Terps coach Edsall poised for return to UConn

Published on NewsOK Modified: September 10, 2013 at 4:01 pm •  Published: September 10, 2013
Advertisement
;

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — As much as Maryland coach Randy Edsall would like to pretend otherwise, the matchup between the Terrapins and Connecticut this Saturday isn't just another game.

It couldn't be, given Edsall's 12-year tenure as the Connecticut head coach before he abruptly left to take the job at Maryland after the 2010 season.

Edsall got his first head coaching job at Connecticut in 1999. He took the program from the Football Championship Subdivision level to the Football Bowl Subdivision as a member of the Big East.

He was the school's all-time leader in wins (74) and games coached (144).

Although UConn beat Maryland last year at Byrd Stadium, this will be Edsall's first trip back to East Hartford's Renscheler Field. His list of priorities begins with helping the Terrapins improve to 3-0 for the first time since 2001.

"I have a lot of great memories of Rentchler Field and coaching there and a lot of good game splayed there and good fan support," Edsall said Tuesday. "But you've got to put that behind you because the attention and the focus need to be on preparing this week and playing the best game we can in a hostile environment."

Maryland will be playing its first road game of the season after two lopsided victories at home against Florida International (43-10) and Old Dominion (47-10). The Terrapins can expect to be surrounded by a home crowd more energetic than usual because of the circumstances surrounding Edsall's departure.

Edsall coached the Huskies in their 48-20 loss to Oklahoma in the 2010 Fiesta Bowl. Afterward, he flew to Maryland for a job interview rather than returning home with his team. Many of the players learned of his departure through the news media. Edsall wasn't able to meet with all the players personally to explain his decision, but did talk to most of the players on a conference call.