The Maryland football team fell 42-36 to Indiana on Saturday in Bloomington, dropping the Terps to 5-3 this season.
Maryland wasn’t able to contain Indiana’s rushing attack, as the Hoosiers gashed the Terps for 414 yards and six scores. The Indiana ground game isn’t usually strong (101st in S&P+), but it was dominant in this game. Devine Redding, Tyler Natee and Zander Diamont all gained over 100 yards to lead the way.
Maryland leaned heavily on its own ground attack once again, finishing the game with 50 runs to 32 throws. Ty Johnson’s 13 carries were a career high, and he finished with 142 yards. Lorenzo Harrison added 73 on 14 attempts. The Terps used Kenneth Goins and Wes Brown sparingly, but there was a clear reliance on the two young guns.
Perry Hills was unspectacular, going 21-of-32 through the air for 211 yards, most of which came after the catch, as per usual. He threw two touchdowns (the second was on the last play in garbage time, was picked off once and lost one fumble; Indiana scored after both turnovers.
Indiana moved the ball at will early in the first half, scoring touchdowns on its first two drives to go up 13-0 (the Hoosiers failed to convert the first extra-point attempt). After Ty Johnson’s 66-yard touchdown run put Maryland on the board, the Hoosiers marched down the field again and kicked a field goal. The Terps responded with a short Perry Hills scoring run, but Indiana marched down the field again—only for Maryland to finally come up with a stop on a fourth down near the goal line.
Maryland gave up 329 yards in the first half, with 217 coming on the ground. But in a miraculous turn of events, the Terps took a 21-16 lead into the locker room thanks to this superhuman, jaw-dropping touchdown catch by D.J. Moore.
If I'm D.J. Moore, I'm replaying this video forever. pic.twitter.com/SvidIHCnmE— Ryan Connors (@RyanConnors_) October 29, 2016
A back-and-forth third quarter started with a five-yard run by Richard Lagow that reclaimed the lead for Indiana. Adam Greene’s 32-yard field goal (on a drive that was halted briefly because Hills’ shoe fell off) gave the Terps a 24-23 advantage, only for Hoosier wideout Mitchell Paige to score a rushing touchdown on the last play of the frame.
Maryland caught a break early in the fourth when Indiana missed a 38-yard field goal, but Hills fumbled the ball away on the ensuing series and the Hoosiers quickly capitalized, with Natee’s run giving them a 35-24 lead. The Terps responded with a touchdown drive of their own that culminated in Hills hurdling into the end zone, although a failed two-point conversion kept it at 35-30.
Diamont’s 52-yard breakaway score in the final minute sealed the deal, and was a fitting end to the ballgame. Maryland scored on the game’s final play, but it didn’t matter in the slightest.
Three things to know
1. Perry Hills struggled throwing deep. He had his fair share of long attempts, but most of them were either overthrown, underthrown or intercepted. Moore bailed him out on the touchdown, though, and the success on the ground made it less of an issue for the most part. However, it’s still discouraging.
2. Maryland upped its trickery again. The Terps ran a play in the first half which saw two running backs — Harrison and Wes Brown — lined up in the backfield. Then Tyrrell Pigrome took the reverse and ran for 17 yards with Kenneth Goins as his lead blocker. Walt Bell said Wednesday that the team prepares to run a few trick plays each week, hoping that a couple of them turn into explosive gains. That’s what happened here.
3. Maryland will have to wait to become bowl-eligible. This was a chance for Maryland to double its win total from last year and clinch some sort of postseason appearance. While there are still winnable games on the schedule (i.e. Rutgers), things are about to get real tough. The Michigan-Ohio State-Nebraska stretch is on its way.