Maryland quarterback Danny O’Brien isn’t all that concerned about the alteration to the celebration rule that will be implemented beginning this season, not with first-year coach Randy Edsall at the helm.
Previously, if a player was flagged for celebrating en route to scoring a touchdown, it was considered a dead-ball penalty. The consequences were realized on the ensuing kickoff.
Now, though, if a player is flagged for celebrating prematurely, the points will be taken off the board. It’s now a live-ball penalty that will be assessed from the spot of the infraction. That has some players, including O’Brien, taken aback. O’Brien called the subjectivity of the rule and the prospect of points being rescinded as a result “a little bit scary.”
“I’m not a fan of it [the rule], but I’m not going to break the rule,” O’Brien said Sunday. “I never would have before. I feel like, at some point, it comes down to, it’s a game. You should be able to do some stuff. But whatever. I don’t think about it too much. You’re not going to see me high-stepping or anything.”
One player that O’Brien said will need to be more mindful of his actions as he approaches the end zone is senior wide receiver Tony Logan, “who is the big celebrator.”
Edsall, mind you, is known as a strict disciplinarian. Late for a team meeting? Meet Edsall to run the stadium steps at 6 a.m. the next morning. Wear a hat or an earring inside team facilities? Meet Edsall to run the stadium steps at 6 a.m. the next morning.
Tardiness and breaking team dress code are relatively minor infractions compared with committing an act that would take points away from the Terrapins, though. What consequences might Edsall levy to a player that was flagged for celebrating prematurely?
“He might die,” O’Brien said with a grin of the unfortunate player who committed the offense. “We had a kid celebrate in practice, and he got in trouble. I don’t think it will be a problem for our team, to be 100 percent honest with you. Hopefully it doesn’t happen. I’m pretty sure it won’t.”