College Park — Maryland's senior class will play its final home game at Byrd Stadium against Indiana on Saturday, capping careers that have been full of ups and downs. Offensive linemen Evan Mulrooney and Ryan Doyle are both fifth-year players who have seen the program's recent lows, such as the 2-10 season in 2011 and Randy Edsall's firing this season, and its recent highs, such as the back-to-back winning seasons and bowl appearances in 2013 and 2014.
On Wednesday afternoon, the duo reflected on their careers in College Park. We'll have more on Saturday's game against Indiana on Friday and Saturday, but here is a selection of quotes from Mulrooney and Doyle's interview.
Mulrooney on the lessons he learned from Edsall: "Coach Edsall always stressed doing the little things right, whether it be technique on the field or doing certain things like showing up to class off the field or just being respectful and all these things. … These little things that he stressed on and harped on that might seem menial to some. When you really take the time to think about those things and do those things and they become important to you, you become a more successful person, not just as a football player, but off the field, in the classroom, in the community, wherever it may be. And I think he did a great job of ingraining that in all of us."
Doyle on the program during his five years: "This program's seen a lot of change. I remember coming on my official visit. That was the weekend that Ralph Friedgen got outed. I wasn't sure if I had a scholarship. I ended up coming in and met Randy for the first time, and it seemed like a good setup. I thought it was. I thought Randy was a good head coach. He taught us a lot of things. I think he had our best interests at heart his entire time here. Yeah, there were some rocky seasons wins-wise -- 2-10, 4-8 -- but there was improvement. We went to a couple of bowl games. This season, obviously, hasn't gone the way we want but at the same time, I think it's been a very good experience for all the players involved."
Mulrooney on the little things: "You can do so many things right, but if you don't sweat the small stuff, then you make things really hard for yourself. That's one thing that I've really learned in college is to just take the time to do the little things that you might not think are important but in the long run, they become very important."
Doyle on his plans for when the season ends: "Losing weight."
Mulrooney on the same topic: "Definitely just losing weight and hanging out, man."
Mulrooney on deciding with Doyle and fellow senior offensive linemen Andrew Zeller and Stephen Grommer to have fun this season: "You enjoy the lighter sides of practice and things like that. It was definitely not very fun saying goodbye to Randy after Ohio State, but with Locks getting thrown into the position that he did, he brought with him a new energy and new life to the team. Honestly I've had more fun in the past six weeks playing football than I have since I was in high school, when it was pure, just all about the sport. I'm just having so much fun in practice, playing. I'm having a great time just enjoying the moment."
Mulrooney on the Terps playing shirts vs. skins football every Friday: "Any time a bunch of 300-pound men are running around with their shirts off and giggling like little girls, it's always a good sign of fun being had."
More Mulrooney: "I'm like the Lynn Swann of shirts and skins football. ... People want to see us in our truest forms."
Notes from interim coach Mike Locksley's Thursday conference call:
>> Maryland will wear red jerseys, red paints and the Maryland Pride 2.0 hand-painted helmets.
>> Saturday's captains will be tight end P.J. Gallo (offense), cornerback Sean Davis (defense) and running back Joe Riddle (special teams).
>> The flag bearers for Saturday are linebacker Brock Dean (American) and safety A.J. Hendy (Maryland).
>> This week's scout team players of the week were Ellis McKennie (offense), Gus Little (defense) and Alex Johnson (special teams).