Starting this year, the NCAA passed a new rule alowing college football players to play up to four games in a season and still redshirt. The rule is one of the rare ones in the NCAA that benefits both coaches and players. Players get an extra year of eligibility, and coaches don’t have to think as hard about playing a freshman in a blowout game.
With that rule in place, it puts an extra wrinkle on who’s eligible for a redshirt year. Starting this week and a few other times throughout the season, we’ll provide an update on which freshmen—and possibly upperclassmen—are eligible for a redshirt season. Here’s where Maryland stands through the bye week.
Freshmen unlikely to redshirt
WR Brian Cobbs—4 games
LB Chance Campbell—4 games
WR Dontay Demus—4 games
WR Darryl Jones—4 games
WR Jeshaun Jones—4 games
TE Chigoziem Okonkwo—4 games
K Joseph Petrino—4 games
LB Durell Nchami—3 games
LB Jordan Mosley—3 games
All nine of these freshmen have received serious playing time, and will probably get some snaps every game the rest of the way. Jeshaun Jones had a record-setting debut, and Okonkwo scored his first career touchdown last weekend. Cobbs, Demus and Darryl Jones have all caught passes this year, and will continue to fight for playing time as Maryland looks for more consistent targets at that position. Nchami and Mosley have seen their playing time increase since the Texas game, with Mosley seeing plenty of snaps at safety after Darnell Savage Jr. and Antwaine Richardson were injured against Minnesota. Petrino has been Maryland’s kicker since the moment he arrived on campus, and Campbell has carved out a role on special teams.
Freshmen more likely to redshirt
OL Spencer Anderson—1 game
DB Vincent Flythe—1 game
DB Fa’Najae Gotay—1 game
DL Jalen Alexander—0 games
DL Tyler Baylor—0 games
DB Raymond Boone—0 games
QB Tyler DeSue—0 games
OL Jaelyn Duncan—0 games
DL Austin Fontaine—0 games
OL Evan Gregory—0 games
DB Ken Montgomery—0 games
Anderson and Flythe played against Bowling Green, and Gotay saw time against Minnesota due to the injuries to Savage and Richardson and will likely play again if both are out for extended periods of time. Many of the freshmen on this list may only see the field in blowout victories, which Maryland has few opportunities for on its remaining schedule. Many of the freshmen who haven’t played are at positions where it’s common for players to take a redshirt season, or in Boone and Montgomery’s case, have a lot of depth already.
Upperclassmen who will definitely redshirt
WR Tahj Capehart—0 games (tore his ACL in spring practice)
Capehart was expected to have a sizable role on the offense this year, so expect him to be granted a medical redshirt.
Upperclassmen who may redshirt
Junior RB Jake Funk—1 game (broken hand)
Funk is a wildcard, as he broke his hand in warmups against Bowling Green and his return is still up in the air.
There are several other veterans who still have redshirt eligibility but probably won’t use it if healthy. Terrance Davis played on offense for the first time last week, and head coach Matt Canada said Lorenzo Harrison III could’ve played against Minnesota but was held out for precautionary reasons. Bryce Brand didn’t play against Texas but has appeared in every game since, so it’s likely he will continue to see the field going forward. Johnny Jordan and Adam McLean both didn’t suit up against the Golden Gophers, and the team hasn’t announced that their injuries are serious, so expect to see both at some point this season.