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What Would You Do About the Running Back Predicament?

Maryland is in quite a pickle at the moment. As you probably already know, Da'Rel Scott is out until at least until the FSU game with a broken wrist, which is over a month from now. That leaves Davin Meggett, who has a solid year on his hands but not as the primary back and has struggled this year, Gary Douglas, who was impressive in spring practice but is yet to see significant playing time, and Morgan Green, who was highly regarded but has fallen off the pace and is now on the practice squad, as Maryland's only non-true freshman RBs.

There's also the highly regarded true freshmen D.J. Adams and Caleb Porzel, both of whom could factor in. Of course, the issue there is burning a redshirt for what would likely be limited playing time in just a few weeks.

According to Ralph, Green "isn't out of the picture, but we want to see these young guys." no Morgan, then. If that is indeed what happens, here's the situation: Meggett is 100% starting, and Douglas is 100% the #2 man. Past's questionable.

There's three different possible routes here. The first, most conservative, is simply sticking it out without burning either of the freshmen's redshirts. If worst comes to worst and Ralph needs to go deeper than #2, head down to Green. Pretty basic, but also gives them an extra year of growth.

If Ralph does decide to play one of them, you can bet that only one will see the field (otherwise, something got messed up somewhere). In that case, is it Adams or Porzel? Adams is the bigger, more reliable power back, more Meggett than Scott. Porzel is the prototypical, Jahvid Best-ian college back: undersized, ridiculously quick, and ultra-shifty. If we were doing the overplayed "Thunder and Lightning" combo, Adams is Thunder, Porzel is Lightning.

Playing Porzel makes more sense than playing Adams, regardless of who is actually the more talented player. We already have a version of Adams; our version of Porzel is hurt. Ergo, Porzel better replaces what Scott vacated, so he should play.

Unfortunately, Porzel himself is hurt, too. He's been out of commission the past few weeks with a leg injury, generally a pretty important aspect for a running back. He's supposed to be back at it this week, but he may not be at 100%, or may be rusty from reduced practice time.

So there's a bit of a problem. The player who makes the most sense to play is hurt. The other player is talented, but presents nothing Maryland doesn't already have. Of course, Maryland doesn't have to play one; maybe it's not even practical for the Terps to give one a shot, as Scott would be back within a month in the best-case scenario, and it's rare for a third string RB to get much playing time.

Quite the dilemma, huh?

[Note by bbroman, 10/07/09 4:07 PM EDT: I didn't check my RSS reader 'til after posting this; I swear I didn't mean to steal the idea from Terps Insider. But it's already posted, so it's staying.]