The Washington Times - September 24, 2008, 05:58PM

Just took a look through Maryland’s game books on a whim, wondering just how many times the Terrapins have rolled together a 10-play drive in four games.

Try four – one in each game.

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Now, 51 points are 51 points, and no one is going to offer them back in exchange for killing some clock. But at some juncture, that’s a trait the Terps will probably be glad to adopt – if they can.

First of all, I expanded the net and included all drives that were 10 plays or took up at least five minutes … and the total remained at four. And here they are.

Opponent Plays Yards TOP Result
Delaware 11 71 5:46 MISSED FG
Middle Tennessee 11 56 4:13 MISSED FG
California 14 60 5:00 TOUCHDOWN
Eastern Michigan 10 80 4:57 TOUCHDOWN

Obviously, a quick touchdown drive is better than a long march that ends with a missed field goal.

But it doesn’t help when opponents roll up nearly three times as many such drives.

Opponent Plays Yards TOP Result
Delaware 10 44 4:22 MISSED FG
Delaware 10 80 3:30 TOUCHDOWN
Middle Tennessee 10 80 5:56 TOUCHDOWN
Middle Tennessee 13 55 5:26 MISSED FG
Middle Tennessee 17 59 6:56 FIELD GOAL
California 11 69 4:39 FIELD GOAL
California 13 95 4:50 TOUCHDOWN
Eastern Michigan 11 80 5:58 TOUCHDOWN
Eastern Michigan 11 80 4:05 TOUCHDOWN
Eastern Michigan 11 69 6:05 FIELD GOAL
Eastern Michigan 12 80 3:43 TOUCHDOWN

That’s a whole lot of long drives, and only two of them were fruitless for the Terps’ opponents.

It’s a potential problem. And while the defense has to take some responsibility, Maryland’s offense could help out by staying on the field a little longer.

Patrick Stevens