The University of Maryland announced on Monday, September 3, 2001, that longtime men's lacrosse coach Dick Edell retired from the post he held for 18 years due to health-related reasons. Edell was replaced by Dave Cottle, who was hired on Sept. 26, 2001 after a 19-year tenure as the head coach at Loyola College.
When Edell retired, he stressed that his health issue is not life-threatening, but that it is affecting his quality of life. "My mind and heart want to do this, but my body won't," said Edell, 57. "I'm thankful to the school for giving me the chance [18 years ago] and to all of my coaches and players. For 18 years this has been an unbelievable experience. I don't know of many people who get to spend the professional life doing what they love doing with people they like being around."
Maryland director of athletics Deborah Yow said the school appreciated all of Edell's efforts with the men's lacrosse program. "We are profoundly grateful for the many contributions that Dick Edell has made to our athletic program. He has coached our men's lacrosse team with skill and great dedication, and he will be missed by everyone associated with the athletic program."
Edell concluded his 29th season of coaching and 18th season at Maryland this past spring and will go down in history as one of the all-time coaching greats of the game. After finishing with a 13-3 record in 2001, Edell leaves with the best career ACC record at 171-76 (.692), all at Maryland. On March 11, 2000, Edell became the first coach to reach the 150-win plateau at an ACC school, with a win over his alma mater, Towson.
With a lifetime record of 282-123 over 29 years including stints at the University of Baltimore, Army and Maryland, Edell was the nation's second-winningest active coach. Ironically, the only coach Edell trails on the active list is Jack Emmer (289-159), who succeeded Edell at Army in 1984.
He is the fifth all-time winningest coach in men's lacrosse annals, overall. He passed former Cornell coach Richie Moran and Syracuse legend Roy Simmons, Sr., during the 2000 season and former Towson coach Carl Runk (262) with the Terps' win at Cornell on March 18, 2000. The all-time leader is former UMass coach Dick Garber (300 wins).
"Big Man," as he is affectionately known on the College Park campus, has led his teams to 20 NCAA Tournament appearances (17 in Division I including the 2001 selection), including 13 at Maryland. He has also led the Terps to three ACC championships (1985, 1987 and 1998) and three NCAA championship game appearances (1995, 1997, 1998).
He was named the National Coach of the Year by the USILA in 1978 and 1995. He was also selected as the ACC Coach of the Year in 1989, 1992 and 1998.
He became the seventh coach in history to pass the 400-games coached plateau. Edell won his 400th career game in the ACC semifinals on April 20, 12-8 over Virginia, at Orlando.
Edell graduated from Towson in 1967, where he was a two-time All-American, with a degree in physical education. He earned his master's degree in education from Western Maryland in 1970 and another master's degree in science from the University of Baltimore in 1976. He broke into the coaching profession in 1968 as the freshman coach at Towson and after two years with the Tigers, Edell spent three years at Calvert Hall High School, where the Cardinals were crowned MSA champions in 1971 and 1973.
In 1973, he was hired at the University of Baltimore where he coached for four years and amassed a 45-23 record. He also coached Baltimore to a Division II national soccer championship in 1975.
Edell and his wife Dolores are the proud parents of four children. Their daughters Lisa and Krissy are both Maryland graduates, while their son Gregg graduated from Dartmouth in 2000 after a successful lacrosse career and currently works in New York City. Their youngest daughter, Erin, is beginning her college career at the University of Delaware and is a member of the Blue Hens' lacrosse team.
Edell By The Numbers