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Evaluation Week: Grading the Defensive Players

All eyes will be on the Wake Forest-Clemson game tonight, and we will have thoughts on the game throughout the day today. I’ll probably blog a couple posts throughout the game tonight as well.

But it’s time to evaluate the play of Maryland’s defensive players as a unit. Try to separate the play of the defensive players from the coaching. A large majority of pollsters gave defensive coordinator Chris Cosh a grade of D or F. I’m interested if fans feel the same way about the players. Here are some thoughts I have about the defensive players:

No one expected the undersized defensive line to be a strength, and it has certainly not overwhelmed opponents … The linebackers were expected to be a strong point. Dave Philistin has played well at times. Alex Wujciak had 16 tackles against Clemson and helped stuff the Tigers on that late-game fourth-down play … The loss of Adrian Moten for a few weeks with torn ligaments in his wrist will hurt because Moten played his two best games before getting hurt … In the fourth quarter against Cal, Maryland’s linebackers failed to cover the same routes they had successfully covered earlier in the game … The secondary has been depleted by injury … Getting Nolan Carroll back for Wake Forest will help … Jamari McCollough has three interceptions … Fatigue has often been a factor for a defense on the field far too long each game … Jeremy Navarre is the defense’s vocal leader …

By Eric Prisbell  |  October 9, 2008; 10:10 AM ET
Categories:  Football  
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Comments

loved this result.

Virginia -- 31
Maryland -- 0 (zero - zip - zilch - nada)

Maryland's - Defensive and Offensive lines and Linebacking corp are the worst in College Football.

I have seen harder hitting teams in powder puff leagues.

Maryland's recruiting efforts are going to take a major hit with this result.

Prediction:

Wake Forest -- 34
Maryland -- 10

Maryland will finish with a 5-7 record.

I am happy that Maryland is no longer recruiting Tavon Austin.

Jelani Jenkins, Travis Hawkins and Isaac Holmes will be signing with the University of Florida.

Go Tar Heels !

Posted by: Gary | October 9, 2008 10:46 AM | Report abuse

Gary seriously, I want to cut your fingers off and feed them to my puppy.

That aside I don't see how you can really blame the defensive players for having a terrible unimaginative coach and the offense for being unable to gain a single first down 2 out of every 3 possessions. The TOP in some of these games is absolutely absurd for a team that is supposed to be good at running the ball. Even in the Clemson win the D was on the field all afternoon and the turnovers they caused were the only reason the game was won. I think it's a bit unfair to rate the performace of the players lower than a B when they are stuck on the field playing a reactionary scheme 40 minutes a game...

Posted by: Lee | October 9, 2008 11:54 AM | Report abuse

We just don't have the talent on Defense. Especially the line. If Navarre's the best on the line then you can tell how bad the talent is. Linebackers are good, and DB's are average at best. Carroll, Barnes, and Skinner are decent I'll give them that.

Posted by: Steve | October 9, 2008 12:30 PM | Report abuse

I think Wujciak had very high expectations coming in, and although his play has been solid, I don't think he is having the impact most thought at this point.

Philistin has been solid, but again, I expected a dominant senior season and he has not been the force many expected.

Barnes has played very well.

Covington has been flat out dissapointing but consistent.

Navarre also may have been expected to much to dominate, although he has not he has been the best lineman so far.

Terrell Skinner showed flashes of being a game changer, and I think the injury slowed him some but I expect big things.

Posted by: BuddhaUMD | October 9, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Lee, in regards to feeding your pup Gary's fingers; your puppy deserves better.

Posted by: Jamie | October 9, 2008 11:49 PM | Report abuse

Jamie you're right. I wouldn't want his fingers to infect my puppy like Snakes hair did to Homer in that one episode of the Simpsons. Then my poor dog would do the same annoying not funny thing over and over and over again each and every day. Inside my dog would have no soul, no joy and be dying a slow painful lonely death. My dog would bring no joy to anyone in this world and would live only as a parasite attempting to remove the joy of others in a pathetic attempt to fill the emptiness inside her own soul. I would be forced to put my puppy down even though she is physically healthy because living an existence such as the one Gary lives really isn't worth living at all. Thank you Jamie for helping me see the light. That said it would be hard to copy and paste the same thing over and over again with a nub or even a hook...

Posted by: Lee | October 10, 2008 9:28 AM | Report abuse

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