Addressing the Randy Edsall Rumors

by Mike Grant on December 11, 2010

in Randy Edsall,UConn Football

When you're the little guy on the block (Connecticut), and your coach has great success (BCS), it's inevitable that his name will come up in coaching vacancies.  It's all part of the game.  In the new age of digital news, rumors circulate and spread like wildfire on twitter.  Some have substance, some are nonsense.  

The most recent report, which appears to have some substance, comes from the Miami Herald, which states that Randy Edsall, Al Golden and Montreal Alouette (CFL) coach Marc Trestman, are all strongly being considered.  It calls the three "leading candidates".  I have no idea whether it's true or not, but Edsall's name does seem to be consistently mentioned with the Miami opening. 

On Friday I conversed with Twitter friends and people over at the Boneyard (UConn's main message board) and most seem to agree that while Edsall's stock could technically get higher, it's awfully high right now.  The iron is hot for Edsall, there's no question. 

What about Miami, is it a good fit for Edsall?  My first thought was no, but I'm going to upgrade my opinion to it's an okay fit.  Miami almost recruits itself, so getting the players he needs would not be an issue.  Furthermore, it's not as if the ACC is the SEC.  When you can build a roster full of South Florida athletes, you are going to be in the hunt.  Edsall might well be very successful there. 

The Miami fan's interest has been waning in recent years, however, and I really question whether Edsall can energize the fan base.  Gauging the fan's opinions on Edsall, I'd say most are hoping for a bigger splash.  I've read a lot of, "we don't want three yards and cloud of dust" comments.  Of course Miami AD Kirby Hocutt doesn't, and shouldn't, care what the fans are thinking, but Miami is having trouble getting butts in seats these days, and I believe they could use a bigger personality.  The flipside to that argument is, if the next coach wins, the fans will return.  True.

Should Edsall take the job?  Truthfully, if I was Randy Edsall, I'd be strongly considering a move.  He's 52 years old, his eldest child is graduating high school this year, and some would argue that he's taken the Connecticut program as far as it can go.  There are certainly worse places you can end up than Coral Gables, that's for sure.  A few years back, Rutgers' Head Coach Greg Schiano was offered the Miami position, and he turned it down.  He was unable to sustain the level of success which got him the job offer, and now Rutgers has had back to back losing seasons in the Big East.  That offer is long gone, which serves as a lesson for other coaches.  Strike while the iron is hot.

If Edsall is interested in other jobs, he sure isn't acting like it.  This past week Edsall was out on the recruiting trail, which included a visit to QB commit Mike Nebrich in Virginia.  If you have one foot out the door, I don't believe you'd be out recruiting at the same time.  Furthermore, I don't believe for a second that Edsall isn't going to coach this team in the Fiesta Bowl.  He's worked too long and too hard for this, and to walk out before the game would be totally out of character.  If Miami, or any other school, wants to fill the position immediately, Edsall might already be eliminated. 

In the end, I don't believe he's going anywhere.  There's no question that schools are interested, as they should be, but I just don't think he's leaving.  He's got too much invested in the UConn program to walk out, unless it's a job he can't refuse.  Miami is a job one could certainly refuse.  Short of Notre Dame (that ship has sailed), Penn State (Joe Pa is coming back next year) or perhaps Michigan (I think they'll hire Harbaugh if they fire Richie Rod), I think Edsall is back. 

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Patrick Hopkins December 11, 2010 at 1:29 pm

Good analysis Mike. If he could hypothetically keep UConn near the top of the Big East for another year do you really think he would be a candidate for a Penn State?

Agree that it would be hard to imagine Randy not on the sideline for the Fiesta Bowl. His integrity, the hard work he has put in & the fact he has never been to a BCS bowl just don't add up.

If and when Randy leaves, what kind of coach could the Huskies recruit ya think?

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Michael Grant December 11, 2010 at 3:30 pm

A candidate for the Penn State job, yes. He's from PA, and 100% fits their mold. I think the Huskies will do just fine with their next hire. Steve Addazio, who was Urban Meyer's OC for the last two seasons at Florida, is a Connecticut guy. As is long time Iowa OC Ken O'Keefe. Then there is always the up and comers from the MAC, etc. UConn will do just fine, Edsall has built a solid foundation.

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Hal Eis December 12, 2010 at 1:50 pm

I tend to be impacted by the experiences of Geno Auriemma and Jim Calhoun and continue to believe that Randy Edsall will stay for the long term and build a perennial top 25 program with more 3/4 star recruits and possibly a rare 5 star. Which means I also think the program can and will get better/stronger (and a stadium expansion to 40,000 +/- seats will be justified in 3/5 years and built thereafter).
Coincidentally, I also believe that Mike Nebrich (notice his 2010 season and career statistics vs. his 2 star rating) might very well be the extraordinary dual threat QB that the Huskies have been seeking ever since the graduation of Dan Orlavsky and the one capable of finally fulfilling their goal of expanding UConn's offensive options, which might be why RE is visiting with him.
Obviously, I am also asking for your opinion on each of these points.

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Michael Grant December 12, 2010 at 8:40 pm

Hi Hal,

Hopefully the BCS berth does indeed get us that bump in recruiting you speak of. It should, but we'll have to wait and see on that. I think stadium expansion is way on the back burner right now, we don't consistently sell out. I'm thinking more like 10+ years out on that, if ever. About Nebrich, who I am a huge fan of. He was upgraded y both Scout and Rivals to a three star. He's got all the tools…you never know until these kids step on the field, but I am as excited about Nebrich as any recruit we've ever signed.
About Edsall…I think he'll leave if offered the Penn State job, but not much else.

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Michael Grant December 12, 2010 at 8:41 pm

***any QB recruit we've ever signed, I meant to say***

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Hal Eis December 12, 2010 at 9:32 pm

Thanks Mike. I am a little concerned regarding Randy's visit with Nebrich. Presumption is that he shares our enthusiasm (or we his) and just wants to bond with Nebrich and give him advice/materials (as in a play book?) whatever to get started or, he has concerns about Mike's commitment which I presume is just an unsupported concern on my part

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Nick January 11, 2011 at 9:53 pm

Edsall is a loser. Good riddens. I brought up adazzio 8 months ago. We made fiesta bowl b/c we have best punter and kicker in NCAA. Next coach will be much better. Get some decent recruits. I guarantee Edsall will be fired from Maryland in four years and will be begging for any job by then. He gets uconn to Bcs game and best job he can get is Maryland. Y no Michigan? Or Miami? They know he’s a putz. Can we please never speak his name again. PS please transfer Jamal mccoombs.

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