Posts Tagged ‘Jahvid Best


the terps missed the starting gun against cal

There are times when I say, ‘Wow, we are making progress,’ ” Friedgen said. “And there are other times when I say, ‘Are we going to show up?’

-Ralph Friedgen in Saturday’s Washington Post

I read this comment on Saturday morning sitting in the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, DC, and thought, “He’s just setting expectations.”  In retrospect, I think Ralph knew that we might expect this team to fly across the country, get overwhelmed by a better team that was out for blood, and head back to College Park with their tail between their legs.  That’s exactly what happened.

The game started at 10PM EST.  At 10:15 it was still 0-0.  I called my buddy Matt, correctly figuring he might be heading back from the bar to watch the second half of the Tech game at home, and told him I’d hop in my car and meet him at his place to watch the Tech game and the Maryland game.  I grabbed six beers out of the fridge, got in my car at 10:20, and flipped on XM 190.  The display showed the score as 14-0 Cal.  I did a double-take and listened carefully.  In the span of 42 game seconds, or five minutes in real time, Jahvid Best had scored twice.  The rout was on.

Is the season over?  No.  These days, Maryland generally plays to be in the hunt for the ACC title and, failing that possibility, something better than the Roady’s Humanitarian Bowl.  Those goals are still possible to achieve.

Was there anything positive to take away from this game?  No.  On the offensive side of the ball, Da’Rel Scott did most of his damage on a single drive in garbage time during the third quarter.  During the first two quarters, Maryland’s offensive line could not contain Cal’s linebackers, and Scott could not find a corner to turn.  With 75 friends and family from Simi Valley literally populating the visitor’s section, Chris Turner started the game in rhythm against a defense that was bringing it, and he seemed to be prepared.  Eventually, the constant jailbreak pressure proved to be too much.  At a time when  the Terps desperately needed to strike back, Turner turned into a game manager, often throwing short of the first down marker and failing to move the chains, at times looking as though he was running for his life.  To add injury to insult, Bruce Campbell suffered a turf toe injury, and the only “veteran” offensive lineman we have may have to sit out.

Defensively, Maryland could not get pressure on the quarterback and Cal QB Kevin Riley had all the time he needed to pick apart the secondary.  I guess an entire off-season of media hype regarding Dan Brown’s blitz scheme turned out to be a bunch of chutzpah.  Cal did not seem to have a size advantage on Maryland, but they certainly outran the Terps, both up-front and in the secondary.  It is tough to tell from yesterday’s game, but Brown may have to tone down the blitzing and have the secondary stay at home a bit more, especially against faster teams.

Needless to say, the Terps have a lot of room for improvement.  They got beat on the road by a top-ranked team that has a Heisman Trophy candidate running back, and that’s not the end of the world.  The team has a couple of weeks to get it’s act together before they face Rutgers.  In the meantime, Friedgen should take a starter’s gun on the practice field and work on reaction times.


A Maryland-Cal preview from special guest Kate Gosselin

kate-gosselin-wedding-dressOK, guys. Listen up!  Are you listening?  I need complete silence from you guys right now, OK?  Mommy’s about to do some blogging. I know, honey…yes, it’s for the losers.  I know.  But remember last week, when Mommy’s head spun around in a full circle, and her eyes got all white?  Yes, very good Mady…that was Scary Mommy. If you don’t want to see Scary Mommy again, please be quiet. Mommy appreciates it. I’m supposedly getting twelve dollars for this.  Eat your Kentucky Grilled Chicken, OK?

OK, sorry, hi, blog reader out there.  “Sports fan.”   What, are you pouting because John Summeralls isn’t here instead?   Well, let me tell you one thing, bucko.  We’re doing this my way?  Or you can hit the highway.  Because I don’t want to hear it from you.  Don’t like it?  Look, I’m packing you a bag.  See?  It’s full of soiled diapers, FDS and Altoids Gum.  That should get you to Allentown, right?  Or maybe you just want to sit back down.


So is there football starting tomorrow or are you just happy to see me? Probably a little of both.  Conjuring up The Orange Bikini Shot?  Got a little Gosselin burn-in, do you?  I don’t blame you.  You see this?   No telling where the stretch marks end and the lipo scars begin.  It’s like a scarway to heaven, ahahahaha!  So you just keep on daydreaming, buddy boy.  That is, unless your last name is “Clooney” or “Philbin.”  Is it?  It’s not?  Oh, okay.  Back to your Doritos then, desk jockey.  Don’t strain yourself there.

As we all know, Maryland upset Cal last year when the Bears were ranked #23.  But this year, the Bears are ranked #12.  Whereas Maryland lost 30 players after last season, the Bears return 17 starters.  You do the math.  The biggest star for either team is Heisman Trophy Candidate Jahvid Best. He’s a finesse guy, and he’s on the home Astroturf this time around. You know what that means.  Track meet.  Best ran for 1,580 yards in 2008, 916 of which came at home — and he missed one of those games.  Yeah, Maryland held him to a season-low 25 yards last year, but who’s gonna make Jahvid Best puke on Saturday?  Ahh, Kevin Barnes — now THERE was a man. Not like you guys; no offense.  But you know what I mean, you know?  Plus, apparently Jahvid is out for blood this year.  And I can relate.  I have also developed a taste for blood.  But Jon was all like, “stop cutting me open in the middle of the night,” and “we can’t raise children just to harvest their blood,” and yadda yadda yadda.  It was always about him, his needs.

But it’s not just about Best for Cal. They’re returning eight starters on a defense that ranked 26th nationally last year. Their defensive line is particularly strong, anchored by senior Tyson Alualu.  Wow — a West Coast team with a big Polynesian guy on defense.  Shocking.  But still, I guess he might be a problem for Da’rel Scott and the Terp runner guys, which could translate to a big test for Torrey Smith, Adrian Cannon, LaQuan Williams, and the rest of those young buck receivers if the runner guys stall. Yoo-hoo, young bucks!  Ever seen a cougar before?  Look, I’m on the “prowl” right now.  Rawr!

Oh, paparazzi!  How did you put yourselves in my speed dial?

Oh, paparazzi! How did you put yourselves in my speed dial?

One more thing about the game.  Maryland’s big weakness — the lines — may not be such a big deal against Cal, who aren’t exactly known for their smashmouth football.

ALEXIS!  Stay out of there!  You know Daddy’s room is off limits while Mommy turns it into a wine bar.   Eat your Kentucky Grilled Chicken.  Good stuff, right, Lexi?  All you moms out there know what I’m talking about.  Or anyone who’s ever respected a mom.  Go check out Kentucky Grilled Chicken!   It’s really been my strength lately.  My stability.

Bottom line.  Let me try to break it to you gently. I think Cal’s gonna kick your heinies. They want revenge, they’re at home, they’ve got more horses and more experience. (Maryland’s still gonna cover that ridiculous 22-point spread, though.)  Now before you start whining at me — I can’t STAND it when a man whines — you need to understand that I think Maryland will win some games this year.  Okay?  Just not this one.

Prediction:  Maryland 12 (no successful extra points), Cal 30


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