University of Maryland football received a beating of epic proportions during the team's Atlantic Coast Conference opener at then-No. 8 Florida State University. With a 63-0 loss in their rearview mirror, the Terps have to prepare for a matchup against the University of Virginia Oct. 12.
Coming off of a loss during which the stout Maryland defense gave up 614 yards of total offense, it could be difficult to bounce back and preparing for the next game. Head coach Randy Edsall wasted no time getting his team back on the field to prepare for the Cavaliers.
"The mood of the team is good," Edsall said. "We went out on the field on Sunday and that Florida State game was behind us when we went out to practice. You get knocked off the horse, you get right back up and you ride again, and that's what we're doing."
To help get past the mental aspects of a loss, it often helps to get back on the field and work on the basics. Edsall kept his team in the same routine as usual and said he was treating the loss as if it were any other game.
"When that game is over, you come in and you watch the film and you move on," Edsall said. "You can't get it back, regardless of what happens. It's one of 12 games that we're guaranteed to play, and when it's over, you move forward. It's no different than a win. When you win, you move forward, and when you lose, you move forward."
Getting mentally prepared is a seemingly simple solution, but overcoming the physical damage of a loss is more difficult. Senior quarterback C.J. Brown exited the game at Florida State after suffering a concussion during the second quarter, and his status for the game against Virginia is still uncertain.
Edsall has been reluctant to share any information about the status of Brown, who is still listed as the starting quarterback on the updated depth chart. Official confirmation will come with the injury report that is released every Thursday after the team's practice.
If Brown does not play, sophomore Caleb Rowe will start at quarterback. Rowe started one game as part of the Terrapins' quarterback carousel last season before suffering a season-ending ACL injury. He also earned playing time during wins against FIU and Old Dominion earlier this season. Rowe has game experience, and Edsall said he was confident in his backup's ability to lead the team against Virginia.
"Caleb came in and did what he was asked of against Florida State," Edsall said. "Caleb has done well as he's come in to replace C.J. in the games that he's played so far this year."
Playing Rowe under center would mean some alterations to the Terps' offensive game planning. Brown gives the offense a dual threat on the ground and through the air, but Rowe is more of a passing quarterback. As the offense makes changes, the players will need to handle the pressure of making adjustments on the fly.
"There may be a few things you tweak when it happens and we've got to do a better job of handling that when it takes place, whether it's receivers, quarterbacks or running backs," offensive coordinator Mike Locksley said. "Our mentality is the next man up. The next guy has to step up and do the job."
The Oct. 12 game will be the 78th and potentially final meeting between the Terps and Cavaliers. As Maryland departs from the ACC after this year, there is no guarantee the two will play again if scheduling conflicts prevent the rivalry from continuing.
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