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Longer winter doesn't hinder Maryland spring practice with new indoor facility

Ex-men's basketball coach Gary Williams, Maryland Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller, AD Kevin Anderson, Maryland president Wallace Loh, UMB president Dr. Jay Perman, football coach DJ Durkin and Terrapin Club president Michael Freiman at the August Cole dedication ceremony.
Ex-men's basketball coach Gary Williams, Maryland Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller, AD Kevin Anderson, Maryland president Wallace Loh, UMB president Dr. Jay Perman, football coach DJ Durkin and Terrapin Club president Michael Freiman at the August Cole dedication ceremony. (Michael Ares / Baltimore Sun)

Despite some turnover on both his roster and coaching staff, third-year coach DJ Durkin is happy with the progress his Terps have made in the first two weeks of spring practice.

A big reason is the weather — or lack of weather inside the team’s new indoor practice facility. Of the first six practices, four have been held inside Cole Field House, which reopened after a $196 million alteration last August.

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Rayshad Lewis, the son of Ravens legend Ray Lewis, is competing for a role at Maryland after transferring from Utah State.

“I think they like it in here,” Durkin said before practice Thursday, which included the team's first scrimmage of the spring. “It’s great. We can kick, we can punt, there’s nothing we can’t do in here.”

Durkin even invited the media in for the first three periods of practice, which consisted mostly of a shell drills. (The scrimmage was held after the media departed.)

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“We’ve got plenty of room on the sidelines so we can scrimmage or do any type of drills," Durkin said. “It’s been great for us, especially on some of these really windy days, it’s hard to get stuff done in the throw game and all that.

“To be able to come in here and have this option I think it’s been tremendous for us in terms of getting stuff done. Obviously, whenever we’re able, we’ll be back outside. But at least for the time being, the weather that we’ve had so far, it’s been great for us.”

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