Throughout the season, one of the biggest concerns for Maryland has been a lack of depth on the offensive and defensive lines. And with offensive tackle Matt Crawford nursing a sore shoulder that has limited his practice availability, it might be an issue again when the 20th-ranked Terrapins play Tennessee in the Peach Bowl on Tuesday.
Reinforcements, however, are on the way. Maryland Coach Ralph Friedgen and his staff have made linemen their top recruiting priority and in particular have been seeking players who are able to enroll for the spring semester. As many as six new players, five of them linemen, could enroll next month and thus be eligible to participate in spring practice.
"It's an added bonus when you get that," Friedgen said, noting that he makes an effort to have seniors, if possible, graduate after the fall semester so that their scholarship can be used for an incoming player in the spring semester. " . . . They really have a better chance to play after going through spring practice. I think it really helps them adapt to the whole situation of college life."
Because NCAA rules permit midyear enrollees to join their teams for bowl games, one of the newcomers -- offensive lineman Donnie Woods of Tampa, Fla. -- met the team here last week. Woods has yet to take a class or move into his dorm room, but he is a full-fledged team member, although an injury is preventing him from practicing.
"It gives you a head start on everything," said Woods, who last week had yet to learn his roommate's name but was on the field for practice.
Offensive lineman Robert Jenkins of Nassau (N.Y.) Community College, a one-time Virginia commitment, has signed a letter-of-intent to attend Maryland and is expected to enroll next month. Another expected newcomer is defensive back Domonique Richmond, who graduated from South Hagerstown (Md.) High School this past spring.
Shime Sent Home
Maryland starting defensive tackle William Shime was sent home today for violating team rules, sources familiar with the situation confirmed.
Friedgen said that one starter was disciplined and will not play in the Peach Bowl, but would not elaborate. However, sources said that the player was Shime, and sophomore Henry Scott likely will start in Shime's place.
Scott, listed at 6-feet-2 and 270 pounds, played only in the final minutes of Maryland's 59-7 victory at North Carolina on Nov. 2. Scott, a walk-on who was given a scholarship this season, was cut the first time he tried out for the team, then made the roster last season as a backup fullback. He then added about 20 pounds and switched positions. . . .
Tennessee will be without linebacker Eddie Moore, its second-leading tackler. Moore had arthroscopic knee surgery after the regular season and has been unable to return to practice. His replacement is senior Steven Marsh, a 6-foot, 190-pound former scout team quarterback. Moore is the fourth starting linebacker the Volunteers have lost to injury. . . .
Former Maryland quarterback Shaun Hill is expected to attend Tuesday's game.