I am a Maryland Terrapins fan. I also live in Baltimore. Let’s get that out of the way.
Many Terps’ fans in Baltimore were excited when they heard the news that Maryland football would be playing games at M&T Bank Stadium in 2013 and 2014 against West Virginia and Virginia Tech.
I understand that Kevin Anderson and Randy Edsall want to appeal to their Baltimore fans. There is nothing wrong with that. I just do not agree with playing what are likely to be two very big rivalry games, including a conference game against VT, away from Byrd Stadium.
The Terrapins should be working to create an elite homefield advantage. Opposing teams should fear coming to College Park to face Maryland.
What kind of message does it send about Byrd Stadium and the atmosphere that surrounds it when Maryland gives away two marquee home games to M&T Bank Stadium?
Maryland and Texas recently agreed to a home and home series. That is great for the program…it really is. They will be playing a significant game against one of the most popular, historic, and relevant programs in college football. Maryland had to do what they had to do to in order to secure those games against Texas.
The difference between the Texas series, and playing the two games in Baltimore, is that Maryland already had those games. Maryland could be playing West Virginia and Virginia Tech at Byrd Stadium, but they are choosing not to.
Why choose to give up playing in your home stadium in two huge games? Why not do everything possible to make Byrd Stadium a better place to play a big game, rather than just packing up and moving to Baltimore instead?
The Terps have a lot going for them right now. I was as disappointed as anyone when Maryland did not hire Mike Leach, but it is tough to argue with the credentials that Randy Edsall had built up at Connecticut. I do not have much doubt that Edsall can win, and win big, at Maryland.
This is a new era of Terps football. Edsall is having turf installed at Byrd in 2012. There are plans to build an indoor practice facility.The Terrapins are going to be joining with Under Armour in hopes of becoming the eastern version of Oregon/Nike. Kevin Anderson has told me that the Terps will likely wear different uniform combinations every week.
Some may scoff at something as trivial as uniforms, but to recruits, flashy is never a bad thing. Just look at Oregon.
Obviously, the program is making every effort to become more relevant on a national level.