Maryland Terps

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Three reasons to watch Maryland football in 2018

Three reasons to watch Maryland football in 2018

Frankly, Maryland football has been tough to watch for the better part of the last decade.

There have been a few decent seasons here and there, but no bowl wins since 2010 against East Carolina. The Terps are 20-30 since joining the Big Ten.

That said, there are still a handful of reasons to watch Maryland football this season. Here are the three best ones:

1. Local high school superstar Kasim Hill leads a crop of young, talented Terps.

Hill was a four-star quarterback coming out of St. John's College High School in 2017. After bursting onto the scene as a true freshman last season, he's poised to win the starting job after a knee injury cut last year short. He'll team with fellow former four-star local running back Anthony McFarland to lead a rejuvenated Terps offense against a dubious Big Ten schedule.

2. Former top overall recruit Byron Cowart is attempting to revive his college career.

In 2015, Byron Cowart was supposed to be the next big thing. After two years of underwhelming football at Auburn, he sat out 2017 and has resurfaced in College Park with a new attitude and hunger to be great. If he can tap into some of the potential that made him so coveted coming out of high school, he'll form a dangerous duo of defensive ends with Jesse Aniebonam, who's returning for a fifth season after a fractured ankle ended his 2016 campaign in Week 1. The last time he played a full season, he led the team with 14 tackles for loss and nine sacks.

3. The two highest-rated recruiting classes in history are poised to shine.

Maryland has not traditionally recruited well despite sitting in the middle of one of the most fertile recruiting areas in the country. But after signing back-to-back top-30 classes full of blue-chip recruits, many of whom are local, things are looking up. They may be young, but members of the classes of 2017 and 2018 are already projected in the two-deep heading into fall camp. Many could be difference-makers once live action comes around.

Nothing is for sure with Maryland football, but heading into 2018, there's a new feeling of optimism and excitement around the program. Don't get caught sleeping if the Terps have a surprisingly good year.

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Maryland wastes their best change become bowl eligible in loss to Indiana

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USA TODAY Sports

Maryland wastes their best change become bowl eligible in loss to Indiana

BLOOMINGTON, Ind.  -- Indiana Hoosiers coach Tom Allen changed tactics this week.

Instead of focusing on one game, he took the big-picture approach and his players responded.

Stevie Scott's late, long run set up Logan Justus for a 42-yard go-ahead field goal with 2:32 to play and Nile Sykes recovered a fumble in the final minute to preserve Indiana's 34-32 come-from-behind to keep Indiana in the postseason discussion.

"I didn't want to talk about going to bowl games, but I just said, `You know what, forget all that, I'm talking about bowl games' because they're big," Allen said. "I'm going to call these guys out on it and say that's what we're playing for."

After a slow start, the Hoosiers (5-5, 2-5 Big Ten) rebounded with three touchdowns in less than 4 minutes in the first half then closed with a flurry to snap a four-game skid. They need one more victory to become bowl-eligible.

At least they still have a chance and largely because they got contributions from each phase.

Scott carried 19 times for 103 yards and one touchdown. Peyton Ramsey went 16 of 28 with 243 yards, two TD passes and one interception and also made two shifty moves on a 35-yard scoring run in the first half.

The defense held Maryland (5-5, 3-4) to field goals on its first two trips into the red zone and forced four turnovers, including the sealing strip-sack of backup quarterback Tyrrell Pigrome.

Justus made all four extra points and two field goals, something Maryland could not. A missed extra point and a failed 2-point conversion with 4:54 left took crucial points off the board for Maryland, spoiling Anthony McFarland's career-best day. He ran 29 times for 210 yards in relief of the injured Ty Johnson.

With the loss for Maryland, their bowl hopes have taken a significant hit.

All the team needs is one more win to extend their season by a game and make the postseason. Their remaining two games are against Top 25 opponents Ohio State and Penn State. 

Maryland's lone Top 25 win this season was in the opening week against Texas. 

"This isn't the last game of the season," interim coach Matt Canada said. "Oh my gosh we wanted to win, we certainly could have."

It sure wasn't easy for the Hoosiers , either, even after they took a 31-15 lead midway through the third quarter.

Maryland charged back after Javon Leake returned a kickoff 47 yards to the Indiana 27-yard line. Two plays later, Leake scooted right and sprinted 27 yards down the sideline for a touchdown. Pigrome's 2-point conversion pass to McFarland made it 31-23.

The Terrapins closed to 31-26 on a field goal early in the fourth and retook the lead when Pigrome hooked up with Jeshaun Jones on a 15-yard TD pass.

But when Tayon Fleet-Davis' run was stopped short of the goal line, Indiana took advantage.

Following a 23-yard kickoff return to the Indiana 40, Scott broke free down the right side of the field and went out of bounds at the Maryland 33. Four plays later, Justus made the decisive field goal.

"It was amazing," Justus said. "I was kind of just spacing out, I was really excited."

NBC Sports Washington's Tyler Byrum contributed to this story. 

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Maryland football lands commitment from Mike Tomlin's son

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USA Today Sports

Maryland football lands commitment from Mike Tomlin's son

Dino Tomlin, the son of Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, announced on Twitter Tuesday he has committed to play for the Maryland football team. 

A three-star wide receiver, Tomlin becomes the first Terps commit since D.J. Durkin's firing. He is known for his speed, running a 4.52-second 40-yard dash and is the defending Pennsylvania state champion in the 300m hurdles. 

"I felt it was the right place for me to develop," Tomlin told 24/7 Sports. "Get to see good competition. Close to family. Get to play schools that passed on me," Tomlin said.

There is a family connection with Tomlin and Maryland as well: his uncle, Ed, played for the Terps.

As for the scandal surrounding Maryland football, Tomlin doesn't have too many concerns.

"I feel like they handled it appropriately at this point," he said. "I kind of knew I was going to commit a week or so ago. I just let it pan out."