Preseason Football Camp Log: Day One
Aug. 10, 2009
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - The Maryland Terrapins capped off a busy opening day of preseason football camp Monday night with a spirited two-plus hour workout at the on-campus practice facility.
With 21 newcomers among the 105 student-athletes in camp, close to half of the session was devoted to individual work.
Head coach Ralph Friedgen liked what he saw during the first of 28 preseason workouts.
"The freshmen did much better than I anticipated as far as knowing what to do," Friedgen said. "For the most part we're in pretty good shape. We have a couple guys that have to get better. I think the only thing you're going to be able to tell (on the first day) is who knows their assignments and who's giving good effort. That's about it."
Two-year starter Chris Turner and Jamarr Robinson were the lone quarterbacks on the roster in the spring, but they have been joined by a pair of talented true freshmen in C.J. Brown and Danny O'Brien.
"I looked at the young quarterbacks and they did pretty good for the first day," Friedgen said. "We put a lot of stuff in and they had the extra meeting today. I thought Chris (Turner) was very sharp. I though Jamarr (Robinson) showed some signs of improving. I was impressed with the quickness of (Caleb) Porzel, He is a quick little kid. We have to get him and D.J. Adams in on Saturday (for the scrimmage). I want to see what they can do."
Earlier in the day, the team held its annual Media Day which included interviews and a photo shoot.
Friedgen opened the day by addressing the media for 30 minutes at a luncheon in the Gossett Team House. Members of the media also spent roughly an hour interviewing players and assistant coaches in the locker room.
Friedgen was upbeat during his session with the media.
"We're excited about the season," Friedgen said. "Our players are very excited and they're glad to be back. They've had a great summer and are looking forward to having a very good season."
The Terps will have to replace 30 seniors from a team which went 8-5 and advanced to its sixth bowl game under Friedgen.
But Maryland does welcome back 38 letterwinners, including 10 starters (six on offense/four on defense) and a pair of preseason All-Americans in punter Travis Baltz and returner Torrey Smith. The Terps incoming recruiting class was also ranked as high as No. 26 in the country.
After morning meetings, the team will be back on field at 4:25 p.m. Tuesday at the on-campus practice facility. The first full-pad practice is slated for Friday.
Preseason practices are closed to the general public, but open to members of the Maryland Gridiron Network (MGN) and Terrapin Club.
Practice Time Adjusted: Monday's practice was scheduled for 4:15 p.m., but due to the heat and humidity in the College Park area the team worked out at 7 p.m. when temperatures had dropped to the low 90s. The Terps just escaped some strong storms which rolled through campus shortly after 9 p.m.
Practice Tidbits: Junior WR Adrian Cannon made a number of impressive catches during individual drills, including a one-handed one along the sidelines ... during one of the 7-on-7 drills, Danny O'Brien went 6-for-6, including a long completion to Quintin McCree. O'Brien and McCree also connected again in 11-on-11s on a long completion ... running back Gary Douglas redshirted last season as a true freshman, but was impressive during fall practice. Douglas continued to show impressive athleticism. He had good runs after the catch Monday and showed some elusiveness.
Return Game: Torrey Smith, who set an ACC record for kickoff return yards last season, is penciled in as the primary kickoff return man, but the Terps are in search of a new punt returner with the departure of three-year starter Danny Oquendo. Sophomore Tony Logan, who handled the job in the Humanitarian Bowl, is listed No.1 on the depth chart. Anthony Wiseman and Kenny Tate are backups for new special teams coordinator Charles Bankins heading into the preseason, but freshmen Caleb Porzel and Travis Hawkins also fielded punts during individual drills.
Switching Lines: True freshman Cody Blue, who enrolled in January and participated in spring drills, has moved from the defensive line to the offensive line. Blue was a backup at defensive end, but will slide in at tackle. "Cody has the height and I think he's going to get a lot bigger," Friedgen said. "It's going to take him time to learn it, and we'll see how he does. If he doesn't adapt, we can always move him back to defense. I think this gives him the best chance of playing."