No. 2 Michigan tries to avoid a pre-Ohio State letdown when the Wolverines play at Maryland
Thu, Nov 16, 2023
NCAAF News (AP)
No. 2 Michigan (10-0, 7-0 Big Ten, No. 3 CFP) at Maryland (6-4, 3-4), Saturday, 12 p.m. EST (Fox)
Line: Michigan by 19 1/2 according to FanDuel Sportsbook.
Series record: Michigan leads 10-1.
WHAT'S AT STAKE?
Michigan can reach the Big Ten title game with a win over Ohio State next week, regardless of what happens against Maryland. But given the number of other unbeaten teams around the nation, the Wolverines will want to stay undefeated themselves to avoid a hit to their playoff chances. The Terrapins became bowl eligible last week and snapped a four-game skid, so the pressure should be off when they try to pull the upset against Michigan.
Michigan's focus vs. outside distractions. The sign-stealing scandal that has rocked the program doesn't seem to have affected the Wolverines much on the field so far. They showed last weekend at Penn State they could beat a highly ranked opponent even without suspended coach Jim Harbaugh. Now they face a possible trap game before the big showdown with Ohio State.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Michigan: DT Kenneth Grant. He matched a career high with four solo tackles at Penn State, including a jaw-dropping play in which he used closing speed to chase down running back Kaytron Allen from behind. The 6-foot-3, 339-pound sophomore has 18 tackles this season, including 2 1/2 for losses, with five quarterback hurries, three passes defended and an interception.
Maryland: QB Taulia Tagovailoa. He's the program's career record holder in yards passing, passing touchdowns, total touchdowns, total offense and completions. He also leads the Big Ten this season with 2,769 yards passing.
FACTS & FIGURES
A win this weekend would make Michigan the first college football program with 1,000 victories. ... The Wolverines have won 26 straight games in the regular season, including 10 in a row on the road. ... Maryland lost at Michigan 34-27 last season. That's the most points allowed by Michigan in the regular season since the start of 2022. ... Michigan has won a school-record 22 consecutive Big Ten games, including the last two conference championship games. ... Maryland has a chance to reach seven victories for the third straight season, something the program hasn't done since 2001-03. ... The Terps are 0-33 against ranked Big Ten teams since joining the league in 2014.
Get alerts on the latest AP Top 25 poll throughout the season. Sign up here
AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-football-poll and https://apnews.com/hub/college-football"