Saturday, January 29, 2011

Kuraczea to Central Connecticut State

It has been confirmed that former UConn offensive guard Erik Kuraczea has transferred to CCSU, and is expected to play defensive tackle for the Blue Devils. We hear Kuraczea is happy and excited to get a fresh start in New Britain.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Offer out to Jones; Foley staying

Jarron Jones, a 6-foot-6, 305-pound junior defensive lineman at The Aquinas Institute of Rochester, N.Y., was offered a scholarship by UConn over the weekend. Mike Foley made the offer, so the Huskies obviously like him as an offensive lineman. Foley also told Jones he is staying put at UConn.

Paul Pasqualoni has been out recruiting a lot lately, so not a lot of scuttlebutt as far as filling out the open assistant coaching spots. However, heard former Pitt running backs coach David Walker's name mentioned. Walker was just hired at Maryland by a guy named Edsall, so it seems like a real long shot.

Friday, January 21, 2011

DeLeone signing contract today

George DeLeone has confirmed with the Register he will become UConn's new offensive coordinator. He is flying in from Fort Lauderdale this morning to sign a contract. Terms, obviously, were not disclosed but it is believed to be a multi-year deal. The Dolphins wanted him back, and were paying him a nice salary. Old news about the hiring, we know. But you can bever be too sure.

DeLeone is from New Haven and attended Fairfield Prep before graduating from UConn in 1970.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

New Haven native DeLeone to be UConn offensive coordinator

New Haven native George DeLeone has been hired as the new offensive coordinator at UConn, according to sources. DeLeone, who turns 63 in May, was the tight ends coach for the Miami Dolphins the past three seasons. The official announcement from UConn could come tomorrow.

So, Joe Moorhead is out at offensive coordinator; but not necessarily at UConn. According to sources, he has some other things in the works. If those don't pan out, he could be back at UConn, perhaps retaining his title of quarterbacks coach.

Also, it appears defensive coordinator/linebackers coach Todd Orlando is set to join Florida International as its new defensive coordinator. Nothing is official, but Orlando could be joining FIU coach Mario Cristobal's staff soon.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Report: McCombs arrested for pot

The UConn Daily Campus is citing a campus police report in an online story stating freshman running back Lyle McCombs was arrested Sunday at Ellsworth Hall and charged with possession of a controlled substance or less than four ounces of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

It's fairly obvious this is the reason why he was suspended indefinitely from the football team earlier today.

McCombs suspended

Team just got back from break. Here's the UConn release. Will look into this and see what happened.

STORRS, Conn. (January 17, 2011) – University of Connecticut freshman running back Lyle McCombs (Staten Island, N.Y.) has been suspended indefinitely from the football team for a violation of team policies . The University will have no further comment on this matter.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Pasqualoni's contract

Here are the full details of the contract signed by Paul Pasqualoni. Very similar to the last deal signed by Randy Edsall in January 2008. It's essentially a continuation of the pay scale Edsall had from his contract. No country club membership, though. Coach P must not be a golfer.

CONTRACT PERIOD: The term of the contract is January 14, 2011 through December 31, 2015.

SALARY/PUBLIC RELATIONS AND MEDIA APPEARANCES: The contract calls for an annual base salary, as well as, annual payments for institutional public relations and media appearances. The following is a year-by-year summary of those payments:

Period Base Salary PR and Media Fees Total
Jan. 14, 2011-Dec. 31, 2011 $350,000* $1,150,000 $1,500,000
Jan. 1, 2012-Dec. 31, 2012 $375,000 $1,225,000 $1,600,000
Jan. 1, 2013-Dec. 31, 2013 $400,000 $1,300,000 $1,700,000
Jan. 1, 2014-Dec. 31, 2014 $425,000 $1,375,000 $1,800,000
Jan. 1, 2015-Dec. 31, 2015 $450,000 $1,450,000 $1,900,000* -Annualized

NOTE: No General Fund (state tax dollars) or tuition monies were used to provide any of the resources for this contract. The Division of Athletics at the University of Connecticut is an Auxiliary Service Fund entity and the sources of revenue include: gate receipts, private fundraising, corporate partnerships, television/radio rights, BIG EAST Conference revenues and NCAA revenues.

AUTOMOBILE ALLOWANCE: The Coach will receive an annual car allowance in the amount of $15,000 to be paid on a bi-weekly basis.

SUMMER CAMPS/CLINICS: The Coach may organize and direct football camps or clinics utilizing University dormitories, dining halls, athletics facilities and other campus facilities, at the rates and fees published by the University’s Conference Services Office. Coach Pasqualoni may also organize and direct football camps or clinics located off the University’s campus, subject to NCAA regulations. All camps and clinics run by the Coach shall be owned and operated by the Coach.

ENDORSEMENT CONTRACTS: Any consulting, endorsement or outside income activity performed by the Coach is allowed within the established guidelines of the University, the NCAA and the Code of Ethics for Public Officials, as interpreted by the Office of State Ethics of the State of Connecticut. Any consulting, endorsement or outside income activity is subject to the approval of the Director of Athletics in accordance with the University’s agreement with IMG College.

TICKETS: The University will provide the Coach with twenty (20) tickets in a suite and five (5) parking passes for personal use for all home football games at Rentschler Field. The Coach will be responsible for all costs associated with food and beverage service in the suite and no such costs shall be regarded as subject to reimbursement. The University will also provide the Coach with purchase privileges for up to twenty (20) tickets for all home football games at Rentschler Field. The University will also provide the Coach with twenty (20) tickets for discretionary use for all away and postseason away football games. The University will also provide the Coach with purchase privileges for additional tickets to away and postseason football games based upon the available inventory. The Coach will also be entitled to received four (4) tickets and two (2) parking passes for all home men’s and women’s basketball games.

COMPENSATION FOR SERVICES AND PERFORMANCE: The Coach will receive one non-cumulative payment equivalent to one (1) month of base salary for participation in a non-BCS bowl game or $100,000 for participation in a BCS bowl game. He will receive onehalf of one month of base salary for selection as National Coach of the Year or one-quarter of one month of base salary for selection as BIG EAST Coach of the Year.

BUYOUT: If the Coach accepts a position as a Head Coach of football at an NCAA institution, or as a Head Coach in any professionalfootball league, the following shall be due to the University from the Coach.

January 14, 2011-December 31, 2011 $1,200,000
January 1, 2012-December 31, 2012 $1,000,000
January 1, 2013-December 31, 2013 $500,000
January 1, 2014-December 31, 2014 $400,000
January 1, 2015-December 31, 2015 $250,000

In the event that the University terminates the contract for any other reason than just cause as defined by the contract, the Coach shall be entitled to continue to receive the following payment in full satisfaction of the University’s obligation to the Coach.

January 14, 2011-December 31, 2011 $1,250,000
January 1, 2012-December 31, 2012 $1,000,000
January 1, 2013-December 31, 2013 $750,000
January 1, 2014-December 31, 2014 $600,000
January 1, 2015-August 1, 2015 $400,000


Tebucky Jones Sr. thrilled with P...Edsall? Not so much

A little more...
  • Age isn't a concern for Pasqualoni, who turns 62 this year, and it wasn't a concern for Jeff Hathaway. Pasqualoni may not be in this for the next 12 years like Randy Edsall. But unlike Edsall, when Pasqualoni says he'll be here as long as UConn will have him, it's not just lip service. Pasqualoni grew up in Cheshire, most of his immediate family -- his two brothers and his mother, who still lives in the same house the family grew up in -- remain there. And in talking about being young at heart, Pasqualoni was married at age 48, has three elementary school-aged children, and he's intent on providing them with a stable and secure home environment to grow up. By the way, the new coach will be living closer to UConn, not in Cheshire.

  • Tebucky Jones Sr. is thrilled with this hire, and is among the legions who think the world of Pasqualoni, and is excited his son will have the same football learning experience as he did. Jones also didn't hold back when discussing Randy Edsall and the way he left the program. "I was pissed off with the way he did it," Jones Sr. said. "You need to man-up and tell your players face-to-face when you make a decision like this."

  • Pasqualoni mentioned the prime recruiting areas for UConn, which will be a five-hour driving radius from campus. That's essentially New England, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, down to Maryland and northern Virginia and even Canada. He also said Florida will be important, as well as the Dallas metroplex and Houston areas of Texas. Pasqualoni has had huge success as a recruiter, has thousands of high school contacts and, as Tebucky Jones said, "(as a recruiter) the man knows how to talk to people and close the deal."

More to come....I'm just getting a second wind.

Assistants got their raise; who else interviewed and who might be coming in

Some news and notes from the Paul Pasqualoni introductory press conference.
  • You'd be hard-pressed to find anyone whose played for, coached with or against or who simply knows the man that doesn't think the world of Paul Pasqualoni. Loyalty and integrity were words heard often to describe him. I spoke to numerous people today, including one prominent high school coach who said despite a strong relationship with Mark Whipple, he thought Paul Pasqualoni was simply the better hire.

  • Much has been made over the issue of pay for UConn's assistant coaches -- including today on the comments section on the old Runway blog. Jeff Hathaway said he committed a new contract for a pay raise to Randy Edsall in August, and that contract was signed on Dec. 29, a full three days before the Fiesta Bowl. Hathaway didn't have specific numbers on the raises, but that it was enhanced and could be further enhanced after conversations with Pasqualoni and the higher-ups at UConn who must be in on those decisions. "You have to remember, right years ago when I got here it was I-AA pay," Hathaway said. "We progressed those people as best we can, including our head coach who wasn't even at the $300 (K) level."

  • Hathaway confirmed that Pasqualoni was the only person offered the job, and was the only person even granted a follow-up interview. He said he interviewed six candidates for the job, which legal issues prevented him from naming. But that has been confirmed to be Pasqualoni, Whipple, Hank Hughes, Garrick McGee, Norries Wilson and Ken O'Keefe.

  • Pasqualoni made it his first order of business to interview all the current assistant coaches and determine who, if any, will remain on staff. No decisions have been made yet. Pasqualoni has reached out to some external candidates already to gauge their interest, and of course he said there is interest from them to come to UConn. Just some names I've heard so far, with a note that I haven't confirmed interest on either side, are George DeLeone of New Haven, now with the Miami Dolphins, and Jerry Azzinaro of Oregon. DeLeone has experience as an offensive and defensive coordinator; Azzinaro is the defensive line coach at Oregon. Both coached with Pasqualoni at Syracuse.

More good stuff to come....just pacing myself here.

Getting ready for Coach P

About 30 minutes until the start of the press conference to announce Pasqualoni. Lots of high school coaches already in attendance. Suffice it to say, they love this hire. But after the route this coaching search has gone, I'll believe it when I see Paul Pasqualoni walk out to the podium. As Ned Griffin of The Day suggested earlier, I half expect this press conference to begin with someone rolling out a giant cake, Dave Wannstedt popping out in a UConn coaching jersey and then singing a seductive chorus of 'Happy Birthday' to himself.

Pasqualoni's contract details

Some quick contract details on Pasqualoni. He'll make $1.5 million this year, bumped up $100K each year over the life of the 5-year deal, ending at $1.9 million in 2015. No state tax dollars used in the contract. Same bonus incentives as Edsall ($100K for a BCS bowl game, etc.). His buyout is $1.2 million this year, $1 million next year, $500K in 2013, $400K in 2014 and $250K in 2015. Will post it in full soon, but those are the basics.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

One reason why the job went to Pasqualoni

What may have been the 'X' factor that pushed Paul Pasqualoni to the top of the heap with UConn athletic director Jeff Hathaway in this unusual 13-day coaching search?

The Lone Star State.

We're hearing that Pasqualoni's experience as a successful recruiter and more specifically, his ties to Dallas and the state of Texas played a big role in his hiring.

As TCU is set to join the Big East in 2012, elevating the level of play in the conference up a few notches, UConn felt Pasqualoni's connections in the area will help the Huskies quickly establish a foothold in the talent-rich state. Pasqualoni also has ties in Florida, having spent a season in Miami with the Dolphins and having recruited the state while at Syracuse.

Mark Whipple, who spent the last two seasons as the offensive coordinator at the University of Miami, is a strong 'x's and o's' guy, but is not regarded as a strong recruiter.

UConn's new coach

The Register has confirmed through sources close to Paul Pasqualoni that he has officially been hired as the new football coach at UConn.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Someone will be named UConn coach, I promise

I was hoping to get firm confirmation tonight that Paul Pasqualoni is the mystery candidate believed to be holding up the works at UConn, but was unable to do so. Sources did say he's not in Connecticut this evening, for whatever that's worth. At this point, I don't know if the job has even been formally offered to anyone. But if that's the case, it won't be for long. We'll hear an announcement very soon. And I think it will be either Paul Pasqualoni or Mark Whipple. But don't count out Hank Hughes. Or Tom Bradley. Yep. Coaching searches are fun.

Don't engrave that name plate just yet

Looks like we may have jumped the gun a bit on Mark Whipple. Sources close to Whipple said he hadn't been offered the job as of Tuesday night, even after reports came out that it was all but finalized. I also understand Whipple wasn't happy to see that he was named "the front-runner" for the job in today's headlines.

Now, Whipple could very well still be the guy. I think he probably will be the guy based on some things I've heard from other sources. But, as of last night, there was at least one other candidate still in the hunt, according to a source. There wasn't a specific name, but I believe it may have been Paul Pasqualoni. Maybe Hank Hughes is still there, too.

An announcement should come soon.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Whipple looking like the choice

Mark Whipple is close to being named the next head football coach at UConn, and an announcement could come Thursday, sources said. Barring a major collapse in contract negotiations, this looks like a done deal.

Whipple was most recently the offensive coordinator and assistant head coach at the University of Miami under Randy Shannon, who was fired in December. New Miami coach Al Golden did not retain Whipple for his new staff.

Other candidates believed to have interviewed with Hathaway are Arkansas offensive coordinator Garrick McGee, UConn interim head coach Hank Hughes and Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator Paul Pasqualoni.

Whipple got his first head coaching job at the University of New Haven in 1988, and built the foundation for an NCAA Division II powerhouse. The Chargers played and won their first NCAA playoff game under Whipple in 1992, reaching the national semifinals. In 1993, behind Harlon Hill Trophy winner Roger Graham, New Haven made it to the national quarterfinals. Whipple's teams were a combined 23-2 over his final two seasons at New Haven, and he left after the 1993 season to take the head job at his alma mater, Brown.

In 1998, Whipple left Brown after four seasons for UMass, and won the Division I-AA national championship in his first year. He was also part of a Super Bowl champion as the quarterbacks coach for the Pittsburgh Steelers, and also spent a year with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2008 before heading back to college.

Friday, January 07, 2011

Pasqualoni getting consideration

Paul Pasqualoni is on UConn's radar, and is expected to be granted an interview for the vacant head coaching job, my colleague Dave Solomon was informed today. Pasqualoni, who grew up in Cheshire, is currently the defensive coordinator of the Dallas Cowboys.

As of Friday, no one had interviewed for the position, there is no front-runner and at least six candidates are expected to be interviews, Solomon reports.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Five for East-West Shrine Game.

Edsall announced this postgame at the Fiesta Bowl, but here's the official release from UConn. These five are also invited to the NFL Combine, with Todman expected to be there, too.

STORRS, Conn. (January 6, 2011) -- A total of five University of Connecticut football seniors will take part in the 86th East-West Shrine Game. The game will be held on Saturday, Jan. 22, 2011 at the Florida Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Fla., kicking off at 4 p.m. EST and will be televised by the NFL Network.

The five Huskies are: offensive guard Zach Hurd (Waterford, Conn.), defensive end Greg Lloyd (Clermont, Fla.), linebacker Scott Lutrus (Brookfield, Conn.), fullback Anthony Sherman (North Attleboro, Mass.) and linebacker Lawrence Wilson (Tuscaloosa, Ala.).

While the teams are divided by East and West, the players come together for the beneficiary of the event, Shriners Hospitals for Children, an international pediatric specialty health care system.

Hurd was a First Team All-BIG EAST Conference pick in each of the past two seasons. Over his career, he blocked for a total of four 1,000-yard single-season rushing performances. Llloyd was a Second Team All-BIG EAST pick during 2009 and battled injuries late in his career. Lutrus was a Second Team All-BIG EAST pick in his sophomore year of 2008 and started a total of 41 games over four years.

Sherman played in 51 games as a fullback over his Husky career and again played a critical blocking role for the UConn tailback position. Wilson is UConn’s career leader in games played (52) and starts (50). He is the second-leading tackler in school history with 449 and was a First Team All-BIG EAST selection this year.

“We hope our supporters all over the country will come out and enjoy this exciting game,” said Douglas E. Maxwell, president and CEO of Shriners Hospitals for Children. “Our health care system depends on the generosity of our supporters, and this game is one of our signature events benefitting Shriners Hospitals for Children.”

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Hathaway: The search has begun

Quite a press conference. Jeff Hathaway provided the details of the coaching search and Hank Hughes publicly made his case for the job. Some news and observations.

  • Hank Hughes more or less stumped for the job vacancy. It's kind of taboo to do that at a press conference, but at the same time Hughes kind of had to take advantage of the opportunity. Certainly some bigger names will enter the fray at some point (Rich Rodriguez, Tony Sparano, etc.) and Hughes, basically an unknown to the public, will be even less attractive to those who buy the tickets. Hughes made a very strong case, his talking points centering around his long involvement with the program and, more importantly, the continuity and stability he'll bring in the wake of turmoil. UConn's coaching staff would remain mostly in tact, and it would minimize the loss of current recruits and potential transfers. It's also the best way to build upon the current foundation with the same mission statement laid down by Randy Edsall. Hughes accomplished his mission. I think he convinced people he is a legitimate choice to lead the program.

  • Hathaway took a nice shot at Edsall and Maryland. A question about whether Hathaway would give extra consideration if someone said UConn was their dream job, "I've seen people leave their dream jobs. And I'm not worried about what a person's dream job is; I don't know how you qualify that or quantify that. That's not passing judgement on anybody whose used that line." Of course, passing judgement is exactly what Hathaway was doing when he said it.

  • In a nutshell, Hathaway said the search is active, and has been since Edsall announced he was leaving. Many calls have already been made; there is no timetable even though time is of the essence and the man who lands the job will be the man Hathaway feels is the best for the job. The choice will be made by Hathaway, and then approved by the president. Since UConn is in a transitional phase with presidents, interim Phil Austin will keep incoming president Susan Herbst appraised on the procedure, and Herbst will be involved.

  • The picture already painted of Edsall sneaking out in the middle of the night to Maryland, kind of like the Baltimore Colts move to Indianapolis, was more or less confirmed by Hathaway. According to Hathaway, he met with Edsall after the game, went to catch the shuttle back to his hotel, checked his cell phone and saw a missed call and new text message. The text was from Edsall, who said he intended to interview with Maryland Sunday. It was 11:25 p.m. MST, around an hour after the game ended. Hathaway said Maryland athletic director Kevin Anderson reached out to him the next morning at 5:25 a.m. (7:25 a.m. EST).

  • Hank Hughes is now the only confirmed candidate for the job. Hathaway has appointed Chuck Neinas, who has the best job in America, to lead the search committee. Contact has been made to gauge interest in others, and many of the leading names out there have likely contacted or been contacted about the position. Whether anyone has interviewed or is scheduled to interview remains unclear.

  • Hughes called friends in the coaching circle including Steve Spagnoulo and John Harbaugh to call Hathaway on his behalf. He's confident UConn won't lose more recruits. There are four players scheduled to enroll in January, too.

  • Lyndon Johnson is leaving the staff to join Edsall in Maryland, it has been confirmed. Joe Moorhead was not in his office this afternoon, but is believed to be among the coaches on the road recruiting today. Drew Wilson, a strength and conditioning coach who had already resigned at UConn with intentions of taking the job at Purdue, is now joining Edsall at Maryland.

Stay tuned...

Edsall nabs Wilson

According to Rob Lunn (via his twitter), UConn strength and conditioning coach Drew Wilson will join Randy Edsall at Maryland.

Media briefing at 3

Athletic director Jeff Hathaway and acting head coach Hank Hughes will hold a "media briefing" today at 3 to update the situation. It's not a press conference to announce Hughes as the new head coach, I'm told. More likely, Hathaway will speak of the process and time frame for the position and Hughes will talk about his duties keeping things together while things are sorted out. Check back for updates here and on my twitter account. And while your on twitter, follow me, whydoncha?

Monday, January 03, 2011

Moorhead and Johnson still at UConn; Richardson to the U

I spent most of today jammed into airplanes, making a day-long trek back from Arizona. But need to clear up the previous post, as the report from the Washington Post about UConn assistant coaches Joe Moorhead, Lyndon Johnson and Terry Richardson following Randy Edsall to Maryland was was off base.

Richardson is indeed leaving UConn, but will join Al Golden on the staff of Miami. I actually ran into Richardson upon arrival at Bradley airport late this afternoon. He was sharply dressed and wearing sunglasses while getting a shoeshine in the terminal and waiting for his flight. And he has no idea how the rumor started, but it's obviously false. All other members of the staff are still under UConn's employ. For now.

The loss of Richardson, an excellent recruiter, particularly his native Florida, stings. He's a good coach, strong developer of talent and popular with the players.

EDIT: Just to be clear...none of the assistants had agreed to join Edsall as of yesterday. That doesn't mean it won't happen. It might; or it might not.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

Report: Edsall taking three assistants to Maryland

The Washington Post reported Edsall will take UConn offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead, running backs coach Terry Richardson and special teams coordinator Lyndon Johnson with him to Maryland.

All three are valuable resources the Huskies, and huge losses.

Who'll be the next UConn head coach?

The process has probably already begun. UConn must move quickly to replace Randy Edsall or risk losing more incoming recruits (and there are bound to be some) and possible transfers. The best way to minimize that stuff is to hire within the program, and Hank Hughes would be at the top of that list. Of course, athletic director Jeff Hathaway must do what's best and if that means an external hire too good to pass up, so be it. Experience, salary, ties to the area and recruiting experience are among the many areas crucial to the position.

Here are a few names I'll toss out there that Hathaway may consider.

Hank Hughes, UConn assistant head coach for defense: A 10-year veteran of the Huskies staff, Hughes has been second in command to Edsall the past few years. He should be considered the top candidate for an internal hire. Hughes and his family (he has four young children) are also firmly rooted in Connecticut.

Joe Moorhead, UConn offensive coordinator: Hand-picked by Edsall to run the Husky offense, will be a head coach somewhere someday. But with only four years as a college offensive coordinator, may lack the experience for consideration. It will be interesting to see what happens with Joe. I expect Edsall will take him to Maryland with him, but Hathaway may do what he needs to do to keep him here.

Ken O'Keefe, Iowa offensive coordinator: O'Keefe grew up in Milford, played for Ray Tellier and Tom Marcucci at Notre Dame of West Haven and his first coaching job was as an assistant at the U. of New Haven. He also has strong ties to the area with family still in Milford, while his wife has family on the Connecticut shoreline. But his relationship with Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz, also a UConn grad, dates back some 34 years. O'Keefe gave Ferentz his first paid job at Worcester (Mass.) Academy, and O'Keefe, the OC at Iowa since 1999, has been fiercely loyal to Ferentz.

Mark Whipple, U. of Miami assistant head coach and offensive coordinator: Whipple’s success at New Haven, his first head coaching job, led to bigger and better things. Won a national title at UMass and coached in the NFL, winning a Super Bowl as an assistant with the Steelers. Is not being retained at Miami by new coach Al Golden.

Kevin Gilbride, New York Giants offensive coordinator: North Haven native has impressive resume but a long shot to leave his current position. Of course, his future depends on what the Giants decide to do with Tom Coughlin.

There are other names with state ties too. Dick Jauron, who is close with Edsall, Chris Palmer, even Skip Holtz. Tony Sparano is still employed as head coach of the Miami Dolphins, but is a New Haven native with family in-state. He's also on shaky footing with the Dolphins. Anything can happen. I know Mike Leach is getting some love from UConn fans right now. He's an offensive wizard, but the baggage cost him the Maryland job.

Any other suggestions out there?

It's offical. Edsall to Terps

Press conference tomorrow at 2.

COLLEGE PARK, Md. - Randy Edsall, who spent the last 12 years taking the University of Connecticut from Division I-AA status (now FCS) to five bowl games, including a BCS contest, has been named Maryland's head football coach, director of athletics Kevin Anderson announced Sunday evening.

Edsall, who will be introduced Monday during a news conference, guided the Huskies to a pair of BIG EAST Conference titles (2007, 2010) and postseason appearances in each of the last four seasons, including the 2011 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl.

The 2010 BIG EAST Coach of the Year has led the Huskies to eight or more wins in each of the last four seasons as the Huskies successfully made the ascent from Division I-AA.

Prior to his stint in Storrs, Conn., Edsall, a native of Glen Rock, Pa., spent one season (1998) as the defensive coordinator at Georgia Tech and four years (1994-97) as a defensive backs coach with the Jacksonville Jaguars who went from expansion team to the AFC Championship game during his tenure.

Maryland Athletics will comment on the hiring during Monday's news conference (2 p.m.) which can be viewed through Terps TV

Edsall blindsides UConn

Making some calls and doing my best to chase down whatever info I can right now. Here's what I'm hearing.

Some of the current coaching staff, I won't say who, but guys in prominent positions on the staff, had no idea this was coming. It seems Edsall told few, if anyone on his coaching staff and certainly not the players, who were also blindsided with today's reports. Most of the coaching staff and others in the program are worried right now about their futures. The underclassmen aren't happy. The seniors are shocked, though this doesn't really affect them.

Edsall will likely bring some coaches with him -- Joe Moorhead, Todd Orlando, Mike Foley, Hank Hughes and Lyndon Johnson are all good bets if they're willing to make the move. Moorhead and Hughes might well be considered to replace Edsall, if Jeff Hathaway wants to go that way.

This decision should have an effect on the current recruiting class. Expect some decommitments soon. UConn

ESPN: Edsall to Maryland

That was quick.

ESPN is reporting that Randy Edsall will coach Maryland next season, and the official announcement could come Monday.

It's not surprising Edsall is leaving. Most felt it was inevitable. He's taken UConn about as far as it can go. But I thought he might hold out for a Big 10 job, or at least a higher profile ACC position -- Maryland has potential to be a player in the ACC, but like UConn it won't be easy to compete for national championships there.

At any rate, we figured the Edsall rumor mill would heat up once Michigan cans Rich Rodriguez and the dominos started to fall to fill that job.

By the way, UConn plays at Maryland in 2012 and the Terps come to Rentschler Field in 2013.

Jordan Todman declares for NFL Draft

Jordan Todman declared for the NFL Draft at the postgame press conference.


UConn falls to Oklahoma in Fiesta Bowl

I'll have more on the game later, but for now a link to the game story.