That didn’t take long.
According to The Washington Post, Maryland offensive coordinator and head-coach-in-waiting James Franklin “is expected to become the next head football coach at Vanderbilt,” according to two sources close to the coach.
The Post reports that contract details are being worked out today and Franklin could be introduced at Vandy in the next 24 hours.
There is no word on whether or not Maryland will make a last-minute try to keep Franklin. He was originally scheduled to take over the Terps’ program by January of 2012, but current coach Ralph Friedgen now wants to coach past that date.
Attendance and fan support have dropped in College Park in recent years and it’s possible that Maryland athletic director Kevin Anderson still might force Friedgen out in order to keep Franklin. However, how excited would the Terrapin fanbase be to simply promote one of Friedgen’s aides?
If you want an idea of the “this was the guy we wanted all along” spin that’s sure to come out of Nashville, here’s some bio information on Franklin from the time he was announced as Maryland’s coach-in-waiting. It’s a solid resume.
Look, the guy may turn out to be the next Nick Saban. And Vandy fans can rightly say — if David Williams can close this deal — that they stole Maryland’s next head coach. That’s a good thing. But truth be told this is exactly the type of hire most people expected VU to make when Robbie Caldwell was forced out nearly a month ago: An up-and-coming assistant with very little name recognition.
If Franklin’s the guy, is there any reason to believe he is a better hire than Bobby Johnson was? He may be. But is there any reason to suspect that?
And while Al Golden or Troy Calhoun or Gus Malzahn would have garnered “SportsCenter” coverage for the Commodores, will Franklin’s hire get much more than a blurb-type of mention? Here’s guessing more attention is paid to Malzahn’s turn-down than Franklin’s hire. Sadly, that’s not the kind of press Vandy officials wanted — or deserved — in opening up their checkbook and aiming for some big name guys.
So here’s hoping VU can ink Franklin and that he does well in Nashville.
(But to those of you who chose to get ugly and angry when we told you things would go in this direction… uh… we told you so.)
December 14th, 2010 10:12 AM║ Posted By: John Pennington ║ Permalink
║ Schools: Vanderbilt
Tags: Nick Saban, Ralph Friedgen, Robbie Caldwell, VU
That didn’t take long.