(Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)

After working his way back from a lower leg injury that kept him from starting against James Madison last week, Maryland linebacker Cole Farrand said Wednesday that he expects to be in the lineup for Saturday’s game at South Florida.

Farrand was expected to only play in an emergency situation in the opener against the Dukes, and he admitted that he was a little thrown off when the staff put him in the game late in the second quarter as James Madison approached the end zone.

“I didn’t really expect it. I kind of just got thrown in there so I had the nerves going,” Farrand said. “I had a little adrenaline, so it was fun.”

While Farrand didn’t disclose he exact nature of his injury, he wore a walking boot during the team’s open scrimmage on Aug. 16. Against James Madison, he was on the field for 17 plays, and Edsall noted following the game that he thought the senior linebacker played well without any ill-effects. He finished with one tackle and assisted on one tackle for a loss.

He’s been a durable player over the past two seasons, starting in 19 games over that span. He missed time last season with a concussion following his 23-tackle performance against Clemson.

Maryland’s defense will be challenged this week by freshman running back Marlon Mack, who rushed for  275 yards and four touchdowns in South Florida’s 36-31 win over Western Carolina last week. South Florida’s starting offensive line averages 308 pounds, which is “just another part of the game” and something the team will have to maneuver, Farrand said. He’s healthier than he was this time last week, which should make playing a complete game more realistic.

“I feel healthy now, I feel good. I feel like I can play a full game. It was just a little bump. You get bumps and scrapes when you’re in camp, it was a little something I had to come back from,” Farrand said. “The plan is to start this week and just stay healthy and try and start all the other weeks.”