COLLEGE PARK, MD - SEPTEMBER 24: Quarterback Danny O'Brien #5 of the Maryland Terrapins jogs off the field during the second half of the game against the Temple Owls at Byrd Stadium on September 24, 2011 in College Park, Maryland. Temple defeated Maryland 38-7. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Two quick-ish football notes for you today. The first, we already kinda knew: Maryland has officially charged Vanderbilt with tampering with Danny O'Brien, which really means the ACC has charged the SEC and it now goes to the NCAA. (Messy, isn't it?) Vanderbilt's acknowledged it and will open an investigation; while waiting for this all to get figured out, O'Brien is declining to consider Vanderbilt, which makes this all one big debate over nothing.
Anyway, it's good to see Randy Edsall and Kevin Anderson realize that this is the best course. And, frankly, they should've taken this stance from the start. I had no problem - or, more accurately, no opinion - on blocking the transfer, but it obviously made the program look terrible and if they had formally accused James Franklin and Vandy of tampering from Day One it would've insulated them from a lot of the media hate. All of those hack jobs can't be unwritten, but it would still be a tiny bit of vindication going forward. That said, I'm still not convinced that "poor PR handling" = "evil," as Gregg Doyel would have you believe.
In other news, Maryland's position coaches have continued to meet with the media, part of Randy Edsall's Gossett Glasnost. The offensive and defensive coordinators have already done this, as have Lyndon Johnson (aka The Prez) and Andre Powell. Today's subjects were the line coaches, Greg Gattuso (defensive) and Tom Brattan (offensive). The official site usually comes out with full quotes later, and I imagine some quick articles will be coming from the major newspapers. Until then, though, we have tweets., thanks to the tireless Patrick Stevens
Of particular interest is Gattuso, as it's a big question mark as to how Maryland will handle their defensive end personnel. Apparently, Gattuso is saying that the likely starters in spring ball at the ends will be Joe Vellano and Andre Monroe, and perhaps with Darius Kilgo in the middle. Some big absences there - A.J. Francis? Justin Anderson? - who I thought would be great fits for the 3-4. Kilgo is an aircraft carrier, so sticking him at the nose makes sense, and Monroe was extraordinarily disruptive last year and can't really be kept off the field that long. Still, it'll be interesting to see how long they can keep Francis's experience and Anderson's size down the depth chart.
Gattuso also makes mention of rotating Joe Vellano, playing him at all three defensive line positions depending on the situation. I mentioned this earlier and think it's a very good idea - I wouldn't be surprised to see Monroe take up this role in the future, either, as he's pretty dense and has great leverage. They're going to use him, in a sense, much the same way Alabama used Marcell Dareus, sort of as a free role. This should maximize the damage he can do and havoc he can wreak, so I'm on board.
Brattan is a bit more boring, simply based on subject matter. Still, he is losing both of his starting offensive tackles in R.J. Dill and Max Garcia, which is going to test the line quite a bit. There isn't much of interest there yet - says he'll go with the best five overall, which could mean rotating bodies outside of their "natural" positions - but I'm sure the full quotes will shed some more light. Truth be told every time I look at the depth chart there's a weird mix of fear and promise: between guys like Pete White, Nate Clarke, Sal Conaboy, and Andrew Zeller, there's actually a good bit of talent there. Just really, really unproven.
Don't fret: happier basketball posts are on the horizon.