Nov 29, 2014; College Park, MD, USA; Rutgers Scarlet Knights quarterback Gary Nova (10) scrambles to try and avoid Maryland Terrapins linebacker Cole Farrand (47) at Byrd Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports
With the 2014 football season officially over after Monday evening’s College Football Playoff National Championship between Oregon and Ohio State, the road to April’s NFL Draft is officially underway. The first of many collegiate all-star games takes place on Saturday, January 17 with the East/West Shrine Game. The game features players who attended colleges in the Eastern and Western United States. The games features three Maryland seniors and can be seen at 4 p.m. on the NFL Network this coming Saturday. Obviously that’s the same time that the Maryland men’s basketball program takes on Michigan State at the Xfinity Center. If you’re going to the game or watching on television, this game is definitely worth recording on your DVR!
- Deon Long – It certainly was an up-and-down 2014 season for the Terrapins senior wideout. The erractic quarterback play of C.J. Brown definitely didn’t help in Long reaching his true potential. The Washington D.C. native still managed to record 51 catches for 575 yards (11.3 yards-per-catch) and two touchdowns on the season. It definitely would be a huge boost to his draft stock if Long were able to have a strong showing in the annual all-star game. Most scouting services project Long as a seventh round pick or maybe even being an undrafted free agent. Personally, Long would be a steal and a great addition to a team, even if picked in the later rounds. A strong week of practice and performance on Saturday certainly could vault the Maryland wideout up a bit in terms of his draft landing spot.
- Cole Farrand – A member of Maryland’s talented linebacker unit over the past few years, Farrand is a tackling machine and really has a nose for the football. Maryland’s secondary certainly didn’t do them any favors this season, so the front seven was relied upon quite a bit to get pressure on the quarterback. In his senior season, Farrand tallied 118 tackles (70 solo), which comes out to 9.08 tackles-per-game. While the New Jersey native may not have a ton of athleticism, he has a ton to offer an NFL team. It appears that Farrand is slated to go somewhere around Round 7, but that could change with a good showing in this game and a strong combine and Pro Day. Much like Long, a good week in the middle of January can do wonders in terms of how professional teams look at a player when the draft rolls around.
- Darius Kilgo – In terms of Maryland’s eligible draft prospects, Kilgo is probably one that not a ton of people know about. However, Kilgo is a stout nose tackle that has shown a lot of promise during his Terp career. In 2014, the Charlotte native registered 43 tackles (31 solo), including eight tackles-for-loss. Kilgo is also quicker than you might expect for a nose tackle. Most nose tackles just plug the running lanes and that’s it. Kilgo is more than that. Right now, Kilgo has the potential to be a mid-round pick if this game does well along with the rest of the draft process. Kilgo would be a perfect fit in a 3-4 defense and could prove to be a steal if a team takes a chance on him in the middle to late rounds.