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Terrapins Insider: August 9, 2009 - August 15, 2009

Defense Impressive in Scrimmage

This is a very brief synopsis of Maryland’s first scrimmage, which finished a little more than an hour ago. I’ll delve much further into analysis on Monday morning. Safety Kenny Tate continues to look very good. Tate had five solo...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 15, 2009; 9:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
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Friedgen Talks Linebackers

Coach Ralph Friedgen has been pleased with the play of his linebackers, particularly junior Alex Wujciak and redshirt freshman Demetrius Hartsfield. Friedgen has praised Hartsfield on more than one occasion already this week. He noted Thursday that Hartsfield is “going...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 14, 2009; 2:27 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
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True Freshman White in Mix at RG

Offensive line continues to be an issue – “We’re still not as physical up front as we need to be,” Coach Ralph Friedgen said. At center, senior Phil Costa is playing “pretty solid,” Friedgen said. At left tackle, Bruce Campbell...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 14, 2009; 1:02 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Friedgen: Turner Practicing Better than Ever

Remember when lack of consistency in practice was a significant issue for quarterback Chris Turner? That seems like an awfully long time ago at this point. Over the past week, Coach Ralph Friedgen has talked about the progress of lots...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 14, 2009; 12:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Finding Success Going Deep

Coach Ralph Friedgen opened his media session with reporters Thursday by saying that the offense completed four or five deep passes in practice and “it might have been the best since I have been here.” That’s high praise, but coaches...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 14, 2009; 11:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Defensive Line Concern

So the Dion Armstrong saga ends before we learn whether the sophomore nose tackle would have been academically eligible this season. The general feeling was that Armstrong was considered somewhat of a long shot to play this season, and Coach...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 14, 2009; 10:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
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Armstrong Leaves Team

Maryland nose tackle Dion Armstrong, who was waiting to learn whether he would be academically eligible for the season, has left the team, Coach Ralph Friedgen said Thursday. Armstrong, a 6-foot-1, 303-pound sophomore, started the final three games of the...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 13, 2009; 8:33 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
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QB Aside, Which Player Can Maryland Least Afford to Lose?

I’ve been thinking more about the Darren Evans injury and what it means for Virginia Tech. Obviously losing quarterback Tyrod Taylor would have been more damaging to Tech’s hopes of winning the conference. When you consider Maryland, aside from quarterback...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 13, 2009; 2:54 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
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More Praise for the Young Running Backs

For what it’s worth, Ralph Friedgen has heaped more praise on his young running backs than his more veteran backs the last few days – and I don’t recall Friedgen even being specifically asked about the young guys. On Wednesday,...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 13, 2009; 1:53 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Defense Is Winning the Blitz Battle

Coach Ralph Friedgen said Wednesday’s practice was a “real good, tough practice.” He liked the overall intensity of the team. Specifically, he said it is clear that the defense is ahead of the offense right now. Maryland started blitzing linebackers...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 13, 2009; 12:30 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Cannon and Smith Emerging at WR

It should be fascinating to watch Maryland's wide receivers all season. The Terrapins go nine deep at that position. There is little separation among the nine, and there is no true star in the bunch – yet. Coach Ralph Friedgen...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 13, 2009; 11:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
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Guards a Concern on the Offensive Line

Ralph Friedgen said center Phil Costa is playing very well right now and has demonstrated tremendous leadership to help the young guys on the offensive line. Friedgen also knows what Bruce Campbell can do at left tackle. There’s the three-way...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 13, 2009; 10:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
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Around the ACC, Aug. 13

A trip around the conference as preseason practice gets into full swing. The Post's Mark Viera reports that Virginia Tech may go with a three-headed backfield this season now that Darren Evans is out with a torn ACL. The most...

By Matt Bonesteel  |  August 13, 2009; 10:12 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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Friedgen Planning on Permanent Team Captains

For the first time, Maryland will appoint permanent teams captains for the entire season. The Terrapin Council asked Coach Ralph Friedgen if it could do that. Friedgen said he wants to wait until the end of two-a-days and then let...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 13, 2009; 9:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
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Video From Media Day

Post videographers were there to capture the sights and sounds of Maryland media day on Monday. Check out the video, featuring some fine narration by Eric Prisbell....

By Matt Bonesteel  |  August 13, 2009; 8:46 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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The Young Running Backs

When running backs coach John Donovan started a blocking drill Tuesday, Ralph Friedgen took notice because of what he heard. D.J. Adams and Caleb Porzel, two freshman running backs, pounded the blocking sled and gave Friedgen an early glimpse of...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 12, 2009; 4:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
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The 'Fight' at Right Tackle

Coach Ralph Friedgen made clear that very few starting jobs are locked up. He acknowledged that senior quarterback Chris Turner is in good shape, but he wants to see backup Jamarr Robinson come on and cement himself as No. 2....

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 12, 2009; 3:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Barbour and Wallace Are Top Place Kickers, for Now

Maryland's place kicking situation continues to be intriguing. Coach Ralph Friedgen said Mike Barbour and Nick Wallace are much improved since the spring, and both are ahead of true freshman Nick Ferrara. Barbour holds a slight lead over Wallace. Friedgen...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 12, 2009; 2:08 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Dion Armstrong's Grades, Physical Condition in Doubt

Maryland Coach Ralph Friedgen had said that nose tackle Dion Armstrong’s eligibility remained in doubt and it was not known when Friedgen would know whether Armstrong would be available this season. Now Friedgen says that another issue is Armstrong’s physical...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 12, 2009; 1:06 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
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An Early Look at the Defense

Coach Ralph Friedgen gave an early sense of what Don Brown’s new-look defense will be like when he talked about the role of safety Kenny Tate. Friedgen said Tate at times could serve as a hybrid nickel linebacker who can...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 12, 2009; 12:36 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Looking Ahead to Saturday's Scrimmage

Maryland's second day of practice was not as good as Day One, according to Maryland Coach Ralph Friedgen. The Terrapins did not throw or catch the ball as well as Friedgen would have liked. It was hot Tuesday, though not...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 12, 2009; 11:55 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
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Virginia Tech Loses Evans: What It All Means

If you’re still trying to get a handle on what the loss of leading rusher Darren Evans means for Virginia Tech and the rest of the ACC, you’re not the only one. The Hokies were considered the class of the...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 12, 2009; 11:36 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
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Around the ACC, Aug. 12

The big ACC football news from yesterday came from Blacksburg. Running back Darren Evans, Virginia Tech's leading rusher from last season, will miss the season after tearing the ACL in his left knee. Evans rushed for 1,265 yards and 11...

By Matt Bonesteel  |  August 12, 2009; 11:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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The Best Player No One Wants to See

Maryland junior Travis Baltz should be pretty happy with himself. After all, for a guy who sees the field only a handful of times per game, he sure has received considerable hype in recent months. Baltz was a consensus preseason...

By Steve Yanda  |  August 12, 2009; 8:33 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
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Promising Return Units to Highlight Special Teams

In the hours leading up to last year's Humanitarian Bowl, Maryland Coach Ralph Friedgen needed a punt returner. His primary option for much of the season, senior Danny Oquendo, was benched for the first half because he had missed curfew....

By Steve Yanda  |  August 11, 2009; 4:04 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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More From Ralph

Here are some other tidbits from Coach Ralph Friedgen’s season-opening news conference yesterday:  Friedgen gave the character of his players high praise. He said he asked his coaches to rate every player’s character on a scale of one to...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 11, 2009; 2:07 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
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Checking In With Scott

I had a good talk with running back Da’Rel Scott on Monday. He said he has added a few pounds of muscle, and looked like he had, too. He also said he has a lot of respect for Cal running...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 11, 2009; 1:44 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
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Cal in a Blowout?

Hey, everyone knows the Sept. 5 season-opener promises to be a bit challenging for Maryland. The Terrapins – the very young Terrapins -- are flying across the country to play a late-night game against a nationally ranked California team that...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 11, 2009; 12:48 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
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Defensive Line Shuffling

Maryland is already making some adjustments on the defensive line, a unit that looms as one of the more significant concerns at the start of camp. Redshirt freshman Masengo Kabongo is going to give it a shot at the anchor...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 11, 2009; 11:38 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
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New DC Brown Aims to Make a Point (or Two)

Don Brown, shown here when he was head coach at Massachusetts, broke his pinkie in college. Now he's always making a point with it. (By Nancy Palmieri - Associated Press) Back when first-year Maryland defensive coordinator Don Brown was...

By Steve Yanda  |  August 11, 2009; 10:27 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Revamped Defense Won't Mind Getting Dirty

Maryland's defensive linemen quickly bought into first-year defensive coordinator Don Brown's hyper-aggressive 4-3 schemes during spring practice, and for good reason. "I think in this system, the defensive line gets a lot more love," redshirt freshman A.J. Francis said. "In...

By Steve Yanda  |  August 11, 2009; 8:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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First Practice Completed

Well, Maryland’s first day – make that night – of practice is in the books. Coach Ralph Friedgen pushed the late afternoon practice back to 7 p.m. because of the heat. Reporters are allowed in only for the first five...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 10, 2009; 10:35 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
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Such a Thing as Too Much 'Vim and Vigor'?

Maryland pushed back the start of fall practice by a few hours because of the stifling heat in College Park today. That was just fine with the players, though many expressed a sense of restlessness at the countdown until the...

By Steve Yanda  |  August 10, 2009; 5:27 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
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A Recurring Theme on the Defensive Line

In case the last two blog posts didn't give it away, this Maryland squad is young. Very, very young. Young at offensive line. Young at wide receiver. And young at defensive line. First-year defensive coordinator Don Brown acknowledged the team's...

By Steve Yanda  |  August 10, 2009; 5:22 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Plenty of Wide Receivers to Go Around

Sure, Maryland won't have Darrius Heyward-Bey around this season to draw the attention of opposing defenses. And yeah, the Terrapins at times will miss having a quality possession receiver such as Danny Oquendo. But Coach Ralph Friedgen doesn't appear all...

By Steve Yanda  |  August 10, 2009; 4:25 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
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Terrapins' Offensive Line Is Mostly Untested

Maryland offensive line coach Tom Brattan sat back and reflected the other day on just how many preseasons he's taken part in since he got into the profession. His final tally: 37, including his years in the high school ranks....

By Steve Yanda  |  August 10, 2009; 3:58 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Friedgen Talks at Media Day

Maryland Coach Ralph Friedgen kicked off the official start of the Terrapins football season just a little while ago inside the Gossett Team House facility. He spoke to reporters for about a half-hour and expressed excitement over the team he'll...

By Steve Yanda  |  August 10, 2009; 12:37 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Maryland's Camp Starts Today

Hello, everyone. This is Eric Prisbell. I’m back after a, well, interesting so-called offseason. And this blog is back to its regularly schedule programming beginning today. We are less than three hours away from Maryland Coach Ralph Friedgen kicking off...

By Eric Prisbell  |  August 10, 2009; 9:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
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