COLLEGE PARK - After Maryland defeated Eastern Michigan, 51-24, on Saturday, Darrius Heyward-Bey took a short victory lap. The wide receiver jogged around the Byrd Stadium field's perimeter, high-fiving students in the first row.
But just as quickly as he began his celebration, Heyward-Bey cut it off.
With Clemson looming at the beginning of the Atlantic Coast Conference schedule on Saturday, it was time for Heyward-Bey and his teammates to look ahead - a point coach Ralph Friedgen quickly made to his players in the locker room.
Friedgen said yesterday that the Terps, who righted their young season with victories over California and Eastern Michigan, have several issues heading into the toughest game of their season so far.
Among them are injuries, new and old. Linebacker Adrian Moten, who blocked a punt Saturday and intercepted a pass, could be out indefinitely. "They think he has torn [wrist] ligaments," Friedgen said. Safety Antwine Perez could move up to his spot.
Linebacker-defensive back Dominique Herald, a Friedgen favorite on special teams, tore his anterior cruciate ligament Saturday, further depleting the defense. Maryland already was playing without injured running back Da'Rel Scott and defensive backs Terrell Skinner, Nolan Carroll and Richard Taylor. "Having three of your secondary guys out doesn't help," Friedgen said.
The good news for the Terps is that Scott is expected back for the Clemson game, and Skinner might play as well. "Hopefully, Carroll too," Friedgen said. Defensive lineman Travis Ivey might return.
The Terps surrendered 278 passing yards to Eastern Michigan's Kyle McMahon, who isn't even the regular starter, although he had played a lot in the first three games. Junior Andy Schmitt, who ranks in the school's top 10 in career passing, was out with a bruised shoulder.
"I didn't think we played with the same focus as we did the week before," Friedgen said of the defense. Eastern Michigan "did some things we hadn't seen them do before. They took a play-action approach to us."
Not all the news was bad - not on a day when the Terps topped 50 points for the first time since 2004. Backup quarterback Josh Portis and running back Morgan Green scored their first touchdowns, and starting quarterback Chris Turner looked comfortable and efficient in the offense.
"I think we've gotten better offensively," Friedgen said of the Terps, who have scored 86 points in the past two games.
Eastern Michigan had gone 80 yards to cut Maryland's lead to 17-7. Was a real game about to ensue? Not after Torrey Smith returned the kickoff 57 yards to Eastern Michigan's 32, and Turner found Heyward-Bey for a touchdown on the next play.
Dwayne Priest got behind linebacker Rick Costa for a 34-yard reception in the first quarter. Maryland had difficulty with passes in the zone between the linebackers and defensive backs.
The Terps (3-1, 0-0 ACC) travel to Clemson (3-1, 1-0), which beat South Carolina State, 54-0, Saturday.
TV: Ch. 13
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