Although Maryland quarterback C.J. Brown will miss the 2012 season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament, there is some hope he will have a year of eligibility restored because he's missed nearly two entire years due to injury.
The NCAA grants players five years to complete four seasons of eligibility. Brown redshirted the 2009 season, then played only four snaps in Maryland's second game in 2010 against Morgan State before suffering a broken collarbone, which sidelined him for the rest of the season.
Brown played in 10 games as a sophomore last year, starting five. He was expected to start for Maryland before suffering the right knee injury during practice Tuesday evening.
Coach Randy Edsall said he's already discussed the possibility with Brown and Brown's father.
"When we sat down, C.J.'s dad brought that up and I said, 'That's something that's going through my mind,'" Edsall said. "We just have to go and check and see exactly what the rules are. Usually you have to miss two full years due to injury. He only played a few handful of plays, so I would think that that would probably count."
While not especially common, a hardship waiver for a sixth year is not unprecedented in College Park. Defensive back Richard Taylor missed all of 2007 with a torn ACL, then played in three games in 2008 before suffering another knee injury. His request for a sixth year was approved, and he appeared in all 12 games for the Terps in 2009.
Edsall said an application to the NCAA, let alone a decision, probably would not be made until after Brown completes his fifth season.
"That's something we'll work with our compliance people on and continue to research," Edsall said. "I don't think you can apply for that until that eligibility is up, that fifth year is done. That's something that's in our plans."
Robinson out three weeks
Safety Matt Robinson missed the final nine games last year with a right shoulder injury. He'll likely sit out the first game of 2012 with a left shoulder ailment.
Robinson was hurt during Tuesday's practice, and Edsall said Thursday that Robinson would not participate in football activities for three weeks.
That timeline would keep him out of the Sept. 1 opener against William & Mary.
"The labrum in his shoulder, the opposite one that he did [last year]," Edsall said. "It's one of those things where we'll rehab him and see how he comes along. At this point in time, it's not one that's a surgical situation. Could it develop to that? Possibly. But as of right now, we're not at that situation."
Robinson wore a sling to practice Thursday and is expected to remain in it for a week. He'll then undergo rehab for two weeks.
Freshman Sean Davis is working as a starter in Robinson's place. Maryland also tinkered with cornerback Jeremiah Johnson at safety during Thursday's session.
Burns impresses at QB
While freshman quarterbacks Perry Hills and Caleb Rowe continue to settle into larger roles (Hills as a likely starter, Rowe as a No. 2), Edsall was pleased with how Devin Burns handled his first two days as the Terps' No. 3 quarterback.
Burns came to Maryland as a quarterback, then switched to wide receiver after Edsall arrived. The sophomore volunteered to make the move back to quarterback after Brown's injury this week.
"It's kind of been a little bit surprising from the standpoint of coming out and really haven't had any problems with the cadence or those sort of things. " Edsall said. "It's very obvious you can tell he's been a quarterback before. In high school, he played in a very similar type of offense. Even some of the reads he did yesterday, I thought he did a pretty good job. I'm glad he came to me so we could put him there."
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