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Ohio State-Maryland: 5 things you need to know

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Ohio State-Maryland: 5 things you need to know

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- If this is the final game that Randy Edsall coaches at the University of Maryland, it will go down as, in many ways, the opposite of the types of games that over a period of years added to the displeasure felt within the program’s fan base.

Against the nation’s No. 1 team, Maryland showed up and competed for nearly four entire quarters despite a crowd of 107,869 almost unanimously against them at Ohio Stadium in Columbus.

But the strength and talent of the Buckeyes eventually overcame Maryland after it held its ground for as long as it could in a 49-28 Ohio State victory.

Here are five things you need to know.

1) Perry Hills start at QB and makes a splash early

Maryland opened the playbook to begin Saturday’s game. Off a play-action pass in the first quarter, Hills found wide receiver D.J. Moore for a 52-yard strike to make it 7-0 Maryland.

With Hills under center, Maryland experimented much more with rollouts and bootlegs -- something they couldn’t do with Caleb Rowe over the past three weeks.

He finished 10-of-27 for 133 yards with one touchdown and two late interceptions.

2) Keeping it competitive before the half

With the score at 21-7 -- and with the game looking like it would go into the half as such -- Hills ripped off a 75-yard run up the gut that gashed the Ohio State defense. He would score thereafter to make it 21-14.

That scoring drive came right after a missed Ohio State field goal that could have made it 24-7. Instead, the momentum was skewed toward the Terrapins, which set up the drive coming out of the half.  

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3) Tied up

Down a touchdown coming out of the half, Hills led another touchdown drive to begin the third quarter, aided by a personal foul penalty on Ohio State defensive lineman Joey Bosa.

The drive included a reverse and a run by cornerback Will Likely. Yes, cornerback Will Likely. The game was tied, 21-21.

4) The tide turns

After Maryland tied it up, Ohio State began to dig deeper into the playbook, with the running game not really aiding the Buckeye offense.

Cardale Jones found Jalin Marshall for a 48-yard touchdown to make it 28-21. On a subsequent drive, they involved running back Ezekiel Elliott in the passing game and chipped away in 10-yard chunks for another touchdown to make it 35-21.

5) On Ohio State: Ezekiel Elliott continues his mastery, despite “slow” game

Maryland, by and large, kept Ohio State’s star running back in check. That, in comparison to the 274 yards he put up last week against Indiana, which included three touchdown runs of 55 yards or more.

On Saturday, Elliott reached the 100-yard mark for the 11th straight game but averaged only close to five yards in getting there.

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Not the homecoming former Terp D.J. Moore was hoping for against the Redskins

Not the homecoming former Terp D.J. Moore was hoping for against the Redskins

Former Maryland Terrapin D.J. Moore made his first trip to FedEx field as an NFL star. His Carolina Panthers traveled up to Landover, Md. for a Week 6 matchup with the Washington Redskins.

However, it was not the homecoming he and the Panthers were hoping for. 

The first-round draft pick had two fumbles in the first half against the Redskins. Both were punch-outs due to Moore not holding the ball tight enough.

The wide receiver's first came as he fielded the Redskins' first punt of the afternoon.

The second being a fumble coming off of his first reception, punched out by Josh Norman, who had his best game as a Redskin.

Both plays had enough effort, probably too much. Moore was clearly trying to make something out of nothing and both times it cost him and the Panthers two key possessions on the road. 

First two touches, two fumbles. Not a good look. 

But in other Maryland Terps news, Vernon Davis did haul down the first touchdown of the game and Torrey Smith scored a late touchdown and converted the two-point conversion. 

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As one of the most penalized teams in college football, Maryland's penalty woes showed vs. Michigan

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As one of the most penalized teams in college football, Maryland's penalty woes showed vs. Michigan

On the field, it has been a season of ups and downs for the Maryland Terrapins. On Saturday, it became evident that the team's penalty issues are at epic proportions based on their loss to Michigan.

This season, Maryland is one of the most penalized teams in all of Division I football. 

No matter if the penalties are coming in wins or in losses, yellow flags have forced Maryland to dig themselves out of holes this season. Quickly these holes become insurmountable with the inconsistent offense the Terps have this season. 

Below is where they stand on the NCAA FBS Division I leaderboard:

  • Penalties per game (4th worst) - 9.8 penalties
  • Penalty yards per game (3rd worst) - 93.8 yards
  • 7 penalties per 100 plays (t-worst) 


This past Saturday against Michigan, their penalties were a significant factor in a loss for the first time this season. Twelve times the Terps were flagged, costing them 107 yards. 

The first major penalty was just after the Terps got a big kickoff return for a touchdown by Ty Johnson to give them an early 7-3 lead. Two scrimmage plays later, Darnell Savage got his second interception of the season on Michigan's side of the field with the upset in full swing. A holding penalty on the return pushed the Terps back to midfield where they would go three-and-out. 

That mistake, although minuscule at the time, cannot happen on the road against a top-25 opponent. A momentum-swinging play was diminished by the penalty and kept them from adding to their lead.  

The offense though was responsible for most of the dirty laundry on the field. Of their 12 penalties, half of them were on the offense. Five of those six were detrimental to their success. 

A holding penalty in the second quarter prevented the Terps from having the chance to answer Michigan's first touchdown of the game.

On the first drive of the second half for the Terps, three penalties in the first four plays pushed them back to a 4th-and-36. 

Although they converted a fourth-and-6 in the red zone, they got pushed back to that mark because of a false start the play prior. This was their first drive of the fourth where they were behind by three scores and desperately trying to come back.

In their Week 1 shocking upset over the ranked Texas Longhorns the team had eight penalties for 70 yards. This was the only game that their opponent committed more penalties.

The next week at Bowling Green (14 for 139 yards) was worse, at home vs. Temple (five penalties, 35 yards) and at Minnesota (10 penalties, 118 yards).

Currently, the team is sitting at 3-2 with a win over the No. 9 team in the country, Texas. Considering everything that has happened, and they are under interim head coach Matt Canada, they are rising above expectations. 

But by no means are there many confident in how the Terps have played this season. Mostly that is due to these penalties. 

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