Maryland-Virginia Tech Live Blog

November 06, 2008 | Glenn Clark

10:52-Tech just wants to run the clock out; but the Terps won’t let them…….because they can’t make a tackle! Darren Evans is now at 253 yards; a new single-game school record at Virginia Tech. The Hokies will go to victory formation; and Maryland will have 9 days to try to come up with answers on defense. Let’s pay this one forward……Virginia Tech 23, Maryland 13. Terps fall to 6-3 overall; 3-2 in the ACC. They will certainly fall out of the Top 25 in all polls; but will have a key matchip with North Carolina next Saturday to stay alive in pursuit of an ACC Championship.

I will have more shortly.

10:50-I will say this much……Had tonight’s game been at home; Maryland would have won. It is just SO tough to win on the road in the ACC; and Maryland clearly hasn’t learned just how exactly to do it. They were given a gift at Clemson; but they will now need to win out-which will include a game at Boston College November 29.

10:48-Darren Evans with another first down; and the Terps will not even get the ball back tonight. On top of that, Nolan Carroll is hurt.

10:45-Chris Cosh will have PLENTLY of questions to answer after allowing Darren Evans ANOTHER first down; putting him over 200 yards today. The Mikell Simpson and Darren Evans performances might ultimately be how we remember Cosh if this is his final season in College Park-which it almost has to be; even if he doesn’t have the horses. Maryland will call their remaining timeouts; but this game is obviously over.

10:42-As I mentioned at the half; the number that will ultimately tell the story of Maryland’s undoing is rushing yards. WIth ANOTHER 20 yard scamper from Darren Evans, the Hokies now have 223 on the game. Maryland has -12. They were in a position to have to try to steal the game in the 2nd half; but it appears as though even those hopes are going to go unanswered. 4 minutes to play; Tech faces 3rd and 6 from their own 30; Maryland just called their first timeout. Tech would be smart to run the ball here. Time is more valuable than a first down in a 2 possession game.

10:38-The Terps dug their own grave tonight; and the ladder they built didn’t quite get them out. This won’t go down as a COMPLETE collapse; but it will not help them in the eyes of doubters. It won’t help them get casual fans out to next Saturday’s game against North Carolina; a game where their ACC fate will REALLY be on the line.

10:35-Terps will start with the ball from their own 30; and need to score quickly here. Dump-offs to Da’Rel Scott for no yards and 15 seconds are not helpful. A 2nd down completion to Isaiah Williams garners 4 yards; but they’ve run a minute and a half off the clock with just those 4 yards to show.

Turner’s pass on 3rd down goes incomplete; and Maryland will be forced to give the ball back. This one is over.

10:31-Maryland holds; but Keys connects from 28 and gives Virginia Tech a 2 possession advantage again with 7:30 to play; 23-13. Maryland must get to work quickly; as they need to leave at least 3:30 on the clock to really have any opportunity to get the ball back at all. They also CANNOT waste their timeouts. This is the type of drive you HAVE to put together if you want a chance to be ACC Champs. Remember Matt Ryan rallied Boston College from down 10 in the final minutes of their game in Blacksburg on a Thursday night last season.

10:29-The inability to get pressure on 3rd down dooms Maryland again; as Glennon is again able to go underneath for a first down. The Hokies are in easy FG range from here; and are working on the clock as well. This could be double trouble for the Terps; who are watching 40 seconds tick off the clock after every play.

10:25-The spot WAS overturned; leaving the Hokies with a 4th and 1 and a MAJOR chance for Maryland to turn things around, but Darren Evans got outside for 3 yards and Tech has a first down at the 31.

10:22-No pressure from Maryland; and Glennon steps up to convert a 3rd and 3. Tech will have the ball on their own 33; right on the cusp of field goal range. They’ll review the spot, but this one will stand as well.

10:19-Mistakes are inexcusable at all times; but ESPECIALLY inexcusable when you are attempting to mount a 4th quarter comeback. A hold costs the Terps ten yards; and two Turner passes are absolutely over-fired, as he is clearly a bit too excited. He is normally unflappable in pressure situations, but he still has a tendency to be a bit erratic.

Virginia Tech gets a HUGE field position win with that stop; as they will start on Maryland’s side of the field following the punt, putting this defense at a significant disadvantage and not realy in a place where they can afford to give up any points. This is where failing to get a TD from the 11 hurts; as it would buy them a field goal worth of wiggle room.

10:16-What a start to the 4th quarter for Maryland. The Hokies are stopped on 3rd and 1; and the Terps will take control at their own 16 with plenty of time and their entire arsenal available. Turner must remain under control here.

10:14-It is important to remember that no matter what happens tonight and the rest of the weekend; Maryland will still control their own destiny; as they still do not have a division loss. It would be significantly better for them to keep some distance in front of other foes though; as they would like to make the November 22nd game against Florida State decide the division title.

10:10-A nice mix from Virginia Tech gets them a first down. Not only is it important for Maryland to keep this as a 1 possession game; but they can’t afford to let Tech start to work the clock. Greg Boone is marvelous in running the ball from the QB spot; avoiding a sack and getting Tech into a 3rd and 1 position as the 3rd quarter comes to a close.

10:08-Obi Egekeze’s 27 yard FG is good; and Maryland is back in the game; trailing by one possession 20-13 with a few minutes still left to play in the 3rd. The defense MUST continue to make stops though; and the Hokies will likely look back to Evans on this drive.

10:06-Bad news, bad news, and bad news.

1-Another attempted underneath route by DHB is snuffed out; and Maryland gets just back to the line of scrimmage.

2-Virginia Tech is CLEARLY fired up after the play; and may take back momentum.

3-DHB was slow to get up……although he was fired up when he DID get up.

10:04-Again Maryland will be faced with 3rd and long. This is a place for an underneath route. A field goal is not the worst thing to happen here; as it still makes this a one possession game. But getting 6 would make the hearts on the Va Tech sideline race a bit; and would extend momentum from the punt miscue. A field goal could calm the Virginia Tech team; and help them re-establish their own will.

10:02-That couldn’t have been more of a momentum swing on consecutive plays. Turner is sacked for a 10 yard loss; but the ensuing punt bounces off a Virginia Tech player and is recovered by Maryland at about the 11. You don’t see Virginia Tech make special teams gaffes much; so they must capitalize on this.

10:00-Turner is fortunate to not be picked on 2nd down; and Maryland stares down a 3rd and 9. A swing seems to be in line. Da’Rel Scott will need to make a play.

9:57-And it was. Maryland has officially taken momentum back with that stop; and now they have the chance to get a score and get officially back into the game. They CANNOT afford to let their emotions get the best of them though.

Momentum continues with a blocked punt, even though the ball did manage to travel forward for the Hokies. Maryland then follows that up with a HUGE run from Da’Rel Scott; and the Terps are in business on the Tech side of the field. THIS is seizing momentum.

9:56-The Terps are STILL allowing Glennon all the time in the world to throw the ball; and he will make plays if that continues. He got 24 yards on first down; but the Terps have managed to force them into a 3rd and 10 from their own 39. This has to be the type of play where they get off the field. HAS to be.

9:54-A stop becomes even more important here because Maryland can’t allow this to become a game against the clock either. Beating Virginia Tech is hard enough; beating the clock as well is almost impossible. They have to get this back to a 1 possession game with enough time still on the clock.

A HUGE penalty on the Virginia Tech return helps, as the Hokies are forced to start from their own 15.

9:49-Maryland will be faced with a 3rd and 5 here; and at this point; it wouldn’t hurt for SOMEONE in the huddle to say something about how THIS play could determine their ACC title fate.

JUST LIKE THAT! A PERFECT underneath route ran by DHB connects for 62 yards and Maryland is FINALLY in the endzone; and within 10 points with just under 7 minutes to play in the 3rd. Remember what I said about the 15 yard taunting penalty being a possible game-changer. Now the Terps must respond again on defense. A turnover could get them right back into the game.

9:47-Virginia Tech gifts Maryland 15 yards on a taunting penalty to get the Terps out past the 20. This is the EXACT type of play that can become a game-changer; if Maryland responds.

9:44 My postgame story will likely have something to do with handling adversity. This is Chris Turner’s job; but he has failed miserably to overcome adversity many times this season. In fact, the only game during which he has actually responded positively in a situation like this was Clemson. He HAS to learn to be a vocal leader on field; as the games are not going to get easier before the season ends.

9:42-Terps are fortunate to stymie this Virginia Tech drive; but the Hokies will have the chance to pin Maryland in deep. The Terps absolutely HAVE to have to have something positive happen here; but they will have to do it from inside their own 5.

9:39-Trailing by 13; you can pretty much count on Virginia Tech running the ball. This would of course make Darren Evans’ 45 yard run on first down all the more inexplicable. This team is imploding right now; and Darren Evans looks a bit like Mikell Simpson.

9:36-Two plays in the 2nd half; two plays where the offensive line just absolutely forgets they have to block. Turner is fortunate to throw that ball to someone’s feet on 1st down; but on the 3rd offensive play of the 2nd half he is sacked. Virginia Tech can feel free to attempt to tee off on Turner with a 17 point lead. Terps get about 13 on a swing to Scott on 3rd and 16; and they will be forced to punt again. This one won’t be turned around; despite nice punt coverage from Terrell Skinner.

9:33-A gift 3 points for the Hokies as Keys nails a 30 yard FG to entend their lead to 20-3 early in the 3rd. The Terps are on life support early in the 2nd half; and MUST get a touchdown right about now; or else they might not get one at all tonight.

9:31-Darren Evans must be okay; as he is back on the field for the Hokies. They face a 3rd and 11; this is an absolute MUST stop for Maryland.

9:29-Coming up big in key situations is something that you HAVE to learn how to do if you want to win on the road. This Maryland team has yet to learn how to seize momentum on the road and put teams behind the 8 ball. You cannot just sit back and let the game come to you; you have to step up and make plays in big situations.

As I say this; Chris Turner is sacked and fumbles inside his own 20. This could be over right now.

9:20-Nice to know that of 3 VERY important football games tonight; the Maryland-Virginia Tech game is the only one you’re able to watch on your Comcast TV. And interestingly enough; this game is probably the 3rd most important of the games. The NFL Network of course is where Cleveland has a 17-10 lead over Denver in Brady Quinn’s debut. Something tells me Derek Anderson would have had a 17-10 lead at this point too.

Meanwhile; on CBS College Sports-a network many people likely don’t even know exists-TCU has a 10-3 lead over unbeaten Utah in Salt Lake City. This game might as well be a BCS playoff game; as the loser will be all but out of consideration to play in a major bowl game. The interesting subplot here will be whether or not TCU jumps past Boise State with a win over Utah. Should Boise State stay ahead and finish unbeaten; the Broncos would likely stay ahead of the Horned Frogs in the BCS standings; which could prevent the Mountain West from getting a team into the BCS at all-despite TCU arguably having better wins than Boise State.

9:18-You want a halftime stat to jump out at you? Virginia Tech rushing yards-129. Maryland rushing yards-4. Maryland will need a Clemson-like collapse to get back into this one; as they will not be able to turn rushing stats around without something like the double reverse they executed in South Carolina. Virginia Tech is likely too disciplined to fall for something like that here though.

9:07-We’ll go to the half with Maryland trailing 17-3. Lots of blame to go around. I’ll be back with some analysis after we give away some t-shirts. Maryland needed to get to the half here; as re-establishing momentum on the road is almost impossible without a time stoppage. Hopefully the students will be late getting back to their seats to start the 3rd.

9:05-The try is true; and Virginia Tech extends their lead to 17-3 with just 9 seconds to play in the half. Maryland will have to re-evalute at the half; as the run will be all but taken out of the offense. They might need to move to a diet of short passes again on their first possession of the 2nd half; as it has worked throughout the game.

9:03-That is absolutely back-breaking. Following a timeout on 3rd and 18; Greg Boone slips between every Maryland defender for 26 yards to get Virginia Tech to the 18. With 13 seconds left and no timeouts; Virginia Tech won’t take any chances; they’ll kick a FG here and not risk anything.

9:01-A strange delay of game forces Va Tech into a 3rd and 18. Maryland inexplicably follows that by calling a timeout. With just 45 seconds left; I imagine Virginia Tech will still take a chance.

8:59-A sack could be just what Maryland needed; especially as Sean Glennon comes up limping. Va Tech faces a 3rd and 13 from the 42; but given the time running off the clock; this might be 4 down territory.

8:57-Darren Evans might be banged up; but it looks like just about anyone could run on this Maryland defense right now.

8:55-Virginia Tech plays things safe to get a first down before they attempt to move into scoring position. With 1:21 to play in the half; they’ll be working just past midfield. Maryland needs a big play BADLY to turn things around here. Even a FG might send Maryland to the showers doubting their ability to come alive.

8:53-Again too much zip from Turner as he tries to find Oquendo downfield. This could get ugly at the half. Virginia Tech will start with the ball on Maryland’s side of the field; and the Maryland defense is seriously tired.

CORRECTION: A flag will keep Va Tech on their own side of the field; but the changes in momentum on the last two Maryland possessions are VERY costly. They HAVE to find a stop here.

8:51-Maryland tries to get DHB involved in the backfield, but Va Tech snuffs it out for a 10 yard loss. EXTREMELY bad time to be moving backwards. Turner had Oquendo on 2nd down downfield; but put too much zip on it. Giving the ball back this quickly could doom Maryland here.

8:49-Va Tech extends their lead to 14-3 late in the half. The failed 3rd and 1 will haunt the Terps. The good news here is that Maryland starts with the ball in the 2nd half; so if they can manage to get a score here; they’ll be in good shape.

8:48-He didn’t get in; but it won’t matter. This won’t be overturned.

8:47-Darren Evans goes to the air on 2nd down to punch things in for the Hokies. Looks like they’ll take another look; but he appeared to cross the goal line.

8:46-No collapse in the middle; and Tech gets a first down inside the 5. This should be academic with Boone in the game.

8:43-Big defensive play coming for Maryland here; as you would like to keep this a 1 possession game as we get closer to the Half. Virginia Tech helps Maryland by not having a QB run option on 3rd and 5; but I would imagine they’re going to try to go with something towards the endzone in case Maryland collapses the middle.

8:41-Tech goes to Macho Harris on an end around, then fakes the reverse allowing Boone to run for a short first down. They will continue to threaten outside; which will open things up for them inside.

8:39-Talk about a turning point……after the Terps fail to convert a 3rd and 1; they are rewarded by having Evans bounce off a short tackle for a 50 yard run. He’s already over 100 yards for the game; and Virginia Tech is inside the Maryland 30.

8:34-Terps going to Meggett on this drive; but he gets stacked up on 3rd and 1; and Maryland will have to give the ball back. Remember that play; as that was a real opportunity for Maryland to keep things moving their way.

Baltz recovers from a bad snap to boom a punt into the endzone, and Va Tech will start at their own 20.

8:30-Nice defensive plays on 1st and 2nd down; including a SOLID coverage sack forces a 3rd and long; where they get another coverage sack. HUGE defensive stand following a big return, and momentum could be available for the Terps to steal back here; as Va Tech’s punt sails into the endzone.

8:28-As I said; Special Teams will be a factor. Virginia Tech commits to blocking downfield; and they’ll start from Maryland’s 45 thanks to it. Nice saving dive from Egekeze.

8:25-It isn’t the answer they wanted; but the Terps will take Egekeze’s 41 yard boot to get within 7-3. They now need to re-establish the line of scrimmage on this Va Tech possession. Of course, that is SIGNIFICANTLY easier said than done.

8:23-A draw might have been better. The pitch leaves them with 3rd and 18 and outside of FG range. Nice work ESPN to let us know that Maryland has ran 6 times for just 1 yard tonight. Maryland gets back about 14 on 3rd down; giving Egekeze a reasonable try.

8:21-We have our first DHB sighting, as Maryland goes to him in the flat to move the ball to the 29. A false start gives Maryland a tough 2nd and 15. I get the feeling a draw might be next.

8:18-Terps get Hokies to jump for a 2nd time thus far; which couldn’t be more helpful. They’ll end the first quarter trailing 7-0; but on the move again.

8:16-Gutty pass on 3rd and 4 goes 26 yards to Torrey Smith. Smith has done a nice job of finding soft zones and getting open. Still not much going in the run for Da’Rel Scott, but Maryland might want to consider continuing to throw the ball downfield; as Turner has had time.

8:11-It sounded as though their might be a number of Maryland fans who made the trip to Blacksburg judging by the noise that was being made on the 3rd and goal play. Maryland will start with the ball at about the 20; needing to get the run going and to get the ball in the hands of the great Darrius-Heyward Bey.

8:08-Glennon goes over the top to Boone for a 5 yard TD pass. Maryland cannot afford to allow a terrible redzone offense to succeed inside the 20. Wujciak bought a double move on that play to allow Boone to get behind him; and Maryland was unable to get pressure. Va Tech goes up 7-0 with about 4 minutes to play in the first.

This is where Maryland needs to respond quickly, or else this could become a multi-possession defecit early, much like their trip to Charlottesville.

8:05-Va Tech goes to Greg Boone for a “Wildcat”-type run, which unbelievably picks up 5. Virginia Tech is owning up front right now; and has pushed the ball all the way to the 10.

8:03-I will admit that I hadn’t seen that statistic before. Unbelievable to think that no Virginia Tech receiver has scored a TD this season.

Just like that, momentum is officially on the Va Tech side; as a long run gets the Hokies inside the 35. Maryland is normally tougher up front against the run, and more likely to be caught napping outside. Glennon finds Goale again, and the Hokies are in FG range.

8:01-Macho Harris is NOT the greatest offensive weapon on the face of the planet; but he must be accounted for. Maryland does a nice job on the double reverse of staying home and not letting a trick play burn them.

7:59-That’s a REAL victory for the Virginia Tech defense; who was on their feet until Maryland went with back to back runs from the 29. Might be the type of victory that starts momentum on the Hokies’ side.

7:56-Drive stalls as the Terps try to force the run; Egekeze can’t get the ball to the left on a 46 yard FG attempt; and the game remains scoreless.

7:55-Continued effective passing from

Turner gets the Terps inside the 30. No positive running plays yet this game.

7:50-That was the difference between Tyrod Taylor and Sean Glennon. Glennon had all the room in the world on 3rd and 10 to run; but he has no speed. Taylor would have taken that for a first down. Turner comes out throwing on Maryland’s first drive; and connects with Ronnie Tyler for a first down. You have to wonder if Da’Rel Scott will have have his ‘burst’ tonight.

Two more first downs for Maryland on short passing plays. Turner is running plays effectively thus far with solid protection.

7:47-Don’t discount Special Teams in this game. Frank Beamer has stolen victories throughout his career thanks to Special Teams. Maryland is not a team that has punts blocked; but it could happen tonight. And downfield blocking on returns happens all the time.

We won’t be doing as much play by play tonight since I’m not at the game; but more comment. A false start helps the Terps on Va Tech’s first possession; as they’ll be faced with 3rd and 10.

7:45-Glennon getting the start could be the best thing for Maryland. They still need to get pressure on the QB; but it is easier to pressure a statue than it is to pressure a cheetah. I get the feeling Da’Rel Scott might not be good for much more than 15 carries.

7:39-The biggest question here is “Which Maryland team shows up?” I’m actually not concerned about the Terps laying an egg tonight; but I AM concerned about the Hokies getting to the outside against the Maryland defense; which has struggled to get penetration.

7:17-We’re at Della Rose’s, so if you don’t have anywhere to be-stop by for $3 Miller Lite bottles. Word from Blacksburg is all 3 QB’s have dressed for the Hokies; but they WON’T name a starter until the first drive.

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