Durkin calls loss of Har­ri­son ‘sig­nif­i­cant’ for Terps of­fense

Coach of­fers no de­tails about sus­pen­sions of run­ning back, two oth­ers

Baltimore Sun - - SPORTS - By Don Markus don.markus@balt­sun.com twit­ter.com/sport­sprof56

While say­ing there was no new in­for­ma­tion re­gard­ing the in­def­i­nite sus­pen­sions of three fresh­man play­ers for vi­o­lat­ing the stu­dent-ath­lete code of con­duct, first-year Mary­land foot­ball coach DJ Durkin called the loss of run­ning back Lorenzo Har­ri­son “sig­nif­i­cant” to the team’s of­fense.

Speak­ing on his reg­u­lar Mon­day tele­con­fer­ence, Durkin did not pro­vide specifics about the rea­son be­hind the sus­pen­sions of Har­ri­son, backup line­backer An­toine Brooks and backup wide re­ceiver DJ Turner. The sus­pen­sions were an­nounced be­fore Satur­day’s 62-3 loss at home to No. 5 Ohio State.

“Lorenzo is cer­tainly a crit­i­cal part to our of­fense and what we’ve been able to do this year,” Durkin said. “That’s a sig­nif­i­cant loss.”

Har­ri­son came into last week’s game against the Buck­eyes with 633 yards, two short of the team lead of sopho­more Ty John­son and 57 shy of break­ing La­Mont Jor­dan’s school record, set in 1997. Har­ri­son was also the first fresh­man in Mary­land school his­tory to rush for touch­downs in his first four games.

With Har­ri­son out of the lineup, the Terps were held to a sea­son-low 43 yards on 40 car­ries, with John­son get­ting a team-high 21 yards on eight car­ries. Har­ri­son had started two of the three games be­fore last week and along with John­son had given the Terps one of the best back­field tandems in the Big Ten.

John­son took over as the starter in Har­ri­son’s ab­sence, with se­nior Wes Brown get­ting a sea­son-high nine car­ries for only 12 yards. Fresh­man Jake Funk got four car­ries for 13 yards and se­nior Ken­neth Goins Jr. (Gil­man) had two at­tempts for mi­nus-3 yards. Wide re­ceiver D.J. Moore also had one carry for 2 yards.

The long­est runs from scrim­mage for Mary­land came on two quar­ter­back scram­bles, a 10-yard run by fifth-year se­nior Caleb Rowe in the first half and an 11-yarder by fresh­man Tyrrell Pi­grome in the sec­ond half. Both played after fifth-year Satur­day, noon TV: ESPNews Ra­dio: 105.7 FM, 980 AM Line: Ne­braska by 141⁄ Lorenzo Har­ri­son was Mary­land’s sec­ondlead­ing rusher with 633 yards. se­nior Perry Hills in­jured his left shoul­der in the first quar­ter and was taken out.

Hills’ sta­tus for Satur­day’s game at No. 19 Ne­braska re­mains un­cer­tain, a nearly weekly sit­u­a­tion for Durkin and of­fen­sive co­or­di­na­tor Walt Bell. It was the sec­ond straight game in which Hills was forced to the side­line be­cause of an in­jury and the third time this sea­son.

After hurt­ing his right shoul­der in a dou­ble-over­time win at Cen­tral Florida in mid-Septem­ber, Hills was knocked out of a loss at Penn State two weeks later in the first half, sat out a home loss to Min­nesota, played through a home win over Michi­gan State and was forced out in the sec­ond quar­ter in a 59-3 loss at Michi­gan two weeks ago.

The in­jury to Hills’ left shoul­der against the Buck­eyes came on Mary­land’s sec­ond of­fen­sive se­ries.

Asked how Hills is do­ing, Durkin said, “He’s sore com­ing out of the game. He suf­fered an in­jury to his other shoul­der. We’ve got two things go­ing on with him right there. We’ll take it day to day. He’s get­ting a bunch of treat­ment, he’s very proac­tive about things, as you can imag­ine, and very com­pet­i­tive about be­ing out there. I wouldn’t want to make any de­ter­mi­na­tion un­til we go through the week day to day to see how he is.”

Durkin and Bell will have to fig­ure out a ro­ta­tion at run­ning back with­out Har­ri­son.

Asked if there was a pos­si­bil­ity that grad­u­ate trans­fer run­ning back Trey Edmunds, who broke his foot in a Septem­ber prac­tice, could re­turn this sea­son, Durkin said, “Po­ten­tially, but prob­a­bly a long shot with Trey. That would be push­ing it a lit­tle bit. He’s work­ing hard and do­ing well and all that, but that’s not some­thing we’re count­ing on.”

NOTE: Mary­land’s home fi­nale against Rut­gers on Nov. 26 will kick off at noon and be tele­vised on ESPNews.

Char­lie Thomas (River Hill) and Wis­con­sin will face Creighton tonight


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