Florida State rocks Maryland to eliminate Terps from ACC contention

November 22, 2008 | Glenn Clark

12:05-For those of you looking for a silver lining; maybe I can help. Boston College will almost certainly be a ranked team next week; and we all know what happened the last 6 times Maryland has faced a ranked team.

This team WILL be tested again. They might be helped by the fact that Dominique Davis could end up playing for an injured Chris Crane (although Davis certainly got things going when it counted today); but Maryland hasn’t won in Boston since BC joined the ACC. And many players on that team-and CERTAINLY Coach Jeff Jagodzinski-remember the pasting Maryland delivered to the Eagles last week when they were a Top Ten team in the country. This BC team will be ready to play; it will be a question of whether or not Maryland has responded.

The difference in a win and a loss for this team could be significant. A win could vault the Terps to the #3 position in the ACC; and a New Year’s Eve trip to Atlanta and the Chick-Fil-A Bowl; considered by many to be one the nation’s more prestigous Bowl games. A loss could leave the Terps in an afternoon game in a destination like Nashville, Boise, or even DC. That might not mean THAT much to the Maryland players though; as the ACC title ring is out of the picture; and the chance to take a trip to Miami is long gone. Even a trip to sunny Jacksonville is out. The staff can’t use the Bowl scenarios as motivation; because the Terps likely won’t care much about which cold-weather city they visit in late December.

The staff will again be faced with the need to question the manhood of this Maryland team; and maybe even their own manhood. Halftime is not the only time to make changes; and the staff did not respond well tonight. James Franklin couldn’t solve Florida State’s blitzes, nor the move of Everette Brown to the inside of the line. Chris Cosh couldn’t solve FSU’s stretch run, nor how to help his linebackers when Ponder had the pitch option. This staff can’t afford to place all of the blame on the players. Ralph has struggled with handling these situations throughout the season; but must again prove his “trust” in a veteran team facing a tough situation.

His bargaining chip was playing for an ACC title. That’s gone now. Somehow, this team must be convinced to take Boston College personally. It will be interesting to see their response. With any luck; teams named the Eagles will lose twice between now and next Sunday.

We’ll wrap it up for now. Talk to you Monday morning for Crabs and Beer; and again Thursday night when the Maryland hoops team takes on Michigan State.


11:58-Going to the numbers; Da’Rel Scott finished with 12 rushes for 82 yards. Christian Ponder paced the Noles with 14 rushes for 81 yards. The numbers are almost even for the two teams offensively; the difference came on defense. Florida State fumbled the ball 3 times; but recovered all 3. Maryland fumbled twice, losing both; and they were intercepted twice. The -4 turnover margin is not a winning number. To make it worse, Derek Nicholson, Everette Brown, and Jamie Robinson combined for 4.5 sacks, 7 TFL’s overall. Maryland did not record a sack. Alex Wujciak and Dave Philistin had 11 tackles each; but recorded only 1 TFL between them.

11:40-Ralph said that nothing was made of the Boston College win when it went official earlier today; reminding us that the Terps “didn’t have it on” in the locker room; and even went on to say he “(didn’t) even know if (the team) knew” the Eagles had rallied to win. He said that the BC game had no bearing on the outcome tonight; because it had been made clear to the team that they HAD to win this game. I don’t disagree with any of that; but I think emotions may have been a factor after Wake lost.

Ralph started his session predictably; saying the team “didn’t play very well”, and that “it boggles (his) mind (the Terps) could play that poorly with so much at stake.” He added that the Terps “didn’t compete” and  “didn’t play with any effort” before moving on to some individual factors.

Ralph admitted that as has been the case in previous weeks; he had some concerns with the team in practice this week. He said he “wasn’t pleased with some of our practices”, and he “brought guys in and spoke to them, but they assured (him) they’d be ready to go.”

One of the reasons the Seminoles were so effective in rushing Chris Turner in Ralph’s eyes was that they “moved (Everette) Brown inside”, which Ralph said “they hadn’t done all year.” Brown was able to beat Maryland’s guards throughout the game; which Ralph and OC James Franklin couldn’t have prepared for having not seen it on tape. Brown finished the game with 3.5 sacks, 4.5 TFL’s.

When asked about the first 2 drives of the game where Maryland had the chance to take an early advantage but failed to come away with any points, Ralph said the team has “been struggling with that all year.” He said they “get to the 30 yard line and then just bog down.” This was a factor for the Terps tonight; as 10 points on those two drives could have set a different tone.

When asked about the team’s reaction to tonight’s loss, Ralph said “they’re not good”, and then added that his own “mental state is not very good right now.” But Ralph told the team to be prepared for a hard week of work, as their “character is going to be tested again at BC” next Saturday. Ralph reminded us that the team has played pretty well in those situations.

Bobby Bowden told the media the following when asked about Maryland suffering a letdown…..
“”To be honest with you, I had a feeling that their win last week might hurt them in regard to this week. I think that teams play tougher when they come off of a loss and they won last week, beating a heck of a football team. I thought we might catch them a little flat.

I will admit that I didn’t.

10:49-Lee-Odai drops the screen on 4th and 3; and this one will come to an end at 37-3. Advance Maryland to 7-4 (4-3); Florida State to 8-3 (5-3). Maryland plays at Boston College next Saturday; but has been eliminated from ACC title contention. I’ll go talk to Ralph; but there won’t be much to report.

10:47-Florida State fans aren’t happy that Maryland is using timeouts here to try to score; and they probably outnumber the Maryland fans left if we didn’t count Maryland’s marching band. Terps face 3rd and 3 from the 9 with 1:13 to play.

10:45-I predicted that Maryland will play Wake Forest for the NCAA Soccer title when I filled out my brackets this week. If they do; it will be the 2nd time the schools meet for a NCAA title in a month. The Maryland field hockey team will meet Wake tomorrow in Louisville. If you’re watching the Ravens game at home tomorrow and have CBS College Sports Network (i’m talking to BOTH of you!); flip over during commercials. Coach Meharg is looking for her 3rd national title in 4 years.

10:44-Terps trying to reward the couple hundred supporters of theirs who chose to stick around by hitting paydirt once. They’re at the 16 with a minute and a half to play.

10:43-Rhodes Scholar Myron Rolle DID return in the 2nd half, and is seeing playing time. Terps are driving behind Davin Meggett here; they’re on the 22 with 2 minutes to play.

10:37-Torrey Smith has set a single season school record for return yardage on this last kick return. I’m sure the champagne is on ice. (That was a joke; Smith isn’t even old enough to drink yet. But I am. And I wish the bottle of water in front of me was whiskey.)

10:35-If everything else stays the same but Maryland BEATS Boston College; things shake up drastically. Florida State plays Virginia Tech for the ACC title; and that’s more of a crap shoot. I’ll even say Florida State wins. Either way; the loser goes to Jacksonville. BUT, a Maryland win over BC makes them 8-4; even with the Eagles. In that scenario…..
-FSU to the Orange Bowl; Virginia Tech Gator; Maryland Chick-Fil-A; Georgia Tech Champs Sports Bowl; Boston College goes to Nashville; Carolina to Charlotte; Miami to San Francisco; Clemson to Boise; and Wake to DC.
-The DC folks are hoping for Maryland; but they wouldn’t slip past Boise. Clemson is the X factor here; as they travel fairly well; but lose some sex appeal due to the interim coach. A win over their rival might be enough to galvanize the fanbase and help get them higher on the bowl totem pole.

10:33-Sorry I was gone; I was working on my Bowl projections. Will update them with a Maryland win over BC in a second. Terps got the ball back; ran a few times; Turner overthrew on 3rd down; and they punted. FSU drove again; it fizzled at the Maryland 30; and Gano kicked a 47 yard FG to give the loud FSU section more to cheer about-a 37-3 lead with 5:19 to play in the game.

10:20-Nice drive by the Noles; who get a short TD run by Ponder to give them a 34-3 lead with just under 9 minutes to play.

10:16-For the sake of this argument; we’ll advance Maryland to 7-4 (4-3); and Florida State to 8-3 (5-3). Maryland is eliminated from ACC title contention. Boston College clinches with a win next week; a Maryland win sends Florida State to Tampa.

-There are 8 games next week featuring ACC teams. I’ll project those 8; then give you final standings and Bowl projections.
-I’ll say Florida beats Florida State; Georgia beats Georgia Tech; BC beats Maryland; Carolina beats Duke; NC State beats Miami; Clemson beats South Carolina (NC State and Clemson are at home); Virginia Tech beats Virginia; and Wake beats Vanderbilt.
-If that’s the case; Maryland finishes 7-5; FSU finishes 8-4; Wake finishes 7-5; BC finishes 8-4; Clemson finishes 7-5; and NC State finishes 6-6 (all bowl eligible).
-In the Coastal; Georgia Tech finishes 8-4; Miami finishes 7-5; North Carolina finishes 8-4; Virginia Tech finishes 8-4; Virginia finishes 5-7; and Duke finishes 4-8 (only UVa and Duke are not bowl eligible).
-I’ll say for this argument also that Virginia Tech beats Boston College for the ACC title. If that’s the case….
-Virginia Tech to the Orange Bowl; Florida State to the Gator Bowl; Boston College to the Peach Bowl (the Peach Bowl doesn’t need to sell tickets); Georgia Tech to the Champs Sports Bowl; Carolina to the Meineke Car Care Bowl; Maryland to the Music City Bowl; Miami to the Emerald Bowl; Clemson to the Humanitarian Bowl; and Wake to the EagleBank Bowl.
-It is possible that the Terps would be passed over for Miami by the folks in Nashville; considering that Miami is a sexier name than Maryland is. If that’s the case; Maryland ends up in Noise; as the Boise folks would prefer the Terps to Wake.

I’ll re-work these with a Maryland win over BC in a second.

10:15-51,620 is the announced crowd. 49,000 are not happy; and 32,00 are already home.

10:13-A 3rd straight run from Scott results in a fumble; which will be recovered by Drew Robinson. FSU takes over at the 43; and this place is emptying quickly.

10:11-Smith’s return sets the Terps up at the 23. Terps go to the ground; maybe already accepting their fate. Scott gets 7. Heyward-Bey follows by getting the first down on the reverse. Terps with a first down at the 35; but just 13:30 to play.

10:06-Ponder can’t find Surrency on the fade; and Gano is forced to try a 33 yarder. He makes it; and FSU extends their lead to 27-3. Well coached 2nd half by the Noles, who aren’t bothering to take chances.

10:04-Richardson in the game; he runs for another 18 to the 10. More fans are deciding to not stick around in the cold. Richardson fumbles on first down; but recovers at the 18. That’s how the 3rd quarter will end. Terps get the ball just once; and trail 24-3 with FSU driving again. I’ll work on those bowl projections now.

10:02-Noles get 7 yards on the first two plays; and face 3rd and 3. Not surprisingly; they keep it on the ground on 3rd and 3; and Ponder gets the first down. A slip screen on the next play goes for 27 yards to Bert Reed; and FSU has it again at the Maryland 30 with just over a minute to play in the 3rd.

9:58-If you checked the stats at halftime; you were probably surprised to see that Maryland had only 1 yard rushing. That’s a deceiving number; as Maryland had run for 39; but 5 sacks lost 38 yards; which is why the number was 1 yard rushing.

9:56-Play takes too long to develop; and Scott is hit in the backfield. On a negative play; the Terps HAVE to kick the field goal; as they are desperate for ANYTHING to go right.

Egekeze is true from 34; and it’s 24-3 with 3:46 to play in the 3rd. The mistake on that drive was going back to the ground on two straight plays after the big run. They caught the Noles napping for the big play; but all they did after that was run more time off the clock.

9:55-Finally a MAJOR positive play; as Scott gets 40 down to the 16. Terps keep it on the ground on the next two plays; and get just two yards. 3rd and 8 from the 14. Terps really need to consider this 4 down territory.

9:52-Terps will start from their own 37; needing a score quickly just to stop the mass exodus of the fans on a chilly night. Turner does start the 2nd half; with the Terps getting 6 on a screen to Scott.

9:49-The way the 2nd half plays out is more important than just winning or losing. A loss DOES eliminate them from the Orange Bowl; but does NOT eliminate them from major bowl consideration. They need to make the score more respectable to stay alive for Gator or Chick-Fil-A consideration; and to have something positive to take with them to next week’s game in BC.

9:47-Ponder takes off; gets down to the 4. Gano will have a chip shot from 21; which he will hit. FSU extends their lead to 24-0; using more than half of the time on the clock in the 3rd quarter in the process. 6:41 to play in the 3rd; and Maryland is in ABSOLUTE desperation mode now.

9:45-Some good news; as Parker slips on the 2nd down screen from Ponder. Noles face 3rd and goal from the 13; I bet they go underneath; as a FG is basically just as good as a TD at this point.

9:44-Ponder again with the fake pitch; and the take gets him 12 yards to the 10. FSU can do whatever they want; and right now they’re choosing to both take time off the clock AND move the ball. Must be nice.

9:42-Some minimal good fortune; as the Noles fall on a 1st down run and a screen gets just 2. 3rd and 11 from the Maryland 40. Ponder gets plenty of time; and steps up to find Taiwan Easterling for 18 yards and a first down at the 22.

9:41-Two more runs, 15 more yards. FSU has the ball on the 39. Stretch runs have killed the Terps in past years; and FSU clearly watched the tape. Letting a team get the lead allows them to go to the stretch runs; unlike the Cal and Wake games; where the Terps took the lead early and took those teams away from their game plans.

9:39-Ponder and Smith runs get the ball to the 46 and a first down for FSU. Too many 5 or 6 yard plays for the Noles have helped make the game more manageable for them.

9:38-Noles go to work at the 35. If this gets ugly; I’ll try to start breaking down the Bowl situation; as I’ll need to work on my travel plans.

9:33-The only thing that can turn this game in Maryland’s favor is a turnover. It doesn’t have to be a score; but they HAVE to get a turnover to set the pace for the 2nd half.

9:22-Making matters worse; the Noles will start with the ball in the 2nd half. Those first two drives KILLED the Terps; as they had their chances and came up empty. You just can’t do that and expect a good opponent to not score either. They needed to come away with 10 points somehow on those two drives. This game has been almost a parallel of the Virginia game; just at home.

Some in the press box have wondered if Turner is just too rattled from taking 5 sacks (and even more hits). That may be the case; and I wouldn’t be stunned if Ralph said he has a neck stinger and goes to Steffy (remember Ralph saying of Steffy “he’s gonna come back and win a game for us this year” a few weeks back). Steffy hasn’t been hit yet tonight; but it wouldn’t matter who plays QB if they don’t have better designed plays to get rid of the ball faster. The run won’t be much of an option at this point; as they can’t afford for time to go off the clock.

9:15-Noles indeed take the knee; and they’ll go to the half with a 21-0 advantage. Be back shortly to TRY to give you some explanation.

9:14-Good punt from Baltz is downed at the 12. FSU will have it with 40 seconds to go; and will likely take the knee instead.

9:12-A draw would have been better. Turner is sacked again by Nicholson; and the Terps will have to punt from their own 37. They net a whole 2 yards on that drive. FSU calls timeout; they still want to do something before half.

9:09-Terps go no huddle; and two plays later Gronkowski has a first down at midfield. Turner is sacked AGAIN on 1st down; losing 7 back to their own 43. Turner is clearly rattled; as following a timeout he overthrows DHB and the Terps face 3rd and 17. I expect a draw.

9:08-Noles go with the squib kick; and Tate can’t go anywhere from the 35. Terps have to take some shots; but they either have to get better protection or they have to run quicker routes.

9:05-Two plays later, Smith goes over the top for 6 to put FSU ahead 20-0. The extra point makes it 21-0; and this place is SILENT. Just 1:35 to play in the 2nd quarter; and NOTHING is going right for the Terps tonight. They are drowning right now; and need halftime to get here to get air. The emotions of this football team are drastic. When things go wrong; things go miserably wrong.

9:04-FSU goes back to Richardson; and use him the way the Terps SHOULD be using Portis. Instead of running; he lofts the ball to Parker for 17. Ponder then gets 16 with his feet, and the Noles are inside the 10.

9:02-Turner CRUSHED on 1st down; and is remarkably able to hold on to the ball.

But one play later; disaster strikes again. Turner rolls out; then throws the ball into coverage; where it is intercepted by Toddrick Verdell. He returns the ball all the way back to the Maryland 38. This could be a dagger.

9:01-FSU is coming after Turner; and was too aggressive here. They get hit with a roughing the passer following a completion; and the Terps move all the way to the FSU 30.

8:59-Meggett gets 5 on a run; but Turner is sacked for a loss of ten. 3rd and 15 now from the 26. Another tough spot for the Terps.

Turner with a nice job of shaking off a defender; then finds Gronkowski for 17. HUGE play.

8:57-FSU jumps, and Terps get a bonus 5 yards. FSU defenders humorously try to get the crowd to make noise by raising their arms. DHB gets the ball on a stretch reverse; picking up 6 yards and a first down. Turner took a lick on that play.

8:56-Play stands. Big play from Meggett there. Love the fact that Meggett doesn’t get too up or down in every situation; as he made a nice play there.

8:53-Turner gets plenty of time; and Meggett makes a nice move to stay on his feet; then dives for a first down. Very important play; but FSU calls a timeout; or issues a challenge on the ball spot. It looked to me as though he might have been a half yard short.

8:48-Great play by Wujciak to break up a short pass; and the Noles are forced to punt. Maryland will be deep in their own territory; starting at the 10.

Turner overthrows on a deep ball on first down; then is forced to get rid of it under pressure on 2nd down. 3rd and 10 here; and Turner will take a timeout to think about a very important play.

8:47-Richardson finds nothing on a first down run; then Ponder finds Greg Carr for 7 yards; setting up a 3rd and 3 from the FSU 49. Maryland needs another stop badly.

8:46-More disaster for Maryland. Turner’s rollout pass is deflected, then intercepted by Kenny Ingram. Noles take over on their own 42. UGLY.

8:45-Torrey Smith was the nice return to the 41; Meggett runs for 5 on first down; but Turner’s overthrow on 2nd down leads to a 3rd and 5 from the 47.

8:40-This one will stand; and Maryland is in a BIG hole here. FSU adds the extra point; they lead 14-0 with 9:19 to play in the 2nd. This is a danger situation for an emotional football team; as bad news has a way of snowballing with this team. They got bad news even before they hit the field; and things have just gotten worse. The emotion needs to swing the opposite way; or this could be trouble.

8:36-Terps get pressure on 3rd down; and Ponder only gets the ball back to the line of scrimmage, FSU forced to punt.

But 2 plays later; DISASTER STRIKES. Scott puts the ball on the ground; and Derek Nicholson picks the ball up; and scampers back 22 yards for a TD. They’ll review to see if Scott’s knee was down-I couldn’t tell, and Maryland isn’t showing the play on the board anymore.

8:35-Finally a play that doesn’t produce positive yards; as Ponder overthrows Parker. FSU faces 3rd and 6 from midfield. It they get at least 3 here; I bet they go for it on 4th.

8:33-Macho Harris returns an INT for a TD to finish off Duke in Blacksburg. It’s 14-3 with 1:23 to play. FSU gets a first down on the ground; they’re up to their 46 and moving very effectively with positive yardage plays throughout this drive.

8:32-Ponder getting some rhythm here; and two straight completions get them to the 36 and a first down.

8:29-Turner throws short of the sticks and high to Oquendo; who can’t pull it down. Disastrous situation here; as the defense could have used some more time on the bench. Bert Reed slips a few men after Baltz’s punt; but Jeff Allen gets a big stick to bring him down at the 20.

8:28-Turner tries to go deep on first down; but can’t find DHB. There was some contact on the play; but a no-call is fine there. Meggett in the game; but runs right into the line of scrimmage on 2nd down. Terps face a 3rd and 11 from the 36.

8:23-With NC State’s win; all conference teams remain alive to get bowl eligible. Duke is trying to hold on to their Bowl livelihood; but trail 7-3 to Virginia Tech in the 4th. 2:05 left; Hokies have a first down at their own 37. The dream might end here for the Devils.

8:21-Wiseman with the nice defensive play in the secondary to breakup a pass to Surrency, but FSU gets a tremendous block on a pass in the flat to allow Parker to spring in for a TD on the following play. Another 3rd down play that goes wrong for the Terps. 16 plays, 73 yards, 7:02 on the drive for FSU; who leads 7-0 with 14:51 to play in the 2nd quarter.

8:20-We know BC won; but the other winners in the conference earlier were Clemson (13-3 over Virginia); and NC State (41-10 AT North Carolina).

8:17-Fast moving first quarter comes to an end with the Terps and Noles scoreless; but FSU faces 2nd and goal from the Maryland 7. Terps were ineffective in key 3rd down situations on both sides of the ball thus far; the opposite of what they were able to do last week. They also need to get better penetration; at least hitting a runner behind the line of scrimmage to give their linebackers and safeties chances to make short tackles on FSU runs. FSU is going into the endzone where the students are here; so noise will hopefully become a factor as well.

8:16-Not as effective this time-as Marcus Sims finds room in space, and gets exactly two yards for the first down at the 9. Bend but don’t break time for the Terps here.

8:14-Noles’ shotgun has allowed for an effective run offense. They have gotten their backs going behind the line of scrimmage; and their blocking has kept the Terps from getting too much penetration. They’ll be faced with a 3rd and 2 from the Maryland 11-3rd and short was where the Terps were particularly impressive last week.

8:13-Noles go back to Richardson under center; and he turns upfield for 10 yards; but a hold will bring the ball back to the 22; and make things 1st and 13. Richardson creditted for a gain of 7.

8:12-FSU’s offensive line has done a nice job upfront providing run blocking; and Maryland has played fairly manilla offense. Fokou bit on a Ponder option run; and he held on for 17 to the Terps’ 19. FSU in the red zone; looking to draw first blood.

8:11-Ponder has gone to Preston Parker a few times already; this time for 7 yards. They’ve been keeping him in the shotgum; making it tougher for Maryland to get pressure. Rod Owens picks up a new set of downs at the Maryland 40 on a short run.

8:09-Ponder has a stronger arm than I realized; he was pressured but nearly found a receiver 20 yards further for a first down. His legs are still his greater weapon, and he gets 8 on 2nd down; then gives the ball to Antone Smith for a 1st down at midfield. Noles are building confidence on this drive.

8:07-FSU gets a first down in the air; then goes to their own version of Josh Portis-D’Vontrey Richardson-for a “Wildcat” run. He fumbles; but Florida State recovers for a first down up at the 38.

8:01-Turner effective moving the ball; and a roll-out gets Gronkowski down to the 33. Drive fizzles at the 27 after an overthrow; and Egekeze misses from 44. Two drives into FSU territory; no points. Letting FSU off the hook early.

7:56-Low snap on 3rd and 2 bails the Terps out on defense; as Ponder is forced to just fall on it; and Gano will be forced to punt. Oquendo with the fair catch at the 39.

7:53-Terps try to get tricky; but Danny Oquendo throws high and can’t find Chris Turner; Florida State brings the house on the next play; and Turner is sacked at the 39; forcing the Terps to punt. Not the way you want the first drive to end. Baltz’s punt sails into the endzone; and FSU seriously dodges a bullet.

7:52-2 Scott runs give the Terps a first down, then Lansford Watson takes a short pass and rumbles to the FSU 28 thanks to a PRETTY stiff arm. Terps moving quickly on this drive.

7:50-Florida State wins the toss, defers. Maryland stats at the 20 and Turner finds DHB on a screen and finds about 12 yards.

7:30-One of my favorite new features of the live blog: let’s check the current Facebook status of members of the football team.

*Cameron Chism….is preparing for this blackout game @ 745 in 30 degree weather on espn against Florida state! “We gotta get this 1!”….2 hours ago
*Matt Furstenburg….is blackout….2 hours ago
*Torrey Smith……is bouta play in the biggest game of his life….FSU we ready…out to get that RESPECT……4 hours ago
*A.J. Francis…….
Is Sayin’ Them Dirty Terps Are In Action At Byrd Once Again, Takin’ On Them ‘Noles…. Tune In To ESPN @ 7:45 To Witness THE BLACKOUT, Ya Dig Me?…….7 hours ago
*Chase Bullock…….
is chasing this cheddar, Cuz I’m told the end is closer then we know……….yesterday

and a couple recruits…….

*Zach Kerr……….IS WE BLACKED OUT 2DAY O YEA LETS GET IT……..5 hours ago
*Cody Blue………
is finally home again, and for longer than 3 days this time :)……..6 hours ago
*Caleb Porzel………..
is ready for my last war im not goin to let up at all remember dat GC……..7 hours ago
*Danny O’Brien……….
is BLLAACKOUUTT!……..8 hours ago

7:23-It is Senior Night tonight; and the Terps are currently honoring their 30 seniors on the field with a line of family members that covers 50+ yards. The seniors are:

Jeff Allen, Aaron Ball, Kevin Barnes, Chase Bullock, Scott Burley, Rick Costa, Trey Covington, Ricardo Dacosta, Arnold Davies, Obi Egekeze, Moise Fokou, Mack Frost, Jack Griffin, Dan Gronkowski, Rashad Henry, Dean Muhtadi, Jeremy Navarre, Lee Oliver, Danny Oquendo, Olugbemi Otulaja, Dave Philistin, Dane Randolph, Drew Robinson, Andrew Schmitt, Alex Schultz, Jordan Steffy, Richard Taylor, Jaimie Thomas, Edwin Williams, and Isaiah Williams

7:15-Update from Alabama; where Florida State safety Myron Rolle HAS been named a Rhodes Scholar. Rolle accepted the honor in Birmingham; and will be given the opportunity to study at Oxford now. Rolle is presumably currently on a flight to DC; where he will then drive to College Park and hopes to play at some point tonight. No word on whether or not he will receive a police escort; as there was some traffic on the beltway tonight. I don’t expect him until the 2nd half; but he will certainly provide an emotional lift to Bobby Bowden’s Seminoles. Reserve Roosevelt Lawson will start in his place.

7:05-We’re still more than 40 minutes from kickoff in College Park; but the Maryland Terrapins are already forced to overcome adversity tonight. Thinking all week that tonight’s game could be played for the right to clinch the ACC Atlantic; the Terps instead will play just to stay alive. Boston College put together a remarkable TD drive followed by a defensive stand to beat Wake Forest 24-21. Maryland must now win tonight against Florida State; then beat Boston College next week in Chestnut Hill to have the chance to play in Tampa.

And as far as ACC Champions go; how do the Boston College Eagles now look having won back to back games AT Florida State and AT Wake Forest; when both teams were playing for their own ACC title hopes. Not to mention; the rally tonight came with backup QB Wake is now eliminated from title contention; Florida State needs a win tonight and a Maryland win next week for a shot at the title.