Greetings from Concourse B at BWI Airport, the first stop of a busy day on the blog.
It should also be a lovely day in the Triangle, where the forecast calls for sunshine and a high of 65 degrees. Effectively, perfect early November football weather —- and the opposite of the dreary conditions Maryland has played in its last two games.
And as for what might happen when Maryland (2-6, 1-3 ACC) visits N.C. State (3-5, 0-4)? Here’s five possibilities …
1. Russell Wilson will throw for 300 yards. Riley Skinner did it. So did Thaddeus Lewis. Competent quarterbacks tend to hit the 300-yard plateau against Maryland, or at least get close to it. Wilson, with his 21 touchdown passes and six interceptions, is more than competent. He’s in for a big day.
2. Torrey Smith’s slump will end. The sophomore said this week his relatively quiet games of late have as much or more to do with torrential downpours as they do with opponents’ double coverage. The skies will be clear, and N.C. State’s defense isn’t particularly stout. Chris Turner‘s favorite target is primed for a day of 90+ yards and a touchdown.
3. Caleb Porzel will score his first career touchdown —- and it’ll be from more than 15 yards out. Maryland wasn’t well served using the swift true freshman in the muck at Duke two weeks ago. With a dry track, Porzel will uncork Maryland’s first run of more than 15 yards since Sept. 19 —- and just the Terps’ fourth of the season.
4. It’s going to be close. Games in this series —- the 37-0 Maryland rout in 2007 notwithstanding —- usually are. There was the OT game in 2000, the Orange Bowl clincher in 2001, the rally in 2002, the Leroy Ambush game in 2003, the N.C. State victories in 2004 and 2005 against inept Maryland offenses, the not-as-close-as-the-score-indicated Maryland victory in 2006 and the Davin Meggett reception in the rain last year. The final margin will be a touchdown or less.
5. There will be no redshirts burned today. At least I don’t think so. Chris Turner will go the distance, barring injury. D.J. Adams is the No. 4 running back and shouldn’t be needed. Pete White has plenty of guards ahead of him. Maybe there’s a risk of Nick Klemm at right tackle, but Paul Pinegar can swing back to the right side. The true freshman total should remain steady at 10.
—- Patrick Stevens