Maryland Arrival and Welcome Reception – Quotes and Photos



Washington, D.C. – December 22, 2010

From left to right: Marie Rudolph, Military Bowl Co-Founder and Director of Teams and Special Events; Hon. Joe Reeder, Military Bowl Board Member and Former Under Secretary of the Army; Steve Beck, Military Bowl Executive Director; Ralph Friedgen, University of Maryland Head Coach; Kirby Smith, Executive Director of Sales of Marriott Global and Erik Moses, Senior Vice President, Washington Convention and Sports Authority following Maryland’s arrival and Welcome Reception in Washington, DC on Wednesday, one week before Maryland and East Carolina meet in the Military Bowl presented by Northrop Grumman on December 29 at RFK Stadium (ESPN).

Ralph Friedgen, Maryland Head Coach

“It has been a stressful week, emotional more so than anything else. It is what it is. I really appreciate all the people that have text, emailed or called me. I‘m very proud of that, and some of the articles that have been written have been very nice. Some of the things that some of you wrote have been emotional.

“It was a possibility that I would lose two of my staff members to coach Franklin. Yesterday morning I was in the office at 4 a.m. studying the game plan because I thought there was a chance I would have to call the game. We don’t know who is going to call plays right now.

“I have spent a lot of time with the bowl, really organizing things. Kids have the opportunity to go to the Wizards game tonight. Tomorrow they are going to the White House. The next day they are going to the Caps game.

“For the most part, I’ve been holding in my emotions pretty good, and you know I’m emotional. It has been tough. You know, the kids have been great. To be with them last year and see them grow and we are right to a point now where we are about to take off

“That’s the toughest part about this. I think we really have a chance to be champions. That’s what I have really been looking forward to. The kids have been great. It’s really a warm feeling really.

“I think this game is really important to us. I think with nine wins we could be in the top 25. It’ll be a great accomplishment. It’ll be great for next year.

“This year’s not over. You know ECU is a tough football team.

“Virginia Tech and North Carolina did the best job against them (ECU) on defense. The first game with 27 points and in the other they had 24. They are a high scoring team.

“I don’t know who is calling the game. It’s an issue we have to get around. But I’ll make a decision as the week goes on.

“I was going to go to Wizards game, but I’m going to go to dinner and then to study. I’m going to go to the White House. I really appreciate what Steny Hoyer did to get us in. I thought if I didn’t go it would be an insult. I think our kids think they are going to see Obama walking around in his slippers.

“I do see myself coaching somewhere else. Yeah I do. You never know.

“We have a tradition our last practice. We carry the seniors off. I just want to know who is going to get the lucky task of carrying me off.”

Torrey Smith, Maryland Wide Receiver

“We are going to have to bring our A game offensively and defensively. They have a good team.

“Hopefully the fans come out. I hope they support us and Coach Friedgen in his last game. “

Travis Baltz, Maryland Punter and Place Kicker

“Being a senior it’s a big game. It’s the last time to wear the Terps jersey and a great way to share the experience with Coach Friedgen after his 10 years with the team.

“It was good to be back in practice and be back in the swing of things.

“I was a little bit surprised when I walked into the building for the first time since the announcement, the first thing Coach Friedgen said was ‘did you kick over break.’ From the way he acted, I would have never known anything happened.”

Danny O’Brien, Maryland Quarterback

“The easiest thing about the last two weeks was just getting back in the huddle. I have a lot of friends on the team, and Coach Friedgen was the guy who recruited me.

“Once the news settled in we realized we have a game to play.  We want to send coach Friedgen out the right way and we have an opportunity to finish in the top 25.

“They have a great team. We aren’t taking them lightly.

“Hopefully the Military Bowl is packed with red. We are just thankful we are in a bowl.

“Before I came to Maryland I sat down with my parents and we decided that I was going to graduate. I’m proud to be a Terp. I’m proud to lead this team. We are looking forward to a great game next week.”

University of Maryland Head Coach Ralph Friedgen speaks with media following Maryland’s arrival and Welcome Reception in Washington, DC on Wednesday, one week before the team faces East Carolina in the Military Bowl presented by Northrop Grumman on December 29 at RFK Stadium (ESPN).

To download more photos from today’s press conference, please click HERE.

Photo credit: Alan Lessig