COLLEGE PARK -- Don't look for any quarterback controversy at Maryland.
Scott Milanovich pushed John Kaleo for the job last August. It was nearly his name linked to the dozens of records established by the run-and-shoot offense that was installed by then first-year coach Mark Duffner.
With Kaleo's eligibility finished, Milanovich came into spring practice No. 1 on the depth chart, and nothing has changed during the past four weeks. He'll get the first look when spring practice concludes today (1 p.m.) with the Varsity-Alumni game at Byrd Stadium.
A 6-foot-4, 220-pound redshirt freshman from Butler, Pa., Milanovich is the only quarterback candidate who completed a pass last season; he was 17-for-30 and 232 yards in four games. He has improved his mobility, he knows the offense and apparently he has put some distance between himself and true freshmen Kevin Foley and Dee Reed and redshirt freshman Tom Marchese.
"Clearly, Milanovich has established himself as the No. 1 quarterback," Duffner said. "He's been very impressive, and we're very pleased with his development. He's making good decisions, he's stronger and quicker, and he's more mobile.
"That's not to mean he looked bad [last season], because he gave Kaleo great competition. But he's lowered his body fat to about 10 percent. He's enhanced his overall play."
The top four pass-catchers left along with Kaleo, but true freshmen Jermaine Lewis and Wade Inge made the most of their opportunities last fall and are ready to step in. Four other wide receivers have impressed Duffner, but there hasn't been as much to see at running back.
Mark Mason has missed the second half of the past two seasons with injuries, and though he's fully recovered from the broken scapula (shoulder blade) that sidelined him from the Pittsburgh game last Oct. 3 on, he'll sit out today as a precautionary measure. He's still the healthiest of the superbacks, as Doug Burnett, Kameron Williams and Larry Washington are nursing injuries.
Mason charted Tuesday's practice, the third this spring which used officials in a game atmosphere, and he thinks the offense is more advanced than it was a year ago.
"Last year, it was like putting round pegs in square holes," Mason said. "This spring, everything's fitting in more smoothly. We knew more about the run-and-shoot coming in."
Linebacker Chad Wiestling, a returning starter, and Corey Holobetz, a reserve lineman in 1992, are also out with injuries, but the defense, a sore spot last season, has gotten help from some personnel shifts.
Cleveland Everhart, a junior college transfer, has taken over one of the outside linebacker spots. Wilde Lake grad Raphael Wall got a look at superback as a true freshman in 1991 and played both there and on defense last fall, but he's settled in at
strong safety now.
Mark Sturdivant and Jim Panagos have stayed on the defensive line, and the offensive line has seen some changes. The depth chart has Steve Ingram at left tackle, Jade Dubis at left guard, Jamie Bragg at center, Dave Hack at right guard and John Teter at right tackle.
The nearly 70 players in camp have been spurred on by the "Beat Virginia" sign -- the Cavs are Maryland's season-opening opponent Sept. 4 -- and an incoming group of 23 recruits that has been labeled Maryland's best in a decade.