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Maryland Forces Out Friedgen, But Not Over Franklin

When Vanderbilt officials made a dash toward Maryland offensive coordinator James Franklin last week, we wondered if Terrapin officials would force out Ralph Friedgen and try to keep their coach-in-waiting. 

Not quite.

Maryland is trying to force Friedgen out following an 8-4 season… and a lot of empty seats in College Park.  (As of this morning, The Baltimore Sun reports that the coach is refusing to retire.)  But his attempted ouster is apparently tied to Mike Leach, not Franklin. 

According to numerous reports, Maryland officials did not make any type of counter-offer to keep Franklin.

As the story goes, Under Armour founder Kevin Plank — Maryland’s top booster — has close ties to Leach, the former Texas Tech coach.  But Leach’s agent said this weekend that there’s been no contact between the school and his client.

Either way, it’s clear that Maryland didn’t fight very hard to keep its coach-in-waiting.  Instead, they might have their eyes on Leach, a coach who numerous Vanderbilt fans would have loved to see in black and gold.  Now that doesn’t mean Franklin can’t be successful at Vandy.  Perhaps the Terps’ previous AD — who put the coach-in-waiting deal in place — is a better judge of coaches than Maryland’s current AD. 

But you can bet Vandy fans have taken notice of the fact Franklin’s last school had no problems letting him walk.




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