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19
Nov
09

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09
Nov
09

terps men’s soccer concludes solid regular season; faces uva in acc tournament

The defending National Champion Terps men’s soccer team wrapped up another successful year with a win against College of Charleston this weekend.  With the win the Terps finished regular season play with a 12-4-2 record.  Considering their tough schedule this was pretty impressive.

Maryland enters the ACC Tournament ranked #6 in the nation.  Their first postseason game will be against #7 UVA in Cary, NC, on Wednesday afternoon.  It’s a tough draw, but at least UVA is an out-of-towner, too, so Maryland will be on a truly neutral field.  UNC is #2 in the country and Wake is #4, so the ACC Tournament will be a dress rehearsal for the NCAA Tournament.

The NCAA Tournament starts on 11/20.  It’s been another great season for the defending champs.  The Terps have a legitimate shot at repeating, so stay tuned.

08
Nov
09

#1 maryland field hockey continues to roll, wins acc again

The Terps field hockey squad added another trophy to the case this weekend with a 3-2 win over UVA to capture the ACC Championship.  Katie O’Donnell, the best player in the nation, captured the tournament MVP award.  The Terps had to beat #6 Wake Forest and #3 UVA on their way to the title.  With the two wins the Terps are now 20-0 on the season and they are likely to capture the #1 seed in the ACC Tournament.

“Dominant” is the only word I can think of to describe this team.  Dominant.  The team has six shutouts this season and they have outscored their opponents 96-24.  That means they are scoring four times as many goals as their opponents for those of you fellow English majors.

I love this team.  If I had one free minute of time in my life I’d go to their games.  Maybe I’ll go to a game one day soon.  In the meantime I’ll follow them from afar and use the power of the blogosphere to broadcast my cheers.  Go Terps Field Hockey!

08
Nov
09

terps lose game, turner, virginity to nc state

It’s one of those times when I hate being right, but in Maryland’s 38-31 loss to NC State this afternoon the game covered the over and State covered the spread.   I had a feeling this was coming given that both teams employ the Wet Paper Dag defense.  It’s an innovative variation on the 3-4 where the linemen use only their thumbs to tackle and the secondary covers the cheerleaders.

Even as turnovers mounted for the Wolf Pack, the Terps yielded 482 total yards to NC State.  Adding injury to insult, Chris Turner left the game in the first half with an injury to his MCL.  Backup Jamarr Robinson was ineffective in relief, going 5-11 passing with 27 yards in the second half.

Chris Turner could be lost for the rest of the year.  The Terps finish the season with three tough opponents, starting with Virginia Tech this weekend and continuing with games against Florida State and Boston College.  If you think the team looks ugly now, look for it to get uglier in the next three weeks.  There may be some competition for the starting QB job between Robinson and Danny O’Brien to keep you tuned in.  Either way, the Terps have a long November ahead of them.

06
Nov
09

maryland versus nc state in football: the failure will be palpable

The Lakers versus the Celtics in the 1984 NBA Finals at the Old Boston Garden

The Yankees versus the Dodgers in the 1963 World Series at Ebbitts Field

The Terps versus the Wolf Pack in 2009 at Carter-Finley Stadium

One of these games is not like the others.

The 2-6 Maryland Football Terps roll into Raleigh tomorrow to take on the 3-5 NC State Wolf Pack in a battle of ACC bottom feeders.  Eric Prisbell reports in the Post that this is one of two DI-A games that is not televised this weekend, the other being Baylor vs. Missouri.  While that nugget was the result of some cutting edge investigative reporting, the rest of Prisbell’s article leaves the impression that there is some reason to watch this game.  Even if this game was on terrestrial television rather than E-f’ing-SPN 360, there is zero chance I’d watch it, and even less of a chance that my co-blogger MASH would watch it given his newfound multimedia fame.

Both teams have suffered a number of injuries, including some to key underclassmen, which means that this game will do little to show progress and growth in either team.  Despite the fact that the winner of this game remains “bowl eligible”, neither team will win out, so eligibility is a moot (checking the spelling this time so I won’t be muted) point.  Neither team plays defense period.  Maryland ranks 104th in the country giving up about 32pts per game, while NC State ranks 89th at 29pts per game.  The saddest fact about this game is that both teams have lost to Duke this season.  Maybe this is how ESPN 360 should promote the game, “Both teams are looking for blood following embarrassing losses to Duke, the worst football program in the long history of the conference.”  Wait, nope, that still doesn’t make me care.

Vegas has NC State at a 6.5pt favorite and the over/under is 56.5.  I belive the Wolf Pack will cover.  One thing they can do is score, and Maryland’s depleted defense will not be able to keep them off the field.  Conversely, the Terps have not been able to get the ball in the end zone very much this year, scoring only 22pts per game against a schedule that has included some pretty weak opponents to this point.

Final Score: NC State 33 Maryland 26.  The Wolf Pack will cover and take the over.  If there is any defense played in this game it will be by the losing coach in the postgame press conference.

I have to go and take a shower now.  I feel dirty just writing about this terrible game.  Go Terps… blech.

18
Oct
09

maryland football goes from bad to ugly

U-G-L-Y you ain’t got no alibi, YOU UGLY (what what) YOU UGLY! I loved me some Wildcats back in the day.  I even used to think Goldie Hawn was hot.  80’s hot.

On a wet day at Byrd Stadium yesterday, the Terrapins fell to a UVA team that managed only 201 yards of total offense.  While the defense held its own, Maryland’s offense kept coughing up the ball and handed the Wahoos a win.  Four turnovers did the Terps in, including a third quarter Chris Turner Pick-6 that gave the Cavaliers the lead for good.  Maryland’s -1.8 per game turnover margin puts them at 117 out of 120 DI-A teams.

This game was not indicative of the Terps season long struggles with breakdowns in protection.  While Chris Turner seemed to have more time to throw the ball this Saturday, he never got into a rhythm and coughed it up with the game on the line.  The running game was plagued by fumbles.  Offensively, the Terps moved the ball reasonably well, but they failed to get the ball in the end zone.

The defense seemed to turn things around yesterday.  The Terps totaled 5 sacks against UVA and the D was getting constant penetration.  Alex Wucjiak was everywhere, adding 14 tackles to his season total of 77.  Wucjiak is now ranked 4th in DI-A in total tackles.  Demetrius Hartsfield gutted it out with a broken hand to get seven tackles, and Adrian Moten ended up with two sacks.  That was about it for Terps highlights.

Turnovers turnovers turnovers.  Why all the turnovers?  UVA has a good defense ranking 19th overall in total yards, but that’s no excuse for fumbles and interceptions.  I think Maryland’s offense has been too predictable all year.  Check that, they’ve been too predictable since 2006.  They’ve fallen in love with the quick outs and the runs off tackle.  The offensive rhythm is rarely staggered, allowing the defense to time their blitz better and zero in on the football.  I’ve said it before, but I’d still like to see Maryland use more no huddle, especially in the second half.  Chris Turner seems more in control when he’s thinking less, and mixing in the no huddle would keep the defense on its toes.

Otherwise, we all know it’s going to be a long season so let’s just hope for some incremental improvements.  U-G-L-Y the Terps ain’t got no alibi, they ugly.

15
Oct
09

i spent $250,000 and all i got was this crappy slogan

Next year UMD will be launching a new brand called University of Maryland Classic.

Next year UMD will be launching a new brand called University of Maryland Classic.

Do you remember “New Coke”?  In 1985, the Coca-Cola Company decided to reformulate it’s classic soda and rebrand it.  As part of a rebranding campaign, the company released New Coke with the slogan, “The new taste of Coca-Cola.”  The new formula, and the branding campaign that went along with it, were a colossal failure.  People hated New Coke.  They just wanted the old formula.  Shortly thereafter the company was forced to release a second brand, Coca-Cola Classic, which was actually just the old formula under a new label.  I studied this case in business school and the lesson I learned was “don’t mess with a good thing”, especially if you don’t have a better alternative.

According to a report in the Diamondback, the University of Maryland got their New Coke today.  They’re replacing “Fear the Turtle”, one of the most recognizable and endearing college slogans in history with (brace for it):

UNSTOPPABLE STARTS HERE

The article states that this is a “second slogan”, but this sounds like a hedging tactic so they can ease the school into accepting this new slogan.  I guess the school needed to rebrand itself to escape the reputation it’s gained from a decade of improving academics, outstanding athletics, and rapid campus expansion and readjust expectations for a new, blander era.  Student responses to the article have been overwhelmingly negative.  Here’s my take on this new slogan…

THIS SLOGAN BLOWS

I’ll justify that comment if you disagree with me, but for now I’m just going to let it stand on its own.  FEAR THE TURTLE!




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