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Inept play on offense holds back Terps in third quarter

The Terrapins allowed an 8-yard touchdown pass from Christian Hackenberg to tight end Jesse James in the third quarter of Saturday's game against Penn State, falling behind 16-7. Other than that, more or less nothing happened in the opening frame of the second half. That's because Maryland's offense had a genuinely brutal quarter on offense.

The Terps completed five drives on offense in the third quarter. As the quarter ended, they were at the Penn State 9-yard line, with a chance to cut into that 16-7 lead. But before that, their five drives had concluded in this way: punt, punt, punt, fumble, punt. Maryland couldn't muster anything offensively at all, running either three or four plays on all of those drives. Wes Brown's fumble near midfield was particularly deflating, as the James touchdown came afterward.

The Terrapins are down by nine points as they start the game's final 15 minutes. For the first time since the second quarter, though, at least they're threatening.