Michigan will find a familiar face across the sideline Saturday.
Former defensive coordinator D.J. Durkin took Maryland’s head coaching job near the end of the 2015 season. Now, Durkin is almost through with his second year leading the Terrapins.
There haven’t been many bright spots for the Terrapins this year. It’s been a season fraught with injury problems — Maryland lost two quarterbacks with season-ending injuries and third-string Max Bortenschlager is doubtful for Saturday’s contest — and defensive problems.
Outside linebacker Jermaine Carter, though, has remained consistent. The senior was named to the Bednarik and Butkus Award watch lists and has tallied 47 tackles with three sacks this season.
The Daily spoke with Carter at Big Ten Media Days in July about facing Michigan’s offense, his impressions of the Wolverines and what it’s like playing under Durkin.
The Michigan Daily: You beat Michigan your redshirt freshman year, before losing the past two seasons. Does that add any motivation to beat them in your final year at Maryland?
Jermaine Carter: It definitely motivates me — not just me. It motivates my teammates and myself because we’re all competitive. We all want to compete, nobody likes to lose, so we all look forward to the opportunity that we’re being given this upcoming season.
TMD: What was the most difficult part about defending Michigan’s offense last year?
JC: The most difficult part was eliminating the big plays. They had a lot of big plays against us — a couple of long passes, a couple of long runs. Once we eliminate those things, hopefully we’ll be moving in the right direction.
TMD: Do you see any potential for a rivalry or anything against that school?
JC: We aren’t focused on rivalries. You let what happens on the field dictates whether it’s going to be a rivalry or not. You don’t want to sit here and talk a rivalry.
TMD: What are your impressions of this year’s Michigan team?
JC: They’ve lost a lot, but it’s Michigan. They’re going to reload. It’s college football. You’re not just going to walk out there with people off the street. Their guys are still on scholarship. It’s not going to be a cakewalk.
TMD: What was the biggest difference between going from Coach Edsall to playing under Coach Durkin?
JC: The biggest difference I would say, it would be practices were much more different. I wouldn’t say a lot harder, but it was just something — we were used to practicing and working out the way Coach Edsall had ran things, and with the new transition, me being there for three years already, I’ve gotten used to practicing and working out, and just the coaching turnover, that would be the biggest difference.