Terps notes from win over UConn

McDougle's status uncertain; Likely impresses returning kicks

September 15, 2013|By Jeff Barker | The Baltimore Sun

EAST HARTFORD, Conn. — If you're a Terps fan, you just hope that Dexter McDougle, who has seemed to get better each game this season, can rebound from a shoulder injury. McDougle was stellar in the 32-21 win over Connecticut, with two interceptions — one of which he returned for a touchdown  and eight tackles.

Maryland seemed hopeful about the senior's third-quarter injury, but the team has not offered an official diagnosis/prognosis yet. The Terps have already lost one starting cornerback, Jeremiah Johnson, for much of the season, though Johnson does expect to return from a broken toe bone.

The starting-time temperature Saturday was 62 degrees, but it dropped into the 50s or even the high 40s by game's end. Maryland players had issues with cramping in the season's first two games in much warmer weather.

Maryland not only failed to convert a fourth-down run on its opening series, but Brandon Ross actually lost 3 yards. Fourth downs can be a barometer of the play of the offensive line, which seemed to give him no place to go. The Terps failed on another fourth-down attempt later in the half.

The Terps' running backs had trouble with C.J. Brown's end-over-end pitches. Ross fumbled one, but got it back. Albert Reid lost one in the third quarter, although Brown's pitch was on target that time. 

Will Likely returned punts and kickoffs later in the game, showing again why he's a freshman to watch. He had a 45-yard beauty of a kick return in the third quarter.

Wide receiver Stefon Diggs told me Likely was out there because Diggs "got banged up a little — nicks here and there — but nothing ice can’t fix." But Diggs continued to play on offense as usual. He never talks directly about his injuries, leading me to believe he sustains more of them, or at least more minor ones, than we in the media know. 

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