Over the coming weeks and months, the Maryland football program will search for a new head coach to replace the departed Randy Edsall. We know who the candidates are, but who should Maryland pick? We'll state every coach's case, whether he wants the job or not, in 500 words or fewer.
Mike Tice: Oakland Raiders offensive line coach
Possibility Scale: 2/10
Mike Tice’s football career as a player and coach spans more than three decades. Tice is probably most remembered for his stint as head coach of the Minnesota Vikings from 2002 to 2005. Additionally, Tice spent 14 seasons in the NFL as a tight end, catching 11 career touchdown receptions while playing for the Seahawks, Redskins and Vikings. His coaching career began in 1996, and he has held various positions as a coach in the NFL ever since.
The reason Tice is even in the replacing-Randy Edsall conversation is his prior connection to Maryland. Tice played quarterback for the Terps from 1978 to 1980 and was the starting QB for two more-than-respectable (albeit run-oriented) Maryland teams in 79’ and 80’.
Tice has the benefit of being a former Terp, and that could potentially make him a popular choice among fans as a replacement for Edsall. The last time Maryland had a former player take the reigns as head coach (Ralph Friedgen), it worked out reasonably well, at least initially.
As head coach of the Vikings, Tice’s overall record through four plus seasons was 32-33 with one playoff appearance. While that record is not awe-shocking or head-turning, Tice is one of the few people on the list of possible replacements that has NFL head coaching experience.
A near .500 record in the NFL over four seasons is certainly not terrible enough to raise any serious red flags. Additionally, during Tice’s first three seasons as the Vikings head coach, they finished second, first and fourth in total offensive yards, respectively. While Tice did have Daunte Culpepper and Randy Moss at his disposal for much of that time, he has spent most of his coaching career on the offensive side of the ball, something the Terps desperately need to improve upon.
Tice’s collegiate experience is strictly limited to his three years spent at the University of Maryland as a player. His nearly 20-year coaching career has been spent entirely on NFL sidelines. This brings into question whether or not Tice would be able to adapt his vast coaching experience to a collegiate program and consistently find success. Also, his past experience does little to suggest Tice would be able to offer much in terms of recruiting, and that's kind of important.
Tice would be 57 years of age at the start of next season (Edsall turned 57 before the start of the current season). Tice’s tenure has a head coach ended a decade ago, and he has bounced around with four different teams since, mostly serving as an offensive line coach. He doesn't strike anyone as an up-and-comer.
In one sentence
Tice has important Maryland connections, but he probably hit his coaching peak a long, long time ago.