Here, before it appears in the paper, are notes from today's media availability:
*The play wasn’t designed for Chris Turner to run.
Turner’s three-yard score may have came on a busted play – he had no lane to throw – but coaches say they have encouraged the fifth-year player to run more often this season than last.
Turner may never lead the Terps in rushing, but coaches want him to keep the defense guessing by presenting at least the threat of a scamper out of the pocket.
“Chris is a pretty tough kid,” coach Ralph Friedgen said Tuesday. “I think he’s added that (running) element to his game and that really helps the rest of the team. Obviously we don’t want him to get hurt.”
Turner was credited with 44 rushing attempts for 57 yards last season. The total doesn’t include yardage lost in sacks. In two games this season, he already has 19 carries for 59 yards.
On a team loaded with fleet receivers, Turner and his teammates like to joke about his hardly being a sprinter.
“He’s not the most fleet-footed quarterback,” receiver Torrey Smith said with a smile.
But, said tight end Tommy Galt, Turner’s mobility “gives us the ability to do some things out of different sets. He’s always been tough.”
Even if Turner continues to run more frequently, he won’t be as much of a rushing threat as the quarterback the Terps will face Saturday – Middle Tennessee State’s Dwight Dasher.
It’s the second week in a row that the Terrapins will encounter a quarterback who is, in effect, an added running back. James Madison’s Drew Dudzik burned the Terps with a 70-yard run during Maryland’s 38-35 overtime win in its home opener on Saturday.
Defending Dudzik and Dasher is good practice for the Terps, who will encounter a number of mobile quarterbacks – including N.C. State’s Russell Wilson and Virginia Tech’s Tyrod Taylor – during their Atlantic Coast Conference schedule.
“If we handle our job he (Dasher) is not going to have a lot of space to run,” defensive end Jared Harrell said. “I’m going to be running after him all day long.”
Dasher ran for 89 yards in Middle Tennessee’s 31-14 victory over Memphis Saturday. He also threw for 231 yards and two touchdowns.
Dasher will be without his team’s primary running option against the Terps because running back Phillip Tanner is out with a knee injury.
But Maryland won’t have trouble getting motivated for the Blue Raiders, who upset the Terrapins, 24-14, last season. The game led to media questions about Maryland’s inconsistency.
“I think our kids want to win this game for last year,” Friedgen said. “If they don’t, I don’t know what’s going through their veins.”
James Madison coach Mickey Matthews telephoned Friedgen after Maryland’s overtime win to talk about chop blocks.
Friedgen said he had noticed some blocks being thrown at or below the knees by Dukes players.
“There were some chop blocks going on,” Friedgen said. “He (Matthews) wanted me to know he didn’t teach that.”
Friedgen said he accepted Matthews’ explanation.
*Nolan Carroll may be lost for the season with a broken leg, but Friedgen said he wants the senior cornerback around the team as often as possible.
“He’s still a captain of this football team,” said the coach.
Carroll, a former wide receiver, won’t have any eligibility remaining, so his college career is likely over.
Carroll was kicked by a teammate, linebacker Derek Drummond, during a second-half tackle against James Madison.
His absence – safety Jamari McCollough is also out Saturday with a foot injury – hurts Maryland’s secondary as it faces a Middle Tennessee team that runs five-receiver sets.
“We’re going to find a way to appropriately honor (Carroll) and play for him this season,” Harrell said.