Camp is just a week and a half old, and it’s a little too soon to guaranteea true freshman will make it onto the field at any point this season for Maryland.
But there’s certainly some guys with a much better chance than others.
And that’s where this list comes in.
1. DT Zach Kerr: There might have been a chance Kerr got to redshirt after his prep school year, but Dion Armstrong‘s departure pretty much eliminated any chance of that. Ready or not, Kerr will almost certainly be part of Maryland’s tackle rotation.
2. LB Darin Drakeford: Like Kerr, Drakeford was around for spring practice, and his six extra months in the weight room have made a noticeable difference. Maryland is untested at linebacker beyond Adrian Moten and Alex Wujciak, and Drakeford seems like a smart bet to settle in as Moten’s top backup.
3. K Nick Ferrara: He might just be the first true freshman on the field if he wins the kickoff duties. The Terps gave more field goal opportunities to Mike Barbour and Nick Wallace in Saturday’s scrimmage, but it seems unlikely coach Ralph Friedgen won’t use his lone scholarship placekicker in some capacity.
4. RB/PR Caleb Porzel: Sure, he’s a bit banged up right now. But with his quickness, Maryland could probably find a use for him this season. That could even be at punt returner, where Porzel is competing for a job with Tony Logan. If Porzel doesn’t play, it wouldn’t be a surprise if fellow true freshman D.J. Adams does.
5. LB Avery Murray: Another early arrival, Murray is tucked behind Wujciak and Drew Gloster at middle linebacker. Still, he got plenty of reps in the spring, and Friedgen is always looking for athletic guys who can run hard to play on special teams. Given the depth of Maryland’s linebacker class, it wouldn’t be the worst thing to spread out that group to avoid losing all at once down the road.
—- Patrick Stevens