Sunday, October 05, 2003

Disappointed, but we'll be OK

Maryland's strong defense and a couple of questionable calls ruled the day in the Terps' 21-7 victory over Clemson in College Park. I'm not happy about the loss, but there are still plenty of reasons for optimism.

1) We can beat Virginia next week for our homecoming in front of a sell-out crowd.
2) N.C. State lost to Georgia Tech, a team we thrashed, and the Wolfpack's defense looks mighty vulnerable.

Folks, we win the next two, and maybe only lose once more the rest of the season (to Florida State), and we could be in a decent bowl game. Anyway, on with the blogging.

GAME STORIES: "Momentum stealer," says The State; "Clemson winning streak snapped by Maryland, 21-7," says the Greenville News; "Tigers flattened by Terps," says the Anderson Independent-Mail; "Terps drag down Tigers," says the Charleston Post and Courier; "Terrapins' defense needs little help," says the Washington Post; "UM cooks at home, feasts on Clemson," says the Baltimore Sun.

GAME STATS: Here's a complete statistical summary of the game.

GAME ANALYSIS: The Charleston Post and Courier's Gene Sapakoff calls the game "a big missed opportunity" for the Tigers. I couldn't agree more. Short-yardage situations and the running game were once again problem areas for the Tigers. Maryland's fine defense also was able to make the right adjustments. And check out the grades for The State's keys to victory, plus the quarter-by-quarter highlights.

Offensively, the Terps decided to pick on all-star defensive back Justin Miller, and it worked.

NOTEBOOKS: The Greenville News; The Charleston Post and Courier.

AROUND THE LEAGUE: Georgia Tech surprised N.C. State, which gives me hope for Clemson's visit to Raleigh on Oct. 16. Virginia, next week's opponent, thumped winless North Carolina. We are going to have to play pretty darn well to beat the Cavs next week. A large, enthusiastic crowd -- of which my father and I will be part -- could help.

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