The Washington Times - November 12, 2008, 11:51AM

Time for a little fact checking excursion.

Maryland coach Ralph Friedgen just repeated something he’s said a couple times since the Terrapins‘ 23-13 loss at Virginia Tech.

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Here is a snippet from the ACC teleconference:

“We looked back through the tape, there were probably five running plays where we probably gave up 160 yards on,” Friedgen said. “All were in a similar situation. One, [Darren Evans] broke for 40 or 50 and should have been stopped but we didn’t tackle well. The others, we didn’t secure our gaps. You can’t take away those five plays. But other than those five plays, I thought we played OK on defense.”

Friedgen, as it turns out, is remarkably spot on.

Evans’ top five runs – scampers of 17, 50, 45, 20 and 29 –accounted for 161 yards. Remove those plays from his total and he’s at 27 carries for 92 yards, which Maryland would probably concede most days.

Now let’s take Evans’ big plays out of the total offense (72 snaps, 400 yards, 5.6 yards/play). It leaves the Hokies with 67 plays and 239 yards, plus a more manageable 3.6 yards/play.

So Friedgen’s right on three counts:

* Evans account for a lot of yards on only five plays

* Maryland’s defense didn’t do its job on those plays (“I think that was poor tackling more,” Friedgen said. “Or good running depending on how you look at it.”)

* The Terps were not abysmal on defense otherwise

Of course, five plays are more than enough to sink a team – as the Terps know all too well after their loss in Blacksburg.

Patrick Stevens