Terps Pass Defense: 109th Nationally
Make what you want of statistics. You can always twist and turn them in different positions so they come out in your favor. (See: Gary Williams vs. Missouri Valley Conference) But check this out:
Maryland’s pass defense now ranks 109th in the nation. The Terps have allowed 279.25 yards per game through the air, and they have only played one school, California, from a BCS conference. I understand the Terps were in prevent mode in the fourth quarter of the Cal game, when Kevin Riley threw for 239 yards in that quarter alone. But 217 of the 282 passing yards that EMU threw for came in the first half yesterday.
Maryland has a way of turning the Kyle McMahons and Joe Craddocks of the world into stars for a day.
“We made a couple big plays in the first quarter and then everyone went to sleep,” defensive tackle Jeremy Navarre said of Eastern Michigan. “I feel for the most part everyone was up, but it’s staying that way regardless of how we are doing.”
Cornerback Kevin Barnes said: “They had a few good plays that took us out of rhythm. But I think overall we were just thinking too much and expecting too many little plays. We pretty much practiced every play that they did; we just didn’t go out there and play our style. After a while, it was getting kind of embarrassing. That's not our defense."
While the struggles of the pass defense is a concern, I also don't want to make too much of this. Why? Check out the team that ranks 110th in the nation: Missouri, which has a fighter's chance to win the national title. The only other school from a BCS conference that ranks worse than 110 is Washington, which has faced three mighty offenses in Oregon, BYU and Oklahoma, losing all three games.
Maryland also ranks 85th nationally in total defense, allowing 391.25 yards per game.
On the bright side, Maryland is 13th in net punting.
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