Maryland pulls off stunning comeback, puts Kyle Flood's future in doubt
Final: Maryland 46, Rutgers 41
Key play: Brandon Ross 80-yard touchdown rush
I’ll be the first to admit it. I didn’t think Maryland had a shot if this game was close in the fourth quarter. A team without a B1G win surely wasn’t likely to all of the sudden muster some massive fourth-quarter play in the last game of the year. But then Ross happened. And because of it, Maryland pulled off a stunning comeback. For the second straight week, the Terps tailback went off without Wes Brown. This time, however, he fueled a winning effort.
Telling stat: Maryland outscores Rutgers 33-10 in second half
The game was supposed to be over. A 21-point lead is supposed to be good enough to win. But a depleted Rutgers defense’s true colors came out down the stretch. Guys couldn’t get off blocks, defensive backs couldn’t make game-changing interceptions and above all else, Rutgers couldn’t make a tackle. Ross wore down the Scarlet Knights and when they needed to stop the bleeding, they couldn’t. It was the most sour way possible for Rutgers to cap its frustrating 2015 season. But I’ll get to that more later.
–Caleb Rowe replaces Perry Hills…and shines
Hills got the start after missing last week’s game against Indiana with mono. But that didn’t last very long. In the revolving door that was the Maryland quarterback picture in 2015, Rowe came in and delivered his best performance of the year. He wasn’t particularly accurate, but the Terps offense finally got some balance. He accounted for over 300 yards of offense and looked far better than he did early last week. It remains to be seen what happens with this team and this offense moving forward. At the very least, Rowe gave the future coaching staff a look at what he can do when he’s on his game.
-Leonte Carroo wins matchup against Sean Davis
The Rutgers wide receiver was not about to sit out his last collegiate game. Carroo earned himself some money with his performance against an NFL-caliber corner. Chris Laviano connected with Carroo early and often en route to a career day, despite the fact that he dealt with a shoulder injury late. He had 132 yards and a score by halftime. Davis did have an interception, but it was still Carroo’s matchup. It’s amazing to think about what the Rutgers offense would’ve looked like if it didn’t have Carroo for the entire season. That was actually Laviano’s first touchdown pass since the Indiana game 42 days ago, which says all you need to know about the Rutgers passing game without Carroo. He ended his historic career in fittingly dominant fashion. Also fitting was the fact that it came in a loss.
What it means: Goodbye Kyle Flood
He knows it, Julie Hermann knows it and everyone in New Jersey should know it. The fact that Flood kept his job through the 2015 is amazing in itself. Given the off-the-field issues his team faced this year and the fact that it fell well short of last year’s mark, it would be a complete shock if Flood was still the Rutgers coach by the end of the weekend. Unfortunately for the Scarlet Knights, there are a whole lot more vacancies that are higher in the food chain. Stay tuned.