After Scrimmage, Friedgen Still Mum On QBs

Several times during fall camp head coach Ralph Friedgen has been close to naming the starting quarterback. He said he would "definitely" name one after Saturday's scrimmage.


So who is Maryland's starting quarterback? Well, Friedgen is still not quite ready to make the call yet.

"Not right now," he said after the scrimmage. "I'm going to look at the tape and probably do something by Monday or Tuesday."

It was an unspectacular day for all three quarterbacks, partially due to the entire team's fatigue as it enters the final week of two-a-days. Jordan Steffy went 9-for-17 for 116 yards and hit LaQuan Williams for a 62-yard touchdown pass. Steffy entered camp as the No. 1 quarterback and there's no indication that has changed.

"I'm not concerned," he said. "I've taken every single No. 1 snap with the first team all of camp. That hasn't even happened in the past with Sam [Hollenbach]."

The closer battle at signal caller appears to be for the No. 2 spot. Friedgen said Josh Portis holds the spot now but "it depends on the day." Portis went 4-for-10 for 57 yards and Chris Turner went 9-for-12 for 88 yards and an interception.

Turner is the more consistent of the two and has a better understanding of the playbook. Portis has an unmatched running ability—"In practice sometimes he looks like the State Farm Insurance commercial where he runs through the whole team," Friedgen said—but has to get better at receiving and relaying signals from the sideline, as well as footwork and other details.

"He missed a couple [signals] tonight but he's not missing as many as he used to," Friedgen said. "I gave him one tonight—I bet my paycheck he wouldn't get it. I still got my paycheck."

Quarterback isn't the only position Friedgen is looking at closely. Jack Griffin entered Saturday's scrimmage with a slight lead over Dane Randolph at right tackle and Phil Costa is pushing Jamie Thomas at left tackle. "The good news is I think they can all play for us," Friedgen said.

Obi Egekeze, who Friedgen has leading at place kicker, missed his first three attempts but made his remaining four, including a long of 45 yards. Travis Baltz had a 32-yard-per-punt average and is No. 1 at that position now.

LaQuan Williams led all receivers with 80 yards on three catches. He is competing with Isaiah Williams (three catches for 25 yards tonight) for the No. 3 receiver position.

Dan Bonato, who was added to the 105-man roster when Bobby Sheahin left the team, had 77 yards on 23 carries, mostly against the third-team defense. Keon Lattimore rushed for 42 yards on seven carries with a long of 21 yards and Lance Ball ran eight times for 36 yards, despite a sore toe.

Moises Fokou had a team-high 10 tackles, including a sack. Mack Frost and Jeff Allen had two sacks each. Erin Henderson had nine tackles and Alex Schultz had eight. The defense only surrendered two touchdowns in normal game conditions.

"I'll probably look at the film and think it was better than what it was," Friedgen said. "It just seemed like we were in slow motion…probably because everybody's tired.

"I think we're ahead as far as our mechanics... With this team I'm trying to get them game-ready early. We got to get off to a good start. We can't be starting slow this year and have a good season."

Notes:

--Darrius Heyward-Bey (foot) and Chase Bullock (ankle) were held out of yesterday's scrimmage.

--Friedgen tried to re-enact a game situation as exact as possible. With a full set of referees and replay cameras, Friedgen even challenged a ball spot and won.

--Friedgen will most likely hold another scrimmage Thursday, depending on injuries.

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