Saturday, October 17, 2009

Pregame: Maryland vs. Virginia

As Expatriate said, we all are busy this week, so this preview will be shorter than normal.

After last week's loss to Wake Forest, Maryland returns to College Park for homecoming as they take on the Virginia Cavaliers. Both Maryland (2-4) and Virginia (2-3) have had rough starts plus both coaching staffs are on the hot seat, but UVA has won its last two against UNC and Indiana and will be favored to win the game.

In scouting Virginia, they are led by Jameel Sewell, a senior quarterback from Richmond, a player who runs as much as he passes. Their main rusher, Mikell Simpson, is likely out with a neck injury, which will will hurt as he is a solid rusher and good pass catcher. The Cavs have not been able to develop a second tailback, so it may be a running back by committee to see who gets the ball on the ground. With the field very wet and more rain on the way, someone will need to be able to run the ball.

On defense they are led by redshirt freshman linebacker Steve Greer, who has 37 tackles and five for loss. Senior nose tackle Nate Collins could give the Terps trouble, with two sacks on the year.

Key to the game:
It has been raining heavily in the past three days in the state. The field will be soaked and the conditions will be favorable to running the ball constantly. Both sides have issues with running as the starting tailback for each side is out with injury. For Virginia, they will need Sewell to lead the charge from the QB decision, and Maryland will need to figure out their tailback position and get control on the ground.

If Maryland can get a steady gameplan that does not involve constantly throwing the ball in the rain, then I believe their strength at tailback should give them the slight edge. But this game could easily go either way.

Maryland 13, Virginia 10

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