Sophomore quarterback Devin Burns, a converted wide receiver who played in three games for the Terrapins football team last season, is leaving the University of Maryland effective immediately, an athletic department official confirmed Tuesday.
Burns nearly led the Terps to a second-half comeback against North Carolina State, but suffered a season-ending Lisfranc injury in that game. A fleet-footed athlete adept at running the zone-read offense, Burns still has a long recovery road ahead of him, but would have returned to a clouded quarterback situation.
The bad news: I was on the Burns bandwagon (Burnswagon?) almost as much as the C.J. Brown bandwagon (Brownwagon?), and he did quite well when called upon against N.C. State. Well enough, in fact, that he probably has a few programs, FBS and otherwise, who'd be willing to take a chance with throwing him into a quarterback battle. He was unlikely to ever get that opportunity at Maryland, so it's easy to see why transferring would be attractive to him: he might be able to play some quarterback somewhere, but not here. That's a shame, because he still had potential to be a Kain Colter-type x-factor in the future, lining up at a variety of places and causing problems for defenses. That was hardly a guarantee and it would've taken some risk and ingenuity from Locksley and Edsall, so it's not to be oversold. Still, it would've been fun to have the option.
The good news: despite jokes about AMQHG, this isn't a blow to the stability of the position for Maryland. Burns was recovering from a Lisfranc injury and probably wouldn't be 100% in spring ball; even if he was, he was unlikely to remain at quarterback any longer than what was strictly necessary for practice. With Brown, Caleb Rowe, Perry Hills, Ricardo Young, walk-on Dustin Daily and freshman Shane Cockerille all being healthy and eligible next season, Burns' future was at receiver. And he had a logjam in front him there, too, with the likes of Stefon Diggs, Deon Long, Marcus Leak, and Nigel King all well-established. To be honest, I don't know where Burns fit in at all. While I'm hardly happy to see him go, it's not something that should overly concern anyone in the program; in fact, I'm a little encouraged for Burns himself, who was by all accounts a model player and should get a chance at another program.
Still, if AMQHG wants to claim it, I'm not about to deny him. We've learned our lesson about hubris already. But best of luck to Burns at wherever he lands; I'll be following his career, for sure.