Grading Out Maryland’s Performance Against Clemson


Maryland just continues to find new and frustrating ways to lose. They blew two separate 18-point leads to the visiting Tigers, and ended up falling to 2-4 on the season. Regardless, there were positives and negatives to draw from this game, and let’s run it down in our weekly Testudos.

Five Testudos :

Lorne Goree, Joe Vellano, and Matt Furstenburg. Goree had his breakout game, leading the team in tackles with 12 and getting a big sack on Tajh Boyd. Vellano continued his excellent season with eleven tackles and a pass breakup, and even ran down Sammy Watkins at one point to prevent a first down. Furstenburg was the only completely reliable receiver on the day (although Kerry Boykins, who we’ll cover later, had his best game to date), and caught five passes for 104 yards and two scores.

Four Testudos :

C.J. Brown, Davin Meggett, Alex Twine, Cameron Chism, and Gary Crowton. Brown brought a new level of excitement to Maryland’s offense by taking over the helm, and even though he struggled in the passing game (17/35 for 177 yards, three touchdowns and one interception), he was dynamic on the ground (22 rushes for 162 yards and a score). Meggett ran very well (16 rushes for 69 yards and a score) and caught a 7-yard touchdown pass. Twine had an excellent first half but seemed to get tired in the second, and finished with eight tackles, including a half a tackle for a loss. Chism returned an interception for a touchdown (his second such score of the year) and had nine tackles with two passes defended. Meanwhile, Crowton called an excellent game, but could have done a little more in terms of bubble screens. Yes, bubble screens. In the second half, Clemson’s defense adjusted, putting spies in the center of the field to prevent C.J. Brown from taking off on easy scrambles. As a response, Crowton should have spread the field out by calling his usual barrage of bubble screens, but we didn’t see it. Regardless, he called a good game, and involved Furstenburg like we’ve always wanted him to.

Three Testudos :

Mario Rowson, Justus Pickett, and Kerry Boykins. Rowson did an admirable job subbing in for Kenny Tate, finishing with three tackles but making some big plays. Pickett didn’t see the ball much, but had five runs for 31 yards and caught one pass for 11 yards, looking like his potentially-explosive self. Boykins had his best game yet (not statistically, but in terms of consistency) and caught four passes for 30 yards.

Two Testudos :

David Mackall, Titus Till, Eric Franklin, and Dexter McDougle. Mackall didn’t make any serious blunders, but he finished with just one assisted tackle on the day. Till and Franklin both finished high in tackles (nine and ten, respectively) but both missed a handful of tackles and failed to provide adequate help defense on Sammy Watkins, while McDougle, who was inexplicably left to cover Watkins instead of Chism, struggled all day to contain him.

One Testudo :

Quintin McCree, Ronnie Tyler, and Randy Edsall. McCree dropped a ton of passes, causing the ESPN crew to question whether he was paying attention in the game. Tyler dropped a pass in his hands in the end zone that could have given Maryland a possibly unbeatable margin. Edsall called extremely questionable timeouts, leaving the Terps in an even tougher position to attempt to make the comeback late in the fourth quarter.