Maryland's Edsall running football program his way

Terps coach running a tight ship in College Park

July 25, 2011|By Coley Harvey, Tribune Newspapers

PINEHURST, N.C. — — There is only one way Randy Edsall wants the Maryland football program to be run: his.

"I'm not worried about pleasing everybody," the first-year Terps coach said Monday. "If I think I got to please everybody, then we're not going to be as good as we need to be, and we can't develop the way I want to develop."

It's Edsall's way or no way. And that, sophomore quarterback Danny O'Brien said, is perfectly fine.

"It's been his way from Day 1, which is good, and we respect him because he's a man of his word and he shares the same qualities we have," O'Brien said. "He's definitely put his stamp down."

After a drama-filled offseason, it's the most appropriate stance Edsall could take.

Before he even stepped on Byrd Stadium's field for a game, Edsall was tasked with cleaning up the aftermath of a controversial coaching change and manuevering his way around an NCAA-imposed punishment. The Terps had been slammed for a poor academic year that happened more than 12 months before he was even a glint in Maryland's eye.

Perhaps the most difficult part of Edsall's transition has been convincing fans and players to stand behind him.

When asked his thoughts on the coaching change Sunday at the ACC Kickoff, senior linebacker Kenny Tate said he continued to have no opinion.

"It's all business," Tate said. "We're the players and we don't really have control over what a coach wants to do or what a school wants to do. We just have to be embracing this by saying that this is the university's best decision for us and that's what they want to do for us.

"I mean, I loved Coach [Ralph] Freidgen and I love Randy Edsall. I just feel like I've bettered myself now that I've had two good coaches."

Now that nearly seven months have passed since Freidgen's departure following a 9-4 season — that came on the heels of a 2-10 campaign — Edsall can tell he has finally been embraced.

"Anytime you go into a new situation and once people get a chance to meet you and see you and touch you, then they get a better idea for what we're going to stand for and what we're going to do," Edsall said. "People appreciate the kind of program that we're going to be running and the things that we do."

When it comes to what the Terps expect to do on the field, not much will change, O'Brien said.

"I feel, from the fan's perspective, a lot of it is going to be the same," O'Brien said. "We'll still have new terminology. We're doing a few different things, which is the case with any offensive coordinator. … But what you see on the field will continue to be the same."

ACC media preseason voting

Atlantic Division

Florida State (65), 420

Clemson (4), 286

North Carolina State, 270

Boston College (2), 224

Maryland, 211

Wake Forest, 80

Coastal Division

Virginia Tech (66), 421

Miami (4), 328

North Carolina, 287

Georgia Tech (1), 226

Virginia, 132

Duke, 96

Player of the year

Montel Harris, Boston College, 26

E.J. Manuel, Florida State, 14

Luke Kuechly, Boston College, 12

David Wilson, Virginia Tech, 8

Danny O'Brien, Maryland, 4

Andre Ellington, Clemson, 3

Lamar Miller, Miami, 2

Sean Spence, Miami, 1

(tie) Brandon Jenkins, Florida State, 1

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