Based on what I saw in the summer league, he was probably not good enough to play in the NBA anyway.Media members picked Maryland football to finish sixth in the Atlantic Division at the ACC’s Football Kickoff in Greensboro, N.C., on Monday. Is that a fair prediction?
Connor Letourneau: Definitely. Randy Edsall can talk all he wants about ensuring “sustained success,” but the reality remains that the Terps just aren’t a very good football team.
They lack talent, have question marks all over the field and are transitioning two new coordinators. Playing in the same conference as Sammy Watkins and E.J. Manuel, that’s not exactly a recipe for success.
The problems start on offense. C.J. Brown is now the man under center, but is that really worth getting excited about? Outside of a few noteworthy scrambles last season, he was largely ineffective. He completed just 49.4 percent of his passes, averaged less than a touchdown a game and was winless as a starter.
Add that to a less than impressive spring, and I’m not convinced Brown’s a legitimate ACC quarterback.
In fact, I’m not sure the Terps have a go-to offensive weapon at all. Sophomore Justus Pickett lacks the size (5-feet-10, 175 pounds) to be an every-down running back. Senior wide receivers Kevin Dorsey and Kerry Boykins are the trusted veterans, but have yet to prove they have big-play potential. And all-everything freshman Stefon Diggs will likely need a year of seasoning before he’s a true difference maker.
Luckily for the Terps, though, defense is a bit more of a known commodity. All-American defensive lineman Joe Vellano will anchor a group returning 10 of 11 starters, and senior linebacker Kenny Tate — who missed the final eight games of last season with a knee injury — should be ready to go by the start of practice on Aug. 5.
Of course, experience can only do so much. The Terps ranked 102nd in Division I last season in average points allowed (34.3). Even if all their players manage to stay healthy, their defense is still mediocre at best. They simply don’t have the size or skill to shut down top-notch offenses.
So even though I expect Maryland to improve upon last year’s 2-10 record, I still think the Terps are the worst team in the Atlantic Division.
But who knows? Maybe it can string together a couple upsets and leapfrog Boston College for the No. 5 slot.