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Mike Leach was a rambling mess during 2010 interview for Maryland football job

Washington State football coach Mike Leach has many qualities — he knows a lot about pirates, keeps a Viking axe by his bedside and has turned a Division I backwater into a perennial threat in the Pac-12 Conference — but succinctness is not one of them.

In November, a reporter asked Leach, who is married, for some advice on his own coming nuptials. Leach spent three-plus minutes on the topic.

There’s also the time he debated whether pirates or vikings would win in a battle. Or when he disparaged candy corn. Or when he lamented the lack of gorilla mascots. There’s so many more.

It’s perhaps no surprise, then, that for all of Leach’s offensive know-how, when the former Texas Tech coach was up for Maryland’s coaching vacancy in the wake of Ralph Friedgen’s December 2010 firing, he reportedly came across as just a little cuckoo.

“I’ve interviewed a lot of people for jobs in my career,” an unnamed member of Maryland's search committee told AL.com, “and that was one of the more bizarre interviews. You’d ask him a question, and he would just start talking and keep talking. … You are sitting there thinking, when is he going to get to the answer? And then he says, ‘Oh, wait, I'm rambling. What was the question again?’ ”

According to the AL.com report, Leach used “salty” language and struggled answering simple questions during the interview with the search committee. The Terps ultimately went with Randy Edsall, Leach’s polar opposite, someone whose most interesting characteristic might have been that he jogged around campus in College Park.

When Edsall was fired in mid-October 2015, Leach was in the midst of the Red Raiders’ first nine-win season since 2013. Two weeks later, he was still oblivious to Edsall’s employment status. Of course he was.

jshaffer@baltsun.com

twitter.com/jonas_shaffer

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