Maryland quarterback Danny O'Brien said Wednesday he will remain with the Terrapins despite the firing of Ralph Friedgen and the departure of offensive coordinator James Franklin to Vanderbilt.
"A lot of people kind of overspeculated --- whatever you want to call it," O'Brien said. "When the news happened, it was shocking. I didn't do any interviews, but people around me were saying we weren't going to overact. Before I even decided to come to Maryland, before I signed, my family sat down and said if I'm going to commit here, I'm going to graduate from here. My goal is still to graduate from the University of Maryland and continue to play three more great years no matter which direction we go in. I think I have to kind of assume a leadership role. Whatever decision Kevin Anderson decided to go in, I'm going to support it, because it's not something I can control."
Anderson is the first-year athletic director who opted to buy out the final year of Friedgen's contract. He also told Franklin he wasn't guaranteed to become the head coach, which helped precipitated the 38-year-old's decision to leave Maryland.
That was a particularly jolting departure for O'Brien, who said he visited with Franklin and his family before Franklin left for Nashville.
"With Franklin leaving first, he was a huge reason I came here," O'Brien said. "He recruited me, obviously. I can't say enough about how important he was in my develop, because we really saw eye-to-eye from day one on the game of football, life, whatever. ... I'm here. I'm here to stay. Whatever we do, I'm behind it."
O'Brien's analytical approach to things --- seen regularly on Saturdays --- helped him with handling the uncertainty of the last few days.
Still, having something to fill his time, namely practice and the chance to be around his teammates, has him feeling up upbeat about the Dec. 29 Military Bowl --- and what will happen beyond that.
"I think everything that's going on, whatever I say or do, I can't control what's going to happen, so I have to sit back and see and kind of evaluate things," O'Brien said. "Today was emotional for me. Being back in the huddle with everyone, practicing and preparing, reminded me of why I came to Maryland and why I love it so much. It was fun just to play football and not worry about all this stuff. That was special today. This is the best day for me in the last two weeks."