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Tracking the Terps
News and notes on Maryland football, basketball and other sports
Maryland beat writers predict the outcome of Terps-Wisconsin

Each week during Big Ten play, the Washington Post’s Roman Stubbs, another Maryland football beat writer and I share our predictions for the Terps' upcoming game.

This week's rotating writer is Aaron Kasinitz from The Diamondback, Maryland’s independent student newspaper.

Here are out predictions for Saturday’s game between Maryland (5-2 overall, 2-1 Big Ten) and Wisconsin (4-2, 1-1) in Madison, Wis.

Matt Zenitz
Wisconsin 34, Maryland 23

I think Maryland quarterback C.J. Brown will have some success as a runner against a Wisconsin defense that plays primarily man coverage and likes to blitz, according to Terps players and coaches. I also think Maryland’s wide receivers are better than Wisconsin’s cornerbacks despite the Badgers’ pass defense being ranked first in the Big Ten. The primary reasons I am picking Wisconsin are 1) I think Maryland’s offensive line could have problems in pass protection against one of the top pass rushes in the Big Ten; and 2) Slowing down Melvin Gordon and...

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Weekly Maryland recruiting roundup

In this week's recruiting roundup, Ty Johnson continues his rampage across Western Maryland and the Terps get a visit from a European forward with a familiar name.

Football recruiting

-- Class of 2015 quarterback commit Gage Shaffer had a 19-yard touchdown pass in a 49-13 win last Friday.

-- Class of 2015 running back commit Ty Johnson had 188 rushing yards and three touchdowns on seven carries, an average of 26.9 yards per rush, plus a receiving touchdown in a 38-13 win last Friday.

-- Class of 2015 linebacker commit Gus Little had a catch for 15 yards in a 35-12 win last Friday.

-- Class of 2015 athlete commit Mike Majette had 12 carries for minus-17 yards and was 3-for-7 for 19 yards passing and an interception in a 47-6 loss last Friday.

-- Class of 2015 defensive back commit Darnell Savage had a 78-yard kickoff return touchdown and 65 yards and a score on 13 carries in a 23-18 win last Friday.

-- Class of 2015 defensive tackle commit Keiron Howard was

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Terps preparing to face two Wisconsin quarterbacks and other notes

Joel Stave and Tanner McEvoy have both seen time at quarterback for Wisconsin the last two weeks, and Maryland is preparing as if it will see both quarterbacks when the Terps play the Badgers on Saturday.

“Absolutely,” Maryland defensive coordinator Brian Stewart said. “Stave is more of a drop-back passer and seems to get the ball out of his hands quicker. He understands and reads defenses pretty well. I think McEvoy does a good job of running the ball. He’s tall. He’s a bigger target. He has a strong, live arm. But his best athletic quality would be running the ball. Put the ball in his hands and he will run it.”

Both quarterbacks have struggled.

Stave, who threw 22 touchdowns last year, is just 15 of 33 for 187 with one touchdown and three interceptions the last two games.

While the 6-foot-6, 225-pound McEvoy has run for 258 yards and is averaging 8.7 yards per carry, he is completing just 49 percent of his passes against teams not named Western Illinois and has thrown only two...

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Terps coordinator Brian Stewart 'learned a lot from' Wisconsin's Gary Andersen

In 1995, Brian Stewart was a young coach eager to pursue an opportunity at his alma mater, Northern Arizona.

Stewart, who was hired in January 2012 as Maryland's defensive coordinator, did not make a lot of money at that point. He had only been a coach for two years -- previously at Cal Poly -- and he had taken a restricted earning position at Northern Arizona.

To help, Wisconsin coach Gary Andersen, then an assistant coach at Northern Arizona, offered for Stewart to stay rent-free in his basement, and Stewart accepted. The two, who will see each other Saturday when the Terps play at Wisconsin, have been friends since.

“As far as knowing Gary as a person, I don’t know if I know a better person,” Stewart said.

Stewart did not know Andersen before taking the position at Northern Arizona. However, after the then-30-year-old Stewart accepted the job, the then-31-year-old Andersen told Stewart he had a big basement and that Stewart was welcome to stay there instead of having to pay for an...

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One win from bowl eligibility, Terps football team not looking ahead

Maryland offensive coordinator Mike Locksley was asked Wednesday whether the Terps are talking at all about being one win away from gaining bowl eligibility.

“It hasn’t even come up,” Locksley said.

Being bowl-eligible is the first priority on the Terps’ checklist going into every season.

However, at 5-2 through seven games and fresh off a win over previously 5-1 Iowa, Maryland coaches and players are all focused on more than just going to a bowl game.

“I think that’s a good thing that they’re not talking about bowl eligibility, because I think with them not talking about bowl eligibility, they see us as a better team than we [were],” inside linebacker L.A. Goree said. “If everybody was excited about us being bowl-eligible, then they didn’t really expect it.”

At 2-1 in Big Ten play, the Terps are third in the East Division behind Michigan State (3-0) and Ohio State (2-0) and are one of just six teams in the conference with a winning percentage of .667 or better in league play heading...

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Even in situational role, Terps' Yannik Cudjoe-Virgil remains 'key guy'

On a third-and-8 during the fourth quarter of Maryland’s win over Iowa on Saturday, Terps outside linebacker Yannik Cudjoe-Virgil -- lined up over center -- used a quick swim move to beat Hawkeyes center Austin Blythe before converging with fellow outside linebacker Yannick Ngakoue to force a hurried throw from Iowa quarterback Jake Rudock.

Earlier in the fourth quarter, Cudjoe-Virgil jumped up and got his hands on a pass after reading Rudock’s eyes and recognizing that the quarterback was about to throw a screen to his side of the field.

Although Cudjoe-Virgil (Towson) is not starting as was expected before the season started, the senior still is making an impact on Maryland’s defense.

After missing the first three games this year with a foot injury that he suffered during preseason practice, Cudjoe-Virgil has played in each of the last four games and has nine tackles, 1.5 tackles for a loss, a sack and two pass breakups.

“His role is still very important,” Ngakoue said of the...

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