Just as it was looking as if Florida State and Clemson were building a talent gap insurmountable to the rest of the ACC’s Atlantic Division teams, Maryland has suddenly showed a spark of competitive life.
The Terps pulled off a late-cycle recruiting coup last week with the announcement that five-star wide receiver Stefon Diggs of Olney, MD has signed with Maryland.
Diggs, who’s ranked as the nation’s No. 2 wide-out by both Rivals and Scout, could have gone anywhere; and the fact that he’s chosen to stay home and play for the Terps is big-time good news for coach Randy Edsall, who hasn’t had much go his way during his first year at Maryland.
There has been a mix of both good news and bad news on the Maryland football front this week. On Monday, Maryland granted releases to quarterback Danny O’Brien and two other players, including offensive lineman Max Garcia, a Norcross, GA native who picked the Terps over Clemson two years ago and now wants to play closer to home.
O”Brien’s departure leaves new Terps’ offensive coordinator Mike Locksley with just one quarterback with game experience.
The addition of Diggs is a step in the right direction for Edsall, who in addition to giving his program an immediate talent boost, has taken steps to stop the outflow of talent from the rich Beltway area – a necessity if he’s to sustain the Maryland program over the long haul. Florida State raided the area this year for a pair of elite recruits in defensive lineman Eddie Goldman and cornerback Ronald Darby.
The Terps’ 23-man recruiting class, which is now ranked 35th nationally by Rivals, includes 10 local players, including four-star running back Wes Brown, a high school teammate of Diggs.
Comings And Goings: Boston College, whose offense ranked among the worst in the nation last season, is in the process of undergoing a near-complete makeover of its offensive coaching staff.
Head coach Frank Spaziani has a new offensive coordinator (BC’s fifth in five years) in former Kent State head coach Doug Martin, and there will apparently be just one holdover from the Eagles’ 2011 offensive staff.
In her ACC blog, ESPN’s Heather Dinich details the changes: Dave Brock, who served as BC’s interim offensive coordinator last season in place of Kevin Rogers, who took a medical leave of absence and did not return, has moved to Rutgers as offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach, accompanied by Ben Sirmans, who’ll coach Rutgers’ running backs; while Ryan Day will reportedly join the coaching staff at Temple.
In at BC are offensive line coach Jim Bollman, who previously worked at Ohio State, and running backs coach Sean Desai, who was most recently assistant director of football operations at Miami.
The only holder on BC’s offensive staff is Sean Devine, who’ll coach tight ends.
Boston College, which ranked 112th nationally in both total offense and scoring last fall, will begin spring practice later this week.
In another ACC-related moves, Everett Withers, who served as UNC’s interim head coach last fall after Butch Davis was fired, has been hired as co-defensive coordinator at Ohio State, while Davis has joined the Tampa Bay Bucs’ staff as a defensive consultant.
Speed To Burn: Clemson and the rest of the ACC will be dealing more world-class speed as they prepare to go against Florida State in coming years.
Marvin Bracey, a wide receiver signee from Orlando, FL, recently rank the fastest time in the world this year in the 55-meter dash – 6.08 seconds, which is a new high school record.
In addition to playing football, Bracey will also run track for the Seminoles, as will Darby, a Clemson recruiting target who specializes in the 200 meters on the track.