This was the â€œphilosophyâ€? of a guy I knew a long time agoâ€¦..Go ugly early. He said it nearly always assured â€œsuccessâ€? whenever he went to a club. This â€œapproachâ€? was also supposed to keep him from being totally embarrassed by the girl that he had picked up. I suspect that there are a number of bowl committees wishing that they had the same opportunity when it comes to picking schoolsâ€¦.Like maybe the bowl committee that â€œgetsâ€? to have the winner of the State/Maryland game for their bowl.
On Saturday, two teams at the end of a second consecutive, disappointing season will decide which one goes home for the holidays or to a bowl game that canâ€™t get anyone else. Donâ€™t get me wrong, winning is always better than losingâ€¦but beating Maryland will not keep this season from being a disappointment to the large majority of State fans. I suspect that the same thing can be said of Maryland fans even if they are the ones â€œcelebratingâ€? on Saturday.
At first glance, it might appear that the game will hinge on whether or not State can defend against the second best passing attack in the conferenceâ€¦or maybe whether or not the ninth-ranked rushing defense can contain Stateâ€™s freshman running backs. However a closer examination of the stats changed my mind.
State and Maryland shared six common opponents: Virginia Tech, Carolina, Wake Forest, Boston College, Florida State, and Clemson. State is 1-5 against the six teams listed above and Maryland is 2-4. I took the offensive and defensive stats from these six games to see how Maryland and State compared against common opponents:
92 yds rushing + 219 yds passing = 311 yds total offense
121 yds rushing + 237 yds passing = 358 yds total offense
132 yds rushing + 173 yds passing = 305 yds total allowed
160 yds rushing + 225 yds passing = 385 yds total allowed
So I come to the conclusion that this game is as close to a toss-up as you are likely to find. This basically means that some bowl committee will find out what happens when you wait for last call before you try to hook up for the remainder of the night.