December 30, 2016

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) Randy Edsall can go home again.

The most successful coach in UConn football history is returning to the Huskies to try and right the ship one more time. Edsall, 58, was introduced as the program's head coach Friday morning. Edsall agreed to a five-year contract.

Edsall is the all-time leader in wins at UConn after going 74-70 with five bowl appearances in 12 seasons before departing for the University of Maryland following the 2011 Fiesta Bowl.

After going 3-9 and finishing last in the American Athletic Conference, UConn athletics director David Benedict decided to fire head coach Bob Diaco on Monday. By Wednesday, the Huskies found their new coach by dipping into their successful past with Edsall.

Upon taking over the program in 1999, Edsall helped guide the Huskies from a I-AA school playing in the Atlantic-10 to a I-A independent and then a member of the Big East conference.

Due to conference realignment, the Huskies moved into the AAC in 2013 along with the other Big East football schools that did not move into another conference.

After a 2-4 start in 2015, Edsall was fired at Maryland and has spent the past year working for the Detroit Lions as its director of football research-special projects. In four-plus seasons at Maryland, Edsall went 22-34 and took the Terps to two bowls.

Since Edsall's departure from UConn, the program has posted six consecutive losing seasons while going 24-49. Edsall's replacement Paul Pasqualoni was fired after a 0-4 start in 2013 and went 10-18 in two-plus seasons.

Under Diaco, the Huskies were 11-26 in three seasons. Their best finish was 6-7 in 2015 when they went to the St. Petersburg Bowl and lost to Marshall 16-10.

In his return, Edsall takes over a program that finished last in the nation in offense and closed out the season on a six-game losing streak. UConn is also no longer part of a major football conference, with the AAC not being a part of the Power Five.

In addition to assembling a staff, Edsall will soon have to hit the recruiting trail with the dark period ending Jan. 11.

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