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Terps vs. Cal: Five Reasons to Be Concerned

Posted by SuckaFish

Before each game we’ll give Five Reasons to Be Concerned, Five Reasons to Feel Good, and The Absolutely 100% Guaranteed Prediction.* As always, we start with the bad stuff.

1. Cal Is Very Good

The Bears
are ranked #12 in both polls and many think they have a shot to knock off USC and go to a BCS bowl. This is their opening game, at home, at night, on ESPN2. They’re 27-4 at home since 2004 and they’re favored in this game by 21 points. If Cal is going to have the season they want to have, it has to start with a big win on Saturday.

2. The Revenge Factor

Last year Cal went to College Park and got demolished from the start. Maryland ran out to a 21-6 halftime lead and Cal needed 21 points in the fourth quarter to make the final look respectable at 35-27. The game left a bed taste in their mouths (especially Jahvid Best’s).

Best is a Heisman Trophy candidate and he and his teammates are chomping at the bit to get another shot at the Terps.

3. The Lines

Maryland has huge question marks on both the offensive and defensive lines. The o-line lost five of the top seven guys from last year. It’s a young unit with talent but not much experience or time working together. The d-line is inexperienced as well and is learning a new system.

4. Maryland Doesn’t Have a Starting Kicker

Okay, they will by the time the game starts but they haven’t named one yet. There was a three-man competition heading into camp between Nick Wallace, Mike Barbour and freshman Nick Ferrara, and no one won it. That’s not a good sign. If Maryland hangs around and has a shot to win it on a late field goal we have no idea who will be kicking it. And it could be their first kick in a college game.

5. The Travel

Last year the game in College Park kicked off at 9 am Pacific. The Bears chose to travel on Friday, sleep for a few hours, and then play what was essentially an early morning game. Many a pundit used that as the excuse for Cal losing the game. Well, now it’s our turn. While Coach Friedgen was smart enough to fly out on Thursday, it’s still a long flight and the game will start at 10 pm Eastern. If Maryland doesn’t pull off the upset we know it’s because of the long flight and late start. 😉 😉

* Guarantee not valid in Utah or anywhere else

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Terps vs. the Turk (pt. 2)

Posted by SuckaFish

Here’s part two of our roundup of Maryland players battling to make NFL rosters. You can see part one here.

Washington Redskins
CB Kevin Barnes
RT Scott Burley
C Edwin Williams

The ‘Skins depth chart lists Barnes as the third-string RCB, Williams as the third-string C, and Burley as the fourth-string RT. None of that is very cheery, but the latest projected 53-man roster from The Washington Times has Barnes making the team.

Breakdown: Best case scenario is one more Terp, Barnes, makes a squad and can hang out with ex-Terp Stephon Heyer who will start at RT for Washington.

Detroit Lions
TE Dan Gronkowski

Another one without much information available. I know, weird that there aren’t tons of article of the battle for third-string TE on a team that went 0-16 last year. Here’s what I do know, he scored the game-winning TD against the Colts last week. You can see the highlight here at the 4:35 mark. Yes, they have like five minutes of highlights from a Lions-Colts preseason game.

Breakdown: It could be between Gronkowski and Casey FitzSimmons. FitzSimmons has been in the league for seven years and probably would cost a lot more. Then again, an 0-16 team might not want two rookie tight ends on the roster. I leave this one up to you.

Green Bay Packers
RT Dane Randolph
NT Dean Muhtadi

Both were undrafted free agents that signed in late July. Neither was mentioned in this projected 53-man roster.

Breakdown: It does not look good in Green Bay.

Minnesota Vikings
TE Jeffrey Dugan

He’s battling to be the third tight end behind Visanthe Shiancoe and Jim Kleinsasser. If his name was Geoffrey McQuiggian he’d be a lock.

Breakdown: They already have Erin Henderson, E.J. Henderson, and Madieu Williams. What’s one more Terp?

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
DT Dre Moore

Last year was a huge disappointment for Moore. A fourth-round draft pick, he failed to make the roster and was delegated to the practice squad. Things seem to be different this year.

Breakdown: Looks like Moore will be in the rotation at DT this fall.

Arizona Cardinals
C Melvin Fowler
LB Chase Bullock
LB David Holloway

Fowler is listed as the third-string center, Bullock third-string inside linebacker, and Holloway isn’t even on the chart. But then again, he wasn’t on the team when the chart was released.

Breakdown: It doesn’t look good for Fowler or Bullock. Holloway was with the Cardinals two years ago, they resigned him last week. They can’t be a bad sign.

Seattle Seahawks
LB Dave Philistin

Another undrafted free agent signing, Philistin is facing long odds to make the roster. But Lofa Tatupu likes what he’s seen from Philistin
and fellow free agent Shane Simmons.

“These guys are fun to watch,” Tatupu said. “I love watching all of them play.”

Breakdown: Despite the kind words, he won’t be making the roster. Maybe another team will like what they see too.

We’ll update you on all the Terps in the league after the final roster cuts are made.


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Saving the Best for First

Posted by SuckaFish

The Terps open the season September 5 at Cal. The Bears are ranked #12 in both the AP and the USA Today preseason polls, Maryland is not ranked. In the AP Maryland isn’t even in the also receiving votes. In the USA Today they get two points, enough to be tied for #53. Cal is favored by 21 1/2 points. Seriously. It’s one of those times where a team can actually play the “no respect” card.

Just last year the Terps worked Cal and Kevin Barnes had the hit of the year on Heisman Trophy candidate Jahvid Best. Enjoy the video which ends with Best returning the Gatorade he had during the pregame warmups.

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