I doubt you'll find a better GPA for the weekly report card feature than from yesterday's game. 62-3 heals all wounds. Except, you know, real ones.
QB: Jamarr Robinson had his moments, but he also some points where he looked just as bad, or worse than, he did last week against Navy. I'll put it this way: he looks a lot better than he did last week, but not so good that most fans will have serious confidence in him.
He made a few nice short completions early, including two TD passes, but I can't remember him stretching the field. The first time he did, there was quite literally one of the ugliest passes I've ever seen; I don't know if it was a miscommunication, a bad read, or a failed attempt to throw the ball away, but it was on the bad end of a Morgan State safety.
Meantime, Danny O'Brien looked a lot better than he did against Navy (of course, improving upon a fumble and nothing else isn't that difficult). He threw three touchdowns in his first four passes and the throws were, for the most part, beautiful. He showed a little mobility, at least enough to get out of the pocket if it collapses. And, most importantly, he was calm and confident in the pocket. More on the potential controversy later in the day (maybe week).
Overall, it wasn't exactly what I would have wanted against a team like Morgan State, Just 11 completions and 149 yards passing wasn't the performance I was hoping for after last week's passing abomination. B-
RB: When your main backs average 5.9 yards per carry, there's just not much complaining you can do. Da'Rel Scott turned in a performance you'd expect out of him, but he's still yet to bust a big run. That role has fallen to Davin Meggett, who had a 20+ yard run in his second straight game today. He's been looking quicker, faster, and more decisive than last year; actually, he looks a lot like freshman Meggett.
But if the star of the backs wasn't Meggett, it was redshirt freshman D.J. Adams. After a one carry, one yard game against Navy, he looked a lot better last night, with two touchdowns and 70 yards on just 11 carries. He had a 24-yard carry and looked like a load to bring down between the tackles. In other words, he looked like what everyone hoped he would be. It's just Morgan State, but he looks to have a very promising future. A
WR: With just 11 completions, it's really tough to grade this bunch, but they did everything they were called to do, and did it very well. Outside of one drop by Adrian Cannon, the group was fantastic. Torrey Smith had two touchdown catches; so did fill-in tight end Matt Furstenburg. Cannon had a beautiful 19-yard touchdown off a screen pass that included three or four nice moves to avoid Morgan St. tacklers.
Perhaps more impressive was the blocking. Both LaQuan Williams and Ronnie Tyler threw at least one great block throughout the day, and I remember at least two other for which I wasn't able to identify the player. That's an overlooked part of the game. A
OL: Look, it's Morgan State. Not only did Maryland have a massive advantage in size, like Navy, there's a lot more talent and coaching prowess for the Terps. The QB was pretty rarely pressure and the line did what it was supposed to do. A few false starts, including the soon-to-be-infamous "entire offensive line" call, did hurt a little.
It was a good performance against Navy and another good one here, but these are pretty easy opponents. We'll find out if the OL is for real next week. B+
DL: It needs to be said that Morgan State's offense was legitimately terrible, and that they didn't get into the end zone against Bowie State in their season opener. So even the most dominating performance ever wouldn't really be all that surprising.
Still, the DL did their job. Joe Vellano looked solid early on and did a good job of applying pressure. Drew Gloster pitched in with a tackle for loss. And other than that, Maryland did their job of absolutely stifling the run. Morgan State QB Donovan Dickerson wasn't pressured quite as much as I would've liked - there were no sacks - but all in all, it's tough to complain. B+
LB: Here's a surprise: Alex Wujciak didn't get double-digit tackles today. It seemed like a shoe-in, but Wujciak finished the game with just five tackles; that's still good for more than 10/game, but it's nothing like last week's 18-tackle job.
Still, the linebackers were fantastic. Demetrius Hartsfield had a pick six; Adrian Moten also had a pick; David Mackall, who saw his first extended time, led the team in tackles. And, of course, Morgan only had 85 total yards. A
DB: Again, Morgan's just plain ol' bad. Donovan Dickerson looked shaken all game at QB and there wasn't a ton of covering to do. But like the DL, they did what they needed to do and did it well.
True freshman safety Matt Robinson shared the team lead in tackles with Mackall and forced a fumble (actually, batted down a backwards pass, but same thing). Cam Chism batted down a pass; Kenny Tate did too. Honestly, Morgan only completed 7 passes, so there's really no complaining to do here. Of course, most of that is Morgan's doing, but whatever. A-
Special Teams: For the second week in a row, Travis Baltz made a serious statement. Last week, he hit the game-winning FG. This week, he hits three 40+ yard field goals; not only is there a brewing QB controversy, there's some kicking controversy, too. Oh, and he landed 3 of his 4 punts inside the 20 and had a 53-yard punt. Methinks there's some awards on the horizon for Baltz.
And Tony Logan is just as slippery as can be at punt returner. He had a huge 68-yard return and came within one man of breaking two more. He's clearly a weapon, and that's weapon Maryland's lacked since the Steve Suter days.
And Maryland got a hand on two more punts of their own. Emani Lee-Odai tipped one, and looked very good in punt coverage to boot. Only a kickoff out of bounds holds this back. A
Coaching: In this type of game, it's tough to make any big mistakes, and there weren't any today. The playcalling was mostly sensible, the substitutions were mostly sensible (although Torrey Smith played one more play than necessary and was injured, though it appears not seriously), and there was a nice balance between avoiding "running up the score" and "pulling back too much." A-
- D.J. Adams, RB: Lot of options here (obviously), but Adams was awesome in garbage time today. Two touchdowns in the second game of his career is pretty nice.
- Matt Robinson, S: True freshman led Terps in tackles with David Mackall and forced a fumble. Pretty nice performance.
- Travis Baltz, P/K: Almost went to Logan, but pulling double-duty gives Baltz another sticker. Surprise.
- Danny O'Brien, QB: Sorry, had to do it. He throws darts.