Tonight's game

September 07, 2002|By Christian Ewell

Tonight's game

Akron (0-1) at Maryland (0-1)

Site: Byrd Stadium, College Park

Time: 6

TV/Radio: Comcast pay-per-view/WBAL (1090 AM)

Line: Maryland by 21

Series: First meeting

Last game: Maryland lost to Notre Dame, 22-0; Akron lost to Iowa, 57-21

Maryland offense vs. Akron defense: After gaining only 133 total yards last week, the Terps would like to get untracked against a Zips defense that gave up nearly 400 yards of rushing against Iowa. Maryland plans to start Chris Downs at tailback, after the team ran for only 16 yards in the Notre Dame loss. The team may also succeed with the pass, as Akron allowed 10.8 yards per attempt last weekend.

Maryland defense vs. Akron offense: Akron runs something of a spread formation with some option thrown in. Its quarterback, Charlie Frye, impressed by completing 21 of 29 passes for 230 yards and two touchdowns in the first half of the loss. Maryland's defense was one of the bright spots in the loss, denying Notre Dame's offense a touchdown despite spending more than 40 minutes on the field.

Special teams: Maryland would like to improve its coverage on returns, as it gave up an average of 42 yards on punts (including a 73-yarder for a touchdown) and 31 on kickoffs. Akron's Andy Jerdon averaged 42.4 on five punts last week.

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