2012 Record: 4-8 (2-6 in ACC)
Head Coach: Randy Edsall (6-18 at Maryland, 80-88 All-Time)
Last Bowl Game: 2010 Military Bowl: beat ECU 51-20
Stadium: Byrd Stadium in College Park, MD (capacity = 51,500)
Home Field Advantage: ranked 59th out of 69 BCS teams
Revenge: 10/5 at FSU, 10/26 vs Clemson, 11/23 vs Boston College, 11/30 at NC State
Other Key Games: 11/9 vs Syracuse, 11/16 at Virginia Tech
Stats to Fear: turned the ball over 30 times in 2012 (11th in ACC), converted on just 29.89% of third downs (11th in ACC), scored on 71.33% of red zone trips (last in ACC)
Stats to Cheer: allowed 18 plays of 30 yards or more (1st in ACC), allowed 4.97 yards per play (3rd in ACC)
Advanced Stats (Football Outsiders 2012 FEI Ranking): 81st out of 124 teams
Phil Steele's Returning Starters: Offense: 7, Defense: 5, Special Teams: 2
Key Defensive Returnees: LB Cole Farrand (78 tackles), CB Dexter McDougle (71 tackles)
Key Offensive Returnees: CJ Brown (842 yds pass in 2011), RB Brandon Ross (390 yds rush, 4.59 ypc), WR Stefon Diggs (54 rec, 6 TD)
Randy Edsall must be a believer in tearing things down before they are built back up. He inherited a 9-4 team and promptly went 2-10 in 2011. In 2012, the Terps increased to four wins. Now in Randy Esdall's third year at Maryland, the Terps are looking to get back to bowl eligibility.
Injuries have been brutal for Maryland during Edsall's tenure. In 2011, they led the Nation in starts lost to injury.Last year, they had a LB playing QB for them for the last four games of the year. Last year at times, the offense had six freshmen playing alongside two sophomores. This year that should help depth and so should the fact that six year senior QB CJ Brown was granted an extra year of eligibility and looks to be the starter this season. At RB, the Terps have talent but Wes Brown is currently suspended and Brandon Ross was bit by the injury bug last year. Stefon Diggs really came on last year and will be one of the most exciting players in the ACC if not all of college football. The Terps will need some of the other receivers to step up alongside him and JUCO Deon Long is one to keep an eye on. The OL will be a big question-mark as they return just 33 career starts which ranks 106th in the FBS.
The defense loses four of it's top six tacklers and six of it's top ten. They also must replace their top five sackers. Despite that the Terps still project to have eight juniors or seniors in the starting line-up. Last year, the Terps showed a lot of improvement over 2011 after a change in coordinators and scheme and despite the losses they should still be a much better defense than they were in 2011.
I expect this Maryland team to continue to move forward and barring another injury bug they should be able to secure a bowl bid.
Previous 2013 Pre-Season Previews: