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Special teams watch: Maryland

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This will be a sporadic set of notes throughout the season, but there’s often some interesting tidbits to be gleaned from the six special teams units.

Some of those groupings (kickoffs and kickoff returns) are easier to identify personnel in than others (punt and punt return). But based on some scribblings from Monday (will happily take corrections, by he way), here’s who Maryland trotted out:

KICKOFF RETURN

12-15-29-13

52-53

9-81-89

31-44

It’s almost entirely regulars on this unit. Only one of the 11 players in this group wasn’t listed on the two deep (tight end Ryan Schlothauer, who was a special teams regular a year aho). There are two wideouts (Kevin Dorsey and Kerry Boykins), three linebackers (Demetrius Hartsfield, Darin Drakeford and Lorne Goree), two tight ends (Schlothauer and Matt Furstenburg), two tailbacks (Justus Pickett and Jeremiah Wilson), a safety (Austin Walker) and a Star (Mario Rowson).

Overall, that’s four starters on offense or defense.

 

KICKOFF

16-12-52-29-53-43-9-40-6-24-21

This comes straight out of the notebook after Maryland’s first score. And again, it is almost entirely guys on the two-deep (Avery Graham is the exception).

This is heavy on defensive backs (Anthony Green, Walker, Matt Robinson and Trenton Hughes) and linebackers/Stars (Drakeford, Goree, Hartsfield, Kenny Tate and Graham). That leaves Dorsey and kicker Nick Ferrara.

Of the 10 non-specialists, five also started on offense or defense.

 

PUNT

43

81-34-89

48-24-52-6-40-25

92

There’s certainly no order to that third line; instead, it’s how quickly each guy was ID’d during Maryland’s only punt of the night.

Again, there’s a major influence of starters; six of the nine non-specialists were starters (Furstenburg, Drakeford, Tate, Robinson, Eric Franklin and Dexter McDougle). Graham, Schlothauer and reserve tight end Devonte Campbell were also in this group, along with Ferrara and veteran long snapper Tim Downs.

Also, Maryland used three tight ends to form the shield around Ferrara.

 

PUNT RETURN

Despite double the chances, the note-taking wasn’t quite as strong when it came to recording which 10 players  were blocking for Tony Logan. In tries, nine numbers found their way into the notebook.

So while a couple of those players were different from the first three groups listed (Webb Dulin and Titus Till among them), there’s no full list to provide. Apologies,

 

PAT/FG

Kicker: 43
Holder: 29
Snapper: 92

Blockers (in numerical order): 49-61-67-68-73-76-81-89

The specialists involved – Ferrara, Downs and holder Michael Tart – are just who the depth chart said they would be. Schlothauer pops up on another special teams unit (he could wind up one of Maryland’s most quietly valuable players this season) along with Furstenburg. Freshman fullback Tyler Cierski was in this group, too.

As for the linemen, there’s a mix of starters (Josh Cary, R.J. Dill and Max Garcia) and reserves (Jake Wheeler and Pete White)

 

PAT/FG BLOCK

As is usually the case, this was almost entirely starters. The group that was out to contest Miami’s third extra point attempt (early in the third quarter) included 10 of the game’s starters. Keith Bowers was in for defensive end Isaiah Ross, who had departed with a left leg injury earlier in the drive.

Patrick Stevens

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