At some point this week Maryland AD Kevin Anderson will call a press conference to announce the hiring of a new head football coach. Many believe that announcement can happen by this Tuesday, but with all the different rumors swirling around College Park it’s hard to decipher fact from fiction these days. Whoever the new coach may be, by accepting the position he will have to come to terms with the fact that Maryland just simply does not have the resources many other BCS teams are accustomed to. The biggest obstacle he’s going to find is the lack of money readily available for football. Many of the top programs pay head coaches millions of dollars, and still always have money left over to pay for top assistant coaches. Cash for top assistant coaches can run from $500,000 to $900,000 per coach, and the University of Maryland is nowhere near having the resources to cover those costs. The new head coach will have to be crafty when putting his staff together, because finding the right people to help run the program is essential to future success. Here, I have compiled a list of names that should be considered. This is by no means a “dream team” of coaches, but rather a reasonable collection of names that takes into consideration the Maryland Athletic Department’s current economic situation.
Running backs Coach
Chris Beatty – RB/Recruiting Coordinator at West Virginia
The former Mountaineer RC is a Northern Virginia native, and recruited the heck out of Maryland, Washington, DC and Virginia. He could be a great grab for the new Maryland coaching staff as he consistently brought WVU 3 and 4 star talents such as Hyattsville’s Ryan Clarke, Hampton’s Shawne Alston, and Chesapeake’s Logan Heastie. As a position coach, WVU’s running backs finished in the top 3 in rushing from 2008 to 2010, and Beatty was instrumental in developing Noel Devine into a star.
Wide Receivers Coach
Lee Hull – Current WR Coach at Maryland
Every new staff should keep two or three holdovers from the previous staff, and Lee Hull should be considered. He’s done great things with receivers working with both Oregon State, and Maryland. It’s at Maryland however, where he’s helped develop the best WR core in the ACC. He has coached a first round draft pick, and God willing, his second 1st round pick will be Torrey Smith, as Smith will enter the NFL draft this spring. Hull is a decent recruiter who’s steadily becoming better at the trade. In 2009 he helped Maryland procure a commitment from QB CJ Brown, and in 2010 he hauled in highly touted QB prospect Tyler Smith. Marcus Leak, one of Maryland’s current verbal commits, is an exciting WR talent, and Hull is his recruiter.
Offensive Line Coach
Tony Wise – Former OL Coach at Pittsburgh
Mike Haywood cannot let this man go from the Pittsburgh staff, but if he does Maryland should reel him in. Wise has been coaching for a long time in both college and the pros, and he’s coached some of the meanest, toughest OL units around. With two freshmen tailbacks in 2009, Pittsburgh’s running game flourished with Wise’s boys clearing the way. In the 1980’s he helped Jimmy Johnson put together a top notch OL for the Miami Hurricanes, and Jimmy then brought Wise with him to Dallas. He might not be known as a recruiter, but his ability as a position coach is key and that must be considered especially with Maryland’s young core of linemen.
Don Brown – Current DC at Maryland
This is a no brainer because Don Brown has transformed Maryland’s defense into one of the most exciting in the country. His press coverage, multiple blitzing D has players flying all over the field and confusing opposing offenses. It boggles my mind why he wasn’t given serious attention to take over as the head coach, but retaining Don Brown on the new staff should be priority #. Don’s an excellent recruiter as well, but unfortunately his skills were overshadowed by the former OC, James Franklin. Don has ties to the talent rich state of Florida, and he’s wasted no time in helping bring some of that talent to College Park. Don is a fan favorite, and more importantly kids love playing for him.
Defensive Line Coach
J.C. Price – Current DL at JMU
Price is a coach who is under the radar, but he’s had tremendous success at JMU. He’s coached several players to national, and conference honors, and two players he’s coached have signed NFL contracts, including Arthur Moats, a 6th round draft pick by the Minnesota Vikings. Coming to Maryland will give Price a chance to beef up his resume, and it should be at a low dollar value. Price fits in at Maryland for more then just his ability as a position coach as he recruits both Baltimore and Southern Maryland, for JMU. He also has recruiting ties to Richmond, VA, which could help steal a few recruits from ACC rivals Virginia Tech, and UVA. As a player at Virginia Tech, he was named team captain and helped lead the Hokies to a Big East Title.
Al Seamonson – Current LB Coach at Maryland
No other Terps position coach the past 10 years has guided more players to such great heights as Seamonson. The list of stud linebackers at Maryland since 2001 goes on and on, and includes All-Americans, a two-time Bednarik winner, and a slew of All-ACCers. While not all Terp LBs have had as much pro success as the Vikings’ EJ Henderson, you can find many are in the NFL right now in some capacity. He recruits Florida and South Carolina, where the Terps have had decent success recently.
Defensive Backs Coach
Lyle Hemphill – Current DB Coach at Delaware
A relatively young coach, 30 some-odd years old, with a solid resume which includes working at Hofstra and Delaware. The son of one of Delaware’s most successful high school coaches, Joe Hemphill, Lyle was an unfortunate casualty of Hofstra ending its football program last spring. He is a coach, who much like Price, could come to College Park for a low dollar value, plus he already recruits much of Baltimore, Southern MD, and the Eastern Shore.
Special Teams/Recruiting Coordinator
Darrell Wilson – Current STC at Iowa
The 1981 UConn graduate is a fantastic recruiter, and he hits the Washington/Baltimore Area just about as hard as anyone else in the country. He plucked Marcus Coker out of DeMatha last year, and also grabbed DT Anthony Furgeson, and LB Jim Poggi from Baltimore. If he can encourage kids to trek to the corn fields of Iowa he shouldn’t have any problem recruiting for a school with two major cities not more than a half hour away. If anything, the Terps need to hire Wilson just to keep him from taking anymore in-state talent, and with Kirk Ferentz’s seat getting a little hotter, perhaps Wilson would like to be at a place with a bit more stability.
Director of Football Operations
Al Thomas or Bob Milloy – Maryland high school football legends
One of the more genius coaching moves I’ve seen in recent years came from Maryland’s new baseball coach, Erik Bakich. Bakich put together a great coaching staff with very, very little resources, and one of the more intriguing decisions was to hire one of the state’s all-time great high school baseball coaches to his staff. Bernie Walter, recognized nationally for his many years of success at Arundel HS, was named the Director of Baseball Operations, and his presence has helped create a bridge between the new Terp baseball coaches, and the in-state high school coaches. The move has already paid off as Maryland signed the state’s top two prospects in 2010, Alex Ramsey and Kyle Convissar. Top Maryland baseball talent usually goes out of state, but these two young men did not follow the Danny Hultzens and Mark Texerias, they will stay and play for their home state. Terp football desperately needs to create such a bridge with the current high school coaches in Maryland because the top talent keeps overlooking Terps. Al Thomas and Bob Milloy have coached some of the strongest teams in the state’s history, and both are well respected in high school football circles. The addition of one of these legends could be just the edge the Terps need with local recruiting.
*I did not include certain coaching positions such as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach because that’ll depend on who gets the job, and the type of offense they choose to run.