The Washington Times - October 15, 2008, 11:49AM

It was a mild surprise that Clemson coach Tommy Bowden‘s departure (whether you call it a firing, resignation, not deferring a sealed fate, whatever) came up during Ralph Friedgen‘s press conference yesterday.

However, it was a reasonably popular topic on today’s ACC teleconference. And the circumstances of the regime change in Tigertown was brought up to Ralph.


“I had some sadness there,” Friedgen said. “I’ve known Tommy a long while. It’s just unfortunate these things happen in the procession. I’m sure he’ll be fine. It’s just a difficult thing.”

Friedgen also chose the course of discretion when asked about midseason changes; this was the third time since 2003 that an ACC coach was jettisoned before the end of October, though North Carolina gave John Bunting the chance to finish out the season two years ago.

“It happens,” Friedgen said. “Me, I don’t know all the situations and all the circumstances. People have to run their program the way they see fit. It’s not my place to comment on that, one way or the other. I have my own problem.”

Oh, is it a big one, too —- trying to figure out how to decipher Wake Forest’s defense this week.

One writer asked Ralph just how the Terps would turn around from getting blanked 31-0 at Virginia against the Demon Deacons’ veteran posse of defenders. When pressed for details, Friedgen offered a wry reply wrapped in the uncertainty that seems to shroud Maryland every week.

“I think you’ll have to wait to see until Saturday —- if we have one,” Friedgen said.

—- Patrick Stevens