coordinator Todd Bradford
As a football coach and fan, I had an interesting experience today. University of Maryland defensive coordinator Todd Bradford (official Maryland bio here) stopped in to our school to visit our head coach. When he walked in, I immediately recognized him from the Nike Coach of the Year Clinic, which I attended back in March.
As coaches often do, he was in the area doing some recruiting. I had a few minutes to chat him up. We talked a little bit about his presentation at the coaches clinic, I asked him how his spring practices went, etc. He had some interesting things to say about the team's preparation. Maryland opens the season on September 5th with a televised night game against Miami, which ought to be exciting for the Terrapins, who don't frequently get a chance to play in prime time.
Coach Bradford asked if I'm from the area originally, and I told him I was from Michigan. He asked where, and when I told him, he said, "Yeah, I know where that is. I used to coach at Eastern Michigan. Ypsilanti." I said I went to school right next to Ypsilanti at the University of Michigan. His response was, "I always wanted to coach there. That's a great place. I used to work their summer camps, you know, but once I went to Wisconsin [where he coached defensive backs from 2000-01], I couldn't work the camps anymore, since they're in the Big Ten."
We talked a little bit longer about recruits at my school and in the area, but obviously, that's not conversation that should be relayed here. Shortly afterward, I left him with the head coach and carried on with my day.
As you might know, college coaches spend a lot of time on the road trying to create relationships with local programs and schools. There was a great article about the life of college basketball recruiters in last week's issue of Sports Illustrated. We've heard about Darrell Funk, Mark Smith, and Fred Jackson making school visits in recent weeks, and those are the types of things they do when spring practices and the fall football season aren't in full swing. They hit the road and visit every school they can, hoping that relationships built will help them land a recruit or gain some support in the coming months and years.
Nothing earth shattering happened and the more interesting parts of the conversation should remain undisclosed, but it's not every day that you get some one-on-one time with an ACC coach.
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