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Turgeon says Terps’ execution better against Georgia Tech than all season prior

Posted on 04 January 2014 by WNST Staff

Maryland Head Coach Mark Turgeon

Opening Statement:

“I’m really pleased with the way we played. We just continue to get a little bit better. I can talk about a lot of things that went well. One was our post players played well and our post defense was really good. We didn’t always finish, but we had a presence down there. We played inside out, which was great and it carried over from the defensive end to the offensive end. We had 16 assists and six turnovers. That’s really good for us. Roddy [Peters] had five assists and no turnovers and that’s really great for him. His defense on [Trae] Golden was tremendous. We did a lot of things well. Guys played smart defensively. Our execution was better than it has been all year. Georgia Tech is a hard team to score against, and we got 77 today, so it’s good for us.”

On the team’s unselfishness:

“It’s a fight every day to get guys to pass the ball. We had a really good practice today. We really shared the ball, we executed and guys were having fun. It carried over. For the most part, our shot selection was better. We shot a few shots that led to layups for them, but our passing was better and our guys are looking for each other. Just having more offensive players on the floor, it makes us harder to guard. They key so hard on Jake [Layman] that it opens everything else up for us. The guys really shared the ball and it was good to see.”

On Nick Faust’s improved shooting:

“He got his release up higher, that’s number one. That happened right before Christmas. Then just getting away, and having one more scorer playing takes a lot of pressure off Nick. When you look at percentages, who are you going to let shoot. You’re going to let Nick shoot, but he’s knocking them down right now. I’m happy for him and really defended. He’s just under control. He’s so much better with the ball and not forcing things. He’s playing like a veteran guard should.”

On Shaq Cleare:

“I’m so happy for Shaq. When he hit that running hook at the start of the game, I looked over to [Coach] Spinelli and said, ‘wow, that was big time.’ It’s hard for Shaq. Most of the time Shaq’s chasing around a 6’7” skinny guy, and tonight he got to bang on a big kid. If you remember last year when Shaq played well, he was usually banging on a big body. Today he had a good matchup. He loves hitting and being physical. He got his offense going and he was much better. It really, really helped us.”

Sophomore Center Shaquille Cleare

On getting the first basket of the game:

“We needed that bucket to get the game going.  Coach [Turgeon] just told me to go in right away and make an impact and be aggressive from the get-go.”

On what he’s doing to handle the offense:

“It’s time for a change; I’m just working hard in practice, staying positive when things aren’t going my way.  Everything is going to fall into place for me, I just have to stay positive and work hard.”

On being more comfortable defending a player his size:

“It’s a lot easier; defense is one of our main things.  People scoring on me is really personal; [Daniel Miller] is not a smaller guy I have to chase around.  It’s just him and I one-on-one, it’s up to who is going to be the toughest guy.”

Junior Forward Evan Smotrycz

On if Coach Turgeon has changed anything he’s saying throughout the season:

“[Coach Turgeon] has been saying the same thing, coming back from Christmas break we wanted to think of it as a fresh start and ever since then we’ve really been playing tough on defense and I think that spurs our offense a little bit.”

On how they adjusted from the loss to Boston University:

“It was timely in the fact that we got to go home and reevaluate things and realize what we needed to bring and how we needed to bring it every day.  Ever since we came back guys have been playing hard for us and we have really good depth so we can wear teams down.”

On Shaq’s opening basket:

“That was a nice move — big for him and big for us too.  He really got us going.  It’s good to play inside out.  When our bigs are scoring we’re tough to guard; if a team collapses on our bigs then we’ll knock down shots.  We have a lot of depth and guys just played really hard today.”

Junior Guard Nick Faust

On the team’s play of late:

“We’ve been playing really well lately and as a team we’ve really been concentrating a lot on defense so I really think that’s a reason why our offense is going so well, it’s because of our defensive pressure.”

On his role off the bench:

“Coming off the bench I can just bring a lot of energy. Me and Seth [Allen], coming off the bench, we’re a big spark for our team. We’re excited just coming off the bench and bringing a lot of energy.”

Georgia Tech Head Coach Brian Gregory

Opening Statement:

“Give them credit, [it’s] a very eerie similarity to last year’s game at our place. Their post players played well. I think when you combine [Shaquille] Cleare and [Charles] Mitchell, I think it’s 14, 15 points and 12 or 13 rebounds. And last year, we had Daniel [Miller] play well. Last year we had a couple guys shoot the ball extremely well from the three, and that’s what happened this year for them. Similar games, unfortunately the wrong team played the same. Give them credit. They did a good job. Defensively they did a good job on us, and we weren’t as good defensively as you need to be on the road.  I think you’re starting to see the Maryland team that I think maybe was projected early in the year, with multiple players that can really hurt you offensively. And I think they’re a team that’s only going to keep getting better.”

On the loss:

“Anytime you play in this league, there’s going to be ebbs and flows to games, and you’ve got to be able to sustain your concentration during another team’s run. And I thought we did that early. I thought we hung in there and then got that thing back to five,  then let it slip those last five minutes. That was the most disappointing thing for me during that game. They’re going to have some runs and make some plays, they’re a high-quality team, but we gave up some threes, and I know three for sure in the first half that were just defensive mistakes. And their guys still have to make shots, so give them credit for making them.”

On Quinton Stephens and Kammeon Holsey:

“I thought Q [Quinton Stephens], for a freshman in his first ACC game, crawling into that situation did a lot of good things. He had six rebounds for us, 10 points, did some good things. He’s going to be a good player in this league. He’s going to be forced to maybe do some more stuff faster than maybe you’d like, but I think he’s capable of helping us. I thought Kamm [Kammeon Holsey] is Kamm; he did a good job. We’re going to have to keep evolving, obviously.”

On Dez Wells:

“Mark [Turgeon] asks him to do a lot of things, but sooner or later because of your intensity level and your energy level, a lot of good things are going to happen. He’s gotten to a point that even when he’s not playing as well, or maybe making some jump shots—I don’t know if he even made one jump shot tonight—he was a big key in that. He did a lot of good things. We got him in foul trouble because we were aggressive against him, but [Nick] Faust comes in and steps up and does a good job. Again, those guys are maturing a little bit.”

Senior Guard Trae Golden

On tough start of the game:

“It was tough. They hit a lot of three’s tonight. We didn’t guard the three’s very well and that’s definitely tough to overcome on the road.”

On adjusting without Robert Carter, Jr.:

“It’s a big adjustment. He is a big part of our team. We have to just prepare. Guys who step out [on the court] have to make shots and share the ball.”

On the conference loss:

“We didn’t play well as a team. We didn’t defend well. Some of our better guys didn’t shoot well. It’s a loss, but we have 18 or 19 more games. We just have to watch film and let it go.”

Sophomore Guard Marcus Georges-Hunt

On playing against Dez Wells:

“We are both aggressive scorers. We are both strong and physical. He’s a great player. I think it was a good matchup.”

On early troubles defensively:

“We didn’t communicate in the transition defense. They got a lot of open shots and knocked them down. They finished the game 53 percent from the three-point line. They shared the ball great and their defense talked on transition. That is how they got a lot of easy baskets.”

On first ACC game as a loss:

“We have to learn what we did wrong to play better and not give up. We have to stick together as a team and play each game. We have another game on Tuesday, so we just have to learn from this one. That is how we will play better moving forward.”

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Maryland faces Georgia Tech Saturday in final ACC home opener

Posted on 04 January 2014 by WNST Staff

Maryland hosts Georgia Tech in its ACC home opener Sunday at 2 p.m. in Comcast Center. The Terps have won 12 of their last 14 ACC home openers, and hold a 34-26 record all-time in such games.

Watch: ACCN – Tim Brant (Play-by-Play), Dan Bonner (Analyst)


• The Terrapins have defeated the Yellow Jackets six consecutive times at Comcast Center since 2005 — a streak spanning six games. Maryland last played Georgia Tech in an ACC home opener on Jan. 10, 2009, when current graduate assistant Eric Hayes scored 17 points to lead the Terps to a 68-61 victory.

• Maryland closed non-conference play on New Year’s Eve with a 70-56 defeat of North Carolina Central, holding the Eagles to just 32.7% shooting (2-of-15 from 3-point range). The Terps are 8-0 this season when holding opponents below 40% shooting.

• Junior guard Nick Faust turned in his best performance of the season against NC Central, matching a career-high with 19 points and adding a season-high nine rebounds. Faust is averaging 12.0 points over the last five games, previously averaging 5.4 points in the four games prior.

• The Terps were victorious in their lone ACC game of the season to date, defeating Boston College, 88-80, in Chestnut Hill, Mass. on Dec. 12. Junior Dez Wells had a career-high 33 points in the effort.

• Nick Faust has the most experience among current Terrapins against the Yellow Jackets, averaging 9.7 points in three career games. He had 10 points on 4-of-5 shooting in last year’s meeting at Georgia Tech.

• Sophomore forward Charles Mitchell is a native of Atlanta, Ga. and attended Wheeler High School.

Faust Shines in Victory vs. NC Central
Nick Faust equaled his career high with 19 points and had a season-high nine rebounds to lead Maryland over North Carolina Central 70-56 on Tuesday.
Maryland (9-5) began the second half with three 3-pointers, one by Seth Allen and two by Faust. The junior guard scored 14 of his 19 after halftime.
The trio of 3-pointers gave the Terrapins a 37-26 lead with 16:47 to play. The Eagles (7-4), who lost by 11 to No. 8 Wichita State on Dec. 21, were just 2-for-15 from the 3-point line. They were averaging nearly 34 percent before the game.
Jeremy Ingram, who was averaging nearly 25 points, was just 4-for-19 from the field, and led NC Central with 11.
Dez Wells added 10 for the Terps, who extended their lead to 68-45 on Faust’s 3-pointer with 3:20 to play.

Scouting Georgia Tech
Winners of four of its last five games, Georgia Tech rolls into College Park to open its ACC slate sporting a 9-4 record. The Yellow Jackets most recently defeated Charlotte, 58-55, on Dec. 29.
The Yellow Jackets announced on Jan. 2 that sophomore forward Robert Carter, Jr. — the ACC’s leading rebounder (9.2/g) — has been sidelined indefinitely with a tear of the meniscus in his left knee.
Despite the loss of Carter, Georgia Tech boasts the conference’s third leading rebounder in Daniel Miller (8.2/g). Miller is also one of four Yellow  Jackets averaging double-figures in scoring this season. Trae Golden leads the team with 13.2 points/g.

Statistically Speaking

  • Maryland has defeated Georgia Tech six consecutive times at Comcast Center dating back to Jan. 30, 2005.
  • In fact, the Terps have won 15 of their last 16 home meetings against the Yellow Jackets dating back to 1995.
  • Maryland has won 12 of their last 14 ACC home openers, including a 68-61 win over Georgia Tech on Jan. 10, 2009.
  • Junior Nick Faust has averaged 9.7 points in three career games against Georgia Tech — the most among current Terps.

Looking Back
The Yellow Jackets were victorious against the Terps in their lone meeting last season, as Robert Carter, Jr. tallied 19 points and 10 rebounds in Atlanta on Feb. 27, 2013.
Dez Wells led Maryland with 15 points, while Alex Len had 13 points and nine rebounds and Seth Allen had 12 points.
The Yellow Jackets made 16 of 28 shots from the field (57.1 percent) in the first half and finished at 51 percent for the game with 22 assists on their 26 field goals.
Trailing by double-digits for most of the second half, Wells cut the Terps’ deficit to nine points with two minutes to play.

Georgia Roots
Maryland sophomore forward Charles Mitchell is a native of Atlanta, Ga., and attended Wheeling High School in Marietta, Ga. Mitchell grew up less than 20 minutes from the campus of Georgia Tech.

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Edsall pleased with Petty’s effort in Maryland loss

Posted on 03 November 2012 by WNST Staff

Maryland Coach Randy Edsall


Opening Statement

“We didn’t have as good of a day as we would have liked defensively. We knew it was going to be tough today going into the game. We also knew that we were going to have to play great on defense to keep it a very low scoring game. We weren’t able to do that. Offensively, we struggled in the first half but then we came out better in the second half as we got a feel for Shawn [Petty] and what he could do. We did some better things in the second half but we couldn’t get the stops when we needed to. Our kids battled hard throughout. Shawn Petty did a good job considering he’s practiced seven times at quarterback. There are things that we need to work on and we will get better moving forward with him at quarterback.”


On quarterback Shawn Petty’s second-half play:

“The speed of the game was something that it took him a little bit of time to get used to. You can’t go out there and line up at this level after only seven practices and think that everything is going to happen the way you hope it will. Once he got settled in, we could see what we could do with him. He showed his poise and the game still needed to slow down for him. We still moved the ball better in the second half.”


On the defensive performance:

“We didn’t do a good enough job. That’s on us as coaches in terms of the toss sweep. That was something that was a little different for them and we weren’t really able to shut that play down. I don’t think that we tackled as well as we needed to and we got cut too much on cut blocks. We didn’t do as good of a job executing as we would have liked.”


On overcoming all the adversity:

“We have a really good group. I told them after the game that we all have to stick together. There are going to be great things that happen here. We all want these things to happen today and tomorrow, but we have to deal with the situation at hand. All we can do is come here each and every day and work as hard as we can to get better. You can see that there are a lot of things happening that are positive. We just haven’t been able to string enough of them together to get more wins when we were close.


“This group is a tight-knit group and is a group that feels good about each other. They like being around each other and when you have that kind of chemistry and that kind of camaraderie and fellowship, you’re going to be okay. Today we played right until the very end. We need to focus only on ourselves and understand that every day we are going to come in here and work to get better. I like the mentality, the attitude and the fact that when guys get an opportunity to step up they have. Brandon Ross did a good job today when he got the opportunity. Levern Jacobs got the opportunity today to play more. This group has a great feeling for each other and they want to stick together and keep grinding.”


On if the defense tried to do too much today:

“I would hope that wouldn’t be the case, but maybe human nature would have that happen. We had some guys today defensively that didn’t do their jobs who have in the past. I hope that wasn’t the case but there may have been some guys who thought that they needed to do this. When you play this type of offense, you have to be disciplined in terms of making sure you do your job. We had one situation where a guy is right there, but he goes and does something he shouldn’t have. They got a twenty yard gain when it could have been [no] gain. When you get behind then guys think maybe they can do this or that, but that’s when you make problems worse for us. I think that might have happened a couple of times for us today.


On Shawn Petty’s interception:

“That was probably the first time Shawn has seen that type of situation and so it’s a teaching moment. I thought what he could have done was to come out of his fake a little faster. When he did come out of it, he could have put the ball up in there air more instead of throwing it on a line and having the ball get tipped. When the ball gets tipped it becomes anybody’s ball. I tried to tell him that you need to see that guy and put the ball up in the air over top of him and let Stefon [Diggs] go up and get it. Don’t throw it on a line because then it gets tipped.”


On the playbook for quarterback Shawn Petty:

“We had too many [plays] in this week for him. It’s a delicate balance. Mike [Locksley] has done a great job with our quarterbacks with the situation we have been in. We want to be able to do enough to give our team the opportunity to win. But you don’t want to do too much where we are overloading Shawn [Petty]. We had plenty enough in the game plan. As we go back and look at it there are some things we can cut down on in terms of how much we will go in with. We didn’t run anything that I knew he would feel uncomfortable with.”


On Shawn Petty’s mentality:

“Shawn’s [Petty] demeanor was the same in the first quarter as it was when he threw the touchdown passes coming off the field. He is very coachable. I told Mike [Locksley] coming off the field that we know what we can do with him. I feel very good about the things that we are going to go into next week with him. I think our guys have confidence in him. We need to make sure that we do the things that we need to with him to get him more prepared. He never had the big eyes and we never saw a flustered look from him coming off the field. I thought he handled himself very well for the tough situation that he was thrust into today.”


On direct snaps to running back Wes Brown:

“We nicknamed that package ourselves as the ‘Wild crab.’ Being Maryland, rather than the wildcat, [we have] the wild crab. I thought it was productive for us. It’s a situation where, as coaches, we have to find things that will give us the best opportunity to win, and take some pressure off of Shawn [Petty] in there. I think Wes [Brown] had an ankle [injury], we will see how he is tomorrow and Monday and go from there.”


On the difficulty transitioning from linebacker to quarterback:

“It’s very difficult. This is the first time that I have experienced this with a player. To see how he went out and handled himself I thought he did the best with the situation that he was presented. You saw a kid who struggled in the first half, and he came out in the second half and played that much better. It’s a credit to our coaches to get him ready. It’s hard; having played that position myself, it’s a hard position to play if you are in the meetings all the time and out taking reps in practice [and] to come in two weeks ago and be told he was going to be playing quarterback. You have to learn the terminology, be able to command a huddle, and get the signals from the sideline. I told the team I am very proud of him for how he handled the situation. I think he earned a tremendous amount of respect from our team—which he already had—and from the opposing team. I have never had it happen before, and hope this never happens again. I hope we can keep him healthy for the next three weeks.”


Sophomore Linebacker Cole Farrand


On defending the option:

“The first part that’s hard about defending the option is preparing during the week because our scout players only have a week to prepare for the option. It’s hard to get the scout team up to speed and everyone able to do their responsibilities because the first 12 plays that you’re out there has a completely different tempo. It’s a different game when it isn’t the scout team.”


On the defense:

“Whenever Maryland defense plays, they are going to give 100 percent every play. I could tell [Georgia Tech] had a good scheme against us. We probably could have been a little better prepared, but the whole defense was giving 100 percent the entire day and you can’t ask for anything more.”


On the technical breakdowns:

“For me, I was having a hard time getting off the cut blocks. That’s definitely something I can work on in my personal game.”


On Shawn Petty:

“We had full confidence in Shawn Petty. We watched him during the week and he was looking great and you saw out there that he had great potential. He can be a great quarterback and it was his first week as a true freshman starting against Georgia Tech, one of the better teams in the ACC. We couldn’t expect anything more from him and we think he did a great job.”


On playing after the offense’s three and outs:

“That’s what we’re preparing for. I think we were conditioned enough to keep defending the option even though they were going three and out. They were using a new quarterback, so that was kind of what we were expecting.”


On the toss:

“From a personal standpoint, I know every time they ran a toss for me, I wasn’t defending it well enough and I needed to get a better feel. I wasn’t helping out my team as best as I could.”


On the future:

“We’re still going. We’re still trying to get to that bowl game. It’s a little hiccup, but we’re moving on to Clemson next week.”


Freshman Running Back Brandon Ross


On the differences between the first and second halves:

“I think just establishing the run. The offensive linemen were getting off the ball and we were getting good blocks so that opened it up for a lot of the running backs.”


On Shawn Petty’s confidence:

“I think he had confidence the whole game. Things weren’t going right in the first half. He was getting the jitters out or whatever it might be. I think in the second half we just started to gain a little bit of momentum.”


On his playing time:

“It felt good. I was just being patient and just waited for my number to be called. I was always ready.”


On what they’ll take away from the game:

“With an extra week of practice, you’re always able to get better. Shawn will be going on his second start now and I really think things are starting to come together. I think we’ll really start to come together as an offense.”


On the mood among the offense:

“It’s a down mood, but I think that’s just because we lost. We play hard every week so we’re trying not to get our heads down too much, but the goal is to just rebound from this and go beat Clemson next week.”


Freshman Wide Receiver Stefon Diggs


On if he’s satisfied with his role:

“I am always satisfied with how much time I get the ball. We have a lot of guys on the team who have the ability to make plays just as well as I can. When I do get the ball, I just try to make the most out of it. I think I had an OK day. It could have been better, but that’s why we get back into the film room and practice.”


On the last play:

“That was a good way to end the game. We ended strong and on a good note. We’ll be back next week. We had a one-on-one basically. The defender didn’t squeeze – he stuck with the post. He then squeezed a little bit and came after the corners, but I was one on one with him and went up to grab the ball and tried my best.”


On the running plays:

“I don’t think I should [get more running plays] necessarily. I think they’re doing a great job moving the ball. Brandon Ross did a great job, Petty did a great job. Everyone is doing a great job.”


Freshman Quarterback Shawn Petty


On learning terminology:

“I have picked up on most of it. Coach has been doing a good job of making sure I’ve got it down for the game.”

On what was most difficult:

“You just have to get used to the speed of the game. That’s the biggest difference. Playing my first college game when I was playing linebacker before this, the speed of the game was much faster so it took me a while to get up to speed.”


On what was different in the second half:

“I started feeling more comfortable in the second half. In the first half I was a bit antsy and the speed of the game was much faster then. I calmed down and played faster and let the game come to me.”


On his reaction when being told he’d start at quarterback:

“I was just ready to play. We play next man up so I had to be prepared to come today. Of course I can always do better and I plan on getting better. We are going to get better from here.”


On being a quarterback again:

“I always thought that I could play at the D1 level. Now I have my chance and I have to go prove it.”


On what he’ll work on moving forward:

“I need to make sure I slow down and make my reads.”


On being on the field with Stefon Diggs:

“He makes it a lot easier. You give him the ball and he makes you look good. He’s a big play-maker so you want the ball in his hands a lot.”


On the option run:

“I am really comfortable with it because it’s a lot of stuff that I did in high school. Some things came quicker than other things. It’s just going out there and playing and executing.”


Postgame Notes


Kicking Off: Maryland dropped below .500 for the first time this season with its 33-13 loss … the Terps are now 4-5 overall and 2-3 in the ACC, while Georgia Tech improved to 4-5 overall and 3-3 in the league … Georgia Tech owns a 15-6 advantage in the all-times series and has taken five of the last six from Maryland.


First-Time Starters: Entering Saturday’s game, Maryland was tied for fifth nationally with 17 players having drawn their first career start this season. The Terrapins added to that tally as Shawn Petty made his first career start at quarterback.


Three Starting QBs: With Shawn Petty drawing the start, Maryland has seen three different quarterbacks start a game this season (also Perry Hills and Caleb Rowe). It’s the first time that Maryland has had three different starting QBs in a season since 1973, when Ben Kinard, Bob Avellini and Al Neville did it.


Petty’s TD: When Shawn Petty hit Stefon Diggs for a 16-yard touchdown in the third quarter, it represented the fourth quarterback that has accounted for a touchdown this season for the Terps. Perry Hills passed for eight and ran for three, Devin Burns ran for one, and Caleb Rowe passed for two.


Diggs Gets Receiving TDs #5 & 6: Stefon Diggs caught his fifth and sixth touchdown passes of the season, passing Darrius Heyward-Bey (2006) and Sean Sullivan (1983) for the freshman receiving touchdowns record at Maryland. With 55 receiving yards, Diggs now has 721 this season. That’s also a Maryland freshman record and ranks 11th overall.


Diggs’ All-Purpose Yards: Stefon Diggs came into Saturday’s game ranked second in the ACC and ninth nationally with 169.25 all-purpose yards per game. Against Georgia Tech, he totaled 220 yards (133 kickoff return, 14 punt return, 55 receiving, 18 rushing) and is now averaging 174.9 yards per game. That currently ranks first all-time in the ACC among freshmen. Now with 1,774 on the year, Diggs also passed Torrey Smith for the Maryland freshman record and is third overall. He trails just LaMont Jordan (1,840 in 1999) and Torrey Smith (2,192 in 2009).


All-Purpose Yards by a Freshman (ACC)

Rk.   Name                      School               Year       Yds/G

1.     Sammy Watkins      Clemson             2011       171.4

2.     Stefon Diggs          Maryland            2012       169.2

3.     Duke Johnson         Miami                 2012       148.3

4.     Robert Lavette        Georgia Tech      1981       142.0

5.     Ryan Williams         Virginia Tech       2009       141.2


Defensive Notes: Cole Farrand had a career-high 10 tackles and matched his career high with six solo stops … Demetrius Hartsfield had all nine of his tackles in the first half … A.J. Francis was credited with his third field goal block of the year and also added six tackles … Darius Kilgo had a career-high seven tackles … Quinton Jefferson forced and recovered the first fumble of his career.



Georgia Tech Coach Paul Johnson


Opening statement:

“It was a good win for us. I’m proud of my team. I thought we played with some energy early, and took advantage of some possessions. We overcame a little bit of adversity when we fumbled the punt to start with. We were able to hold them pretty well defensively in the first half, and then in the second half, they did a nice job of keeping the ball. I think offensively we had four possessions in the second half. You have to give them some credit. As I told our guys, we kept alive what we’re playing for this season. We still have a chance mathematically in the league; still have a chance for a winning season and to go to a bowl game. It makes next week’s game against North Carolina the most important game of the year for us. We’ll go back and correct what’s wrong.”


On game planning for Shawn Petty:

“There is no tape on the quarterback, but they stayed pretty much within their scheme. They ran some zone-read plays and didn’t run as many bubble screens, but we knew the guy would run the ball.  In the first half, we did a better job defending it than in the second half.”


On rotating the quarterbacks:

“We weren’t sure how they were going to play defensively with the new coordinator, and we wanted to play both quarterbacks, but I felt it was important to start the game with Tevin [Washington] because he’s more important in whatever they lined up in and has a better feel for it. So we pretty much decided on Thursday to play them two series as a time, and that’s what really happened. In the second half we only had the ball four times, so it just kind of worked out. Tevin got dinged a little bit in the second half so he was done.”


On the performance of the quarterbacks:

“I thought they both did some good things. We didn’t throw the ball a lot. I think we threw the ball four times, and we should have completed all four. We missed two big games in the passing game when we dropped the ball.”


On sophomore Synjyn Days:

“His run towards our bench was a great run. It was good to see him out there. He’s been practicing better, and he’s focused. He’s a good athlete. I was proud of him, he played really well.”


Senior A-Back Orwin Smith

On Georgia Tech’s defense:

“We come in every game confident. It’s kind of how it goes. This game, we happened to get key blocks and guys on the perimeter.”


On Georgia Tech’s offense:

“The offense has to do well. Last week we didn’t do well, and we knew coming in that we had to step it up. That was the game plan and we executed it.”


On Georgia Tech’s energy:

“Just from getting ready before the first quarter, guys were amped up and getting ready. We were just amping each other up and you could tell a difference during the game.”


On having two quarterbacks:

“It’s a big advantage. At any time, either one of them could go down. We just have to make sure they both know what they’re doing in case that happens.”


Redshirt Freshman Quarterback Vad Lee

On Georgia Tech’s offense:

“We’re taking it one game at a time. When we come out ready to play, that’s when I think we’re doing our best. We were just ready to play this game. We were ready to go.”


On the success of the offense:

“Coach found a couple of plays that were very successful. We just took advantage and kept running. It was working, so we just kept grinding.”


On quarterback Tevin Washington:

“Me and Tevin, we help each other out. When I see something on the sidelines, I see the [defense] coming in hard, or the safety falling off, I let him know. He’s the one playing first. He also does the same thing for me when I’m in the game, so we try to work together. We’re going for a common goal, and that’s getting a win.”


On the team’s energy:

“We were just ready to play; we were ready to go. I think the cold had something to do with it. We were trying to stay warm. We were jumping around, I was trying to get everyone to jump around in the huddle and stuff, but that also created some energy. It got us ready to go.”


Redshirt Sophomore A-Back Synjyn Days

On his progression:

“My first week, I was just raw talent. Now I actually know what [to do]–I kind of knew what I was doing then because I played quarterback–but the actual angles and techniques you have to use to block defenders. I feel like I’ve been working.”


On preparing for Maryland:

“Making sure we finished our blocks, making sure we got the guy down. Whether we have to cut them or stand up and push them out of the way. The safeties and corners weren’t coming down too hard so I stayed up most of the time to block.”


On the team’s energy:

“I felt like it was a new attitude. Before the BYU game, after six games, we sat down and had a meeting and said, ‘This is the second half of the season. It’s the last six games.’ We’re 2-1 for our second half of the season. We’re trying to make it to a bowl game and play for the ACC Championship. We’re all excited for that.”


Redshirt Junior Defensive End Euclid Cummings

On preparing for Maryland:

“It was different preparing. We actually watched high school footage on [Shawn Petty]. I felt like that was different, but I thought we prepared well.”


On the team’s motivation:

“In defensive meetings, we were just focused on playing for each other. Our season has gone down a rocky road so we wanted to make sure we played for each other and get the ‘W.’ It didn’t matter if they’re playing the first-string or the fifth-string quarterback.”

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Petty takes over at QB as Terps host Georgia Tech Saturday

Posted on 02 November 2012 by WNST Staff

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Maryland returns to Capital One Field at Byrd Stadium for its second-to-last home game of the 2012 season when it plays host to Georgia Tech Saturday at 12:30 p.m. The Terps are coming off a pair of close losses and have played in close games throughout the year. Maryland’s average margin of victory is 5.5 and its average margin of defeat is just 4.5. The series with Georgia Tech has also been close in recent history – five of the last seven games in the series have been decided by five points or less. Last year, the Yellow Jackets claimed a 21-16 victory in Atlanta.


• The Terps are in what seems to be uncharted territory at the quarterback position. Four Maryland QBs have suffered season-ending injuries this year: C.J. Brown was lost in August with a torn ACL; Perry Hills was lost in the NC State game with a torn ACL;Devin Burns was lost after replacing Hills in the NC State game with a Lisfranc (foot); and Caleb Rowe was lost for the year after suffering a torn ACL in the Boston College game. An inquiry among FBS media relations contacts turned up no results of any school having a similar injury situation at quarterback this season or in the past.

• Against Georgia Tech, true freshman Shawn Petty will take the reins at QB. Petty starred on both sides of the ball and was an All-Met selection at Eleanor Roosevelt HS in Greenbelt, Md. As a quarterback, he threw for 1300 yards and 15 TDs, and ran for 550 yards and 10 TDs. Fellow true freshman Brian McMahon, a tight end, will back up Petty. McMahon also played QB in high school. When Petty starts, Maryland will become one of seven schools to have started three different players at quarterback this season (also Southern Miss – 4; and Colorado State, Kentucky, Minnesota, Tulane and Utah – 3).

• Despite the injuries and the fact that the Terps have relied on mostly young players – the 14 true freshmen Maryland has played are tied for the fifth most in the FBS – they are two wins away from bowl eligibility. That’s in large part due to a defense which has ranked among the nation’s best throughout the season.

• The Terps rank seventh nationally in total defense (289.3 ypg), fourth in rushing defense (77.6 ypg) and 40th in passing defense (211.6 ypg). Maryland has held its last two opponents under 50 rushing yards: NC State totaled just 40 yards on 26 attempts (1.5 yards per carry) and Boston College had just 8 yards on 27 attempts (0.3 yards per carry). Maryland has an experienced front seven highlighted by senior defensive linemen Joe Vellano and A.J. Francis, and senior linebackerDemetrius Hartsfield. Those three have played a big role in holding opponents to an average of just 2.31 yards per rush, which ranks third nationally behind Alabama and Stanford. Adding to Maryland’s strength up front are senior linebackersKenneth Tate and Darin Drakeford.

• Maryland’s 7.6 tackles for loss per game are tied for 10th in the FBS and its 3.0 sacks per game are tied for 12th. Vellano leads the ACC and is tied for ninth nationally with 1.75 tackles for loss per game. He was named ACC Defensive Lineman of the Week after recording five tackles and 2.5 sacks, along with a forced fumble against Boston College. Drakeford, meanwhile, has 8.0 TFLs and Hartsfield has 7.0.

• Offensively and on special teams, wide receiver Stefon Diggs continues to be Maryland’s most dynamic playmaker. Against Virginia, the freshman returned the game’s opening kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown and last week vs. BC he had a career-high 11 catches for 152 yards and a touchdown. Over the last five games he’s averaging 104.0 receiving yards per game, while his 169.3 all-purpose yards per game this season rank second in the ACC and ninth nationally. Diggs has earned ACC weekly honors four times this season: he received Rookie of the Week honors against West Virginia, Wake Forest and Boston College; and Specialist of the Week honors against Virginia.

Quick Hitters

• Maryland has lost seven players to season-ending injuries this year, four of which are quarterbacks. QB C.J. Brown (knee), QB Devin Burns (foot), QB Perry Hills (knee), PK/P Nick Ferrara (hip), WR Marcus Leak (toe), DL Andre Monroe (knee) and QB Caleb Rowe (knee) have all been lost for the year.

• Stefon Diggs has earned ACC Player of the Week honors four times this year. Diggs won Rookie of the Week for his play against West Virginia (9/22), Wake Forest (10/6) and Boston College (10/27), and Specialist of the Week against Virginia (10/13). Additionally, a defensive player has captured weekly honors in three of the past four weeks: Demetrius Hartsfieldearned Linebacker of the Week for his play against Wake Forest (10/6), and Darin Drakeford received the award against Virginia (10/13). Joe Vellano was named Defensive Lineman of the week for his play against Boston College (10/27).

• Diggs ranks fourth in the conference and first among freshmen with 83.2 receiving yards per game. Diggs, who has 38 catches for 666 yards, already ranks 16th on Maryland’s single-season receiving yards list (see list page 6).

• Diggs is the only Maryland freshman to record back-to-back 100-yard receiving games (vs. West Virginia and Wake Forest) since at least 1985, the earliest game-by-game statistics were recorded at the school.

• Maryland allowed Wake Forest to complete just 32.4 percent of its passes (13 of 38). That is the lowest percentage by an opponent with at least 30 passing attempts since Duke went 13 of 42 (30.9%) on Nov. 14, 1998.

• Joe Vellano’s father, Paul Vellano, was inducted into the Maryland Athletics Hall of Fame on Oct. 5. The elder Vellano was a first team All-American in 1973, while Joe was a second team All-American in 2011. The father-son combo represent one of four known father-son All-America combos to attend the same FBS school (also Lee and Travis McGriff at Florida; Kevin and Drew Butler at Georgia; Archie and Eli Manning at Ole Miss).

• Fourteen players saw their first career action for Maryland against William & Mary, and 25 players have seen their first career action for Maryland at some point this season (14 true freshmen, eight redshirt freshmen, two juniors, one senior).

• The Terps are holding opponents to 2.31 yards per carry, which ranks third nationally. Of the opponents’ 269 rushing attempts this season, 186 (69.1%) have been for three yards or less (28 of 41 vs. William & Mary; 28 of 39 vs. Temple; 25 of 40 vs. Connecticut; 20 of 25 vs. West Virginia; 21 of 29 vs. Wake Forest; 25 of 42 vs. Virginia; 18 of 26 vs. NC State; 21 of 27 vs. Boston College).

• Demetrius Hartsfield leads the team with 69 tackles and is just outside Maryland’s top 15 with 329 in his career. He needs two stops to pass Kevin Walker for 15th on Maryland’s career tackles chart.

• The Terps have done a good job controlling the clock. In seven games, Maryland has had the ball for an average of 31:43 to 28:17 for the opponent. That’s a major upgrade compared to 2011, when Maryland averaged just 25:16 a game to 34:44 for the opponent.

• Head coach Randy Edsall hands out game balls for each win. Most recently, Darin Drakeford received the defensive game ball and Stefon Diggs got the special teams game ball for the win over Virginia (see complete list, page 6).

• Against William & Mary, Perry Hills became the first true freshman starter at quarterback for Maryland since Latrez Harrison in 1999. He also became the first freshman to start a season opener since redshirt freshman Calvin McCall on Sept. 2, 1999, in a 6-0 win over Temple.

• Nine bowl teams from last year appear on Maryland’s 2012 schedule: Temple (Gildan New Mexico Bowl), West Virginia (Discover Orange Bowl), Wake Forest (Franklin American Mortgage Music City), Virginia (Chick-fil-A Bowl), NC State (Belk Bowl), Georgia Tech (Hyundai Sun Bowl), Clemson (Discover Orange Bowl), Florida State (Champs Sports Bowl) and UNC (AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl).

Maryland-Georgia Tech Series History

• Georgia Tech owns a 14-6 advantage in the all-time series, and has taken four of the last five from Maryland.

• The Yellow Jackets joined the ACC in 1983 and the teams first met in 1988. They played each other for 17 straight seasons (1988-04) before league expansion necessitated a rotating schedule.

• Five of the last seven games in the series have been decided by five points or less. Last year, the Yellow Jackets claimed a 21-16 victory in Atlanta. C.J. Brown rallied the Terps from a 21-3 halftime deficit with a 77-yard touchdown run and Davin Meggett cut the lead to five with a 1-yard TD run, but the Terps would get no closer.

• Maryland’s win in 2007, the last meeting between the teams in College Park, snapped a three-game Georgia Tech winning streak. In his first career start, Chris Turner threw for 255 yards, and Lance Ball ran for three touchdowns as Maryland held on for a 28-26 victory over Georgia Tech. Travis Bell sent a 52-yard field goal attempt wide right with 54 seconds remaining.

• Georgia Tech edged Maryland 27-23 in a 2006 thriller in Atlanta. The Terps had the ball at the Yellow
Jacket 7-yard line with only seconds remaining, but were stopped shy of the winning score.

• Maryland’s Lance Ball and Tech’s Tashard Choice had 116 and 138 rushing yards, respectively, in that game, as the two dueled it out on the ground. The Yellow Jackets’ Calvin Johnson had 133 yards receiving and Terrapin wideout Darrius Heyward-Bey had 111 to provide Maryland’s yards through the air.

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