Indiana faces Maryland on Saturday from College Park in a battle from the Big Ten East. Neither team has had much success in the league this season. Both are 1-2 in the East Division, both blasted Rutgers and suffered huge blowout losses to top 10 teams (Ohio State and Penn State).
Last season, Indiana edged the Terps at home, 34-32.
Taking care of businessTwo weeks ago, Maryland crushed Rutgers by 41 on the road and last week, the Hoosiers were victorious at home, 35-0. Indiana has played better in the last three weeks, after getting blasted by Ohio State, 51-10 at home on Sept. 14. After that expected defeat, the Hoosiers crushed UConn (38-3), played Michigan State close on the road (40-31) and then crushed the Scarlet Knights.
Indiana amassed 557 yards against Rutgers, including 282 with three TDs from quarterback Michael Penix Jr. But the real story was the defense, holding the Scarlet Knights to just six first downs, 0-for-11 on third downs and 75 total yards. Junior wide receiver Whop Philyor also had a big day with 14 10 catches for 182 yards. He now has 41 catches for 553 yards and three scores. Big sophomore tailback Stevie Scott III (6-2, 231) added 164 yards and now has 445 on the season with four TDs.
Defensively, the Hoosiers are better than advertised. They are allowing just 283.2 yards per game and 121.3 rushing yards, which will be important against a Maryland team with a running quarterback in Tyrrell Pigrome.
Pass defense?Since starting the season at 2-0 and making a rare appearance in the Top 25, Maryland has reverted to their normal self. The Terps fell at a pretty good Temple team by three (20-17), got destroyed at home by Penn State, 59-0, destroyed a horrible Rutgers team and then lost at Purdue last week (40-14).
The Terps were a four-point favorite in that game despite having a backup quarterback in Pigrome, who was replacing struggling starter Josh Jackson (ankle sprain). Jackson is considered questionable but had been awful against Penn State and Temple, before getting injured on the last drive of the first half against Rutgers. He has thrown for 968 yards with 10 TDs and four picks, while completing just 51.1% of his passes.
Pigrome got the call against Purdue and completed 21 of 39 for 218 yards and ran for 107 yards and a score. But "Piggy" also threw two picks as well. Terps star running back Anthony McFarland Jr. (340 yds, 8 TDs) was limited to just four carries due to an ankle injury and might be limited again.
The real issue against Purdue and Penn State was the pass defense. The Boilermakers had a backup quarterback in Jack Plummer, who completed 33 of 41 for 420 yards with three TDs and picks. They also converted 11 of 18 on third downs. On the season, they are allowing 279.7 yards per game, which may be misleading considering they also played FCS Howard (79-0 win).
- 4-1 ATS last 5 after a SU win.
- 2-5 ATS last 7 conference games.
- 3-8 ATS last 11 after allowing more than 280 yards passing in their previous game.