Maryland (2-1, 0-0) at Wake Forest (1-2, 0-1)
When: Saturday, 3:30 PM
Where: BB&T Field, Winston-Salem, N.C.
TV: Televised on ESPNU. Doug Bell (play-by-play) and Charles Arbuckle (color) with the call.
Radio: Terrapin Sports Radio Network - Johnny Holliday (play-by-play), Jonathan Claiborne (color) and Tim Strachan (sideline) with the call.
WMUCSports - Scott Sudikoff (play-by-play), Nick Verderame, John Willmott & Norman Carter as analysts.
Maryland links: Official site | Roster
Wake Forest links: Official site | Roster
Series history: Maryland leads the all-time series 40-14-1. Maryland last lost in Winston Salem in 1997 and has lost there only twice since 1969.
Coaches: Maryland - Ralph Friedgen, seventh year, 52-25 (5-1 vs. Wake Forest)
Wake Forest - Jim Grobe, seventh year, 38-37 (1-5 vs. Maryland)
Maryland articles (updated throughout the week)
--Lack of downfield plays 'frustrating' (9/18)
That one play
Maryland coach Ralph Friedgen demonstrated on two fingers the play that his defense could not stop against Wake Forest last year.
His right pointer finger depicted do-everything speedster Kenneth Moore, split out wide. His left, quarterback Riley Skinner. Moore comes in motion and takes the handoff from Skinner, running laterally. He then stops, cuts back the other way and follows Skinner, who acts as the lead blocker.
"I haven't seen anybody else in the country run that play," Friedgen said. "Anytime you have a play that's not an option play and you can block everybody at the point of attack, that's a good play."
It's the staple of what Friedgen labels as an innovative and unique attack. Perhaps it's a great equalizer, a scheme based on misdirection that Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe installed to neutralize the speed of opposing defenses without having much of his own on offense.
Whatever it was, it shredded the Maryland defense last year to the tune of 421 yards of total offense, 296 of which came on the ground. Moore rushed for 165 yards with a good share of those coming on the play Friedgen described.
Friedgen is unsure how often Wake Forest will run it Saturday because the injured Skinner has to block for the play to be successful.
More speed for Terps
This anecdote courtesy of Washington Times beat writer Patrick Stevens: In Friedgen's first loss as a head coach at Maryland against Florida State in 2001, he lamented afterwards about how much faster the Seminoles were than Maryland; how much speed played a difference in their fourth quarter explosion.
Ever since, Friedgen has focused on recruiting speed. That doesn't come so easy, because he's not the only one looking for it, and he's especially not the only one looking for great football players with it. Friedgen landed one of those elite combos in 2006 by the name of Da'Rel Scott, a running back by Friday nights and a star sprinter the rest of the time.
Scott red shirted last year and battled injuries throughout camp this year, consequently halting his ascent up the depth chart. It was unlikely he would surpass Nos. 1 and 2-- Keon Lattimore and Lance Ball--but he figured to get touches in packages designed specifically to utilize his speed. He was finally healthy for the West Virginia game, but never saw action.
"I had a little package for him last week," Friedgen said. "I probably lost my guts."
Seeing all that speed in the opposing backfield for West Virginia further illustrated to Friedgen how big a role the mere threat of Scott on the field could play.
"Sooner or later I have to go. I think the kid's got to get some experience and we need to see what he can do," Friedgen said.
In addition to running back, Scott could see time as a kick returner, Friedgen said.
Wake Forest when…
The Deacons' media notes for this week have win-loss records for 56 different scenarios under Grobe. Pertaining to Saturday's game….
Wake Forest is, under Grobe,…
? 19-18 at home
? 20-30 against ACC opponents
? 16-12 in September
? 4-2 on ESPU/360
? 24-26 in afternoon games
Perhaps it would benefit Maryland to score a defensive or special teams touchdown, because Wake Forest is 1-9 under Grobe when an opponent does so. Even better, lead at halftime—Wake is 6-25 when that's the case.
Also interesting is the Deacons have lost both games this year in which they won the time of possession battle.
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Leading up to Gameday: Maryland @ Wake Forest
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