Kicker Calicchio lost to Terps on eligibility QB Milanovich now No. 1 punter

August 28, 1993|By Paul McMullen | Paul McMullen,Staff Writer

COLLEGE PARK -- A week before its season opener, Maryland has lost a top recruit and the Terps' quarterback has gained a responsibility.

Punting and place-kicking were supposed to be strengths for the Terps with the addition of junior-college transfer Lonny Calicchio, but coach Mark Duffner was informed yesterday that Calicchio didn't receive his associate's degree and thus isn't eligible to play this season.

A week ago Duffner said that Calicchio would handle all of Maryland's punting and kicking. Now sophomore Scott Milanovich, the Terps' projected starter at quarterback, is also the No. 1 punter.

Calicchio was a junior-college All-American for Northwest Mississippi Community College last season, and few in Maryland's highly regarded incoming class were supposed to make as big an impact.

As a Proposition 48 non-qualifier out of high school, Calicchio needed a two-year, or associate's degree, to gain his NCAA eligibility. He reportedly needed to pass summer school courses at Broward Community College, near his home in Florida, to receive his associate's degree.

When asked if delays in transferring Broward credits to Northwest Mississippi could be holding up a transcript that would make Calicchio eligible, a Maryland administrator said, "it's possible, but not probable."

Sue Tyler, Maryland's senior associate athletic director, also said: "We received notice today [yesterday] from Northwest Mississippi that he [Calicchio] did not get his AA degree. He will not play this year. Our staff is more than disappointed, but they are not counting on him this season. They feel it's a done deal."

Calicchio's scholarship at Maryland was contingent upon his receiving his associate's degree, and Tyler said, "I think the young man may be going home." Calicchio could not be reached for comment.

Calicchio was one of the nation's top high school kickers three years ago at South Plantation High in south Florida, but did not meet the NCAA academic eligibility requirements. He enrolled at Northwest Mississippi, where he was a two-time junior college All-American and NJCAA Special Teams Player of the Year in 1992.

Calicchio was the nation's top junior-college scorer last year, converting 55 point-after kicks and 12 field goals. He punted 46 times for a 40.0-yard average. Last week Duffner said that Calicchio would punt, kick off and kick field goals for the Terps, but his last practice with the Terps was Monday.

Milanovich, who had a 40.7-yard average for Butler (Pa.) High in 1990, has been the Terps' No. 1 punter this week, but Duffner also mentioned wide receivers Erik Henry and Russ Weaver and defensive end Mike Gillespie as possible replacements there. Ken Lytle is now the No. 1 place-kicker.

At the end of practice yesterday, Terps coaches had some of the university's soccer players kicking field goals.

Dave DeArmas, then a redshirt freshmen, did all of the punting and place-kicking for the Terps last season, but he quit the team, citing fan criticism. He's now at Connecticut.

In another eligibility matter, Duffner said that reserve defensive lineman Madison Bradley, who missed the spring semester with a back injury, is eligible to play this season.

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