At the start of camp, Maryland had three options at right tackle, all with a notable deficiency.
Paul Pinegar was small for a tackle, and given the absence of any magic beans to turn him into a 6-foot-7, 320-pound behemoth, the technically sound junior remains a bit undersized.
R.J. Dill was inexperienced, a redshirt freshman who worked through an injury during the spring. Three weeks of camp haven’t changed the fact he hasn’t played in a college game.
And Tyler Bowen had a history of injuries – notably with his foot. And sure enough, he’s missed much of camp with more foot issues.
“He’s trying his butt off,” coach Ralph Friedgen said. “I was telling [athletic trainer] Wes [Robinson] the other day, they can cure all these diseases but why can’t we fix this guy’s foot. With modern science, you tell me you can’t get blood to his bone? There’s got to be some way to do that.”
The troubles have pretty much knocked Bowen out of contention for a job. That leaves Pinegar the likely starter, with Dill almost certain to play some in the Sept. 5 opener at California.
As for Bowen, there’s only so much anyone can say. The man cuts an imposing figure at 6-foot-6 and 305 pounds, and when healthy he’s fairly agile for a guy his size.
It’s just he hasn’t been healthy very much since arriving in College Park.
“This kid is doing everything he can to possibly play,” Friedgen said. “He’s just so frustrated right now. He comes in and we talk and I telling him to keep hanging in there and maybe it’ll get better. It’s frustrating. The thing about it is if he was well, he might be our starting right tackle.”