Maryland’s opening-game opponent -- Florida International -- presents something of a mystery.
The team has a new conference (Conference USA) and a new coach (Ron Turner).
All of the newness makes FIU difficult to scout.
“We haven’t seen them, so we have to go with what Ron Turner has done in the past,” Maryland defensive coordinator Brian Stewart said.
Turner has coached at Illinois and in the NFL.
“You kind of put all that stuff together,” Stewart said. “From what we hear, they’re a West Coast Offense. West Coast offense is the quick passing game where you want to get 4 or 5 yards every time on first down so you’re on schedule at second-and-5.”
Sleeping on the job
There is a stereotype of the harried college football coach who habitually sleeps in his office.
Except it’s not just a stereotype. It happens regularly.
Among those never leaving the office was Stewart.
“Last year I slept in the office the whole time. I’m 48 now. I probably looked like I was 78.”
He said the sound of vacuum cleaners inside Gossett Football Team House would wake him up around 4:30 a.m.
Stewart, in his second Maryland season, has adopted a new sleeping strategy. He and receivers coach Lee Hull have been heading to a nearby dormitory.
“I went to the dorms because I got tired of hearing the vacuum cleaner," Stewart said. "Me and Coach Hull would go over there together. But he had his room, I had my room. Once you’re over 30, it’s not good to have a roommate.”
Walk-on to starter
Maryland guard Michael Dunn entered training camp as a backup, walk-on lineman.
That all changed toward the end of training camp.
“When I walked into a meeting, the very first thing that came out of (coach Randy Edsall’s) mouth was that I was going to be starting at guard and was being put on scholarship,” Dunn said Wednesday. “It’s two of the best things that could happen here. I was just smiling for the rest of the meeting.”
Offensive lineman G.T. Harraka, defensive back Tony Perry and wide receiver Regis Whittington also received scholarships.
Dunn -- who has gained about 20 pounds this year and said he up to 295 -- is from Walt Whitman High School in Bethesda.
Have other Whitman players been prominent Terps? “None that I can remember,” Dunn said.
New role in college
Kenneth Goins Jr. (Gilman) says he is adopting a new mentality. The redshirt freshman got to carry the ball in high school.
Goins, who will start at fullback Saturday with Tyler Cierski injured, says he accepts that he won't be touching the football much. He will be primarily a blocker.
"You've just got to have the mentality of 'Blow the guy up,' " Goins said.