The Washington Times - July 30, 2008, 03:34PM

OK, today we talk about money.

As in raising it. A lot of it. Enough to buy a brand-new, state-of-the-art, glitzy, gleaming, sparkly $250,000 digital video system.

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Because that’s what Friedgen Claus helped bring to Maryland in the offseason (and he didn’t even warn someone it could shoot someone’s eye out).

“For us to get something that’s not in the budget, we have to raise the money,” Friedgen said last week. “When I got there, we had $40,000 in the booster club. I raised $500,000 a year now or more now. That makes us the type of program you have to have.”

(For those who are math-deficient, that’s more than 12 times as much as what was being raised in 2000. And to put it bluntly, Maryland fans were getting pretty much what they paid for, with one bowl berth in 15 years before Friedgen arrived.)

That aforementioned booster club is the Maryland Gridiron Network, which has paid for all sorts of stuff over the years and does some events like tomorrow’s shindig at Caddies in Bethesda.

So Ralph (along with offensive coordinator James Franklin and defensive coordinator Chris Cosh) will be there to chat up fans and maybe make a little extra cash for his program (after all, that’s what booster clubs do).

He might even talk about his brand new digital video system, too – a little bit of proof that money makes the college football world go ‘round.

 – Patrick Stevens