hiring in a short press release Sunday night. The College Park school will hold a press conference Monday afternoon to introduce Edsall as its new football coach.

First-year Maryland athletic director Kevin Anderson fired Friedgen before Christmas. Friedgen finished up a 10-year stint at Maryland with a victory against East Carolina in the Military Bowl.

Even before Friedgen was let go, Leach was being talked about as the leading candidate to replace him.

Leach, who won 84 games in 10 seasons with Texas Tech, was fired after the 2009 season. He had been accused of mistreating a player.

He is suing Texas Tech for wrongful termination.
Associated Press writer Pat Eaton-Robb in Storrs, Conn., contributed to this report.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

  1. Raymond Martineau says:

    I am shocked!! This was my bigest fear come true. I knew it might happen some day but there was no rummors or anything that gave us a heads up on this and prepared us for this. I read somewhere that a reasone he might of had for leaving is UCONN’s accademic requirements where high and he lost some players because of that and the school was thinking of raising the requirements so he decided to leave.
    So now what? Who is out there and how good of a coach can we get. Good luck Randy and thanks for everything.

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