Maryland's 2016 football season starts in 101 days.
The considerable size of the Terps' roster means it's now time to start profiling players one by one, and true freshman quarterback Max Bortenschlager has, by virtue of randomization, earned the honor of going first.
Bortenschlager was a late commitment for Maryland, pledging verbally to the Terps just four days before National Signing Day. The Indianapolis pro-style passer hasn't gotten as much fanfare as fellow quarterback signee Tyrrell Pigrome, who's a more electric dual threat, but Maryland offensive coordinator Walt Bell clearly liked Bortenschlager enough to want him in the fold. What do the Terps have in him? We'll all learn together.
Max Bortenschlager, quarterback
Weight: 185 pounds
High school: Cathedral (Ind.)
How Bortenschlager got to College Park
The world of college football recruiting is such that there's usually a good bit of smoke before the fire of a verbal commitment. Not a lot of things stay secret, because a lot of people talk. But Bortenschlager's Jan. 30 commitment to Maryland felt like it came out of left field, because the Terps haven't been particularly active in recruiting the Indianapolis area. (Or, at least they've haven't publicly.)
As Signing Day crept closer back in the winter, Bortenschlager wasn't widely known to be on the Terps' radar. After four-star QB Dwayne Haskins flipped to Ohio State, Maryland was clearly focused on Pigrome and two Louisiana products, Lindsey Scott and Chase Fourcade. Bortenschlager wasn't much known, and he didn't have a long offers list: Buffalo, Ball State and Eastern Michigan were the only FBS teams who'd extended them, according to 247Sports.
One career highlight so far
Here are many of them, in mixtape form.
Bortenschlager is likelier than not to redshirt during his true freshman season. The Terps have three quarterbacks already on their roster, and it's tough to imagine anyone on the current roster other than Caleb Rowe, Perry Hills or Gage Shaffer seeing live snaps for most of the year. Pigrome could see some time because of his dual-threat nature, but Bortenschlager is a pro-style passer on a team that already has two of them in Rowe and Shaffer.
What a dream season might look like
Bortenschlager could impress Bell and DJ Durkin in fall camp and win a second- or third-string job with Maryland right off the bat. The Terps are probably not a team whose starter will finish every game all year, so if Bortenschlager can push his way to the top few levels of the depth chart, he could see valuable game action and set himself up to compete with Shaffer, Pigrome and four-star 2017 commit Kasim Hill for the following season. It's worth emphasizing, again, that he'll probably redshirt.
Next in the series ...
The second player in the series is a Maryland native and made his game debut last year after a long wait.