Maryland Terps Are Consistently Inconsistent

Brett GellmanCorrespondent IOctober 6, 2008

If you looked up the definition of bipolar in the dictionary, Maryland Football would probably be needs its own addendum. 

Saturday's inexplicable 31-0 loss to ACC doormat Virginia was one that will go down in the record books as Ralph Friedgen's worse loss. 

That's right.

Just a month removed from the Middle Tennessee State debacle, this blunder tops the disaster in Murfreesboro. 

At least the Terps put some points on the board in that game.

This one, however, hurts.  It hurts badly. 

How could Maryland, who just one week ago stunned the ACC with a win at Death Valley, fall prey to a team who got blown by Duke?  Yes, Duke. 

Maryland (4-2, 1-1 ACC) had everything going for them after defeating the Clemson Tigers in a come-from-behind victory.  They were on the cusp of being ranked, had a bye week coming up, and play four of their next six opponents at home. 

You couldn't ask for a better scenario.

After the MTSU setback, the Terps won three straight, two of which were over ranked teams (California, Clemson.)

Up next was rival Virginia, a team who struggled out the gate and put Al Groh on the hot seat.  Their sole win at the time was against the Richmond Spiders after getting demolished by USC, UConn, and, yes, the Blue Devils.

Yet, with nearly every media outlet favoring the Terps in an easy victory, the unfathomable happened.

Maryland failed to score the entire game and UVA (2-3, 1-1 ACC) had its best outing of the season. 

Good thing an Orange Bowl representative was in attendance, and no, it wasn't because the Cavaliers were playing.

This has been the trend for the Terrapins for quite awhile.  They have a frustrating tendency to play to their level of competition. 

Why do they barely win over Delaware yet demolish Cal 28-6 up until the third quarter? 

Why do they lose on the road to a lowly Sun Belt squad but beat the ACC preseason favorites? 

It's a troubling trend that is clearly not being properly addressed by the coaching staff.  While 4-2 is a reasonable record for Maryland fans, you would think those two losses would be from Cal and Clemson as opposed to Middle Tennessee State and Virginia. 

Despite the rabid fans standing proudly in the visiting section, the team that put on a gritty performance against the Tigers was nowhere to be found.  Maryland failed to capitalize on what should've been a golden opportunity to showcase its talent in front of a nationally televised audience. 

Quarterback Chris Turner didn't have enough time to find an open receiver—including playmaker Darius Heyward-Bey—thanks to the senior-laden, yet struggling, offensive line. 

Da'Rel Scott, one of the top running backs in all of Division I, couldn't get the running game going because players were failing to block their assignments properly.

The defense had its own problems thanks to an injury-depleted secondary.  Senior cornerback Kevin Barnes endured a helmet-to-helmet hit but continued to play since there weren't any reserves available.

Special Teams can be summarized by Obi Egekeze's four yard onside kick.  It was his only appearance in Scott Stadium the entire evening.

The game was embarrassing on all accounts and the coaching staff is entirely to blame for this disaster.  There is enough talent on that field that it's simply inexcusable to be shutout by such an inferior opponent.

Maryland now faces a bye week and will have two weeks to let Saturday's loss marinate until they face Wake on October 18. 

Let's hope the Demon Deacons are ranked so the Terps can play up to their opponents.


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