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Right tackle DeSouza ready for first start of career

Maryland’s team this season attracts as much national attention as the ACC – yeah, not much. Whatever. I’m finding this team more fascinating by the day. You have coaches coaching for their livelihood this season as injuries mount and tougher games loom. And it will be interesting to see how everyone deals with the pressure as it grows once we enter the tough stretch of ACC road games.

Pete DeSouza is the redshirt freshman who has been thrust into a starting role at right tackle because of the line shuffling due to the Justin Gilbert season-ending ACL tear. DeSouza will make his first career start Saturday against Florida International. He met the media for the first time Tuesday night and talked about losing 35 pounds in the offseason, any nerves he may have Saturday and the multitude of blitzes he expects to see from FIU. The thought that kept flashing in my mind was about the craziness of college football. Careers and jobs held by veteran coaches can be decided by a bad break here, a bad break there and the often inconsistent play of teenagers thrust into the limelight at a moment’s notice. Maryland could win four or five games this season [maybe it will win more], and then Coach Ralph Friedgen likely will be terminated and nobody will care or remember that he lost his left tackle in the third game and once again played with an inexperienced line. That’s not fair or unfair, just reality.

DeSouza, a DeMatha grad, definitely was not wide-eyed speaking to the media. There was a touch of seriousness and innocence to him at the same time. He knows the line needs to play better because “Jamarr [Robinson] was getting hit on like every play and that’s not good,” he said. He is usually nervous before games but doesn’t know what to expect for this one. “I don’t know how I will feel before the game, or that morning, or the night before,” he said. DeSouza said he has been preparing all along as if he were a starter. So he should be as ready as he is going to be for his first start.

What’s your confidence level in the offensive line heading into this game?

By Eric Prisbell  | September 22, 2010; 10:00 AM ET
Categories:  Football  
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Next: Brattan: Dill not 'totally alien' to playing left tackle

Comments

At this point, with a freshman and two soph's, you have to hope they get this experience under their belt and grow. I think the line is going to be awful the rest of the year but hopefully these growing pains will pay dividends next year. Hopefully, O'Brien can get some time and grown with them as a unit. The offense line will be a major factor in our remaining games.....and that is not a good thing.

Posted by: fushezzi | September 22, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Maryland could win four or five games this season [maybe it will win more], and then Coach Ralph Friedgen likely will be terminated and nobody will care or remember that he lost his left tackle in the third game...
-----------------------------------

I will remember and I will care, and I don't think I'm the only one. I will tell say this, I have been going to Maryland football games for a long time and talk with lots of Maryland fans every week. I have yet to encounter one single Terps fan at Byrd stadium or the parking lots outside during tailgates who wants Fridge fired. I don't know who these idiots are who come on this board demanding that Fridge be fired, but they aren't out there on Saturdays supporting this team and the Terps can do without fans like them.

Here are the facts:

-Ralph Friedgen's teams have gone 64-36 while the three previous Terps coaches went a combined 45-98.

-Friedgen has a .640 winning percentage in his 100 games as coach while the previous 3 coaches went .360 over 13 years.

-Since Fridge took over we have gone to 6 bowls including several major bowls, and gone 4-2 in those games including Fridge's teams winning 4 out of the last 5 w/ a combined score of 151-73 favoring MARYLAND.

-Before Fridge got here, Maryland had been to just 1 bowl in the previous 15 years, and had won just 4 of their last 14 bowl appearances.

-Attendance has skyrocketed since Friedgen's arrival, with 20 of the top 25 crowds in Byrd Stadium history occurring on his watch. The Terps stadium has been totally revamped with a $50,000,000 expansion thanks to Fridge's success, the field naming rights sold for $20,000,000, and 8,000 additional seats.

-Since Friedgen arrived, there are 27 former Terps currently playing in the NFL. This is good for second in the ACC, surpassed only by Miami (which should not even be included in this stat since they joined the ACC only a few years ago).

Posted by: Barno1 | September 22, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Good coach, bad coach, good guy, bad guy, it doesn't matter.

It is all about the $$.

too many seats that were built during the heyday are now empty on Saturdays. Right or wrong, that cannot continue. the season ticket trend has been ominous the past few years and must be turned around.

Posted by: ebaumgart | September 22, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

ebaumgart, don't you just hate it when the facts get in the way of your nonsensical arguments?

Here are the attendance numbers in the 8 years prior to Ralph's arrival on campus vs first 8 years since Ralph was hired:

Pre Ralph 1993-2000: 32,582 average attendance

Post Ralph 2001-2009: 49,187 average attendance

Things that make you go hmmmm.......

Posted by: Barno1 | September 22, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Barno1 - What is the attendance trend the last 4 years?

Posted by: ebaumgart | September 22, 2010 5:35 PM | Report abuse

ebaumgart,

The attendance trend the last 4 years is the same at Byrd stadium as it is ALL OVER THE COUNTRY. James Carville is good for one thing; his comment during the 92 campaign rings true today: It's the economy, stupid.

If our trending downward attendance numbers the past few years were a strong reflection of our on the field success, then 2007 should have seen a nice uptick in ticket sales...considering we had come off a 9 win season in which we were in contention for the ACC title all the way up to the final game. And yet, season ticket sales went down in 07 despite that success.

Why?

It's the economy, stupid

Posted by: Barno1 | September 22, 2010 6:41 PM | Report abuse

Barno1 - "07" was one full year before the recession set in.

Posted by: ebaumgart | September 23, 2010 8:45 AM | Report abuse

No one used the word recession, but the downturn in the economy began in 2006, and this is not debatable. The housing market collapse began in 2006 and again, this is when season ticket sales nationwide began to dwindle.

Posted by: Barno1 | September 23, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

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