By Jeff Barker, The Baltimore Sun
7:18 PM EDT, September 22, 2012
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. —
Two important Maryland players made their season debuts Saturday — linebacker Kenneth Tate and running back Brandon Ross.
Tate, a fifth-year linebacker, did not start but entered the game in the first quarter. He immediately tackled West Virginia receiver Tavon Austin for no gain, then broke up a pass on the next play.
Tate finished with four tackles.
"I felt like I got back in the swing of things pretty quickly," said Tate, who recently told Maryland media relations officials that would like to now be referred to as "Kenneth" instead of "Kenny"
He had a large ice pack strapped to his knee after the game, but said he felt fine.
Said Maryland coach Randy Edsall: "It was great to have him back out there."
Ross, a redshirt freshman, carried 20 times for 52 yards. His best run was a 9-yarder that included two spin moves in the first quarter.
Albert Reid and Wes Brown also carried the ball, and a fourth tailback — Justus Pickett — caught four passes for 27 yards.
Matchup of No. 1s
Maryland receiver Stefon Diggs wears the same number (1) as Austin. They are both receivers and punt returners and are sometimes compared by the media.
Diggs, a freshman, said he met Austin, a senior, Saturday for the first time.
"We talked a little bit briefly after the game," Diggs said. "He said I am going to be pretty good someday."
Austin had three touchdowns Saturday, and Diggs had two.
Edsall was asked about not challenging a fumble by wide receiver Marcus Leak with Maryland trailing 24-14 in the fourth quarter.
"I don't know why anybody challenges anything," the coach said. "We have a system in place in college football that every play is reviewed, so why challenge anything?"
Tough road crowd
With West Virginia fans' reputation for rowdiness, some traveling Maryland supporters were a little nervous about traveling to Morgantown and showing their colors in and around Milan Puskar Stadium.
But there was a healthy contingent of red-clad Terps fans in the corner of the one of the end zones.
There were signs posted outside the stadium urging fans to "Be Respectful" and "Be Courteous."
"Be Classy," said another sign. "Be a Mountaineer."
Maryland fan Jim Carrigan said he didn't worry about raising a large Maryland flag and a white flag with "Terps" in red in one of the parking lots before the game.
"I think this is the only red in the parking lot," said Carrigan of Annapolis, who wore a red Terps shirt and cap and black shorts.
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