Monday, October 17, 2005

Terps recall blowout

It's on the minds of all the players and in all the papers so far this week. The 55-6 embarrassment at Blacksburg on national television a year ago. It was the kind of loss that became expected under Duffner or Vanderlinden but not Ralph Friedgen. The blowout in the Orange Bowl wasn't even as bad considering that Florida team should have played for the mythical national title. The Virginia Tech team of last season was not in any way comparable to that Gators squad. Some of it is about making amends for last season but more importantly it is another hurdle in qualifying for post season play.

D'Qwell Jackson is back at practice after missing the Temple game and even though he may not be 100% he'll be ready for kickoff on Thursday. DT Dennis Marsh, who missed the Temple game after spraining his ankle in warm ups, is healed and should be available for the Gobblers.

The Baltimore Sun reports that backup QB Jordan Steffy is hungry to get a chance to start but is not considering leaving the program, yet. The staff is considering a redshirt for him this season. If he doesn't come out of the spring game at least as the #2 QB I would not be surprised if he does go elsewhere for a better opportunity. He claims his knee is totally healthy again after surgery during the summer. He didn't mention his lingering arm troubles.

What a day
I can't recall a better day of college football. It was a treat to watch some great games. Starting with the 38-34 victory by Wisconsin over Minnesota on a blocked punt with under a minute to go, followed by the Michigan vs. Penn State game decided on the last play with a second on the clock and the USC vs. Notre Dame classic, it was a great day to own a 37" Sony plasma TV. The Virginia vs FSU ESPN game wasn't that bad either. There certainly seemed to be some mojo from the 1995 Virginia squad that upset a powerful FSU team for its first ACC loss.

Some will take it as a sign that USC isn't as good as everyone thinks. After watching the final minutes of their victory I take the opposite approach. They are the best team in the country until someone beats them. Texas is a great team and loaded with talent but USC's players are used to winning. They have a swagger you can't create by just winning a few games during a season. It is enough to put them over the top against a very good team even when they are not playing well.

Heels can't even scrimmage

North Carolina is down to 9 scholarship players after frosh forward Mike Copeland tore knee cartilage and will miss at least 4 weeks after surgery. Keep looking at those recruit rankings Heel fans because this season won't be much to crow about.

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