A few days ago, I posted that Maryland had updated their depth chart and that no changes were made. Because, at the time, no changes were made. But it looks like I spoke too soon, because the depth chart is now sporting a few juicy alterations. Namely, elevating senior cornerback Trenton Hughes and true freshman safety A.J. Hendy to starting spots in the secondary.
That, for what it's worth, means that Human Rollercoast Cameron Chism is now in the second-string at cornerback. He's been a starter for three straight years and, as Pete Volk mentions, had the longest consecutive started games streak on the team. But his performance last week against Virginia stood out as being below-average, and the change was made to put Hughes, who started all thirteen games last season, above him on the depth chart. It's certainly a surprising switch, especially so late in Chism's more or less productive career.
As for the Hendy switch: it's no surprise, and I actually called it on Sunday. (Nailed it.) Hendy had been playing good ball the past two weeks, coming up with three fantastic open-field tackles on special teams against BC before coming up with a fumble recovery against Virginia and actually showing a pulse afterward. Titus Till, in comparison, has struggled most of the year, and had a particularly difficult game last week, when he got nailed with a personal foul and missed at least two coverages. Hendy's a promising prospect, and I'll be intrigued - if simultaneously a bit antsy - to see how he performs against ND.
While we're on football, two more notes that deserve mention: as Custos pointed out earlier, Notre Dame will be without both its starting center (Braxston Cave) and #2 wide receiver (Theo Riddick) for the Maryland game. Obviously the Golden Domers don't lack for talent, but any time a team is missing an interior lineman against Joe Vellano I think you have to start licking your lips a little bit.
Also, Randy Edsall "clarified" his controversial remarks from earlier in the week when he compared Maryland to, in turn, an expansion franchise, a perennial loser, and an FCS team. His reasoning:
"The problem is that sometimes my quotes can get taken out of context," Edsall said. "What I was saying there was going in to Connecticut there was a team that was 10-2 and coming off going to the D1-AA playoffs for the first time in school history. Expectations were very high with what we were going to do. There were some variables there though. They had lost 25 guys who were very good players. The first year didn't go so well and that is what I was saying. I was comparing going in there and [having high] expectations and coming in here, not the state of the programs. I came in installed my program, stayed consistent and good things happened."
Better, but as I said before, he has to figure out how to say things. Anything. People can take quotes out of context if he says things ... well, like he says things. He has to understand everything he says is fair game right now, and he can't leave any doubt in what he's saying. Even if that means drastically over-simplifying or over-explaining a concept.
Sad, but when you're 2-7, it's must-do stuff.