clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Stats Preview: Terps v. Hoosiers

Can Maryland tame the explosive Indiana offense? The Hoosier attack might not be as good as advertised.

Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Maryland stands at a respectable 3-1 entering conference play - Maryland beat teams they should, and lost to a quality opponent in a nail-bitter.  Indiana enters with a 2-1 record constituting one bad loss and one good win.  Last week I called Syracuse a must win, because it was difficult for me to see four wins in Maryland's Big Ten schedule.  Looking at Maryland's Big Ten opponents, I see four probable losses (Ohio St., Wisconsin, Penn. St., and Mich. St.); the rest of the Terp's games are toss ups to me (Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Rutgers), with Maryland unlikely to be a decisive favorite in any of them.  A loss to Indiana leaves the Terps juggling fire and no room for error going forward.  Syracuse was a must win if this team it to achieve their first goal of bowl eligibility.  The same holds true for this game, Maryland must capitalize where it can, and that starts on Saturday.

Maryland Offense vs. Indiana Defense (all statistics are per game)


Total Yards

3rd down conversions

Time of possession

Passing yards

Completion Percentage

Rushing yards


Maryland Offense









Indiana Defense









Maryland's offense has frequently miss fired against quality opponents so far in 2014.  Against the Terp's weakest opponents, Maryland converted 53% of the time on third down.  Against Syracuse and West Virginia, the Terps converted on third down only 28.5% of the time.  Maryland goes big, or it goes home - 27.3% of their scoring drives have consumed less than 1 minute of game time.  Encouragingly, Mike Locksley appears to have discovered the winning formula in his play calling.  As Alex Kirshner demonstrated earlier this week, C.J. Brown can be an effective passer when targeting receivers inside of 10 yards from the line of scrimmage.  For the sanity of Maryland's fan base, let's hope Locksley sticks to that MO on Saturday.

Indiana's defense plays a distant second fiddle to their offense.  The Hoosier defense surrendered 45 points to a mediocre Bowling Green squad, but did manage to hold #18 Missouri to only 27 points.  Indiana surrendered 498 yards of offense to Missouri, but also recorded 11 tackles for loss against the Tigers.  Maryland's offensive line could win or lose this game depending on their ability to control the line of scrimmage.  If the Terps can get a push and be successful running Brandon Ross and Wes Brown, they can extend drives and keep Indiana's potent offense on the sideline.  Time of possession is critical in this matchup.

Maryland Defense vs. Indiana Offense


Total Yards

3rd down conversions

Time of possession

Passing yards

Completion percentage

Rushing yards

Turnovers per game

Indiana Offense









Maryland  Defense









Tevin Coleman is the star of the show for Indiana.  Through 3 games, Coleman is averaging 189 yards rushing, and is averaging 2 touchdowns per game.  The junior tailback is also a receiving threat, compiling 95 receiving yards, good for 4th on the Hoosier's squad.  Junior quarterback Nate Sudfeld is no slouch either, completing 65% of his passes, and averaging very nearly as many passing yards per game as C.J. Brown.  Sudfeld's stats look even more impressive because Indiana's offense is predominately ground based.  They throw enough to keep defenses honest and can be successful through the air.

Maryland's defense ranks last in the Big Ten in both yards per game allowed, and rushing yards per game allowed.  The silver lining for the Terp's defense is three fold.  First, despite surrendering gobs of yards, Maryland leads the Big Ten in red zone defense, and sits 4th nationally (opponents have only scored on 53% of their red zone trips).  If the bend but don't break theme continues, Indiana could struggle to put points on the board given their inconsistencies at place kicker.  Second, Indiana can suffer the same offensive inefficiencies as Maryland.  For the season, Indiana converts 37 % of the time on third down, but that number is deceiving.  In their last two games, Bowling Green and Missouri, the Hoosiers only converted on 3rd down only 19% of the time.  Indiana converted only 1 third down against Missouri!  Finally, Maryland can disrupt teams in the backfield.  Andre Monroe sits 5th in the conference in sacks (.75 per game), and Yannick Ngakoue is 3rd in the Big Ten in tackles for loss (1.5 per game).  Indiana appears to thrive on the big play the same way Maryland does.

Special Teams

Field goals

Field goal conversion %

Punts per game

Penalties per game

Return Yards (Punt/KO)



(long of 49 yards)



6 (54 ypg)




(long of 23 yards)



6.6  (69.3 ypg)


According to ESPN, Maryland has the second most efficient special teams unit in the country.  On average, the Terp's special teams has contributed 7.8 points per game in 2014.  The Terps are tied for the most punt blocks in the nation with North Texas.  Conversely, Indiana ranks 125 out of 128 teams in special teams efficiency.  Indiana's special teams surrenders 4.54 points per game to opponents.  If the trends continue, Maryland could realize a 12 point advantage thanks to the special teams unit.  A 12 point swing would go a long way to combating Indiana's explosive offense.


In some ways, Maryland and Indiana mirror each other.  Each team surrenders a lot of yards on defense, neither is  particularly efficient on offense, and each boasts highly talented skill position players.  Two differences stand out, and each favors the Terps.  First, Maryland has a tremendous advantage on special teams.  Arguably this team is 2-2 without the achievements on special teams.  Second, Maryland is on pace to notch 30 takeaways this season, a mark that would be their best since 2001.  Apart from the South Florida game, Maryland has done a pretty good job of taking care of the ball.  I think this game is a close one, and I think the Terps come out of top when the dust settles - Terps 41, Indiana 35