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Tracking the Terps
News and notes on Maryland football, basketball and other sports
Previewing Maryland-Wisconsin football with a Badgers beat reporter

Back for a second season, we'll be previewing each of Maryland's football games by conducting a Q&A with a reporter who covers the Terps' next opponent.

This week, we traded emails with Jeff Potrykus, Wisconsin beat reporter for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Be sure to check out more of their coverage here before the Terps and Badgers kick off Saturday at noon in Madison, Wis.


TRACKING THE TERPS: Even us Big Ten neophytes down here are well aware that Camp Randall is a tough place to play. Why do the Badgers seem to have such an advantage on their home field, and what should Maryland fans who brave the trip know ahead of time?

JEFF POTRYKUS: CRS can be a very loud venue but like most places, including Lambeau Field in Green Bay, it is the team that makes the difference. When UW has been very good, opponents find it difficult to win in Madison. But remember PSU came to Madison and played well in a 31-24 victory. As for this week, with an 11 a.m. kickoff the student section will be...

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Maryland freshman Michal Cekovsky is quickly adapting to life and basketball in the U.S.

The education of Maryland freshman Michal Cekovsky is a daily grind that includes five hours of learning English in the classroom and two more hours with a tutor in study hall at night.

“It’s a lot,” Cekovsky said with a laugh at Tuesday's team media day.

In between, there is basketball.

While the 20-year-old freshman from Slovakia is far ahead of where former Terps star Alex Len was at a similar stage in terms of his comfort level with a new language and new surroundings, Cekovsky is much like Len in trying to figure out how to keep pace with the speed and physicality of the American game.

“It’s a little bit faster than what I played in Europe. Game is really like up and down, up and down. That’s the hardest thing on the court,” Cekovsky said. "I’m still playing my game."

Asked about his goals for his first year at Maryland, Cekovsky said he wants to put weight on and get stronger.

Maryland coach Mark Turgeon is trying not to have too many comparisons made between Cekovsky and Len....

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C.J. Brown 'feeling great' and other Maryland football notes

COLLEGE PARK — Maryland quarterback C.J. Brown showed up to the postgame media availability Saturday sporting the same brace on his left wrist he has worn since spraining it against Indiana earlier this month.

Brown had also just spent time in the cold tub after suffering an upper trapezius injury during the Terps' 38-31 win over Iowa.

However, Maryland coach Randy Edsall said Tuesday that Brown is "feeling great" as the Terps prepare for Saturday's game at Wisconsin.

“He's doing well,” Edsall said. “He's smiling and walking. As a matter of fact, he was just up here going to his car a little while ago. He's fine. He's doing well."

The possum

Maryland defensive end Andre Monroe lacks prototypical size for a defensive lineman at just 5-foot-11 and 280 pounds. Monroe also may not test out well when it comes time to run a 40-yard dash or knock out reps on the bench press.

However, Monroe consistently finds a way to beat offensive linemen and make plays in opposing backfields.

Monroe had 17...

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Maryland commit Jaylen Brantley proved himself playing with Boston-area stars

Ever since Melo Trimble announced last year that he was coming to Maryland, Mark Turgeon and his staff had trouble recruiting another point guard to follow the McDonald’s All-American to College Park.

A number of prospects turned them down because they assumed – and rightly so – that Trimble was likely going to start from the moment he stepped onto the campus.

The Terps even lost Seth Allen, who started the second half of last season and finished as the team’s second-leading scorer.

It took two well-traveled, mature and more versatile players to embrace the idea of backing up Trimble at the point and also seeing a role playing along side at shooting guard.

This season it’s going to be Richaud Pack, the fifth-year senior transfer who is attending Maryland’s graduate business school. Pack got his degree from North Carolina A

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The good and the bad from the Terps' 38-31 win over Iowa

Maryland beat Iowa, 38-31, Saturday to improve to 5-2 overall and 2-1 in the Big Ten. Here is what went well and what did not from a Terps perspective during that game:


THE GOOD

Quarterback C.J. Brown

As Maryland coach Randy Edsall said during his weekly conference call on Sunday, the Terps would not have won Saturday without Brown.

Brown has been inconsistent as a passer throughout the season and was not perfect Saturday, finishing 12 of 23 for 120 yards with no touchdowns and two interceptions.

However, Brown ran for 99 yards on 21 carries, made some big plays to extend drives and help set up Maryland scores, and he would have had better numbers as a passer if not for wide receiver Marcus Leak dropping what would have been a 47-yard touchdown.

Brown looked good Saturday, and Maryland is going to win some more games the rest of the way if he continues to play like that and can stay healthy.

Brown also further displayed his toughness, returning from an upper trapezius injury to lead...

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Junior college point guard Jaylen Brantley commits to Maryland

Jaylen Brantley’s journey to Maryland included stops at two high schools, a prep school, another Division I program and now, Odessa College, a junior college in Texas. The chip that the 5-foot-11 point guard will bring with him to College Park has been there even longer.

Brantley, who committed Monday to play for the Terps beginning next season, said he has “always been playing with a chip on my shoulder” since his days on the same Boston-based Amateur Athletic Union team with future Maryland teammate Jake Layman.

Brantley is the second transfer to commit to coach Mark Turgeon’s program for the 2015 season, following Georgia Tech forward Robert Carter Jr., who came to Maryland over the summer and is currently sitting out as a redshirt. Brantley will have three years of eligibility remaining.

Considered a four-star prospect in high school, Brantley’s career was derailed by an academic issue. Brantley said several high-major programs, including Virginia, backed off when they learned he...

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