Dan Scott: Clemson - Maryland Prediction


by - Correspondent -
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A tough one to take on the road last week for all involved. So the
Tigers - and the Magic Helmet - are looking to bounce back Saturday at Death
Valley.

 

Maryland (6-2) at Clemson (7-2)

 

When Clemson Has The Ball

Held to just 81 rushing yards vs. Virginia Tech, you get the idea Clemson's
offensive line and running backs are looking to regain their swagger this week.
Maryland's run defense has been shaky this season, and they've yet to face an in-conference
ground attack close to the one Clemson can bring - though don't forget they have played West Virginia. Still, don't be surprised if
the Tigers throw the ball a bit in the early going to try and get Will Proctor's
confidence heading upward. After struggling again last week - and facing
questions about his job for the first time this week - one would think the
fifth-year senior is chomping at the bit to show he can still be an effective
part of this offense.

ADVANTAGE - Clemson

 



When Maryland Has The Ball

Once upon a time - okay, as recently as just a couple of years ago - Ralph
Friedgen's offenses drove Clemson absolutely nuts. Usually it was because of a
quarterback with great mobility who could run and throw, allowing Friedgen's
option-style offense to run at maximum efficiency. Sam Hollenbach isn't exactly
that kind of quarterback, but he has become at least competent running The
Fridge's scheme. For Clemson, Gaines Adams and Co. need to get good pressure on
Hollenbach, and a run defense that was manhandled by Va. Tech last week needs to
rebound in a hurry.

ADVANTAGE - Clemson

 

Special Teams

Lost in Clemson's defeat at Virginia Tech was a special teams performance
that might have been the best all-around showing all season. Still, you know
you'll be holding your breath every time Maryland receives a kickoff. How long
has Terp punter Adam Podlesh been around anyway? Ten, 12 years?

ADVANTAGE - Even

 

Coaching

You always have to respect Ralph Friedgen and his offensive mind. But in
the last few years, at this stage of the season, Tommy Bowden has gotten the
best out of his team. After the loss to the Hokies, is another great November on
the horizon?

ADVANTAGE - Clemson

 

Bottom Line

Two years ago at Death Valley it was an ugly 10-7 Tigers' win. Last year,
it was two late touchdowns for a Clemson rally. This year? Probably won't need
the late heroics.

 

THE PICK

Clemson 38, Maryland 23

 

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