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Terps Likely Headed to Humanitarian Bowl

Maryland will likely land in the Humanitarian Bowl in Boise, Idaho, where the Terrapins would probably play Nevada.

But Maryland officials are still clinging to hope of playing in Charlotte, perhaps against West Virginia. They say it would take a Boston College victory over Virginia Tech in the ACC title game on Saturday, followed by a series of events. I lay that out in my story.

Rick Chryst, commissioner of the MAC, told me this afternoon that Ball State-Boise State would not happen after both the MAC and Ball State "exhausted all possibilities" to see if the game could be played. Officials at the Humanitarian Bowl then met for about two hours.

Maryland officials on Tuesday made a last-ditch effort to see if they could work around exams and play in the EagleBank Bowl against Navy. But far too many players had exams that conflicted with the game, which made playing in it impossible.

Nevada (7-5 overall, 5-3 WAC) was second in the nation in rushing yardage this season, averaging 291.42 yards per game on the ground. The Wolf Pack was also fourth in the country at stopping the run, allowing just 74.5 rushing yards per game. Nevada closed the season by winning three of its final four games, its only loss in that span coming at home to Boise State, 41-34.

By Eric Prisbell  |  December 3, 2008; 6:21 PM ET
Categories:  Football  
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Comments

I must say I have mixed feelings about all of this:

True--Maryland gets to play in another bowl game!
True--Nevada is a good team and would be a tough opponent for the Terps!
Also true--the Humanitarian Bowl offers perhaps the poorest of opportunities for any team seeking to raise its national profile!

Maryland would have been better off to play Navy in the EagleBank bowl. I realize their exam schedules made that match-up infeasible.

Hopefully, we'll earn one more win next year to rule out another trip to Boise!

Posted by: Terptwin | December 3, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

This is the best that Maryland can do?
I saw on CBSsportsline that Wake might play in the Motor City bowl against Ball State (12-0), so UMD finishes number 5 in the ACC and is ranked in the top 3rd of the conference for bowl game travel and we end up in Boise playing a team from an inferior conference with an identical record. I have been a season ticket holder since the early 80's and have been to every bowl game during the RF era except the Orange bowl, I will not be going to Boise, but I would have gladly gone to Detroit to watch UMD play Ball State. Why should all the other 7-5 (except Miami) teams go to a bowl closer to home. I do not feel that the Athletic Department took the fans into consideration at all, or was this the ACC screwing UMD again?


Posted by: larry851 | December 3, 2008 7:51 PM | Report abuse

There is nothing more embarrassing than playing in the Smurf Turf Bowl.

Posted by: der7s | December 3, 2008 8:09 PM | Report abuse

It's called the Humanitarian Bowl because it's the crappiest bowl out of 34 in the most god-forsaken place in the U.S.

I think about 12 Terp fans will make the trip. Great job Fridge!

It's time to get rid of the Fridge.

Posted by: nativedc | December 3, 2008 8:44 PM | Report abuse

As an alumni and long suffering terd head fan, I can proudly say that the terds have never failed to disapoint me, except for one season of basketball. The athletic department has to learn to cut losses and demand excellence in athletics and ACADEMICS! Not good enough to be mediocre in both, or good in one but not the other.
My degree is cheapened everytime some class skipping underwater basket weaving major jock free passes his(her) way through Maryland's degree mill.

Posted by: tniederberger | December 3, 2008 9:29 PM | Report abuse

To nativedc and tniederberger: Sounds like somebody needs a hug!

Can we just get off this fantasy that we should playing for the national championship every year? If you are one these johnny-come-latelies who only started watching MD football when they started winning, let me remind you that many of us supported the teams, football and basketball, when they were at their worst. Could either team have done better? Sure. But let's not throw the baby out with the bath water. I've seen teams who have discarded good coaches because of one bad season. Tommy Tuberville and Phillip Fulmer immediately come to mind. I'm especially dismayed that a guylike Tuberville who, before this season had a perfect 13-0 season 4 years ago, had an .820 winning percentage, and beat Alabama SIX YEARS IN A ROW. Do you really want to get rid of Fridge, who not only brought yearly bowl games back to MD, not only brought more exposure on ESPN, but also has graduated more players than in the past? Trust me, you'll never ever be satisfied even if Almighty God was coach of the Terrapins.

Posted by: ecglotfelty | December 4, 2008 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Screw the Navy game, I don't know why everyone is so eager to see it happen. I suppose due solely to travel considerations... But the fact is we just played Navy in '05, and we're set to play them again in two seasons. WVU we played last year, and play them again two seasons from now... And we've played them a million times in the last 20 years.

Bowl games are supposed to be interesting or unusual match-ups. Save the rivalry games for the regular season, at the end of the year I want to see something that you almost never get the chance to see. How often do ACC teams get to play WAC or Pac10 opponents? How often do they play SEC or Big East teams?

I think going to Boise is stupid for the ACC--WE are the better conference, why are WE forced to travel across the country for the game? (the ACC apparently has come to their senses, because this is the last year they have a tie-in there), but a bowl game in the South or Midwest against a team from the West would be interesting. Nevada is different, so I think it's a decent match-up. Boise State would have been interesting even though they would likely skunk the Terps by 40+ points. What about BALL State? I think the Terps would beat the tar out of them (they are extremely overrated in my opinion). Instead they are probably going to play a team they have NO shot at beating from the Big 10... Stupid!

Posted by: jrchris | December 4, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Wow, some people are ignorant. So I'll try do help you out a bit.
1. It's called the Humanitarian Bowl because the World Sports Humanitarian Hall of Fame is in Boise, including people such as Arthur Ash and Tom Landry for instance. Its for people who have achieved beyond the sport.
http://www.sportshumanitarian.com/index.html

2. We know people don't like travelling out here. It's cold. Well man up, some of the best games ever take place in cold weather.

3. Ask teams that have come before, they rate the bowl highly. We'll treat your team right.

Posted by: boisestfan | December 4, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Ecglotfelty is correct about the Terps' head coach. Even Jim Tatum would find it hard going in today's athletic atmosphere. UMD teams perform well enough given the competition. Small differences between teams are often obscured by big differences in scores. The stats say that small, chance events during games often govern the outcome. Let's stick with Fridge and Gary. We are unlikely to find anyone better but very likely to end up worse.

Posted by: AncientTerp | December 4, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

And tniederberger: Get a life jerk. Yeah, you sound like a real "fan". We don't WANT fans like you.

One season of basketball? So, what, you're only satisfied with your team when they win NCAA championships? You sound like a real reasonable individual!

So what is your beef exactly? Maryland (football) does a decent job balancing its academics. For chrissakes, they're skipping an easy bowl choice because of their kids' exam schedules.

Maryland's degree mill? What did YOU get your degree in? I have the feeling you weren't taking the same classes as me, because I think you'd have a different opinion about Maryland academics. And as for their athletics, compare them (or 90% of ACC schools) to any Big 12 or SEC schools' academic standards for their athletes. Any of those teams that contend for those NCAA championships you so seem to cherish year in and year out.

I think Notre Dame is looking for some true diehard "fans" like you, who pelt their own players with snowballs. Take a hike, loser...

Posted by: jrchris | December 4, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse

"The stats say that small, chance events during games often govern the outcome."

AncientTerp: Then why are teams like USC, LSU, OSU, OU, Florida, etc. CONSTANTLY in contention for titles? How many non-"elite" schools generally have a shot at actually winning the title. Of course, there is a pro-"elite" bias, but still. Generally speaking, the big name schools are there year in and year out for a reason. That's because they have a reputation that can attract the best players, best coaches, and their fans and schools are willing to pony up the obscene amounts of money to keep them going.

There is a HUGE disparity, year-in and year-out between middle of the pack teams like Maryland, or even Georgia Tech and Florida State, and teams like say, Florida. Florida's second string could probably beat 98% of BCS teams in this country... I'm sorry, it's not small differences in these team, it's HUGE differences. And the system is so stacked against the non-big name schools that it's not easily changed.

That being said, a good, smart coach in a middle of the road school can cause a sea change in a season or two and that can turn things around with recruiting. And Ralph Friedgen is obviously not one of those coaches. I think in a year or two it's time to move on. Given what our schedule looks like next year, I think it will be the year that he is really put on the hot seat (you think MTSU was embarrassing? I think we're going to lose to Div I-AA JMU...). But only time will tell....

Posted by: jrchris | December 4, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

I have to agree with some of the comments, we do not want a non-ranked ACC team coming to Boise any more than you want to come. I think the embarrassing thing about Boise having to play the 8th best team in the ACC is: they deserve to play a much better team than the 8th best the ACC has to offer. Hopefully Boise will be playing in a BCS game or playing a ranked team like BYU or TCU in the Poinsettia Bowl. Either way it would be a shame to have to play a bottom team from the ACC regardless of the venue.

Posted by: craig2838 | December 4, 2008 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Craig: Sure, Boise State after their season deserves to play a better team than Maryland or Wake Forest (although I should point out Maryland isn't a "bottom" ACC team, they are tied for third in their division against three teams they beat)... But can you really argue that Nevada or whoever else in the WAC deserves a better team than one of the lower ACC teams? Of course not. I'm sorry but the simple fact of the matter is the WAC doesn't have the strength of most of the BCS conferences, even the "lowly" ACC (which is the best ranked conference by Sagarin in the country this year, btw, and probably has the best OOC record against the other BCS conferences).

And I also should point out, that the Humanitarian Bowl doesn't get the #8 RANKED team, they get #8 PICK of ACC teams, which is a big difference. See the Gator Bowl picking CLEMSON over FSU and, hell, even Maryland who beat Clemson. It's all about the ticket sales....

Posted by: jrchris | December 5, 2008 4:35 AM | Report abuse

I might one of the few Terp fans excited about the possibility of playing a bowl game in Boise. I live in the Seattle area and have only been able to watch three Maryland football games this year (on tv that is). Living on the West Coast it's very difficult to track Maryland sports. I will have a chance to make the eight hour drive to Boise to watch this game. Go Terps!

Posted by: cwduke2001 | December 5, 2008 12:53 PM | Report abuse

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