Posted by Chip Patterson
Sunday was dedicated to the players at the ACC Football Kickoff. Two representatives from each of the 12 schools made their rounds with the media. This was my takeaway from Maryland
A season ago, Maryland fans found an early Christmas gift with the emergence of quarterback Danny O'Brien. The true freshman took the conference by storm, racking up 22 touchdowns and just 8 interceptions on his way to being named ACC Rookie of the Year. After coming within a game of the ACC Atlantic Division crown, the Terps have had to undergo an offseason of change in the leadership positions. Out with Ralph Friedgen and offensive coordinator James Franklin (now the head coach at Vanderbilt) and in with Randy Edsall and new offensive coordinator Gary Crowton. But the sophomore believes that the coaching change will not alter the expectations in College Park.
"[Coach Edsall's] goal coming in, he said he's here to win championships," O'Brien told reporters. "If we have a really tight-nit team it's ACC title or bust."
Part of putting together that tight-nit team will include finding a replacement for All-ACC wide receiver Torrey Smith, who was O'Brien's favorite target in 2010. Smith pulled in 67 catches for 1055 yards and 12 touchdowns, numbers that dwarf the rest of the receivers from last year's campaign. When asked who will step up in Smith's absence, O'Brien admitted that was still unanswered.
"That remains to be seen," O'Brien responded. "We've got a lot of guys who don't necessarily have the same stat line Torrey did last year, but made big plays in big games. We have four or five guys that have stepped up in big games, between Kerry Boykins, Kevin Dorsey, Ronnie Tyler, Quintin Mcree, I think one of those guys will step up."