Tuesday, February 8, 2011
Season of change for Maryland
By ESPN.com staff
Maryland AD Kevin Anderson wanted change.
Well, he got it -- and then some.
The moves that have been made at Maryland this offseason have raised some eyebrows, starting at the top with the hire of coach Randy Edsall. Not that Edsall isn't a good coach -- he'll win at Maryland and make the Terps a contender in the Atlantic Division. The hire didn't exactly make the splash Maryland fans were hoping for, though, and Edsall only brought two of the assistants from Connecticut with him who helped him get to a BCS bowl. The latest move -- defensive coordinator Don Brown to Edsall's old stomping grounds, Connecticut -- was a lateral move at best. Brown said it was to be closer to his family, but the timing of it was indeed "peculiar," as one local high school coach called it.
The Terps have hired Clemson's former running backs coach, Andre Powell, to coach the same position, but the defensive coordinator job is still up for grabs. Bruce Feldman wrote that a source told him former Miami coach Randy Shannon will interview for the job this week. Shannon and Powell would both be good additions to the staff, but Brown's departure will take some time to adjust to, as the players will now have to adapt to a new system, philosophy, terminology and coach.
The question is whether all of these moves will actually make Maryland better than its 9-4 season in 2010. That's a tall task in College Park. It has to be significantly better in order to justify firing the ACC's coach of the year, and Maryland doesn't appear ready to take that kind of leap in 2011. With the recent top-10 recruiting classes they just lured in, Florida State and Clemson should be the teams to beat in the Atlantic Division in the near future.