Maryland football fans who crave offensive fireworks are in for a treat.
Though multiple playmakers from College Park have found success in the NFL over the past two decades, none played on the same team. Wide receiver Stefon Diggs was one of Maryland's most hyped recruits, while wide receiver Torrey Smith and tight end Vernon Davis have had long professional tenures and earned Super Bowl rings.
But those electric players did not join forces to create an offensive juggernaut, and none were paired with a dual-threat quarterback who could match their highlight plays through the air or on the ground.
This year, there's no shortage of star power at the top of Maryland's offensive position groups.
Quarterback Kasim Hill, wide receiver D.J. Moore and running back Ty Johnson could be one of the most exciting offensive trios in Maryland history. Terps fans received a glimpse of their potential in Maryland's 63-17 win over Towson on Saturday, when the unit helped the Terps reach their highest point total since 1954.
"Those aren't good players, they are exceptional players," Towson coach Rob Ambrose said. "For one day out of the year, I don't like them very much. But come on, I'm a Maryland guy. … Those guys are going to represent the state through the game of football for the rest of the season extremely well."
Hill, Moore and Johnson could make a three-minute highlight reel composed entirely of their first halves against the Tigers.
Hill, making his first college start, never appeared uncomfortable in the pocket. Including his late-game performance against Texas last week, he completed his first 11 collegiate passes, for 138 yards and two touchdowns. On his first two drives against the Tigers, Hill found Moore for touchdowns.
Moore put on a clinic against the local CAA foe. In addition to his two reception touchdowns, he returned a punt 33 yards into the red zone.
He also produced the most memorable run of the afternoon.
After receiving a handoff on an end-around, Moore met a defender about seven yards behind the line of scrimmage. But he shook off the Towson player and broke six more tackles on his way to a 21-yard touchdown. It was a play reminiscent of Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch, who often powers through defenses before reaching the end zone.
While Hill and Moore occupied most of the Terps' highlights, Johnson took two of his five carries for more than 45 yards, including a 77-yard touchdown sprint. He finished the day with five rushes for 124 yards.
"I've been around a lot of great players in my time here, but those guys are some pretty good guys," defensive lineman Andrew Isaacs said. "I'm glad they're on my team."
Moore and Johnson led their respective Maryland position groups in yardage last season, but both were hindered by a depleted passing unit, which cycled through four quarterbacks. That's been the case for the Terps' offensive playmakers since 2011, after Danny O'Brien's stellar freshman year. Diggs, who's been a key cog for the Vikings in his first two NFL seasons, never broke out nationally due to poor signal-callers.
But Hill, who entered College Park as a four-star recruit, will likely revert that trend. The D.C. native's playmaking savvy is the kind you'll see on ESPN's College GameDay in two years, especially with the weapons around him.
"Kasim is a young man, but he's been balling," linebacker Shane Cockerille said. "He's playing a lot older than what he is."
There's no question Hill, Moore and Johnson will continue to bond as the season progresses. Even if the defense can't keep the Terps in the win column, their offensive threesome could lead coach DJ Durkin's squad to a bowl game after enduring arguably the country's toughest schedule.
Should Johnson and Moore elect to remain at Maryland another year instead of entering the NFL Draft, the trio might become one of the Big Ten's best by next fall.
"It's definitely fun to watch the plays those guys make," defensive back Darnell Savage said. "You come into practice and if you slack, they'll make you look bad. You definitely got to come into practice every day with the mindset, 'I'm going to get better today. I'm not going to take a play off.'"
Maryland will face some of the country's top players this season, such as Penn State running back Saquon Barkley, Wisconsin running back Jonathan Taylor and Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett. Some of those national stars will have their way with the Terps.
But Maryland has its own set of playmakers to fear — weapons that will cause tremors among Big Ten foes, regardless of the Terps' record. Hill, Moore and Johnson can break a game open in an instant. For a rebuilding program, that dose of excitement is the perfect way to build the fanbase.