4B FROM BAND
you don't know.
TERPS: Can the
the home slate on
a positive note?
We think so.
The Daily football writers do
their best to predict, against the
spread, what happens in the 2014
football season. (Disclaimer:
Please don't follow our advice.)
Fifth-year senior linebacker Jake Ryan will be tasked with keeping Maryland's offense at bay, which
otherwise hasn't been better in one area or the other at making plays.
Fifth-year senior quarterback Devin Gardner hasn't been consistent this season by any means, but he
should see a Maryland pass defense that lacks depth beyond defensive back Sean Davis.
Saturday could mark Michigan football coach Brady Hoke's last game at Michigan Stadium. Last year, the Wolverines' 19-game home winning streak ended.
BreaM' better in most areas
Greg Alejandro Alexa
Garno ZLniga Dettelbach
Marpiandat Michigao(-5) Michigan Michigan Marpland
colorado as. No.2 Oregon ('32.5) Oregon Oregon wake Forest
Maryland at Michigan (-5)
Colorado vs. No. 2 Oregon (-32.5)
BostonCollegevs. Florida State (19)
Vanderbilt vs. No. 4 Mississippi St. (-30.5)
Indiana vs. No.6&Ohio State (-34.5)
Oklahoma Statevs. No.7 Baylor(-28.5)
No. 8Mississippi(=3.5)vs. Arkansas
No.19 USC vs. No.9 UCLA (-3.5)
Rutgersvs. No.11hMichigan State (-22)u
No. 12 Kansas Statevs. West Virginia (-2.5)
Washington Statevs. N r13 Arizona State (-16)A
No.15Arizonavs. No.17 Utah (-4)
No. 20 Mizzou vs. Tennessee (-3.5)
Kansasvs. No.21 Okahoma (-25)
Georgia Statevs. No. 22 Clemson (-40.5)
No. 25 Minnesota vs.No.23 Nebraska (-0)
No. 24 Louisville vs. Notre Darne -)
The State News vs The Michigan Daily (-10)
The State News
Having lost three of
last five, Maryland
offense can't keep up
By ALEXA DETTELBACH
Daily Sports Editor
Let's not beat around the bush: If
the Michigan football team wants
to make a bowl game, it needs to
beat Maryland this weekend.
A matchup with rival Ohio State
looms large next weekend, where
they'll be on the road against a top-
10 team, so the Wolverines need to
take advantage of their last home
game of the season against the
Michigan (3-3 Big Ten, 5-5 over-
all) is coming off a bye week and
two straight victories, but Mary-
land and its offense could pose
some challenges despite having
lost three of its last five games.
As a new member of the Big Ten,
the Terrapins (3-3, 6-4) haven't
played at Michigan Stadium since
1990, when they lost, 45-17. But with
Michigan native C.J. Brown leading
Maryland under center, the Terra-
pins are ready to challenge the Wol-
verines' chances at a bowl berth.
Here's a breakdown of Michigan's
Senior Day meeting with Maryland.
Michigan pass offense vs.
Maryland pass defense
For better or worse, fifth-year
senior quarterback Devin Gardner
will be playing his last game at
Michigan Stadium, so expect it
to be an emotional one. Gardner
struggled against Northwestern
two weeks ago, but the offensive
line kept his jersey clean for the
first time all season.
The biggest question mark for
the Wolverines will be junior wide
receiver Devin Funchess, who has
struggled with drops in recent
games. And while the emergence
of redshirt sophomore wideout
Amara Darboh has opened things
up, it could be Funchess' last game
in the Big House if he opts to head to
the NFL, so expect him to do every-
thing he can to get back on track.
Michigan's offense could also be
helped by a Maryland defense that
ranks No.84 in the nation in points
against and allows 238.5 yards per
gamethroughthe air. But defensive
back Sean Davis is fourth in the
conference in tackles (94) and held
Michigan State's top receiver, Tony
Lippett, to 46 yards last week, in
what was his least productive game
of the season. Davis will probably
shadow Funchess for much of the
game, but he won't be able to shut
down the Wolverines alone.
Michigan rush offense vs.
Maryland rush defense
The Wolverines are continuing
their running back-by-committee
approach and will have sophomore
De'Veon Smith and redshirtsopho-
more Drake Johnson splitting car-
ries until one gets the hot hand.
Whoever gets the majority of the
carries should have an easy time
getting by Maryland's defensive
line, though. The Terrapins allow
nearly 200 yards on the ground, so
both backs should be able to keep
up their recent production on the
ground. Gardner said Monday he
has gotten healthier over the bye
week, so the threat of his feet could
also help the backs.
Maryland pass offense vs. Mich-
igan pass defense
Sixth-year graduate quarterback
C.J. Brown should lead Maryland's
offense on Saturday, but the
question is if he will finish. Brown
has struggled mightily this season,
throwing nine interceptions to
11 touchdowns while hovering
around a 50-percent completion
The Terrapins top weapon, wide
receiver Stefon Diggs, was ruled
out for Saturday after reportedly
suffering a lacerated kidney. While
Maryland's second receiver, Deon
Long is a strong player, he lacks the
explosive game-changing abilities
that Diggs brings.
For Michigan's secondary, this
game has been circled. Senior
cornerback Raymon Taylor is
playing his last home game for the
Wolverines, while Maryland native
redshirt junior cornerback Blake
Countess will be facing off against
his hometown team.
Maryland rush offense vs.
Michigan rush defense
Michigan is eighth in the nation
in total defense, and its crown
jewel is its rush defense. The front
seven ranks seventh in the country,
allowing just 103 yards per game.
Brown will keep the defense on
its toes with his mobility, but the
quarterback is the Terrapins'
leading rusher with a paltry 375
yards on the year.
Maryland lacks a true starting
running back and has no other
players that have rushed for more
than 300 yards on the season.
The Wolverines lost senior
defensive end Frank Clark when he
was kicked off the team for alleged
domestic violence charges, but
junior Mario Ojemudia and sopho-
more Taco Charlton should be able
to make up for Clark's absence.
This is the one area where
Maryland truly holds the edge.
The Terrapins sport kicker Brad
Craddock, who is a perfect 14-for-
14 on field goals this season. He's
the only kicker in the Big Ten
that's perfect on field goals, but
conditions might be difficult
Saturday with high winds and rain
expected throughout the day.
This is as big of a must-win game
for Michigan as it gets - Senior
Day with a postseason bid on the
line. And after the Wolverines'
tumultuous season, they need
to close out the home slate on a
Prediction: Michigan 24,
Onerail1 85-95 86-94 87-93 JM8-96
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2 FootballSaturday, November 21, 20f4