Profiles in Terpage is back for 2017, and this week, we’re looking at all of Maryland’s quarterbacks. We started with Tyrrell Pigrome and will continue our way through the depth chart as the week goes on.
Max Bortenschlager, QB, No. 18
Weight: 200 pounds
Hometown: Fishers, Indiana
High school: Cathedral
How he got to College Park
Bortenschlager flipped his commitment from Buffalo to Maryland on Jan. 30, 2016. The three-star prospect became Maryland’s first quarterback commit in the class after longtime Terp commit Dwayne Haskins flipped to Ohio State just two weeks earlier. He saw the field as a true freshman, but had little impact in his first season in College Park.
He was the third or fourth option off the bench for DJ Durkin and offensive coordinator Walt Bell last season, but did play in two games, including one start. He completed only 16 of 33 passes for 209 yards and a touchdown.
That one touchdown he threw just so happens to be tied for Maryland’s second-longest pass in program history. A simple tunnel screen to D.J. Moore in the fourth quarter of Maryland’s Nov. 19 game against Nebraska became one of the highlights of the season. It was the first touchdown the Terps had scored in weeks, and though it was largely a result of Moore’s run, Bortenschlager gets credit all the same.
ICYMI: @TerpsFootball WR D.J. Moore covered a lot of ground and broke a lot of tackles on this TD. https://t.co/GbXU5iEdIZ— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) November 20, 2016
When Bortenschlager joined Maryland, his upside laid almost exclusively as a pocket passer. With Bell’s offensive scheme apparently best fitted to a quarterback who can do damage with his feet as well as his arm, it’s unlikely Bortenschlager enters the season as the starting quarterback.
With Pigrome’s experience and explosiveness and Caleb Henderson and Kasim Hill’s skill sets, it’s tough to see exactly where Bortenschlager could find a role for himself. If he can’t land himself an on-field role, Bortenschlager can certainly help in the meeting room and on the practice field, elevating the level of competition for whomever does land the starting job.
Bortenschlager tears it up in camp and wins the job heading into the season. His 6’3 stature helps him see over the offensive line and he’s riffling passes to receivers all over the field. His limited mobility isn’t too much of a liability, and Bell is able to scheme just enough quarterback runs into the game plan to keep defenses honest. With Maryland’s already-explosive running game, an efficient passing attack should be able to keep the Terps in games against the elite competition they’ll face.
This quarterback is also listed at 6’3.