With Postseason Secured, Maryland Draws Appealing Bowl Projections

Maryland has just clinched bowl eligibility for the second year in a row after defeating Northwestern 31-24. It’s the first time the Terps have a bowl game in back-to-back seasons since 2013-14 and the earliest they’ve done so since 2001 when then-head coach Ralph Friedgen guided Maryland to a 10-2 (7-1) finish and a trip to the Orange Bowl.

“We’re 6-2, something for our team to be really proud of, becoming bowl eligible,” Locksley said following Saturday’s win. “This team and fan base should be really proud of being able to get that accomplished. What it does now is it earns us an opportunity every week to take the next step and of course, we’re doing it one game at a time the opportunities get better and better.” With the postseason now a certainty for Maryland, we take a look at Maryland’s updated bowl projections heading into week nine.

  • CBS Sports: Duke’s Mayo vs. NC State
  • 247sports: Music City vs. Kentucky
  • Athlon Sports: Music City vs. Arkansas
  • Action Network: Duke’s Mayo vs. Florida State
  • College Football News: Quick Lane vs. Eastern Michigan
  • ESPN:
    • Mark Schlabach: Music City vs. South Carolina
    • Kyle Bonagura: Pinstripe vs. Notre Dame
  • Pro Football Network: Guaranteed Rate vs. Baylor
  • Sporting News: ReliaQuest VS. LSU

Of course, Maryland has history with NC State and Florida State given the old ACC days. The Terps haven’t seen the Seminoles since the 63-0 loss in Tallahassee at the hands of then-quarterback Jameis Winston as Florida State would go on to win the national championship. Meanwhile, Maryland and NC State are deadlocked at 33-33-4 in the all-time series with Maryland pulling off the 41-21 win on the road again in 2013.

While Eastern Michigan would serve as a homecoming of sorts for kicker Chad Ryland, there’s little doubt that a matchup against South Carolina in Nashville would be the preferred choice. The Terps and Gamecocks have gone head-to-head on the trail in several contested recruiting battles under head coach Shane Beamer, which picked up steam last offseason after four-star linebacker Jaishawn Barham flipped from the Gamecocks to Terps on national signing day. Beamer would go on to say “I can’t say it’s a surprise” after reviewing his own 2022 class later that day.

“When this particular young man committed on Saturday, about 10 minutes later I got a phone call from somebody in the know up there that said ‘Just so you know, it’s all part of the plan. He’s going to flip on Wednesday and go to Maryland.’ So I can’t sit here and say that I was shocked. When you’re on the phone with a young man as recent, as late as 10:30, 11 o’clock last night and he and the mom are telling you how they’re so thankful they found a home — how appreciative they are of how we do things, how they knew that South Carolina was the place for him on his very first visit to South Carolina and how excited they are for the future, you feel pretty good about things.” The Gamecocks have since added three prospects from the DMV this cycle as the two teams are battling once more for five-star athlete Nyckoles Harbor.

Elsewhere, Maryland and Baylor split a pair of matchups back in 1955 and 1956, is a perfect 3-0 against LSU thanks to three wins in the ’50s, hold a 3-2 series lead against Kentucky and has never faced Arkansas.

Maryland will look to replenish an injury-ridden team heading into this week’s bye with several key players sidelined during Saturday’s win, including quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa, linebackers Ruben Hyppolite, Jaishawn Barham and VanDarius Cowan. After traveling to Wisconsin on November 5 in search of their first win against the Badgers, Maryland will face a pair of top 15 teams in Penn State and Ohio State before closing out the regular season against Rutgers.

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Instant Reactions: Maryland 31, Northwestern 24