The Maryland football team has run the ball well all season. However, the tables were turned on Saturday afternoon.
Penn State rushed for 372 yards as a team in a 38-14 win over Maryland at Beaver Stadium. Sophomore running back Saquon Barkley led the way with 202 yards and a touchdown.
Maryland didn’t get a whole lot of offensive production. The highlight was a 66-yard touchdown by running back Ty Johnson on a screen in the first quarter.
It certainly wasn’t an ideal start for the Terrapins from the opening whistle.
Penn State shredded the Maryland defense on a seven-play, 84-yard drive to start off the game. The Nittany Lions accumulated 58 of those yards on the ground.
The drive ended with quarterback Trace McSorley finding his tight end Mike Gesicki open in the flat for a five-yard touchdown. Gesicki was one of just three players to catch passes for the Nittany Lions.
On Maryland’s first drive, quarterback Perry Hills was sacked twice and the Terrapins were forced to punt.
After forcing Penn State to punt, Walt Bell’s offense took center stage. Hills had some success running the ball and even picked up a first down for the Terps.
On the fifth play of the drive, Hills looked to one side of the field then looked the other way and dumped off a screen pass to Johnson. Johnson received a phenomenal block from wideout Levern Jacobs and took it down the sidelines for a 66-yard touchdown.
Johnson’s scamper tied the game at seven with 7:13 remaining in the opening quarter. It was his fourth play of 48 yards or more in the last four quarters.
The pass accounted for all but six yards of Hills’ total for the day. He completed just 5-of-7 passes on the afternoon before exiting due to a leg injury in the second quarter.
The second quarter was one to forget for Maryland football.
The Nittany Lions outscored the Terps 17-7 and received a pair of rushing touchdowns from Barkley and McSorley. Barkley punched in a 45-yard touchdown in the final minute of the first half to give Penn State a 24-14 lead going into halftime.
Prior to Barkley’s touchdown, backup quarterback Tyrrell Pigrome came into the game after Hills went down on a running play. On his first play, Pigrome scored from seven yards out to cut it to a three-point game.
That was really the only positive for Pigrome as he failed to move the ball for Maryland.
After Penn State forced another Maryland punt in the final seconds of the third quarter, McSorley launched a 70-yard touchdown pass to DeAndre Thompkins. Cornerback J.C. Jackson fell down on the play, which allowed Thompkins to become wide-open.
Maryland’s run defense really underachieved and allow Penn State to take a lot of the pressure off of McSorley. It also didn’t hurt that the Penn State quarterback was able to get the job done running the ball when he had to.
Maryland football will spend the next two games in College Park as they have Minnesota next Saturday and Michigan State on Oct. 22.