Maryland coach Ralph Friedgen offered this insight into the 24-14 loss to Middle Tennessee State yesterday: “We didn’t do a good job coaching, playing.”
Terrapin fans everywhere can be satisfied with that explanation. I mean this one had “trap game” written all over it. The Terps headed into the belly of the beast, otherwise known as Murfreesboro, TN, to play a Blue Raiders team that was smarting from last week’s loss to Troy. You can imagine the blood thirst that greeted the Terps as they gazed out of the team bus windows on imposing downtown Murfreesboro. The entire town tingled with electricity as game time approached. Playing in this kind of atmosphere can be intimidating to any program, let alone an ACC coming to play a team that became a D-I affiliate in 1999 when they joined the powerhouse Sun Belt Conference.
Ralph said that he tried to warn his team about this game. I think we should all accept Ralph Friedgen’s simple explanation regarding a loss like this. He’s right, the coaches didn’t do a good job, the players didn’t do a good job, and if you ask me, the fans didn’t do a good job, either. I mean, we overlooked Middle Tennessee State, so why shouldn’t the team? So let’s not press Ralph for too many answers regarding the team’s worst loss in a decade. There are more important questions about this program that have no answers, such as:
- “What did or didn’t we do against Middle Tennessee State that can be corrected before we get embarrassed by Cal next week?”
- “How does a team that lost to Middle Tennessee State expect to recruit the best ACC talent this off-season?”
- “Has Ralph Friedgen lost control of this team?”
Let’s hope that Friedgen won’t waste too much time worrying about handing Middle Tennessee State the biggest win in their history. Instead he should focus his energy on finding answers to these more important questions. Otherwise, Maryland Football might soon resemble that image which we projected on the Blue Raiders: