This week, the Terrapins will play their final Atlantic Coast Conference football game, on the road against North Carolina State (3-8, 0-7) on Saturday.
Despite last week’s home defeat, Maryland (6-5, 2-5) has much on the line. A victory would guarantee a winning season, the program’s first since 2010. Winning also would enhance the team’s profile in terms of its attractiveness to the bowl selection committees.
Thus, virtually everyone connected with the program realized it was imperative to leave the Boston College loss behind. In that game, Maryland held an 11-point lead with less than 11 minutes to play, but couldn’t hold it. They lost their last chance for a victory when Boston College’s Nate Freese booted a 52-yard field goal as time expired. Freese initially missed from that distance, but Edsall took a timeout right before the snap, giving Freese another try.
There were some sad faces in the locker room afterward, according to quarterback C.J. Brown. But everyone knows that it’s time to turn the page.
“We understand that it’s over,” Brown said. “We have to focus on the next game. We left it out there on the field. We did everything that we could. It was just unfortunate how things played out, but that’s part of the game. I think everyone’s excited to get back out there this week and get that sour taste out of our mouth. We have something else to focus our minds on and our goals are still out there for the taking.”
For Edsall, reviewing the Boston College game with the players on Sunday was necessary – but only in terms of pointing out where the Terrapins could have done better.
“They understand how we approach things around here,” Edsall said. “Of course, everyone was disappointed because we had an 11-point lead with 10:42 to go and we didn’t finish the job we wanted to finish.
“So what you basically do is show them and explain to them that here’s part of the reason we didn’t come out on top – because of these issues. And if we had been more consistent throughout the game, things could have been different.
“Once you go through that and you go through the film, it’s over and you have to move on. You can’t get it back. You just have to learn from it and move on.”
This will be the 70th meeting between Maryland and N.C. State, including once a season since 1956. Virginia is the only team the Terrapins have played more often (78 times.
Maryland, which joined the ACC in 1953, leaves for the Big Ten next year.