COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Maryland quarterback Tyrrell Pigrome is out for the season with a torn right ACL, an injury that takes some of the joy out of the Terrapins’ season-opening 51-41 upset of Texas last Saturday.
Pigrome twisted his knee at the end of a third-quarter run and had to be helped off the field. He was replaced by true freshman Kasim Hill, who now becomes the starter.
Pigrome won the starting job in an intense competition during the summer. Though his first pass of the season was intercepted and returned for a touchdown, Pigrome went 9 for 12 for 175 yards and also ran for 64 yards and a touchdown .
The sophomore will undergo surgery this week, coach DJ Durkin said Tuesday.
“Very tough for him and our program. He will be missed by all of us,” Durkin said. “But ‘Piggy’ is a tough guy, tough competitor, and he will come back and be a great player for us in the future.”
Hill performed admirably in his first college game. Rushed into action after Pigrome left, the 6-foot-2, 232-pounder finished 3 for 3 for 44 yards and ran for 14 yards and a score.
His poise under difficult circumstances — playing on the road against the 23rd-ranked team in the nation — was more impressive than his numbers.
“He’s been a veteran guy since Day 1 when he got here,” Durkin said. “He was smiling when he went into the game. That’s the type of kid he is. We can do everything we want to do on offense with him, and we will.”
Though only a year removed from high school, Hill stepped onto the field and guided the Terrapins to victory after they let a 20-point lead dwindle to 37-34 in the fourth quarter.
“This guy is special,” Durkin said. “He went in there, went 3 for 3 and ran for a touchdown. That’s what we expected from Hasim, and that’s what we got.”
Hill will make his first college start Saturday against visiting Towson. His teammates expect the offense to operate smoothly in spite of the change.
“Piggy and Kasim were battling out in camp for the starting spot, and we trust both of them,” running back Jake Funk said. “We are devastated for Piggy, but I have full trust in Hasim that he will come in and do a great job.”
Especially in the huddle.
“He’s probably one of the most poised quarterbacks I’ve ever been around,” Funk said. “He comes in very calm. He has the kind of leadership qualities that you don’t really see in a lot of true freshmen.”
Pigrome’s injury wasn’t the only costly one sustained by Maryland in its first victory over a ranked opponent since 2010. Senior tackle Jesse Aniebonam fractured an ankle and will be sidelined for several months.
On a positive note, defensive back Antwaine Richardson, who was carted off the field, has recovered nicely from that scary moment.
“He’s doing great. Everything checked out,” said Durkin, adding that Richardson is undergoing concussion protocol.