The Maryland Terrapins are back at home in College Park for their annual Homecoming game, and could become bowl-eligible with a win today. This mid-afternoon game has the perfect fall weather for early tailgating and meeting up with old and new friends clad in Terps’ red on this sunny day! The 5-2 Terps have Northwestern in for this one. The big question this morning is on the health of QB Taulia Tagovailoa as he suffered an MCL sprain last week in Indiana.
The injury to Tagovailoa looked like it was season-ending as he was writhing in pain from a leg injury, and had to be removed on a cart. The MRI just showed an MCL sprain and the Terps’ QB1 was back at practice this week. That knee brace saved his knee, and it is great news for Tagovailoa and the Terps’ football program. Will he start or play today? That is the question of the morning as he is listed as “questionable”.
If he can’t go, it will be red shirt freshman Billy Edwards Jr. who has seen action in two games so far, and staged the comeback win last week against Indiana. Edwards was a transfer from Wake Forest and grew up nearby in Fairfax, Virginia. He’s led five touchdown drives this season with some very athletic runs.
Maryland is looking for national respectability at this point and to become bowl eligible. After this week, the Terps have a bye week. Then the schedule gets really tough with November games at Wisconsin and Penn State before the Terps come back home to face Ohio State in what could be a game against the №1 team in the country. After Ohio State, the Terps have a final regular season game against Rutgers.
A team has to win at least 6 games and at least a .500 record to be bowl eligible. In a 12-game schedule, six wins would accomplish that minimum requirement — and the Terps can be there today without the drama they had last year in the final game of the regular season. Of course the Terps want to win every game and move into the Top-25 would be big for this program and recruiting more top players College Park, Maryland.
Bowl eligibility counts for a lot more although accomplishing both and getting into a premiere bowl game is a goal for this program. That is how you grow as a team and Head Coach Mike Locksley has done a great job at bringing in some top recruits. But more wins and national exposure helps.
The Terps are favored big in this Big-1o matchup. But Vegas favorites means nothing until you actually live up to those standards. Maryland will once again rely on their top playmakers to lead them to victory. The Terps have to continue to get their talented RB Roman Hemby, more involved in the game this week as well as their big back Antwain Littleton II. Of course it is the talented receivers Rakim Jarrett and Dontay Demas who must also step up and make some big plays.
The Terps defense continued to give up too many big plays last week and it is the secondary who must control the game and come up with some big turnovers.
Maryland (5-2, 2-2 B1G) vs. Northwestern (1-5, 1-2 B1G)
When: Sat., Oct. 22 | 3:40 p.m. EST
Where: SECU Stadium, College Park, Maryland
TV: Big Ten Network – Brandon Gaudin, Jake Butt, Rick Pizzo
Radio: 105.7 FM (Baltimore) / 980 AM (DC) — Johnny Holliday, Steve Suter
Vegas odds: have Maryland at -14.5 as the favorites, and the Over/Under is 51.5 points.