Preseason Football Camp Log: Day 15
Aug. 25, 2009
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - The Maryland Terrapins hit the practice field Tuesday morning for the first of two sessions scheduled for the day, and now have just two more days in which they will hold a pair of workouts.
The Terps will hold a light practice Thursday morning before a scrimmage that evening. They will also have two sessions on Saturday before getting into their normal game-week routine starting Monday.
Now 15 days into fall camp, players are fighting through fatigue and soreness, but head coach Ralph Friedgen has been impressed with what he has seen so far.
"I think they're working hard right now," said Friedgen. "It's just the middle of two-a-days. It's the dog days. They're tired. They're sore. They're beat up. They're looking to get out of this stuff and play a game, and yet we still have work to do. I kind of told them this morning, `here`s where your leadership shows up. I'm not going to say a word today. I'm going to see if you guys can do it on your own,' and our effort was better this morning. I was pleased with our effort."
Friedgen has chosen to rest certain players during fall camp, including Alex Wujciak, Cory Jackson and Phil Costa, among others. That decision was made not only to help prevent injuries, but also to give younger players a chance to prove themselves. True freshman Bennett Fulper, who was just moved from center to guard, has caught the eye of Friedgen.
"I was shocked yesterday (Fulper) didn't make any mental mistakes, with just moving him from center to guard," said Friedgen. "His footwork wasn't bad. I understand the center should know what the guard is doing, but usually with a true freshman that doesn't happen. I thought he did ok again today, so that was a positive. If he could play both positions as a true freshman, that would really help us."
Fulper, along with the rest of the offensive line, had a good practice on Tuesday morning. They were opening running lanes that sprang Da'Rel Scott and Davin Meggett for several long gains, much to the delight of offensive coordinator James Franklin. However, Friedgen noted where one of the most prized players on the team has an area to improve.
"I think Bruce (Campbell) is pass-protecting very well," Friedgen said. "Where he has to get better is run-blocking. I see him making strides in that area. He's a very coachable kid. He needs to get lower. I was just talking to him about it today. He had a couple good moves. He makes an effort to do what you want him to do. He's not making many mental mistakes."
The Terps will be back on the field at 5:25 p.m. Tuesday before being off until Wednesday's practice, which is scheduled for 3:50 p.m.
Preseason practices are closed to the general public but open to members of the Maryland Gridiron Network (MGN) and Terrapin Club.
Practice Tidbits: Travis Ivey's size and athleticism make him a dangerous defensive lineman. If he can stay healthy, he will be an important part of the defensive attack ... although he is behind junior Alex Wujciak on the depth chart at middle linebacker, Drew Gloster has shown he has the ability to play at a high level. His quickness and understanding of the defense will give the Terps good depth at the position ... after the defense had its way with the offense on Monday, the tables turned today. The running and passing game looked sound and the offense was able to make several big plays in 11-on-11. "Yesterday the defense beat the offense," said Friedgen. "Today it was a different story. The offense came out and did a pretty good job."
Terps Featured on Football Preview Show: The Terps will be featured on the 2009 edition of Tim Brant's College Football Preview Show which is scheduled to air at 8 p.m. Thursday on WJLA-TV (ABC 7) in Washington, D.C. The one-hour show was shot Monday evening in Capital One Field at Byrd Stadium.