McCall expected to get start for Terps' opener

Hill also to see action, but early decision appears to favor incumbent QB

College Football

September 05, 2000|By Bill Free | Bill Free,SUN STAFF

COLLEGE PARK - Calvin McCall will start at quarterback and Shaun Hill will come off the bench and play a lot.

That will likely be the secret plan Maryland coach Ron Vanderlinden unveils Saturday at 6 p.m. when the Terrapins open their 2000 season against Temple at Byrd Stadium.

"I've made my decision, but I'm not going to announce it until the first series," Vanderlinden said yesterday after a two-hour, 20-minute Labor Day practice. "There's no reason to announce it. I have the whole thing worked out but I'm not telling you. I would anticipate both of them playing. I had an idea how I was going to do it all along."

Vanderlinden obviously would like to keep the 1-0 Owls guessing, but the fact he made the decision so early points to McCall, the returning starter, getting a shot to keep the No. 1 job. If McCall, a redshirt sophomore, should run into problems, then Hill, a junior college transfer, probably would receive his big chance earlier than Vanderlinden has planned.

McCall, 6 feet 3 and 189 pounds, guided Maryland to a 5-3 record before going down with a season-ending knee injury in a 30-17 loss at N.C. State last Nov. 6. McCall is adept at running the option and has improved his passing in the off-season.

Hill, 6-3 and 229, is more of a classic drop-back passer and has made mostly the right decisions while running the Maryland offense in preseason camp. Hill had a rare off day in practice last Thursday but still came out of camp locked in a virtual dead heat with McCall for No. 1.

Hill had two outstanding seasons at Hutchinson (Kan.) Community College.

McCall and Hill will not have veteran senior wide receiver Jason Hatala to throw to Saturday night because of a lower back injury that Vanderlinden said "was pre-existing." Also, backup junior inside linebacker Reggie Lewis will not play due to a hamstring injury from Friday night's scrimmage.

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