2012 Maryland Terrapins
Record: 4-8 (2-6 ACC)
B1G Standing: 5th Place- Atlantic Division, 10th Place overall (tie with Virginia)
Defensive Stat Leaders: Tackles: Demetrius Hartsfield, Cole Farrand (both with 78).... Sacks: Joe Vellano, Darin Drakeford (both with 6).... Interceptions: Anthony Nixon, Matt Robinson, Hartsfield, Vellano (all with 1)
Head Coach Randy Edsall's second year in College Park started out okay, with a baseball (7-6) victory over William & Mary and a respectable win at Temple. Even the close loss to UConn and the ten point loss against then-#7 West Virginia weren't backbreakers, and were followed by a 2-0 conference start--all with true freshman at quarterback, a key position for any offense, but especially for a Mike Locksley-coached offense.
Then the NC State game, and the wrath of the AMQBHG.
Within two weeks, the Terrapins went from decent freshman quarterback starter to their fifth option--linebacker Shawn Petty, who was forced to start at QB for their final four games, a position he hadn't seen time at since high school.
Losing a starting quarterback can devastate a team's chance at success, but losing four? Few teams have faced such adversity. their challenges showed at the end of the season; they lost three of their final four games by an average of 27 points. They did, however, show flashes of cohesion near the end, only falling at UNC by seven--and scoring a remarkable 38 points in the process.
If any solace can be taken in the Terps' 2012 season, it's that they came out of it in one piece--and it can't get any worse...can it?
A Quick Look Ahead
Recruiting: Class of 2013 Rankings - 247Sports: 34 - Rivals: 33 - Scout: 48
Maryland's 2013 class looks on paper to be a decent one, about average for their program, and includes a few Penn State targets. The Terps nabbed commits from players who had offers and interest from many different, bigger name schools. They were, however, on the losing end of one talented recruit they coveted: Tanner Hartman who was long considered a UMD lean before signing with the Nittany Lions.
Way too early prediction: 7-5 (4-4 in B1G)
You might be wondering why we're covering the Terps when they're not set to join the Big Ten until 2014, and you aren't wrong. But it behooves all of us B1G fans to keep an eye on Maryland in their last season of ACC play, and not just to revel in our relative modesty in uniform choices.
With nearly all of their complement of QBs back for the next year, they should be competetive and able to sneak out one (or two) wins that they shouldn't be competetive in, at least on paper. Traditionally, the Terrapins are known for playing up (or down) to their competition, so they're good for at least one head scratching loss and one head scratching win. I expect, though, that they'll go bowling this year.
Their schedule sets up nicely, though 3-1 should be the best they can hope for heading into conference play. With the ACC adding their new teams of not-so-football powerhouses, three more wins amongst Virginia, Wake Forest, Syracuse, and Boston College don't seem unrealistic, and they could even squak one out versus Florida State, Clemson, Virginia Tech or NC State. A hair over .500 is a good expectation for Maryland, and should allow Edsall another year in College Park before his seat is on fire.
For more information on the Terrapins, head to Testudo Times.
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