Boston College - Maryland Matchup

The Boston College Eagles (8-2) will need to defeat the Maryland Terrapins (8-2) on Saturday in Chestnut Hill to keep their ACC title hopes alive. If the Eagles win their last two games and Wake Forest loses their last two, the Eagles will be headed to the ACC Championship game in Jacksonville. Both the Eagles and Terps are coming off victories. Last Saturday, BC defeated Duke 28-7 while Maryland topped Miami 14-13. The Eagles are a seven-point favorite.

The Quarterbacks
Matt Ryan -- 61.8% comp, 2,282 yards, 12 TD, 7 INT
Sam Hollenbach -- 62.4% comp, 1,717 yards, 12 TD, 6 INT

Top Rushers
L.V. Whitworth -- 670 yards, 4.7 ypc, 4 TD
  Andre Callender -- 507 yards, 4.6 ypc, 2 TD
Lance Ball -- 630 yards, 4.4 ypc, 7 TD
  Keon Lattimore -- 499 yards, 4.8 ypc, 2 TD

Top Receivers
Kevin Challenger (WR) -- 41 catches, 463 yards, 5 TD
  Tony Gonzalez (WR) -- 32 catches, 346 yards, 4 TD
  Brandon Robinson (WR) -- 30 catches, 401 yards, 0 TD
Darrius Heyward-Bay (WR) -- 34 catches, 539 yards, 4 TD
  Joey Haynos (TE) -- 26 catches, 260 yards, 2 TD
  Danny Oquendo (WR) -- 23 catches, 260 yards, 1 TD

Top Defenders
Jolonn Dunbar (LB) -- 64 tackles, 1 forced fumble
  Jamie Silva (FS) -- 43 tackles, 5 TFL, 3 INT
  DeJuan Tribble (CB) -- 38 tackles, 3 INT
Erin Henderson (LB) -- 88 tackles, 2 INT
  Wesley Jefferson (LB) -- 86 tackles, 2.5 sacks
  Josh Wilson (CB) -- 42 tackles, 10 passes broken up

The Kickers
Steve Aponavicius -- 5/7 FG, 16/16 PAT
Dan Ennis -- 15/19 FG, 25/25 PAT

The Punters
Johnny Ayers -- 41.4 yards per punt
Adam Podlesh -- 43.5 yards per punt

The Kick Returners
Jeff Smith -- 31.0 per KO return
DeJuan Tribble -- 9.7 per punt return
Josh Wilson -- 30.2 yards per KO ret
Danny Oquendo -- 10.0 yards per punt return

Final Analysis

I was shocked when I looked at the Maryland statistics today. The Terps are 8-2 but they have the stats of a 3-7 team. Here's a look: Maryland opponents have outscored the Terps this season by a total of 22 points; Maryland opponents have 18 more first downs; Maryland is giving up 43 more yards per game on the ground (and 64 yards overall) than their opponents; Terrapin opponents are averaging 4.6 yards per carry; Maryland opponents are averaging 14.9 yards per punt return; Maryland opponents are converting 42% of third down opportunities compared to only 34% for the Terps offense. Maryland is ranked 102nd in total offense and 83rd in total defense. The fact that Maryland is 8-2 with these numbers is a miracle. Last week, Maryland defeated Miami 14-13 despite gaining only six first downs the entire game. Maryland's two touchdowns accounted for 161 yards. They gained only 97 yards on all of the other plays combined. Of course, this does not in any way imply that this will be an easy victory for BC. The Terps have shown they are capable of making big plays (two TD passes of 65 and 96 yards last week) and BC has shown that they are capable of giving up big plays (two TDs of 46 and 81 yards against Wake).

If the Eagles do not shoot themselves in the collective foot, they should win this game going away. The BC defense has been getting better and better (opponents are averaging just 226 yards per game in the last six) and the offense has moved the ball. Unforunately, the Eagles are 8-2 and not 10-0 because of turnovers, penalties and missed field goals on the offensive side of the ball and penalties and big plays by the opposition on the defensive side of the ball. Maryland is not a great team, but they are opportunistic and will take advantage of BC miscues. I predicted BC victories over NC State and Wake Forest and losses to Clemson, Virginia Tech and Florida State. In the interest of karma, I am going with Maryland.

Prediction: Maryland 2 BC 0

Maryland Links
Official Site
CBS Sportsline
Fox Sports

Maryland by the Numbers

Maryland has been outscored by their opponents this year by 22 total points.

The Maryland defense has given up 4.6 yards per carry this season.

Maryland opponents have converted 42% of their third down opportunities this season. Maryland is at 34%.

Offense - Run 76 81
Offense - Pass 21 89
Offense - Total 37 102
Defense - Run 18 101
Defense - Pass 73 53
Defense - Tot 38 83

Offensive Lines
Avg Height 6'4" 6'5"
Avg Weight 306 323