The Maryland Terrapins came into today hoping to pull of a historic, inspiring upset of tenth-ranked FSU on Senior Day. Those hopes were dead after about five minutes, after the Terps gave up an opening-drive touchdown to the Seminoles, fumbled the ensuing kickoff, and then allowed another touchdown on the very next play.
About six minutes into the game, having not taken a single offensive snap, Maryland was already trailing 14-0. And things didn't get any better.
The Terrapins went into the half down 27-0, having managed only 27 yards of total offense in their own right. The game was virtually over at the break, and the slightly improved second-half showing - largely against FSU's backups - did little to improve the final scoreline, which finished 41-14. The Terps were out-gained 399-170, turned the ball over twice, managed a mere ten first downs, and averaged just 3.2 yards per play. Much of that came late. It was as unimpressive a performance as you could imagine.
But hey, that's the situation, same as it's been for the last two weeks. The team came in injured, lacking depth, mentally dead, playing a linebacker at quarterback, so on. Beating a focused, talented top-10 team was never on the cards. It didn't look like there was as much fight as there had been in recent weeks, but that has a lot more to do with Maryland simply being out of their depth than potentially quitting on Randy Edsall. Like I said before, disappointing, but what are you going to do?
It's a shame for the seniors, too. Guys like Joe Vellano, Darin Drakeford, Kenneth Tate, Matt Furstenburg, and a whole host of others have given a lot to the program over the past four or five years. Seeing them finish out their careers (at home, at least) in this hollow charade of a football game - a blackout game at noon in an empty stadium, on a team not in Florida State's league - was a painful experience. But again, that's just the way it goes sometimes.
Get out next week and into the offseason with everyone healthy, then start getting healthy and building for next season. Until then, you and I have basketball to keep us entertained.