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Offensive line could be unit of strength for Maryland

Adjusting to the new systems of first-year coach Randy Edsall hasn't been much of a problem for Maryland's offensive line.

Center Bennett Fulper said Thursday that the linemen are faring just fine and looking forward to Saturday's annual Red-White Spring game to put their practice to the test.

"All the concepts are basically the same," Fulper said. "The language is a little different. I think everybody's picked it up rather well."

Fulper will be joined on the starting offensive line by left tackle Max Garcia , left guard Andrew Gonnella, right guard Josh Cary and right tackle R.J. Dill. Dill, Fulper, Garcia and Gonnella all started games for the Terps last year.

Fulper said one major positive for the line has been the return of offensive line coach Tom Brattan, who was retained by Edsall after spending 10 seasons under former coach Ralph Friedgen.

"It's probably been easier since we've had Coach Brattan there," Fulper said. "He can revert back to the old language we used before, and that [helps]."

That's why the center said the linemen are faring well so far, and it's also why Fulper said everyone's got to just sit down and learn that playbook.

"As long as you've got time and you've just studied up the playbook, it's not really [hard]," he said. "You've got to get where it's second nature to you and you're not reverting back to old things."

Defense creating confusion

Defensive coordinator Todd Bradford wants offenses that go up against Maryland to realize that they better put their thinking caps on when it's time to take on the Terps.

"We're going to be very multiple," Bradford said Thursday. "We're going to give people a lot of fronts, a lot of coverages."

Bradford, who came to Maryland from Southern Mississippi, said the Terps want to force quarterbacks into making tougher decisions on the field.

"We want to try to take some of the game out of the offensive coordinator's hands, sitting in the press box in the air conditioning, and put it back in the quarterback's hands," Bradford said.

Bradford said that with the coordinators often calling most of the plays, Maryland wants to have a defense that makes the quarterback have to sweat a little.

"We're going to have to be multiple enough to change things up enough to put pressure back on the quarterback after the ball gets snapped," Bradford said. "You know, we've got bright kids here at Maryland and that [lets] us do multiple things to try to keep [the offense] guessing."

No captains yet

Edsall said Thursday that he won't be naming captains at the end of spring practice, although the idea had been considered.

"I don't feel as though we're ready to make that decision," Edsall said. "I still need to see who the leadership is going to be of this football team. I haven't seen enough where I feel comfortable that it would be time to take a vote to see where the captains will be."

Edsall said he's going to keep an eye on which players step up into leadership roles over the summer.

The coach is going to meet with the players next week to talk to them about where they are after spring ball and what they need to do before practice starts in August.

End zone: During Saturday's intrasquad scrimmage, the Red team will have the first-team offense and the second- and third-team defenses. The White is the reverse of that. … Edsall said that the winners will get steak and shrimp, while the losers will eat beans and franks.

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