All last week I was very excited about the opportunities that were ahead of both the Maryland Football and Basketball teams. As we sit here Monday morning, those teams went 0-3 in three big games. Yet, somehow I don’t feel crushed by the experience.
Starting with Basketball, I think we have found one glaring weakness in Jordan Williams’ game, in free throw shooting. And I hate to single him out because he is not the only one, but the truth is he is going to get to the line a lot this season. In time I think he will develop into a decent shooter from the line because his form is not that bad, but if he (and his teammates shoot somewhere in the neighborhood of 65% against Pitt, they win that game. The next night against Illinois, we learned again, that three point defense is going to be something that is going to be a constant nightmare for Maryland fans. Sure I am disappointed with those two losses, but if the team learned anything from those games they should be very valuable going into ACC play. The freshman made freshman mistakes, but showed they can hang in there and fight when they were down. The biggest positive I can take out of both games was the fact that the Terps could very easily have been blown out with the way they started the second half, but fought back to make games out of it until the bitter end. Sure it would have been nice if they didn’t find themselves in that position, but the fact that they were in them until the end gives me a little hope for the season. They next get to face Delaware State tomorrow.
Now, onto the Football team. Despite the loss, I had fun at the game. Sure I enjoy all the games, but this one stands out. While it was not a sellout, the people that were there made Byrd a pretty good atmosphere for the black out. I was even impressed how well that turned out. I don’t know why I feel this way, but part of me isn’t all that upset with the loss. Sure there was a chance at the ACC championship game ahead of us, but this team has overachieved this year, and if they can knock off NC State this week I can live with the season we had.
Even the fact that Danny O’Brien threw that interception on 4th and 7, I am not all that upset as he did something others may not have under pressure. He could feel the defense closing in and threw the ball hoping for something. Taking a sack and you have no chance at winning. Throwing the ball, there is a chance it could be completed
I am proud of the way they played for 3 quarters, but I think the depth of FSU took over late, and Maryland just couldn’t hang in down the stretch. The offensive line suffered more injuries, and brought in freshman Max Garcia, and he too suffered an injury along with Justin Lewis. In the end, that is ultimately what may have cost the Terps the game. I will be honest, they were in the game a lot longer than I anticipated, and gives me some hope for next season. All in all it was a worse case scenario for Maryland fans but I was able to walk away from all three games with my head held high. Here’s to hoping they can too and take some of the positives and build on them.