After a weekend of uncertainty, the decision is in. No, LeBron isn’t taking his talents anywhere this time. Instead, quarterback Danny O'Brien, along with two other Terps, were granted their release from the Maryland football team. Yet again, the Terps’ quarterback position is a mystery.
O’Brien, left tackle Max Garcia and back-up STAR linebacker Mario Rowson will all be wearing a new uniform come next fall. Their departures mark the 22nd, 23rd and 24th transfers since Randy Edsall took over the program. And, as he’s proven time and time again, if they aren’t buying in to what he’s telling, he’s just fine with it.
“I am disappointed by Danny’s decision,” Maryland Coach Randy Edsall said in a statement. “Danny told me that he is not committed to our program, that he is not ‘all in.’ I want what’s best for all of our players. Danny wants a fresh start elsewhere. I wish him well.”
Apparently the commitment by Stefon Diggs was not convincing enough for O’Brien to stay. O’Brien released this statement about his decision.
After careful thought, contemplation, prayer, and consultation with my family, we have come to a consensus that it is in my best interest to continue my educational and athletic endeavors elsewhere.
This was a very difficult decision, one which I did not take lightly. I will forever cherish the friendships of teammates, academic and athletic support staff, fellow students, professors, and of course Terp fans.
Playing at Byrd Stadium and experiencing college life in College Park will remain as unforgettable experiences for the rest of my life. I certainly wish nothing but the best to the team next season and for years to come.
I look forward to completing one of my established goals of graduating from the University of Maryland this spring and becoming a proud alumnus of this great institution.
The rumored destinations for O’Brien include Wisconsin, Stanford and Vanderbilt. Last season the Badgers brought in a veteran quarterback in Russell Wilson to lead their offense. They ended up a game shy of their ultimate goal, facing off against Oregon in the Rose Bowl. Wisconsin could do the same this year with O’Brien. Or could the Cardinal try to make Palo Alto O’Brien’s new home after losing Andrew Luck to the NFL Draft?
The last likely landing spot, Vanderbilt, makes the most sense. Former Maryland head-coach-in-waiting, offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach James Franklin resides in Nashville, and needs a veteran under center as he enters his second season as head coach. O’Brien and Franklin have a well-documented relationship, but there seems to be a huge cinderblock in his way…cough, Edsall, cough.
Edsall officially blocked O’Brien from transferring to Vandy. Franklin brought assistants from Maryland to Vanderbilt when he took the job a year ago; he’s still an excellent recruiter in the area and apparently is going after some current Terps.
O’Brien began last season as the starter after a magnificent first season which earned him Atlantic Coast Conference Rookie of the Year honors. That, of course, was under Franklin’s tutelage. However, after a signature victory in the season opener against Miami, O’Brien struggled mightily, until Edsall finally pulled the cord in game No. 5 against Georgia Tech and inserted C.J. Brown.
O’Brien finished the season on an even lower note. After regaining his job from Brown, he was knocked out the Notre Dame game with a fractured left shoulder. When it was all said and done, it was pretty poetic. Final stat-line: 1,648 yards, 56% completed passes, 7 TD, 10 INT.
It was clear that O’Brien couldn’t succeed in Gary Crowton’s high-tempo spread offense, so Edsall hired Mike Locksley. The former head coach of New Mexico, Locksley runs a traditional pro-style offense. Apparently, that also wasn’t enough to sway O’Brien from leaving.
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