The most notable thing about Saturday’s Maryland-Clemson football match-up is that it will be shown on D.C.’s Fox 5. This marks the first time since playing Navy the Terps have not been televised on ESPN3, an online-only blurfest with a low frame rate (but still better than nothing).
Watching a game from a computer chair is alright, but if you spend 40 hours a week working from a similar chair, it’s just not that enjoyable. Thankfully, this week we can catch Maryland from the couch.
It is yet unclear whether the Terps (4-1) will start Danny O’Brien or Jamarr Robinson against the Tigers (2-3). And Eric Prisbell, longtime Terps writer, is favoring Clemson, which no matter the sport, always seems to trouble Maryland.
The game may be closer to a toss-up. On paper, Maryland and Clemson are similar, middling teams; only Maryland’s scoring defense stands out at 18.4 ppg, 28th in the nation. And the only significant win between the two teams is Maryland’s season-0pening defeat of Navy.
But as always, Torrey Smith is the biggest difference-maker here, amassing almost twice as yards (405) as Clemson’s best receiver, and catching four more touchdowns than Dwayne Allen (235 yards, one touchdown).
If O’Brien is healthy, he should start. He has yet to lose a game for Maryland as the starter and is a more accurate passer than Robinson, who should still contribute by playing the occasional series. The arm is what is most important to maximizing Smith’s effectiveness; Robinson can do other things but it is important for the Terps to emphasize their strengths.
Stout defense and a couple bombs to Smith is are the paths to a Maryland victory; everywhere else on the field, Clemson is equal if not better than their reptilian opponent.