Toppling a Top 10 Team: Maryland-BC 2007

In 2007, the Maryland Terrapins beat the then #8 Boston College Eagles 42-35.

The 2007 Maryland-Boston College matchup was the last in which the Terps defeated a Top 10 opponent.

The Terps’ offense put forth a dominant effort, gaining 472 yards with a balanced attack in the 42-35 victory over the No. 8-ranked Eagles.

Quarterback Chris Turner led the passing attack, completing 21 of 27 passes for 337 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions. On the ground, running back Lance Ball shined, rushing for 109 yards on 32 carries.

The contest was a back-and-forth affair throughout the first half and into the third quarter before the Terps scored three straight touchdowns to build a 42 -21 lead.

The Terps went into halftime leading 20-14, which they soon relinquished when the Eagles quarterback and future third overall NFL draft pick Matt Ryan hit wide receiver Kevin Challenger on a three-yard touchdown strike to cap a 67-yard drive to start the second half.

However, trailing 21-20 with more than nine minutes remaining in the third quarter, the Maryland offense exploded.

Starting at their own 18-yard line following the kickoff, Turner quickly led the Terps down the field in eight plays to reclaim a 27-21 lead. The redshirt sophomore, whose arm accounted for all 82 yards on the drive, put the Terps back on top with a third down touchdown connection to tight end Jason Goode, his second on the day, from 7 yards out.

Turner hit wide receiver Isaiah Williams for a 45-yard reception to jumpstart the drive, which took only 2:25.

But that drive was a marathon compared to the Terps’ next possession.

Following a Boston College three and out and punt, Maryland started with the ball at their own 43-yard line.

It took only one play for Turner to connect with redshirt freshman running back Da’Rel Scott for a 57-yard touchdown pass to give the Terps a 34-21 cushion.

The Terps’ quick-strike offense took another encore on their next drive with Darrius Heyward-Bey playing the lead role.

The dynamic redshirt sophomore wide receiver kept the drive alive with a key 14-yard reception, while absorbing a big hit, for a third down conversion. He abruptly ended the drive by bolting to the end zone on a reverse covering 37 yards.

The future top 10 pick also added the two-point conversion on a pass from Turner to give Maryland a commanding 42-21 lead early in the fourth quarter.

Heyward-Bey also made a big reception on the Terps’ opening drive, making a sliding catch for a gain of 43 yards to set up Maryland’s first touchdown. The play was the first of four passes by Turner that went for over 40 yards, with others going to Emani Lee-Odai early in the second quarter and to Williams and Scott in the second half.

Boston College countered the Terps’ opening score with one of their own, as Ryan connected for on passing plays with receivers Rich Gunnel and Justin Jarvis, which set up James McCluskey’s 1-yard touchdown run.

The Terps’ defense had difficulty in stopping Ryan, who passed for 421 yards and three touchdowns. However, they were able to force two costly interceptions.

The first, by defensive lineman Dre Moore, set up the Terps at the Eagles’ 14-yard line. Turner handed off to Ball three straight times with the back scoring on the third rush from 5 yards out to give the Terps a 14-7 lead.

Another McCluskey touchdown from a yard out tied the score, before two Obi Egekeze field goals gave the Terps their 20-14 halftime advantage.

Ryan’s second pick set up the Heyward-Bey scoring drive.

Maryland’s offensive possessions following its three second half-strikes were quick for all the wrong reasons.

With a big lead, the Terps’ offense primarily kept the ball on the ground, but managed to pick up only two first downs and was unable to hold the ball for more than 2:11 on any of its final four possessions. This allowed the Eagles to creep back into the game.

Ryan orchestrated a 43-yard scoring drive, as he hit wide receiver Ryan Purvis for a 5-yard touchdown to pull Boston College to within 14 points midway through the fourth quarter.

After punting on their ensuing drive, Ryan again led the Eagles on a scoring march, this time for 86 yards. The senior quarterback hit Purvis again to make it 42-35 with just under a minute remaining.

However, time ran out on the Eagles, who were unable to recover an onside kick. Turner kneeled down twice to seal the Terps’ big win, causing the student section to storm the field.

This Saturday the Terps will seek only their second win against Boston College since the Eagles joined the ACC. The Terps’ only other win over Boston College came in 1985 when the school was a member of the Big East Conference.

The Terps will not need to muster an upset to knock off a struggling Eagles squad that has dropped four straight. However, Boston College is coming off their best performance during that streak, a game in which they stayed competitive with a talented Florida State team before ultimately falling, 24-19.

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