There's only so much a freshman quarterback who arrives a semester early is going to pick up in an offense by the time spring practice arrives.
OK, a guy like a Philip Rivers is an exception.
But for the most part, spring ball isn't a measure of such guys' knowledge of an offense so much as it is a hint of how they will cope with a less-than-idea situation.
And from that standpoint, Devin Burns has already made a favorable impression on Maryland's coaching staff.
"He's doing OK," Friedgen said. "He's very calm guy. He's not going to get flustered. I think he keeps his poise pretty good. I know he's like all these other freshmen. Their heads are spinning with nomenclature. The quarterback, he's got to make the call. Today, he was in there and he wasn't very loud and I think he's kind of an introverted kid from what I can see. I was telling him, 'Devin, you're going to play in front of a lot of people. They better hear you. Let's go.' I'm fairly impressed with him as a kid. I think he'll be fine."
Burns' early arrival fresh from high school is a bit different for Maryland (Jamarr Robinson grayshirted the 2006 season and came in the spring, but a semester late). How much of a difference it makes for the 6-foot-2, 185-pounds Burns remains to be seen.
"They struggle either way," Friedgen said. "Coming in and making the transition to college from high school academically is a struggle. The one thing that's a little bit better coming in this time of year is it isn't 20 hours [on the field], it's eight hours. You don't quite have the load that you have during the season. On the other hand, you still have a tremendous difference in the preparation for school they have in high school."