Two outlets project Maryland to face former coordinator in preseason bowl projections

The 2023 college football season officially begins this week with week zero underway, drawing an official close to the preseason coverage. That does mean, however, more preseason bowl picks for the Terps as three publications project two different landing spots.

Action Network projected Maryland to face Baylor in the Guaranteed Rate Bowl in Phoenix, which was a potential yet unlikely selection for the Terps last season before drawing the Duke’s Mayo Bowl. The two teams haven’t faced off since 1956, but they’ll look to find their footing in year four under Dave Aranda. Baylor finished 12-2 in 2021, but finished a combined 8-14 in 2020 and 2022.

Meanwhile, CBS Sports and College Football News project Maryland to face Arkansas in the TransPerfect Music City Bowl in a game that would feature a bit more familiarity despite it being the first-ever matchup. Dan Enos, former Maryland offensive coordinator, is set for his first season under head coach Sam Pittman in Fayetteville while former grad assistant Derek Kief is also on the coaching staff. Former Maryland defensive lineman Tank Booker also transferred to Arkansas this past season where he’s teaming up with former DeMatha and Pitt edge rusher John Morgan.

Before Maryland reaches a bowl game, they’ll look to get through the non-conference portion of their schedule before Big Ten play heats up. Head coach Mike Locksley said Maryland was “still in camp mode” when asked about gameplanning for their first opponent, the Towson Tigers.

“We’ve got about another four, five practices to before we kind of start transitioning into our preparation for Towson, so I think by the end of next week, we’ll start working into, Thursday, Friday, I think is when we’ll start on our Towson prep to give us a couple of extra days to get us ready to go and obviously it’s a new team, new coach there at Towson, so we don’t have a great knowledge of what they’re doing or what they run so we’ve got to be really good at knowing what we do well and be ready to make those adjustments once the game gets on us.”

Heading into the final stretch of camp, Locksley knows what he wants to see ahead of the season opener.

“It’s mostly these young players, the twos and threes, as they’re trying to create roles for themselves. We’ve got a pretty good understanding now with two scrimmages under our belt, what some of our starters and guys that have been around here have been able to do.”

Season opener is set for a 3:30 PM kickoff on Sept. 2.

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