Another week has passed without a resolution to Maryland football’s coaching situation, so interim head coach Matt Canada once again handled press conference duties. However, Tuesday was a unique situation.
Canada took questions from reporters to the backdrop of a Board of Regents press conference coming at 3:30 p.m. to discuss the commissioned report on the team’s culture. Canada brushed off any concerns about what that might mean to him, and once again complemented the players on how they’ve handled everything.
Before the Board of Regents’ press conference this afternoon, here’s Matt Canada making his weekly podium appearance https://t.co/cPGvOcA5Ek— Testudo Times (@testudotimes) October 30, 2018
“We have really closed off our room and said it’s about us,” Canada said. “We can’t control [how many people are in the stands]. We can control how we respond, how our kids respond to each other, and I think that’s something they’ve done a great job of.
“From all the way back to how we’ve mourned, to how we’ve dealt with adversities, to how we’ve dealt with losing games, I think they’ve leaned on each other. I think they’re focused on each other. They’re excited they got to play well Saturday, and they want to play well again.”
Canada then moved on to give an injury update on running backs Ty Johnson and Jake Funk and wide receiver DJ Turner. While Turner and Funk are unlikely to return this week, Johnson is a game-time decision after sitting the second half of the Illinois win with a calf strain.
“Ty is kinda going to be a game-time decision. We’ll see what he can do today,” Canada said. “Hopefully, he can play. He told me today he’s going to play, but sometimes that doesn’t really work. We’ll see where he goes.”
Maryland welcomes Michigan State to town this weekend for its blackout game (a noon one at that), and the Spartans’ run defense is definitely on Maryland’s mind. The Terps just put up 712 yards on Illinois, but have struggled mightily in the three games where they couldn’t get the ball moving. If the Spartans stuff Maryland on ground, similar to how Iowa and Michigan did, it could be a long day.
“Knowing this defense for a long time, and what they do, they believe in stopping the run.” Canada said. “And they’re very, very good at it. And you say that and look at the teams that we’ve played and how good they are at stopping the run, that’s a huge credit to [Michigan State] that they’re leading our conference. It’s a tremendous challenge for us to try to move the football, and we’re going to have to work very hard to do that.”