COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — The Maryland quarterback situation is again shrouded in uncertainty.
Coach Randy Edsall will wait until shortly before kickoff Saturday before naming his starting quarterback against Boston College. It’s the same approach he took once before this season while trying to decide between sophomores C.J. Brown and Danny O’Brien.
Brown received his first college start on Oct. 15 against Clemson after Edsall mulled his options during the week. Brown did well enough to warrant another start, last Saturday against Florida State, but he left the game after taking a helmet-to-helmet hit.
O’Brien led two touchdown drives in relief, and now he’s in contention to regain the starting job.
“It will be a game-time decision as to the starter,” Edsall said Tuesday. “C.J. is fine, as is Danny. We will go out to practice today and they will both work with the first team. By the end of the week we will make a decision as to which way we will go.”
O’Brien started Maryland’s first five games before losing the job while struggling in defeat at Georgia Tech. Brown has 286 yards rushing over the last three games, but that’s not enough to get him the assurance that he will start again.
“We might play both on Saturday,” Edsall said.
Maryland (2-5, 1-3) has lost three straight and five of six. But Boston College (1-6, 0-4) is even worse.
O’Brien entered the season as the clear No. 1 quarterback, but his stature began to waver after he was intercepted three times in the second week of the season against West Virginia and followed that with a clunker of a performance against Temple. Two weeks later, he was yanked after misfiring on five of his first six passes against Georgia Tech.
Asked what he can do to get the starting job back, O’Brien said, “Just doing everything right. Being a leader on and off the field. Then it’s about production. You’ve got to have a really good week of practice to give yourself the best opportunity to play great on Saturdays.”
O’Brien has maintained his composure while on the bench, but it hasn’t been easy donning a set of headphones and offering advice to your replacement.
“It’s a lot different,” O’Brien said. “I don’t like it and he doesn’t like it. But if he’s in the game, for us to have a good chance of winning he is going to have to play well. We’re tight. We just try to make each other better.”
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)