Carter-Finely Stadium (51,500)
Saturday, November 7 1:00 ET
Radio: The Terrapins Sports Network WJZ-FM
N.C. State 2008 Complete Schedule (6-7, 4-4 ACC)
August 28 at South Carolina
September 6 William & Mary
September 13 at Clemson
September 20 No. 15 East Carolina
September 27 No. 13 South Florida
October 4 Boston College
October 16 Florida State
October 25 at Maryland
November 8 at Duke
November 15 No. 24 Wake Forest
November 22 at No. 22 North Carolina
November 29 Miami (FL)
December 29 vs. Rutgers*
N.C. State 2009 Complete Schedule (3-5, 0-4 ACC)
9/03 South Carolina
9/12 Murray State
10/03 @ Wake Forest
10/17 @ Boston College
10/31 @ Florida State
11/21 @ No. 23 Virginia Tech
11/28 North Carolina
Maryland has one the last three meetings against N.C. State making the series 31-30-4 in their favor. The last time these two ACC foes squared off against one another, the Maryland Terrapins pulled off an impressive win with time expiring to keep the Wolf Pack of N.C. State winless in the ACC. This game, however, showed a few key pieces of the Terps staff that will be absent heading into this weekend. Da'Rel Scott, who ran for 163 yards and a score in last year's win over N.C. State, doesn't look to be a factor as he is still recovering from an injured wrist earlier this season. This season, N.C. State and Maryland both have teams that don't look to be making any big moves or pushes for bowl games. So look to see two squads with nothing to lose as they try and fight to stay out of last place in the ACC.
On paper, injuries aside, this Maryland football squad doesn't look like it's all that bad. Sure, with the loss of first-round draft pick Darrius Heyward-Bey, the Terps lost a big part of their offense. Regardless, the team shouldn't have faltered this much. So, the question is what went wrong for the Terps who, one year ago, were regulars in the Top-25 BCS polls? Maryland's first big problem is the loss of running back Da'Rel Scott. With the loss of such a powerhouse runner, it's no secret that Maryland's dismal season can be directly related to it. Maryland's young players can also be considered one of their downfalls this season. Maryland currently has an almost entirely new offensive line, with the exception of a few guys who have some starting experience. Add that onto a freshmen kicker, and the miserable secondary, it's no wondering this team has had such a sad season. It's important that all aspects are looked at before judging this team.
Now, it may seem like we at TSR are a little harsh when it comes to the play of senior quarterback Chris Turner. But, if one were to actually take a look at his numbers, it would be obvious that some of the cries for his benching may be well deserved. Turner has thrown 9 interceptions to complement his 10 touchdowns on the year. At the pace that he is going, he may very well end up with more picks than scores. His completion percentage is 58.8% which, in comparison to the rest of the ACC, ranks him below N.C. State quarterback Russell Wilson. Granted, Turner's season is not extremely terrible, his lack of direction with the team shows that his senior leadership is not there. One could speculate as to say that if Turner stepped up his game just a little, this season could end on a high note for the Terps. Maryland needs their quarterback to show some serious poise and optimism if they expect to end the season with a few wins.
Keys to Win
The keys to Maryland's success this weekend are very simple; get the ball to your play makers. Guys like Torrey Smith and Adrian Cannon are the ones that need the ball in their hands to be successful. This isn't some fancy strategy; this is your bread and butter. Maryland needs to get the ball to their star players if they want to put points on the board. As a football fan, everyone knows that trading 3 for 6 is a travesdy. In Maryland's case, however, scoring is still scoring. Boosting the confidence of young, potential All-ACC kicker Nick Ferrara is very important to the future of this team. The season has come down to this-winning is no longer the most important thing. Maryland needs to develop what they have in order to start planning for next season. Now, with all that said and done, it would be nice to see Maryland in the win column after this weekend.