As expected, former Maryland head coach Ralph Friedgen is returning to college football in a coaching capacity. Rutgers made the announcement official Friday evening. Rutgers announced the hiring of Friedgen in addition to Joe Rossi officially being promoted to defensive coordinator Bob Fraser being named special teams coordinator.
BREAKING NEWS: @RFootball makes it official – Ralph Friedgen named OC; Joe Rossi promoted to DC; Bob Fraser named special teams coord.
“We got significantly better as a football program today,” said Flood. “All three of these coaches have proven track records as excellent tacticians and recruiters.”
Earlier in the week it had been reported Rutgers was close to finalizing a deal with Friedgen to become the new offensive coordinator on Kyle Flood’s staff. According to The Newark Star-Ledger, Rutgers pulled Friedgen out of retirement with a lucrative offer expected to make him the highest paid assistant coach in school history. His addition is a good one for Rutgers as they move in to the Big Ten after showing his ability to maximize his game plans around the talent he has to overcome some overall quality issues.
“We could not have found a better coach or person to lead our offense than Ralph,” said Flood. “His track record of success both in college and the NFL is second to none on the offensive side of the ball. He will be a tremendous addition to our Rutgers football family.”
Rossi previously cached the special teams on the Rutgers staff but took over as interim defensive coordinator for the Pinstripe Bowl against Notre Dame. He replaces Dave Cohen, who was fired prior to the bowl game. Fraser had previously been the defensive coordinator for Rutgers under former head coach Greg Schiano. Fraser followed Schiano to Tampa but was welcomed back after Tampa made some coaching staff changes at the end of the NFL season.
Via social media, Jim Harbaugh has attempted to walk back some of his strong talk.
Monday, the Michigan head coach was asked to comment on one of his former San Francisco 49er players, Colin Kaepernick, who kicked up quite the controversy this past week by sitting down during the playing of the national anthem to protest what he believes to be the mistreatment of African-Americans in this country. Not surprisingly, the outspoken Harbaugh didn’t mince many words.
As it turns out, Pankey won’t be alone on the suspension sidelines as WVMetroNews.com is reporting that linebacker Xavier Preston will be suspended for the opener as well. No reason has been given for the punitive measure, and the football program has yet to confirm it.
The third-year sophomore would be eligible to return for the Sept. 10 Youngstown State game.
Preston played in 13 games last season. He has been described as the heir apparent to Nick Kwiatkowski at outside linebacker for the Mountaineers.
Jim Harbaugh doesn’t respect Colin Kaepernick’s decision to sit anthem out
The latest sports controversy has reached college football’s borders.
Colin Kaepernick, as you might have heard, kicked up quite the controversy last week by declining to stand during the playing of the National Anthem prior to a San Francisco 49ers preseason game. The former Nevada quarterback’s words explaining to sit the anthem out served to add fuel to the raging firestorm.
“This is not something that I am going to run by anybody. I am not looking for approval. I have to stand up for people that are oppressed. … If they take football away, my endorsements from me, I know that I stood up for what is right.”
Kaepernick has spent his entire NFL career with the 49ers, and his first coach at the professional level was Jim Harbaugh. Now the head coach at Michigan, Harbaugh was asked Monday about Kaepernick, who helped lead Harbaugh’s club to the NFC championship game in 2013, and his decision to sit on the bench while the anthem played.
“I acknowledge his right to do that,” Harbaugh said according mlive.com. “But I don’t respect the motivation or the action.”
While more forceful and tinged with personal opinion, Harbaugh’s comments are somewhat in line those made by a former Oregon Ducks head coach who’s now in charge of the 49ers.
“We recognize his right to do that,” Chip Kelly said according to the Sacramento Bee. “It’s not our right to tell him not to do something. That’s his right as a citizen.”