Clemson - Maryland Game Notes

Clemson holds a 29-24-2 advantage in the series with Maryland. The first game of the series was played in 1952, one year before both teams became charter members of the ACC.

•Clemson has won two of the last three, but the Terps won last year on he last play of the game. Tommy Bowden is 4-4 against Maryland in his career, but Ralph Friedgen is 4-2 against the Tigers and Bowden. Clemson has won 10 of the last 14.

•Clemson had won eight in a row and 13 of 14 prior to Ralph Friedgen's return to his alma mater.

•Each of the last three meetings have been decided within the last three minutes of the game and the average victory margin has been just 2.7 points.

•Clemson held Maryland to just 12 total points in winning every game between 1993- 98. Clemson recorded four shutouts, including three in a row during that time period. During Clemson's eight-game winning streak in the series from 1993-2000, Clemson held Maryland to an average of 7.0 points per game, while scoring 26.8 points per game themselves.

•Clemson has not scored over 28 points against Maryland since the 2000 season when the Tigers won at Clemson, 35-14. Clemson did score 28 in 2005 in a 28-24 win, but Clemson has averaged just 15 points per game against Maryland since Ralph Friedgen took over prior to the 2001 season.

•In 2002, Maryland defeated Clemson in Death Valley, its first win at Memorial Stadium since 1985. Clemson has won nine of the last 11 between the two teams in Death Valley. Clemson has a 16-12 lead in the series in games played at Clemson and a 12-11-1 lead in games played in Byrd Stadium.

•Saturday's game will be a meeting of two of the traditional powerhouses of the ACC. Both Clemson and Maryland have been in the ACC since its inception in the fall of 1953. Both teams played their first ACC game against each other on October 3, 1953 at Clemson, a 20-0 Maryland victory. Clemson has the most ACC wins in the history of the league with 220 and Maryland is second with 193.

•Clemson and Maryland have both won the National Championship, the Terps during that first ACC season in 1953, and Clemson in 1981. Clemson has the most ACC championships with 13, while Maryland is third with nine.

•The two teams played at the end of the season in most years between 1978-88 and the game usually decided the ACC championship. That was certainly the case in 1978 when the Tigers won 28-24 at College Park, clinching an undefeated season in the league over Maryland. It was 11th ranked Maryland's only league loss that season.

•Clemson also clinched the ACC championship with a November victory or tie over Maryland in 1981, 1982, 1986 (tie), 1987 and 1988. Maryland clinched the ACC Championship in 2001 with a 37-20 victory over Clemson in College Park. The Terps also clinched the title in 1985 with a victory in Death Valley.

•Clemson has a history of great return performances against Maryland over the years. In 2001, Derrick Hamilton had a 100-yard kickoff return for a score in a game in College Park. Darnell Stephens had an 89-yard punt return for a score against the Terps in Death Valley in 1991, one year after Doug Thomas had a 98- yard kickoff return against Maryland in Baltimore. The greatest return game in ACC history was recorded by Clemson's Don Kelley against Maryland in 1970. He had 224 total return yards on punt and interception returns in that game.

Last Year vs. Maryland
Dan Ennis booted a 31-yard field goal with no time left on the game clock to lift Maryland to a 13-12 upset win over #19 Clemson at Memorial Stadium on November 4.

Clemson took a 12-10 lead on Jad Dean's fourth field goal of the game, a 22-yarder with 2:25 left in the game. But Maryland drove 52 yards to set up the game-winner.

Clemson lost despite out-gaining the Terrapins by 93 yards. The Tigers also outrushed Maryland 143-54, but Clemson had to settle for four field goals.

Four of the Tigers' 68 offensive plays resulted in 201 yards. Thomas Hunter hauled in a 71-yard catch, while Chansi Stuckey caught a 60-yard pass.

Stuckey had eight catches for 129 yards, both game-highs, and Will Proctor was 18-27 for 251 yards. James Davis had a game-high 90 yards rushing. The Tiger offensive line only allowed one sack, and the team did not turn the ball over and committed only one penalty, but it proved costly.

All four starting kickers (punters, placekickers) performed well. Dean was 4-4 on field goals, while Ennis was 2-2. Cole Chason averaged 41.8 yards a punt for the Tigers, while Adam Podlesh had a 43.3-yard average.

Sam Hollenbach, who led the Terrapins on the game-winning drive, was 23-34 for 247 yards and a touchdown.

Clemson took its first possession 70 yards, highlighted by Proctor's 60-yard pass to Stuckey. After the drive stalled and the Tigers set up for a field goal, Maryland was flagged for offsides, giving Clemson a first down. But the next three plays netted no yards, and Dean kicked a 27-yard field goal.

Maryland answered on its next drive to take the lead. On third-and-six from the Tiger seven, Hollenbach found Oquendo near the sideline, and the sophomore backed his way into the endzone for a score on the first play of the second quarter.

The two teams exchanged punts, then the Tigers went on an 11-play, 79-yard scoring drive. Davis ran 42 yards off right tackle to move the ball to the Terrapin 32. But the drive stalled, and Dean came on to make a 32-yard field goal.

Maryland drove into Tiger territory late in the second quarter, but Hollenbach's errant pass sailed high, allowing Michael Hamlin to pull down the interception. The Terrapins led 7-6 at halftime.

After the Tigers were unsuccessful on a fourth-and-one in Terrapin territory, Hollenbach side-stepped the rush and hurled the ball 57 yards to Jason Goode on the first play of the ensuing drive to move the ball to the four. But the Tiger defense stiffened behind a 10-yard sack by Gaines Adams, and Ennis kicked a 31-yard field goal.

With 7:56 left and trailing 10-9, Clemson took over at its own 10. Proctor scrambled on the first play to the 17, but Erin Henderson stripped the ball, and it rolled towards the endzone. An alert C.J. Spiller hustled back to fall on the ball near the goal line. The officials ruled that he gained possession in the endzone for a safety, but the replay officials overturned the call and gave Clemson the ball on the one.

Two plays later, facing third-and-19 from the one, Proctor found Hunter wide-open over the middle. He raced 71 yards to the Maryland 28. Davis later carried four yards on third-and-three, giving Clemson first-and-goal at the four. Two plays later, Davis carried what looked like the go-ahead touchdown, but the Tigers were called for their only penalty of the game. Dean still gave Clemson a 12- 10 lead on his 22-yard field goal with 2:25 left.

But too much time was still on the clock for Hollenbach and company. After the senior signal-caller found Oquendo for 12 yards for a first down, the Terrapins faced fourth-and-inches at the Tiger 45. His off-guard quarterback sneak gained five yards, good for a first down. Hollenbach, who was 5-5 for 47 yards on the drive, connected with Williams (13 yards) and Joey Haynos (12 yards), moved the ball to the middle of the field, then spiked the ball with three seconds left. Ennis came on and drilled the 31-yard field goal.

Clemson And Maryland Have Played Three Consecutive Nail Biters
Clemson and Maryland have played three consecutive thrilling games. Each of the last three games have been decided by scores inside the last three minutes, including two games inside the last 25 seconds.

As noted above, last year's game was decided on a 31-yard field goal by Maryland's Dan Ennis as the final horn sounded.

Clemson won the previous two contests on touchdowns by Reggie Merrieweather. In 2004 at Clemson, Merriweather scored from the two-yard line with 23 seconds left to give Clemson a 10-7 victory. In 2005, Merrieweather scored the game winner with 2:58 left on a 38-yard run to give Clemson a 28-24 lead and victory.

A look to the stats of each of the last three games shows the contests have been basically defensive in nature. Clemson has averaged less than 100 yards per game on the ground against Maryland the last three years, but the Terps are at just over 60 yards per game on the ground against Clemson.

Maryland has the upper hand in passing yardage, but Clemson has a slight lead in total offense. Still both offenses have failed to average over 300 yards per game against the other defense over the last three years. The average margin of victory over the last three games is just 2.7 points per game and the total score of the three games is Clemson 50 and Maryland 44.

Harper Stats Comparable to Ryan
Clemson quarterback Cullen Harper is having a strong year as the Tigers quarterback. He has already established 19 Clemson records on a season or single game basis and many more should be on the way if he continues his current pace. The junior from Alpharetta, GA had his best game of the year statistically against Central Michigan when he completed 20-22 passes for 273 yards and five scores, leading to a Clemson record 273.9 passing efficiency figure.

A look to the latest ACC stats shows that Harper leads the ACC in a number of statistical categories and even compares favorably to Heisman Trophy candidate Matt Ryan of Boston College. Those two teams have not faced each other year, but will at Clemson on November 17. Entering this week's play, Harper has a better completion percentage, passing efficiency, more touchdown passes, a better yards per attempt and better touchdown/interception ratio.

Harper has accomplished those figures even though he has already played against the ACC's top two scoring defenses in Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech. Ryan still has to go against Virginia Tech this coming Thursday. Top Stories