August 27, 1958|
Glen Rock, Pennsylvania
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|1991–1993||Boston College (DB)|
|1994–1997||Jacksonville Jaguars (DB)|
|1998||Georgia Tech (DC/DB)|
|2016–present||Detroit Lions (Director of football research)|
|Head coaching record|
|Accomplishments and honors|
|2× Big East (2007, 2010)|
|1× Big East Coach of the Year (2010)|
Randy Douglas Edsall (born August 27, 1958) is an American football coach who is currently the director of football research-special projects for the Detroit Lions of the National Football League (NFL). He was the head coach at the University of Maryland from 2011 to 2015. Edsall was previously the head coach at the University of Connecticut from 1999 until the 2011 Fiesta Bowl, and oversaw the program's promotion from the NCAA Division I-AA level to Division I-A. He has the most wins for a head football coach in Connecticut history as well as the most games coached.
A native of Glen Rock, Pennsylvania, Edsall is a protege of former New York Giants head coach Tom Coughlin. Edsall played for Coughlin at Syracuse University and later coached under him at Syracuse, at Boston College, and with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Edsall coached at Syracuse under Frank Maloney and Dick MacPherson from 1980 to 1990 and was a part of the 1987 team that went 11–0–1, including a tie in the Sugar Bowl. He then went on to coach at Boston College with Tom Coughlin and was a part of a turnaround at BC. In 1993, they defeated No. 1 ranked Notre Dame in South Bend. He then followed Coughlin to the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jaguars made it to the AFC Championship Game in their second year as a franchise in 1996 and made the playoffs in 1997. In 1998, he became the defensive coordinator at Georgia Tech and saw his defense improve greatly from the season before, including a co-ACC championship and a Gator Bowl victory over Notre Dame. He then became the head coach at the University of Connecticut and had one of the best transitions from I-AA to I-A in college football history. In 2009, Edsall was mentioned in Notre Dame's search for a new head football coach following the firing of Charlie Weis, but did not ultimately get the job. The Huskies won the Big East championship again in 2010 and went to the Fiesta Bowl. Edsall was also named the Big East Coach of the Year. Edsall then became the head coach at the University of Maryland and was coach during Maryland's transition from the ACC to the Big Ten Conference.
University of Connecticut
Edsall was named the 27th head football coach at the University of Connecticut on December 21, 1998 and led the Huskies from Division I-AA into Division I-A. UConn was the first school to ever move from the FCS to the Bowl Championship Series as a member of the Big East. In what has been considered one of the best and fastest building jobs in recent memory, Randy Edsall oversaw a period of unprecedented success at the University of Connecticut. UConn went from Division I-AA into Division I-A, and in only their first year as a full member of the FBS in 2002, Edsall guided the 2002 team to a 6–6 record in its first year with a full Division I-A compliment of 85 scholarships. UConn ended the 2002 season impressively with four-straight wins to reach the .500 mark, including season-ending road wins at Navy and at bowl-bound Iowa State of the Big 12 Conference led by Seneca Wallace that was ranked as high as 9th in the country that year, 49–37. The excitement for Edsall and his team continued to swell in 2003 as the Huskies moved into their new home, Rentschler Field, and enjoyed the nation's largest attendance increase with a gain of 21,252 fans per game. Finishing with a 9–3 record, many national media outlets, including Bristol-based ESPN, proclaimed that UConn should have received a bowl berth, a feat highly uncommon for an independent team. Also in 2003, UConn was the only public I-A school to graduate at least 90 percent of its football players.
With their membership in the Big East for the 2004 season, another strong campaign by the Huskies resulted in a bowl berth. UConn went 8–4 against a challenging slate that fall as the program gained its highest ever level of exposure. Behind one of the best players in Connecticut history in Dan Orlovsky, the Huskies capped their historic season with a resounding 39–10 win over Mid-American Conference champion Toledo in the Motor City Bowl. That year saw 2 players get drafted, Dan Orlovsky, and Alfred Fincher.
The 2005–2006 seasons saw a period of transition for the program. After graduating many impactful seniors after the 2004 season, the Huskies finished the 2005 season 5–6. More of the same happened in the 2006 season as the Huskies finished 4–8.
The 2007 season witnessed a new level of excitement in Storrs as the Huskies earned their first ever national rankings, peaking at No. 13 in the BCS standings on November 5. UConn became just the second Big East team to ever go 7–0 at home and defeated three teams there which were ranked in the Top 10 at some point during the season. That year they also beat their first ranked opponent in school history by beating the #11 South Florida Bulls on October 27, 2007, 22–15. The Big East Champion Huskies finished that season at 9–4 with a berth in the Meineke Car Care Bowl, earning Edsall New England Division I Coach of the Year accolades.
The 2008 season was also very successful. After a 5–0 start and a return to the top 25 rankings, the Huskies finished the season at 8–5 and defeated Buffalo in the International Bowl in Toronto, Canada, 38–20. After a record breaking year, Donald Brown became the first first round draft pick in school history.
The 2009 season saw both great success and great tragedy. After defeating the Louisville Cardinals on October 17, 2009, Jasper Howard, a cornerback on the team was stabbed to death the next day outside of a school dance at the UConn Student Union. After this, the Huskies lost 3 games to West Virginia, Rutgers and Cincinnati by a combined 8 points. After a bye week, Edsall's Huskies won their final three regular season games in 2009 - including a historic double-overtime win over Notre Dame on Nov. 21 at Notre Dame Stadium, 33–30. In their Bowl game they defeated South Carolina 20–7 in the PapaJohns.com Bowl. UConn posted a 7–5 regular season record facing the 25th-toughest regular season schedule in the country and with their bowl win they finished 8–5.
On September 11, 2010, Edsall became the winningest coach in Connecticut football history when the Huskies defeated Texas Southern. His 67th victory placed him ahead of the 66 wins compiled by J. Orlean Christian between 1934 and 1949. The 2010 Big East Coach of the Year led the Huskies to a 33–19 record over his last four seasons there, including two bowl victories with his leadership resulting in UConn being the first program ever to go from FBS newcomer to BCS bowl participant in just seven seasons. After a 3–4 start, the Huskies beat West Virginia 13–10 in overtime for their first win in program history over the Mountaineers. UConn won their last 5 games of the regular season and Edsall led Connecticut to another Big East Championship, his second as head coach and their second in the past 4 years and was the conference's representative in the BCS. UConn went on to play in the Fiesta Bowl against the University of Oklahoma. He was named 2010 Big East Coach of the Year.
University of Maryland
Edsall was hired in 2011 after he led the University of Connecticut to its first appearance in a BCS bowl game. In Edsall's inaugural season, the Terrapins finished with a record of 2–10. In 2012, the Terrapins finished with a 4–8 record. On November 19, 2012, the school announced it was joining the Big Ten Conference and leaving the Atlantic Coast Conference, a conference Maryland cofounded in 1953 with Clemson. The Big Ten is a revenue-sharing conference that, thanks to the success of the Big Ten Network, in recent years, has generated more revenue than any other conference, distributing that money among its members.
Edsall has seen steady improvement in his three years as Maryland's coach: going from 2–10 in his first year, to 4–8 in his second. In 2013, his third season as head coach, after defeating West Virginia in one of the program's biggest wins over West Virginia, Edsall led his 4–0 team into the Associated Press top 25 poll, entering at #25. They would fall out of the rankings the following week after a road loss to eventual National Champion, then ranked #8 Florida State. The highlight of the season came in Lane Stadium at Virginia Tech. The Terrapins had multiple starters out due to injury heading into the game. Maryland stunned Virginia Tech and all but ending their ACC Championship hopes by beating them in overtime, 27–24. The victory also made the Terrapins bowl eligible. It was the first time since 1949 that the Terrapins won in Lane Stadium and the first time since 1990 that Maryland had beaten Virginia Tech. The Terrapins finished the regular season 7–5, earning bowl eligibility for the first time under Edsall, a steady improvement from the previous 4–8 season. In the Terrapins final game of the regular season, the team ended on a high note: winning their last conference game as a member of the ACC, 41–21 on the road against NC State. After a successful season in what would be their last in the ACC, the Terrapins were invited to the Military Bowl in Annapolis, Maryland.
In 2014, Edsall guided the Terrapins to a third-place finish in the Big Ten East. Finishing behind Michigan State and the eventual National Champions, the Ohio State Buckeyes. After a 3–1 start, the Terrapins won their inaugural Big Ten game with a victory at Indiana 37–15. They then went on to win their first game at home in the Big Ten, defeating the Iowa Hawkeyes 38–31. The Terrapins biggest win of the season and one of the biggest wins in program history came on November 1, 2014. The Terrapins traveled to State College, Pennsylvania to play the Penn State Nittany Lions. Previously, Penn State had dominated the series and the rivalry with a record of 35–1–1 against Maryland and the Terrapins had never won in Beaver Stadium. Maryland's lone win came at Byrd Stadium in 1961. Brad Craddock, the eventual Lou Groza Award winner, kicked a 43-yard field goal with 51 seconds left to give the Terrapins their first win at Beaver Stadium and their first win over the Nittany Lions since 1961. Trying to build this old regional rivalry back up, in a post-game interview Randy Edsall said "let the rivalry begin". A few weeks later saw another milestone for the Maryland Football program. Maryland had never beaten Michigan in football in 3 prior meetings with the Wolverines. On November 22, 2014, the Terrapins ended that streak by beating Michigan in the Big House 23–16, which assured the Terrapins of back-to-back winning seasons for just the third time in the past 30 years. The Terrapins finished their inaugural Big Ten season 7–5 (4–4) with a third-place finish in the East division. They posted the conference's best road record at 5–1. The Terrapins also made it to back-to-back bowl games as they were invited to the Foster Farms Bowl in Santa Clara, California. It was also announced that the program had its highest APR scores in program history since the APR's inception (973 multi year, 991 single year). This came after losing scholarships upon his arrival because of bad APR scores from the seasons before he arrived in College Park.
On June 30, 2015, it was announced that the University of Maryland and Randy Edsall had agreed upon a 3-year extension through 2019 worth 7.5 million dollars. On October 11, 2015, Edsall was relieved of his duties with offensive coordinator Mike Locksley named as the interim head coach for the rest of the 2015 season.
On January 31, 2016, Edsall was named director of football research-special projects for the Detroit Lions of the National Football League (NFL). Lions general manager Bob Quinn was a graduate assistant in the Connecticut athletic department when Edsall was the head coach for the Huskies in 1999.
Head coaching record
- Randy Edsall. Nndb.com. Retrieved on 2011-11-29.
- "Edsall Relieved of Coaching Duties - Maryland Terrapins Athletics - University of Maryland Terps Official Athletic Site". Umterps.com. Retrieved 2015-10-11.
- Twentyman, Tim (January 31, 2016). "Lions add Randy Edsall to staff". Detroit Lions. Retrieved January 31, 2016.