Diggs becoming leader in 2nd season with Terps
Stefon Diggs caught 54 passes for 848 yards and six touchdowns last season as a freshman, a dual-threat player who also finished in the Top 10 in the country in all-purpose yards.
That inaugural season was enough to attract the attention of the national media, but now it is official.
Diggs has been named a Second Team Preseason All-American by Sports Illustrated as a returner, the only Maryland player and one of just four ACC players to be named to the first or second team.
This type of accolade is one coach Randy Edsall addressed specifically at Maryland's media day earlier this week.
"The thing with Stefon was when I brought him in and talked to him," Edsall said. "He understands the position he’s in as a student-athlete at Maryland and what goes with the publicity and the notoriety that he’s garnered because of his play on the field.
"We talked about how he has to conduct himself and how he’s going to be watched," Edsall continued. "He’s taken a very mature approach to these things. If he’s doing things a certain way, other guys will follow and will fall in line. The sky is the limit for him."
On the eve of his sophomore season, Diggs is looking not only to build on the accomplishments of his freshman season, but he has also been asked to fill a leadership role within the receiving corps.
He will be helped by stability at the quarterback position, as well. While the Terps cycled through players to fill the spot under center last season, senior C.J. Brown has been named the starter for this fall.
Brown missed all of last season after tearing an ACL prior to the start of last season.
With Brown at quarterback, Diggs will likely see more passes, meaning more yards and the opportunity for more touchdowns.
"Stefon is a special athlete. He has tremendous ability and tremendous talent," Edsall said at media day. "He's a guy you talk about somebody who has a lot of confidence. He thinks that every time he touches the ball he can take it the distance."
Diggs will also benefit from the addition of JuCo wide receiver Deon Long, who should draw some of the defense's attention away from Diggs and free him of double coverage.
Maryland opens its season against Florida International at Byrd Stadium in College Park on Aug. 31.