The Washington Times - September 3, 2012, 10:08PM

Two days later, the number still stands out.

Twelve.

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Twelve true freshmen appeared in Maryland’s season-opening 7-6 defeat of William & Mary. It isn’t so much that the number was a shock – nine seemed like a conservative number heading into the game thanks to injuries and offseason departures – but it sure stands out.

Twelve.

Yes, Maryland is that young, that inexperienced, that likely to make the sort of mistakes most true freshmen are bound to make.

The Terrapins have been young before in the recent past. Just three years ago, they used 10 true freshmen on the season.

Only four actually played in the opener.

In fact, four was the maximum of any season opener since 2000 until Saturday. The 10 newcomers who played in 2009 was the previous season-high in that span.

Here’s a year-by-year look since 2000 at the number of true freshmen Maryland used in a season and its opener, as well as the guys pressed into duty from Day One:

Year Total    
Opener   
First Game
2000 5 2 CB Dennard Wilson, CB Rovel Hamilton
2001 5 4 TB Jason Crawford, WR Rich Parson,
DL Randy Starks, LB Maurice Smith
2002 8 4 WR Jo Jo Walker, LB Shawne Merriman
LB William Kershaw, LB D’Qwell Jackson   
2003 5 1 TE Vernon Davis
2004 8 2 DB Christian Varner, S J.J. Justice
2005 7 4 WR Danny Oquendo, S Jeff Allen
DE Jeremy Navarre, T Jared Gaither
2006 1 1 FB Cory Jackson
2007 4 3 S Dominique Herald, P Travis Baltz
T Bruce Campbell
2008 4 3 S Kenny Tate, RB Davin Meggett
TE Matt Furstenburg
2009 10 4 K Nick Ferrara, LB Darin Drakeford
G Bennett Fulper, DT Zach Kerr
2010 5 2 S Matt Robinson, LB David Mackall
2011 8 4 LB Alex Twine, RB Justus Pickett
FB Tyler Cierski, DE Keith Bowers
2012     
12 12 RB Wes Brown, RB Albert Reid
T Mike Madaras, QB Perry Hills
K Brad Craddock, WR Stefon Diggs
WR Levern Jacobs, DE Quinton Jefferson
S Sean Davis, DB Anthony Nixon
DB Alvin Hill, LB Avery Thompson

Patrick Stevens