A few people reached out over the summer and said they'd like to see some sort of weekly Stock Report/Approval Rating-type feature on Maryland's two new coaches throughout the season. After all, there's hardly a better situation in which to do one of these things than at the start of someone's career.
Is it probably going to be reactive and kneejerk? Yeah, I guess, but that doesn't stop Gallup and Rasmussen from doing it for way more important things than this. Just keep in mind the caveat that we're not judging the coaches on too much just yet.
So here's how it'll work: each week after/before a game (probably on a Wednesday?) there'll be a post with Edsall's approval rating from the course of the season, plus a poll asking for yours now. To fill up some space and, frankly, just because I can, I'll also be throwing in my grade of his performance so far.
Edsall Grade, Preseason: B-
Given that Edsall hasn't coached a game yet, he's really being judged on two things: first, recruiting, and second, saying/doing the right things. They're both sort of mixed bags.
As for recruiting: the majority of his first class is made up of under-the-radar guys, but in fairness they're his under-the-radar guys. Judging recruiting before the recruits ever suit up can be a fool's task - remember Maryland basketball's 2003 class? - which is why, until Edsall proves otherwise, I'll give him some benefit of doubt that he's picking the right under the radar guys. After all, he did at UConn.
And to be honest, he has picked up commitments from four stars Mike Madaras and Nick Brigham, who look like great keystones for the offensive line of the future. Plus, he has Maryland in real contention with five-stars Stefon Diggs and Noah Spence, and if he could pull off one of them he'd solidify what would look like a pretty promising class.
I'm a little less upbeat on the second meter, but until we see the results of his actions, again, it's tough to grade him too harshly. Although I think taking the names off the jerseys and hiring Todd Bradford are bad ideas, I can't presume to know that, so for now I'll just wait it out until we see what's happened.
That said, I'm disappointed by Edsall's relative lack of excitement-generation, ice cream flavor notwithstanding. Remember when Pitt's new head coach Todd Graham went into the student section for a Pitt basketball game? Or when Penn State's new basketball coach Pat Chambers made Nittany Lion fans care about him based on his tireless marketing on-campus?
Graham needed to win over doubters. Chambers needed to generate excitement for a sport that most of the campus community cared little about. Edsall needed to do a little of both, but he hasn't pulled any similar stunts to win over fans, media, or students.
In truth, both of those ills can be cured by winning, and that is Edsall's primary objective. Everything else is peripheral, a nice bonus but not a necessity if he can win eight or nine games this year. He may not be a media darling or a mega-recruiter, and he's done nothing to convince me he is the right man for the job yet, but he hasn't done otherwise, either.
So we wait.
But I'm sure I'm more (or less) patient than some of you. Before any games have been played, how do you view Edsall? And feel free to abstain if you feel there isn't enough to judge yet.