With red sweatshirts a bounty and the fight song trumpeting through McKeldin Mall, one might be led to believe that the Terrapins have turned their season around with their win over Clemson last weekend.
Vegas is not so enthused.
While perusing the week's betting lines, I came across my beloved Terps (2-3, 1-0). They are a touchdown-and-a-half underdog against ACC "rival" Wake Forest (3-2, 1-1).
Obviously the odds-makers do not remember the Terrapins of 2008. Wake Forest, the third ACC game of Maryland's schedule then, came into Byrd Stadium a top-25 team and heavy favorite. They were shut out 26-0.
The defense held quarterback Riley Skinner in check, as well as the rest of the Demon Deacon's offense. Skinner is still the quarterback and the new 4-3 defensive scheme showed a great deal of promise last week, especially in the second half.
Additionally, Chris Turner turned in a stellar performance with over 300 yards and a couple of touchdowns. He played a great game against Clemson and seems to have found some confidence in the pocket.
The arguments against Maryland are clear. A huge loss to California (literally) followed by consecutive losses to Middle Tennessee State and Rutgers, on top of a below-average performance against James Madison all funnel into the idea that the win over Clemson was no more than a mere fluke.
Also, this year's game is at Wake. Potential home field advantage may come into play.
I would not blame a single person for taking Wake to cover the spread. However, I caution those temped to do so. The Terps, by nature, are a team that continually does the unconventional and screws over the spread and line betters.
Momentum and history are pointing in favor of the Terps. Logic is against them. Which one will prevail? Will Maryland's Jekyll or Hyde show up?
The only answer: Tune in Saturday.
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