Upset Bid Falls Short in Maryland Football’s 43-30 Loss vs. Ohio State

Maryland’s upset bid looked alive for the majority of the game, but Ohio State would survive as Maryland fell 43-30 to drop to 6-5 (3-5) with one game regular season game remaining.

Ohio State opened up the game firing on all cylinders as CJ Stroud connected with WR Marvin Harrison Jr. along the sideline on the first play of the game. It’d be the first of six plays in the Buckeyes’ scoring drive that took just 92 seconds, but the Terps would respond with a 61-yard drive that ended with a 31-yard field goal from Chad Ryland. Maryland would respond once again with another drive stalling in the redzone, setting up a 21-yard field goal for Ryland to bring it to a 7-6 contest.

After the opening kickoff, Maryland would allow just 84 total yards of offense on the next four drives including forcing a pair of three-and-outs. With running back Miyan Williams sidelined, the Buckeyes turned to Virginia native Treveyon Henderson first but after the first series, he added just five yards through the rest of the half.

Maryland’s offense, though, was able to find its rhythm against a stifling Buckeyes secondary as quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa completed his first eleven passes and nearly eclipsed 200 passing yards at the half. The passing attack carried the offense into the redzone on the first three drives of the game, while the first drive of the game featured a big catch and run for TE CJ Dippre who capped off the run with a hurdle along the sidelines. Three drives later, it’d be Dippre once more as Taulia found him on a one-yard touchdown with just four minutes left in the first half.

The improved first-half efficiency on both sides of the ball helped Maryland capture a 13-10 lead heading into halftime, but the Buckeyes would reclaim control once the second half was underway. A blocked Maryland punt gave Ohio State the ball at the Maryland 14 and just two plays later, the Buckeyes would retake the lead thanks to an eight-yard run by freshman RB Dallan Hayden. The efficiency that carried Maryland threw the first half would show its first signs of concern following consecutive offensive penalties, pinning the Terps deep in their own territory. Ohio State would tack on three more points after converting a 47-yard field goal to extend the score to 20-13, but with it still a one-possession game, Maryland’s offense gradually struggled to consistently pick up positive yards while the Buckeyes began firing away.

After pinning the Buckeyes deep inside their own territory midway through the third quarter, an 11-play, 88-yard drive would carry Ohio State’s offense into Maryland territory before Hayden punched in his second touchdown of the day to push the score to 27-13. Maryland’s offense wouldn’t lose hope, though, as Taulia found Tai Felton for a 36-yard gain, then Copeland added 12 yards before WR Rakim Jarrett drew a pass interference that would set the offense up at the Ohio State ten-yard line. Just two plays later, Taulia punched in a five-yard rushing touchdown before Copeland converted on the two-point attempt, bringing it to a 27-21 contest just one minute into the fourth quarter. Ohio State would respond with a five-yard scoring drive that pushed it back to a double-digit game, but after a delay of game halted the Buckeyes’ two-point attempt, Maryland blocked the ensuing extra point as CB Jakorian Bennett ran in back for two points, bringing it to a 33-23 deficit with just over 12 minutes remaining.

The momentum-changing play gave Maryland’s offense a chance to inch even closer and they did exactly that, sparked by a 49-yard catch by WR Rakim Jarrett to set the offense up at the ten-yard line. It took all four plays to find the endzone but on 4th-and-2, Taulia scrambled right and found WR Jeshaun Jones in the back of the endzone to bring it back to a three-point game. The play not only brought it back to a one-possession game, but the touchdown made Taulia the new all-time career passing leader to pad his storied Terrapin career.

Maryland would hold Ohio State on the ensuing drive and force a failed fourth-down attempt with just over six minutes remaining, but the offense went three-and-out and pinned the Buckeyes back at their own 12-yard line. Ohio State would take advantage of the clock, driving into Maryland territory before drilling a 45-yard field goal to extend the lead to 36-30 and giving Maryland’s offense one more chance.

That wouldn’t help, though, as Taulia was stripped with just ten seconds left to give the Buckeyes’ defense a last-second touchdown to effectively end the upset bid. In the end, Ohio State walked away with a 43-30 win to end a disappointing, but thrilling contest in College Park.

Next: Maryland will host Rutgers next weekend for a noon kickoff on BTN.

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