Randy Edsall addressed the media Tuesday during his weekly press conference with hopes of moving past the unimpressive 7-6 victory over William & Mary in week one and onto Temple. Unfortunately, that meant revisiting last year’s stompfest at home against the Owls, where the Terrapins gave up 301 yards on the ground en route to a 41-10 loss.
“I wasn’t put in a very good mood after watching it,” coach Edsall said after reviewing last year’s game.
Edsall was reminded of Bernard Pierce, Temple’s former running back, rushing for a school-record five touchdowns that game (three of which came in the first quarter). He has since departed for the NFL, but that doesn’t mean Temple’s running game will be any less potent.
Last week the Owls routed the Villanova Wildcats 41-10, led by senior tailback Matt Brown’s 145 yards on 19 carries and 1 touchdown.
“He’s quick, he’s shifty, he’s fast, he’s tough,” said Edsall when asked about Brown.
While undersized a bit at 5’5, 165 lbs, Brown, a Baltimore native, has the ability to make defenders miss with his agility. Brown was supposed to split carries with senior Boston College transfer Montel Harris, but took the majority of handoffs after the latter went down with a hamstring injury early in last week’s game. Harris is listed as day-to-day by the Owls coaching staff, and is likely to be a game time decision for Temple.
“The biggest thing we’ve got to do is go up there and stop the run,” Edsall said.
That is easier said than done, but the Terrapins did have one strong point during their first game: defense. Seniors Demetrius Hartsfield (LB) and Joe Vellano (DL) combined for 23 tackles and two forced turnovers against William & Mary, and look ready for a repeat performance against the Owls. The two are going to be tasked with the unappealing job of stopping an impressive backfield and a quarterback who likes to scramble in Chris Coyer.
Coyer only completed five passes against Villanova for 61 yards and a touchdown, but he also picked up 80 yards with his legs on 13 carries (including a 19 yard touchdown run). Head coach Steve Addazio said in his press conference that he would like to pass more during the next game, so Maryland would be wise to look out for that. Coyer has the speed to beat slower defenders, and could give the Terrapins fits at times.
- Justus Pickett, as was mentioned previously, will be the starting running back against Temple. Albert Reid has taken the number two role after a less-than-inspiring performance, while Wes Brown will potentially get carries during certain situations.
- The backup quarterback situation is still an OR situation, with Caleb Rowe and Devin Burns occupying the backup role. A depth chart earlier this week designated Rowe as the number two, but that was a mistake by coach Edsall.
- Coach Edsall also said there may be a few players coming back from injury, but as of now everything is still day-to-day and there were no mention of names.