Terps Travel to Temple Saturday
Sept. 3, 2012
COLLEGE PARK, MD. - The University of Maryland football team takes to the road for the first time of the 2012 season when it faces Temple at Lincoln Financial Field Saturday at noon. The Terrapins will look to build upon a 7-6 season-opening win over William & Mary in which 14 players made their Maryland debut, including 12 true freshmen. The defense kept the team in the game, allowing Justus Pickett to run for the game-winning score in the fourth quarter.
The offense was set to return five starters, including three of its top four receivers from last season in wideouts Kevin Dorsey and Kerry Boykins, and tight end Matt Furstenburg. Junior C.J. Brown, who started five games in 2011 and set the Maryland single-season rushing yards record by a quarterback, was set to assume No. 1 quarterback duties before suffering a torn ACL in a non-contact drill on Aug. 14. Injuries hit both sides of the ball hard during the preseason, as 10 potential starters missed the William & Mary game with various injuries and ailments (see note page 2)..
Still, Maryland hopes a number of key returnees, combined with a highly touted 2012 recruiting class, will help it reach postseason play for the ninth time in the last 12 years. In addition to Vellano and Hartsfield several playmakers are back on defense. In the secondary, Eric Franklin and Dexter McDougle have plenty of experience, having both started every game last year. Franklin, a senior who has played in 28 career games, led the team in solo tackles (64), ranked second in total tackles (106) and tied for second on the team with four pass breakups. McDougle, meanwhile, led the team with six pass breakups and tied for the team lead with three interceptions. The Terps also welcome back linebackers Darin Drakeford and Alex Twine and defensive lineman A.J. Francis, all of whom have starting experience. Drakeford is a disruptive force, tying for the league lead last season with four forced fumbles. As a true freshman last year, Twine ended the season as the starter at Will linebacker and averaged 9.8 tackles in his four starts. Francis has played in each of the last 38 games and has 24 career starts.
Quarterback Perry Hills, who against William & Mary became Maryland's first true freshman starter since Latrez Harrison in 1999, will direct the offense. Hills overcame a slow start against the Tribe by leading the Terps on a 10-play, 69-yard TD drive in the fourth quarter that proved to be the game winner. Maryland has a young, talented group of skill players around Hills. Pickett, a sophomore, is the veteran in the backfield and is joined by three freshmen in Brandon Ross, Albert Reid and Wes Brown. At receiver, sophomore Marcus Leak and freshman Stefon Diggs each had three receptions in the season opener.
Maryland was hit hard by injuries in the preseason. Thirteen players missed the season opener due to various injuries and ailments: defensive linemen Keith Bowers, Isaiah Ross and Andre Monroe; defensive backs Isaac Goins, A.J. Hendy and Matt Robinson; linebackers Kenneth Tate and Abner Logan; quarterbacks C.J. Brown and Dustin Dailey, running back Brandon Ross; offensive lineman Josh Cary; and place-kicker Nick Ferrara. Both Monroe and Brown are out for the season.
Maryland-Temple Series History
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