Maryland picked off N.C. State quarterback Russell Williams three times in their loss on Saturday. All three interceptions were from different Terps. Kenny Tate, Alex Wujciak, and Richard Taylor all recorded interceptions. Tate's pick was run back 70 yards for a score which was much needed in this high scoring battle.
Sophomore quarterback Jamarr Robinson made a statement when he entered the game and continued the game. The potential future starter threw for 27 yards on 5 completions and even led the team in rushing with 38 yards. This is the most action Robinson has seen all year and, since the Terps now find themselves in the basement of the ACC, there is no reason that he shouldn't expect to receive more as the season dwindles down.
Freshmen running back Caleb Porzel stepped in the backfield and only recorded four carries. Amazingly enough, the young speedster notched 31 yards on such a small amount of attempts, averaging just over 7 yards per carry. If Porzel can continue to rack up numbers in small doses such as in the game against N.C. State, it will be interesting who gets the nod next season as starting running back.
Besides the 8 receptions for 64 yards, Torrey Smith ran back an 84 yard kickoff for a touchdown in the third quarter to keep the game close. Torrey Smith now has 2 returns for touchdowns and is make a statement as an All-ACC receiver/return man. Even if Maryland is struggling with their current season, fans can't help but be excited at the prospect that is Torrey Smith. He may have different size and different build, but do we have another Darrius Heyward-Bey in the works?
Spreading the Love
The Maryland Terps spread the ball around a great deal when it came to running backs in the loss to N.C. State. Over six different Terps ran the ball for a team-combined 108 yards on 27 carries and one touchdown. Normally, these are numbers that the slightly above-average running back posts on an almost weekly basis. It may have taken a collective team effort for the Terps, but they may have finally found their answer at running back while Da'Rel Scott is injured. That answer is simple; anyone can run the ball on the Terps.
We were all pulling for him as his painful senior year is almost complete. Chris Turner just couldn't get the job done for yet another week in the loss to N.C. State. Turner had a modest game with 12/19 for 135 yards and a rushing score. The problem is that he turned the ball over, which seems to be a reoccurring theme with the senior. Sadly, Turner was never a terrible quarterback; he just never had enough to get the job done. Ralph Friedgen must have agreed, because it was only a matter of time that Turner would be on the sideline and fans would see sophomore Jamarr Robinson under center.
The Terp's defense gave up 482 total yards in the loss against N.C. State. Picking off N.C. State quarterback Russell Williams three times was a plus, but allowing him to also throw for three touchdowns suggests that: one, the defense is allowing too many chances for opposing quarterbacks, and two, the defense is on the field too much (N.C. State's time of possession was nearly 10 minutes more than Maryland).
N.C. State won the first down battle 31-14. Maryland's key to success is moving the ball and avoiding three and outs. This has been a problem plaguing them all season and it doesn't seem to have been remedied. The Terps need to win the little battles if they want to win the big ones.
The Terps had 10 penalties costing them 91 yards. An undisciplined team is a losing team. With just two wins, the Terps have no room for error. Those 91 yards could have been put towards total yardage and, possibly, could be attributed directly to the loss. Penalties are the sign of an immature team. Chris Turner needs to get a handle on his team before his coach's job security is brought back into question.
With the exception of a few penalties and some boring play by key members of the Terps, Maryland didn't play particularly bad in the loss against N.C. State. Now, the Terps find themselves in the basement of the ACC. This game sent the Terps to last place and it may be difficult to dig themselves out with such a short amount of time left in the season. The Terps need to focus on winning the rest of their games or at least putting in effort since the potential of a bowl game has long since been forgotten.