Friday, February 06, 2009

Franklin "Coach in waiting"

Maryland announced that offensive coordinator James Franklin has an agreement to succeed head coach Ralph Friedgen at some point. Friedgen's current deal runs for another three years and athletic director Debbie Yow indicated that if Friedgen was to stay beyond that time that Franklin would be able to opt out of his deal. It is also likely that Franklin would get some payout if he was not given the head coaching job at that time. It is uncertain if Ralph Friedgen will fulfill his current contract but I think the odds that he stays on at Maryland are not high, unless Franklin falls on his face as offensive coordinator. On that front the jury is still out. This arrangement has been rumored since Franklin returned to Maryland before last season and apparently things heated up when other college programs and the NFL came sniffing around Franklin recently. I'm somewhat ambivalent in regards to this arrangement. I'm not sold on Franklin's coaching credentials but this seems to be the trend in college football. If Franklin does flop over the next few years calling the offense then Maryland can keep Friedgen or find another head coaching candidate. It would seem to be a low risk, high reward gamble. The staff confirmed that Friedgen's age and health status are being used against Maryland in recruiting so this is an attempt to minimize the negative recruiting.

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