Maryland fires Friedgen, may have Leach in its crosshairs

AUSTIN, TX - SEPTEMBER 19:  Head coach Mike Leach of the Texas Tech Red Raiders during play against the Texas Longhorns at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium on September 19, 2009 in Austin, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Ralph Friedgen has been fired as Maryland’s football coach according to He’ll receive $2 million to cover the final year of his contract and he’ll leave the program after compiling a 74-50 record in 10 years at his alma mater.

ESPN also reports that former Texas Tech coach Mike Leach is Maryland’s top choice to replace Friedgen.

Leach has already had discussions with potential members of a Maryland coaching staff and has the strong support of Under Armour, the Baltimore-based athletic apparel company run by a former Maryland player, sources told ESPN’s Joe Schad. Maryland considered hiring Leach after last season but it would have cost too much to terminate the contracts of Friedgen and former coach-in-waiting James Franklin and hire Leach, a source told Schad.

Leach and Maryland were discussing a deal last year that could have paid him in the range of $2.5 million a season. It is believed Maryland will try to complete a deal with Leach as quickly as possible, a source told Schad.

Leach would be an interesting fit because Maryland always has talent. I don’t think recruiting would be an issue although it may take a couple of years for Leach to compile the players to run his offense. We’ll see if the Leach-Maryland marriage comes to fruition over these next couple of weeks now that Friedgen has been let go.

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