Now that the 2009 season is complete, I wanted to take a few moments to thank you for your support of our football team this year. And I wanted to tell you that no one associated with our football program is satisfied with our record this season. As Head Coach, I take responsibility for our performance this year and I can assure you that we will be better next year.
* We have an exciting and mobile young quarterback in Jamarr Robinson. His performances against Virginia Tech (129 yards rushing), Florida State (213 yards passing) and Boston College (115 yards passing playing less than half the game) showed everyone that he brings an exciting dimension to our offense. James Franklin and I are going to work on offensive schemes to feature Jamarrs unique skills. We also have two very good redshirt freshmen quarterbacks in C.J. Brown and Danny OBrien – so we are stacked in this crucial position.
* All of our wide receivers are back, including All-ACC performer Torrey Smith, Adrian Cannon, Ronnie Tyler and Kevin Dorsey. You saw the arm strength of Jamarr – next season its going to be exciting to watch him get the ball downfield to these talented and speedy wideouts.
* Our offensive line is back, with the exception of one. A young squad in 2009, our linemen are a year older, a year wiser and will play like veterans next year, opening up holes for our backs and giving our quarterbacks time to look downfield. Their development is crucial and I will be working closely with the Offensive Line Coach Tom Bratton on this in the off-season.
* On the defensive side, we will return 8 of our top 10 leading tacklers. Our linebackers will be a particularly strong unit, with Alex Wujciak and Adrian Moten anchoring a squad that made great strides under first-year Defensive Coordinator Don Brown.
* In all we have 28 players back next year who started during their careers. On our offensive two-deep, we have 18 of 22 players back. On defense, its 15 of 22 players back. That kind of game experience is going to pay off for us next season.
* Spearheaded by Dave Sollazzo and James Franklin, our recruiting efforts have led to a 2010 class ranked 26th by national recruiting experts. The class includes four 4-star prospects who can have an immediate impact on our team.
Our 2010 schedule includes a season opener against the Navy Midshipmen at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. Those of you who were there in 2005 remember what an outstanding game that was (we eventually prevailed 23-20 in a nailbiter), and I expect this one to be another tough match against our intra-state rival. It will be a terrific start to the season.
When our full 2010 schedule is officially announced in January, we will be asking you to continue your support of Maryland Football by renewing your season tickets. I understand that some of you may look at this years record and think hard about that decision. But I ask that you remember the 2009 team not solely for our record, but also for the heart with which they played. This team never quit, not once, not on any play. These are student-athletes of character and we should all be proud that they are called Terrapins. Now is the time for all Terp fans to unite and support the team.
I am so proud to have been a part of this team, perhaps more than any team in my 40 years of coaching. I would like to personally ask that you continue your support of the Terps by renewing your season tickets. Come back to Capital One Field at Byrd Stadium next year. Watch our young team grow and improve. With your help, we can do special things next year. And my staff and I start that work today.
For those of you who wrote, emailed and called with encouragement over the trying 2009 season, I thank you. I am humbled by your continued loyalty and support of Maryland Football. Weve done some great things together here in Maryland during my first nine years, featuring six bowl appearances including the Orange Bowl, Gator Bowl and the Chick-Fil-A Bowl. Returning the program to that level of competition, along with Top 25 finishes remains our top priority.
I am a proud Terp and I consider it an honor to coach here at the University of Maryland and I thank Debbie Yow and Dr. Dan Mote for their continued support. I hope that you look forward with me, our players and our coaching staff to the 2010 season.
Fear The Turtle!
Head Coach Ralph Friedgen