Maryland wide receiver Taivon Jacobs will have surgery Thursday to repair the meniscus in his right knee, Randy Edsall said Tuesday afternoon.
Jacobs, who was injured early in the Terps’ win over James Madison last Saturday, will miss the entire season with the injury. It is the same knee that Jacobs injured during his senior season at Suitland, a torn ACL that kept him limited as a true freshman at Maryland last year.
“It’s unfortunate for Taivon. He’s worked extremely hard to put himself in a position to be a starter. But injuries are a part of football,” Edsall said. “We all feel bad for him, but again, it just gives other guys opportunities to step up.”
Edsall said Tuesday that the team intends to apply for a medical waiver for Jacobs, considering how he was forced to redshirt with his previous ACL injury as a freshman and how early in the season the meniscus injury occurred. Veteran receiver Marcus Leak, who is back with the team after sitting out last season, is expected to take over Jacobs’ role as a starting wide receiver.
Maryland’s thinning wide receivers corps (the team suspended projected starter Levern Jacobs last Friday) will open up new opportunities for young players, Edsall re-affirmed Tuesday. Sophomores Jacquille Veii, Malcolm Culmer and Amba Etta-Tawo are all listed as backups on the two-deep this week, and Edsall indicated that true freshman Juwann Winfree has been sitting in on wide receiver meetings and could be counted on to help shore up depth.
The staff has also moved true freshman quarterback Will Ulmer to wide receiver. Ulmer had been close to approaching Edsall about the change before the coach initiated the move earlier this week, and the team will begin to develop the former St. John’s star at the new position. He is also expected to get looks in the kick return game and be a contributor on special teams, although its unclear whether that will occur this fall. Ulmer worked at receiver with the scout team last week.
“Will is very fast. He’s smooth. He can get in and out of cuts. He’s got to learn how to do some of those things,” Edsall said. “I give Will credit, because it was on his mind. He sits there and he evaluates things and looks at things, and he’s thinking ‘Okay, where maybe can I get on the field the quickest to help the team.’ That’s the thing I like about it.”