Maryland begins an eight-ACC-games-in-eight-weeks stretch at 3:30 p.m. against Wake Forest.
Here’s five things to look for as the Terrapins seek their fifth straight victory in an ACC opener …
1. Kenneth Tate will start at linebacker. After playing 54 snaps against West Virginia, Tate is healthy enough to draw the bulk of the action at strong-side linebacker. He’ll split time with sophomore Alex Twine, but it would be a mild surprise if Tate doesn’t get a starting nod. The two are listed as co-starters on the depth chart.
2. Brandon Ross will start at tailback. Ross got the majority of the work against West Virginia. While there’s no guarantee that continues, he’s as good a guess as anyone to get the nod against Wake Forest.
3. Stefon Diggs will not crack 200 all-purpose yards for the third straight game. Why not? Mainly because there’s a strong chance he won’t get many kickoff return opportunities against a Wake team forced to play without injured wide receiver Michael Campanaro.
4. Diggs will score a touchdown for the third straight game. The freshman will be heard from, though. The Demon Deacons have surrendered 37.5 points per game to major-college opponents this season. Maryland’s offense will manage something, and here’s guessing Diggs is a part of that.
5. Maryland will win. The home team has won five in a row in the series, and Wake’s offense probably won’t be so prolific with Campanaro out. Also: Maryland’s defense has established itself as quite good so far. It might not be a perfect day, but the Terps should improve to 3-2.
—- Patrick Stevens