Sunday, September 03, 2006

Terps top Tribe

Everyone seemed fairly satisfied after the game but the final score should make the average fan a little nervous. Maryland got out to an early lead that was comfortable and seemed to coast in the rest of the game. At one point it was 27-7 in the forth quarter before William & Mary scored a late touchdown but with a margin of only 13 points at the end of the game it should hardly make the players or coaches feel comfortable about where this team is at the moment. In the post game interviews it seemed everyone was eager to find positives in a game that really didn't demonstrate this year's Terrapins are ready to compete with the big boys. In the heyday of Friedgen's early years this would have been the kind of blow out that made you feel sorry for the Eastern Michigan or Wofford squad that came for the payout. It isn't clear that this offense has that kind of explosiveness in them, with or without Ralph Friedgen calling the plays. I'll have a full review of the game once I've had a chance to review the tape.

Around the ACC

Most of the teams in the league had those kinds of stat padding games that hardly mean anything but there were a few games that may be an early indicator of how teams will fare this season.

Georgia Tech gave the Golden Domers all they could handle. The Yellow Jackets defense was ferocious and seemed to intimidate Notre Dame for most of the first half. Reggie Ball is still Georgia Tech's Achilles heel as he was unable to mount any scoring drives in the 2nd half. Without PJ Daniels' ground game to back him up Ball doesn't have the ability to run the offense. He had his normal 50% completion rate and can't seem to complete a pass to anyone other than the singular wide out Calvin Johnson. With a competent quarterback Georgia Tech would be very dangerous.

Virgina had a tough road opener at Pitt and got blow out in the process. The early returns at running back and quarterback for the Cavaliers are not encouraging. Three different quarterbacks and four different running backs saw action for Al Groh but none seemed to distinguish themselves. Virginia's run defense was decent but the secondary was shredded by Pitt QB Tyler Palko. I think Al Groh's group will rebound from this debacle but unless they find a decent backfield it will be a long season in Hooville.

North Carolina lost to an improved Rutgers team in Chapel Hill. There is no shame in losing to Rutgers these days but with three top 20 teams in the next for games and another out of conference game at Notre Dame later in the season it wasn't a game the Tar Heels could afford to give away.

The poor Dukies lost to Richmond. Worse still they didn't even score.

Wake Forest beat Syracuse 20-10 but lost starting quarterback Ben Mauk for the season after he broke his arm. It is a harsh blow to the Deacons bowl hopes.

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