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Injury may force Maryland to go to fourth starting QB this season

There’s being snakebitten, and then there’s Maryland’s quarterback position.

Max Bortenschlager, who began the season as the No. 3 quarterback, was knocked out of last Saturday’s loss to Rutgers because of a hard hit and didn’t return. Ahead of the Michigan game this coming weekend, Bortenschlager’s availability likely won’t be known until closer to kickoff.

“Nothing definitive yet. Probably a game-time decision,” coach DJ Durkin said Tuesday. “It’s nothing we haven’t been through before.”

No truer words have been spoken than in the last sentence of the head coach’s quote.

Bortenschlager is the third quarterback to start a game for the Terrapins this season, with the starter that began the season, Tyrell Pigrome, going down in the opener with a torn ACL and his backup, Kasim Hill, suffering the same injury a couple of weeks later. If Bortenschlager is unable to go, sophomore Ryan Brand, a former walk-on, would become the fourth Terps’ quarterback to start a game this season.

After replacing the injured Bortenschlager, Brand attempted the first 12 passes of his collegiate career, completing eight for 68 yards. He also carried the ball twice for 14 yards, showing a running dimension that Bortenschlager doesn’t possess.

This is the third consecutive year and the fourth in the last six that the Terps have started three quarterbacks in a season. This would be the first time in that span they’ve had to go to a fourth.