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 (roughly) 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.
Matt Campbell, Toledo head coach
Possibility scale: 7/10
At only 35 years old, Matt Campbell is one of the youngest head coaches in college football. He's been head coach at Toledo since 2011, when he assumed the position for the team's Military Bowl victory over Air Force. After starting his coaching career at Bowling Green, he moved to Division-III Mount Union, he served as offensive coordinator and helped win two national championships and produce three All-Americans, including Washington Redskins wide receiver Pierre Garcon. He then came back to Bowling Green for two years before assuming the offensive coordinator position at Toledo in 2009. While with the Rockets, Campbell has been named a "top recruiter" by Rivals, and his classes have consistently ranked No. 1 or No. 2 in the MAC while he's been an assistant and a head coach.
Campbell is currently in the middle of his fourth full season as Toledo's head coach. His team won nine, seven and nine games in each of his three seasons as the team's head coach. His team has seven wins already this seaon. Right now, Toledo(!) is ranked No. 24 in the latest Associated Press Poll, although that will change after the team's upset loss against Northern Illinois Tuesday.
Campbell is one of the trendy up-and-coming names in coaching for a reason. His recruiting classes at Toledo have always been rated highly, and has been a good recruiter in the midwest. His teams have also done well in big-game atmospheres (for MAC teams, at least), beating Arkansas, Arkansas State and Iowa State.
He's already in the region. He has experience recruiting kids in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia, among other states. If he can use his connections in those areas and continue Maryland's recent in-state recruiting success, the Terps could climb out of the Big Ten cellar rather quickly.
He doesn't have any experience in big-time college football. Now this certainly doesn't mean he can't be a good Big Ten head coach, but Campbell's relative inexperience will count against him if he's up against guys like Mark Richt or Pep Hamilton. He also doesn't have the wide-open offense Kevin Anderson is pining for. Toledo comes in at No. 49 on the latest S&P+ ratings. That's not horrible, but it might not be enough for Anderson. Also, just because he can lead a team like Toledo to a top-25 ranking doesn't mean he'd be able to do it at Maryland. Randy Edsall got UConn all the way up to No. 16, and his Huskies were ranked in three separate seasons. He didn't exactly replicate those results at Maryland.
In one sentence
He's young and rather unproven, but someone's going to snatch him up from Toledo before long.