COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Coming off its first bye week of the season, the Maryland football team opens its Atlantic Coast Conference slate in Tallahassee against the eighth-ranked Florida State Seminoles Saturday from Doak S. Campbell Stadium with kickoff scheduled for 12:01 p.m. The Terps are riding a four-game winning streak and are off to their best start since the 2001 season when they won their first seven games en route to the ACC Championship. On Sunday, Maryland debuted in the The Associated Press Top 25 Poll at No. 25 making its first first appearance in the rankings since finishing 23rd in the final poll of the 2010 season.
LIVE Coverage on the ESPN & the Terrapin Sports Radio Network
• Saturday’s game will be broadcast on ESPN at noon. Dave Pasch (pbp). Brian Griese (color) and Tom Luginbill (sideline) will call the action. It can also be heard on the Terrapin Sports Radio Network – Johnny Holliday (pbp), Tim Strachan (color) and Scott McBrien (sideline) have the call. The game can also be heard on Sirius Radio Channel 91 and XM Radio Channel 91, as well as over the internet at www.umterps.com.
• Maryland’s defense stifled the Mountaineers at a rain-soaked M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. The Terps held WVU’s offense to 175 total yards, the lowest output by a West Virginia team since the Terps held WVU to 156 total yards in a 34-7 victory in College Park on Sept. 20, 2003. It is the second time this season Maryland has held an opponent under 200 yards of total offense (FIU, 8/31; 171 yards) and the first time the Terps held an opponent scoreless since beating Wake Forest, 26-0, on Oct. 18, 2008. In the win, Maryland forced six West Virginia turnovers, four fumble recoveries and two interceptions, the most created by the Terps since turning Georgia Tech over six times in a 20-17 overtime win in Atlanta on Oct. 11, 2001.
• With starting defensive backs Jeremiah Johnson and Dexter McDougle sidelined due to injury, defensive back A.J. Hendy turned in a superb performance with an interception and two fumble recoveries to earn the defensive game ball. Hendy’s interception put the Terps up 14-0 after the junior returned it 28 yards for the second Maryland touchdown of the game. Hendy’s interception was the second of his career with both being returned for touchdowns. The Bowie, Md., native picked off his first career pass against NC State on Nov. 26, 2011, an interception he returned 32 yards for a score. For his efforts, Hendy became the first Maryland player to be named The Walter Camp National Defensive Player of the Week. He also garnered ACC Defensive Back of the Week honors, and was named Jim Thorpe Honorable Mention Defensive Back of the Week and College Football Performance Honorable Mention Defensive Back of the Week.
• The Terps tallied two sacks against the Mountaineers to increase their season total to 17, which is tied for the lead in all of FBS. Defensive linemen Roman Braglio and Darius Kilgo each recorded a sack, while linebacker L.A. Goree led the team with nine tackles, five solo, including one tackle for loss. On the day, Maryland finished with eight tackles for loss led by Kilgo’s two. Adding to the Terps’ turnover total, defensive back Sean Davis and linebacker Matt Robinson each recovered a fumble, and linebacker Yannik Cudjoe-Virgil intercepted his first career pass.
• Despite being held to under 500 yards of total offense for the first time this season, quarterback C.J. Brown and the Maryland offense continued to run up the point total. The Terps have totaled 30 or more points in four consecutive games for the first time since the 2002 season. Brown threw for 210 yards (17-of-26) and passed for a touchdown and ran for another. Brown connected with tight end Dave Stinebaugh for the opening score of the game marking Stinebaugh’s first career touchdown reception. Wide receiver Deon Long led the Terps with six catches for 98 yards and running back Brandon Ross rushed for 67 yards and a touchdown.
• Place kicker Brad Craddock connected on all three of his field goal attempts against WVU including a season-long 50 yarder. Craddock, who was named College Football Performance National Placekicker of the Week, leads the ACC with 10 made FGs and is averaging a conference-best 2.5 field goals a game. His lone miss this season came from 52 yards at Connecticut (9/14), which would have tied his career long.
• Maryland’s 37-0 shutout victory over West Virginia is the Terps’ first shutout since blanking Wake Forest, 26-0, on Oct. 18, 2008, and is the first time the Terps shutout the Mountaineers since defeating them 33-0 in 1999. Of Maryland’s 22 victories over the Mountaineers, the Terps have held WVU scoreless in five of the contests.
• The Terps stifled the WVU offense holding the Mountaineers to 175 total yards marking the second time in four games the Maryland defense has held its opponent under 200 yards of total offense. In its season opener, Maryland held FIU to 171 total yards (8/31) and now has two of the top-25 defensive performances in terms of yardage. The 171-yard output by the Panthers is the 20th-lowest total nationally amongst FBS schools, while the 175 yards by WVU is the 25th lowest.
• Additionally, after holding West Virginia to 175 yards of total offense, Maryland has now recorded two of the top-10 defensive performances in school history since the 2000 season. FIU’s 171 total yards in the team’s season opener (8/31) is the seventh-lowest total since 2000, while WVU’s 175 total yards is the eighth-lowest total.
• A stout passing defense has keyed the early season success for the Terps. Maryland has held two of their opponents below 100 yards passing this season with the performance against WVU ranking as one of the best in the country. The Terps held West Virginia to 62 passing yards, which is the 19th fewest allowed, and opened the season by holding FIU (Aug. 31) to 80 yards passing.
• The defense has been extremely successfully in getting off the field and getting the ball in the offense’s hands. Maryland ranks ninth nationally in third-down defense holding opponents to a 25.4 percent success rate and has forced 26 three-and-outs. Maryland is averaging 6.5 three-and-outs per game, which is tied for seventh nationally and has forced the opposing offense off the field in three plays or less in 45.6 percent of its defensive possessions, which is the 11th-highest percentage nationally.
• With a string of strong defensive performances to open the season, Maryland is the third-ranked scoring defense in the country holding opponents to 10.3 points per game. That mark is the lowest average for a Maryland defense through four games since the 1980 season when the Terps held their first four opponents to an average of 9.3 points per game (Villianova, 3; Vanderbilt, 6; West Virginia, 11; North Carolina, 17).
• With six takeaways against West Virginia, the Terps increased their season total to 13, which is tied for fifth nationally with four other schools and their eight interceptions are tied for eighth. Maryland has at least two takeaways in every game this season and dating back to last year has recorded at least one takeaway in nine straight games. The six takeaways against the Mountaineers marks the most since the Terps recovered three fumbles and intercepted three passes against Georgia Tech on Oct. 11, 2001.
• Defensive back A.J. Hendy’s 28-yard interception return for a touchdown against West Virginia was Maryland’s second non-offensive touchdown in as many games. The last time Maryland scored a non-offensive touchdown in consecutive games came in 2010. Tony Logan returned a punt for a touchdown against FIU on Sept. 25, and added another punt return for a touchdown the following week against Duke (Oct. 2).
• Hendy and fellow defensive back Dexter McDougle have each returned an interception for a touchdown this season. Since 2009, the Terps have 19 non-offensive touchdowns, that total is the most in the ACC.
• With 37 points against the Mountaineers, the Terps have scored 30 or more points in all four contests this season. The last time the Terps scored 30 or points in four or more consecutive games came in 2002. Maryland topped 30 points in six consecutive games starting with Eastern Michigan (45, 9/21/02) and ending at North Carolina (59, 11/2/02). Maryland is averaging 39.8 points per game placing the Terps in a tie for the 28th-highest scoring offense in the country.
• Quarterback C.J. Brown and the Maryland offense has been attacking defenses down the field. The Terps are averaging 15.3 yards per completion, the 10th-highest total in the country, and Brown is averaging 15.8, best in the ACC and seventh nationally. The 15.3 yards per completion is the highest average for a Maryland offense since 1980.
• Brown’s primary threat downfield has been wide receiver Stefon Diggs. Diggs is averaging a league-high 22.2 yards per catch and for his career is averaging 17.3 yards per reception, the third-highest average among active players in the ACC with a minimum of 30 receptions. In addition, his 22.2 yards per catch average is the fourth highest nationally among receivers with 15 or more catches.
• With 236 yards of total offense against WVU, Brown passed Al Neville (2,734) for 22nd all-time for total offensive yards in a career in Maryland history with 2,754 yards. Brown leads the ACC with 331.5 yards of total offense per game and ranks 12th nationally.
Maryland Gameday Notes
Scout Team Players of the Week: Each Thursday during the season Edsall will announce the scout team players of the week. This week’s scout team players of the week are wide receiver Taivon Jacobs (offense), linebacker Jermaine Carter, Jr. (defense), and long snapper Joe Marchese (special teams).
Flag Bearers: Defensive lineman Keith Bowers will carry the American flag, and running back Kenneth Goins will carry the Maryland flag during Saturday’s introductions.
Game Captains: With the establishment of the leadship council for this season, Edsall will name game captains prior to each contest. The captains for the Florida State game are running back Brandon Ross (offense), defensive back Anthony Nixon (defense), and linebacker Matt Robinson (special teams).
Maryland-Florida State Series History
• Saturday will mark Maryland’s 24th all-time meeting between Maryland and Florida State. The Terrapins trail the all-time series with Seminoles, 2-21, and are 0-11 at Doak S. Campbell Stadium.
• Florida State has won six straight in the series including its defeat of the Terps, 41-14, in College Park last season.
•.Maryland’s last victory over the Seminoles came in 2006. The Terps defeated FSU, 27-24, at Byrd Stadium.