Dave Cottle has left Loyola for good, is already in his office at College Park, and is even coaching tonight's fall ball practice at 6:30. In a bizarre series of events, Maryland AD brass Rob Mullens and Debbie Yow first offered the job to Tony Seaman, who declined because his salary demands couldn't be met. They then offered it to Cottle, who rejected a counter-offer from Loyola that included a $15,000 raise and a position in the athletic department. Gary Gait was not even taken seriously as a candidate despite earlier promises that the job would be his. All this occurred despite fierce opposition from Maryland players, parents, and alumni to Cottle. Those same groups fervently supported Gait. Press release inside.
10:30pm - The Maryland players boycotted practice tonight, with just their captains showing up to tell Cottle they would not be playing. And, while we are not 100% certain of it, we have it on good authority that Cottle has in fact not signed his contract yet (which is why we didn't post the original news until late in the day). An incomplete list of the Maryland players' grievances is inside, and it has very little to do with the fact that Gait was not chosen.
Reasons Terps Object to Cottle's Hiring:
1) The Athletic Department did not even give the slightest bit of respect to the player's views; less than 24 hours after Cottle interviewed for the job, he had the gig despite the players' well known objections.
2) During the pre-interview process, the players were asked by the search committee, "Is there any coach you won't play for?" Their resounding, singular response was Cottle. Although they would have been very happy with Gait, "All this would not be happening if Seaman had gotten hired. If we had wanted to play for Cottle, we would have gone to Loyola."
3) The 8 player subcommittee of the search panel was a feel-good farce; the coach evaluation forms that the sub-committee submitted were not even looked at by the athletic department. In fact, the player subcommittee did not even submit one for Cottle because they assumed the athletic department would actually pay attention to their request that Cottle literally be the only one not to get the job.
more coming later tomorrow...
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - Dave Cottle, the third winningest active coach in lacrosse, was named the eighth head coach in the history of the Maryland men's lacrosse program on Wednesday. Cottle comes to Maryland after a 19-year stint as the head coach at Loyola College in Baltimore. He signed a four-year contract worth $85,000 per year.
Cottle, 46, replaces longtime, successful head coach Dick Edell, who retired on Sept. 3, 2001 after 18 years with the Terps.
"Coach Cottle's 19 years of Division I head coaching success was an important consideration for the selection committee," said Maryland athletics director Deborah A. Yow. "We believe that he will lead Maryland to its next national championship in men's lacrosse. We appreciated hearing from a number of the former players who spoke highly about their experience of playing under Coach Cottle. In addition, coaches of stature such as Bill Tierney of Princeton spoke glowingly of Coach Cottle's leadership and coaching skills. We look forward to the future of our program under his direction."
Cottle, who said the Maryland position was his "dream job," is also thrilled to join the Terrapins. "I'm excited to come into a program with such a rich history as Maryland's."
Cottle led the Greyhounds to two national semifinal appearances including an appearance in the 1990 championship game. He is currently the third winningest active coach in the sport of lacrosse, winning 72.1 percent of his games for a 181-70 record.
He has led his teams to top-10 finishes in each of the past 14 seasons. The Greyhounds have finished with a winning record for the past 16 years dating to 1984. Loyola has also played in the last 14 NCAA Tournaments, entering the 1998 and 1999 tournaments as the No. 1 seed.
The backbone of Cottle's success has been his emphasis on the following: a strong work ethic, intelligent recruiting, attention to detail, and a creative approach to the game. He also is a true believer in the concept of "student-athlete." In each of the last three years, his team's graduation rate has been 89 percent or higher. Three of Cottle's players earned Academic All-America honors.
A Baltimore native, Cottle took over a struggling Greyhound program in 1983. Since posting a first-year record of 5-9, his only losing season, Cottle's Loyola teams have reeled off 16 consecutive winning seasons. Last year's 13-2 campaign, which ended with a berth in the NCAA semifinals, saw Loyola reach a No. 1 national ranking, and the school's first No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.
In 1988 the Greyhounds began their current run of 14 consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances. Loyola advanced to the national championship game in 1990, and it has made 10 NCAA quarterfinal appearances. In fact, Loyola has advanced to at least the national quarterfinals in seven of the past eight seasons.
The 1990 team, a potent mix of seasoned veterans and talented underclassmen, marched all the way to the NCAA championship game after making the school's first Final Four appearance. In the semifinals the Greyhounds staged an incredible comeback to beat Yale, 14-13, in overtime and advanced to the title contest against two-time defending champion Syracuse. The Orangemen ended Loyola's quest for the national title, but the Greyhounds' 1990 season always will be remembered.
In 1994 Cottle guided the Greyhounds to one of their best seasons ever. Loyola finished 11-2, recording wins against four teams that participated in the NCAA Tournament. The Greyhounds earned the nation's No. 1 ranking for only the second time in the program's history during that memorable campaign. Loyola concluded the regular season with a 17-15 victory over Johns Hopkins, the program's first victory ever against the Blue Jays. Ranked third in the final USILA poll, the Greyhounds earned a first-round bye into the NCAA Tournament before dropping a 14-13 overtime decision to Brown in the NCAA quarterfinals.
Cottle also guided his 1988 and 1989 teams to the postseason. The 1988 squad finished with a 12-2 record, earning Loyola's first NCAA Division I tournament berth. Loyola defeated Air Force for its first NCAA postseason victory before losing to Penn in an exciting quarterfinal. The Greyhounds concluded the campaign ranked fifth in the nation, and Cottle earned USILA Coach-of-the-Year honors, becoming the first coach in Loyola athletic history to receive a national award. Cottle was selected to coach the South team in the 1988 North-South All-Star Game.
The 1989 Greyhounds became the only Loyola lacrosse team to complete an undefeated regular season. The Greyhounds beat four nationally ranked teams en route to a perfect 10-0 mark. Loyola was ranked third in the final poll, behind eventual national champion Syracuse and Johns Hopkins. A quarterfinal loss to North Carolina ended Loyola's season, but the Greyhounds captured the attention of the lacrosse world with their best record ever.
Cottle came to Loyola in 1982 after leading Severn School to a 26-9 record and consecutive Maryland Scholastic Association championships. Prior to his success at Severn, Cottle served for two years as a graduate assistant coach, assistant varsity lacrosse coach and physical education instructor at his alma mater, Salisbury State University.
One of the finest players in Salisbury State history, Cottle was enshrined into the school's Athletic Hall of Fame in 1989. During his career he rewrote the NCAA record book, while earning All-America honors three times. He still holds many places in the Salisbury State record book, and was just the second player in collegiate lacrosse history to score over 100 points in a single season. The nation's leading scorer in 1975, he served as captain of the South team in the North-South All-Star Game.
Cottle received his Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Education in 1978 and his Master of Education in 1980, both from Salisbury State. He was an assistant coach for Team USA 1994, which won the world championship in Manchester, England. Cottle has addressed many lacrosse gatherings across the country, including the USILA Coaches' Convention, and he serves as a member of the All-America Selection Committee. In February of 1998 he was inducted into the Baltimore Chapter of the Lacrosse Foundation's Hall of Fame.
A graduate of Baltimore's Northern High School, Cottle lives with his wife, Lynn, daughters, Taylor and Tory, and son, Sean, in Baldwin, Md.
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING ABOUT COTTLE
Around the lacrosse world, Dave Cottle is a highly respected coach as demonstrated by the comments of fellow lacrosse coaches, former players and administrators.
"He did a wonderful job with the Loyola team for years. We scrimmaged them for years and it was actually so spirited that we dropped it because it was almost like playing another regular season game."
- Dick Edell, former Maryland head coach
"Dave Cottle has been a close friend and mentor for 17 years now. The University of Maryland is fortunate to have the premier offensive mind in the game as its new head coach. He is not only a tremendous coach but also a person of the highest character who will bring out the best in his players."
- Bill Tierney, Princeton head coach
"There's not another coach in the country that I respect more, on and off the field, than Dave Cottle. Maryland has not only made a great selection, but it has made the right selection."
- Tony Seaman, Towson head coach
"Dave Cottle is a very special person. As good as he is as a lacrosse coach, he's an even better person. What he has done at Loyola in almost 20 years is unsurpassed in college lacrosse. He's an extraordinary coach."
- Joe Boylan, Loyola Director of Athletics
"As an alum and former Terrapin lacrosse player, I'm excited that Maryland hired the very best candidate available. I'm confident that Dave Cottle will continue the great Maryland lacrosse tradition and bring home some national championships."
- John Lamon, former All-ACC lacrosse player at Maryland
"Dave Cottle is an outstanding coach whose record speaks for itself. He is a terrific teacher and an even better person. His players, current and former, have nothing but wonderful things to say about him. His commitment to them is not just for four years, but a lifetime. Maryland made a great choice."
- Skip Prosser, Wake Forest basketball coach and former Loyola basketball coach