COLLEGE PARK -- Maryland’s scheduled 8 p.m. kickoff on Saturday at Byrd Stadium against Michigan was supposed to coincide with a “Blackout” promotion, where fans would wear black and the team would sport its “Black Ops” uniforms with new, hand-painted helmets.
All that will still happen, just out in the daylight.
On Thursday, the program announced that it had come together with the University of Michigan and the Big Ten Conference to shift Saturday’s kickoff to noon in hopes of avoiding the worst effects of Hurricane Joaquin as it bears down on the East Coast of the United States.
Aside from the shifting of a few meeting times, though, head coach Randy Edsall says that not much will change as his Terrapins prepare for the Wolverines.
“We were kind of watching that all week long ourselves as coaches in terms of what was taking place,” he said.
“So we tried to formulate a plan that we felt would be able to deal with anything that we might have to deal with so we feel good about the plan we have going in and now we just got to go out there on Saturday and be able to execute.”
That likely includes a heavy dose of the running game, not just because it could be raining heavily but because quarterback Caleb Rowe threw four interceptions last week and running back Brandon Ross was one of the lone bright spots against West Virginia as he eclipsed the 100-yard mark on the ground.
But we may not know until game time itself.
“If it’s a downpour that can, to me, have a pretty big effect,” Edsall said. “But if it’s just kind of a steady rain, I think you can combat that.
“The thing that makes it tough is if you have the rain and looks like they’re calling for anywhere from 15 to 25-mile-an-hour winds. So, again, I think you get the wind, you get the rain, and you get the cold, that can make it a little difficult to throw the football.”
And Rowe may be forced to do that. The Wolverine defense is allowing just 2.6 yards per rush to its opponents this season. That’s good for No. 6 in the nation.