Maryland certainly didn’t have the afternoon that they were hoping for against Minnesota.
With that 31-10 loss behind them, the Terrapins will look to bounce back with a win against Michigan State on Saturday evening.
Entering last Saturday’s game, it was up in the air whether or not Perry Hills would start at quarterback. After the game, coach D.J. Durkin said that Hills’ shoulder was a “ticking time bomb” and he didn’t want to risk a more serious injury.
Freshman Tyrrell Pigrome ended up having to make the first start of his career. Pigrome had relieved Hills on multiple occasions through the first five games, but had never began the game as the team’s quarterback.
Pigrome struggled throwing the ball throughout the game as he finished 18-of-37 for 161 yards to go along with one touchdown and two interceptions. He did add 71 yards on the ground, but had difficulty making the right reads all afternoon.
Arguably, Maryland’s biggest weakness was their run defense.
Minnesota totaled 229 rushing yards with Rodney Smith racking up 144 of them and a pair of touchdowns. The biggest was a 70-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter that gave the Golden Gophers a commanding 24-3 lead.
Michigan State has had even more struggles than Maryland as of late.
The Spartans have lost four consecutive games and are coming off a 54-40 loss at the hands of Northwestern. Michigan State surrendered 490 yards of total offense and Clayton Thorson threw three touchdown passes.
Michigan State struggled to establish the ground game throughout the contest. That’s been the theme throughout the bulk of the season as the Spartans are last in the Big Ten in rushing.
This could be exactly what the doctor ordered for the Terps, who have been brutal against the run. Maryland is currently giving up 179.5 rushing yards per contest and has been gashed by the likes of Saquon Barkley and Smith the past two weeks.
This game features a pair of teams that are very desperate to get back into the win column. The Spartans will thought to be a Big Ten title contender and the Terps looked to be on the right path through the first four games.
Maryland Terrapins vs. Michigan State Spartans
When: Saturday, October 22, 7:30 p.m.
Where: Maryland Stadium (College Park, Md.)
TV: Big Ten Network
Line: Michigan State -2.5