Michigan State also has a lot to play for. Things can get interesting and even confusing in these last two weeks of the season. The Spartans are in second place behind Ohio State in the Big Ten East. They lost to the Buckeyes last week in convincing fashion 48-3. The Spartans do hold victories over No. 10 Penn State 27-24 and No. 24 Michigan 14-10. Both Penn State and Michigan are 5-2 in the Big Ten East and need a lot of help besides winning out in order to win the East. The Spartans need Ohio State to lose the final two games of the season to the Fighting Illini this week and next week to Michigan plus have to win out.
Maryland has been ravaged at the quarterback position. They are down to their fourth string quarterback Ryan Brand, who got the start last week in a losing effort against Michigan 35-10. Max Bortenschlager, the third string QB could be back for the game Saturday. Brand passed for 136 yards and a touchdown but threw two interceptions. Bortenschlager on the year has 10 touchdowns and just three interceptions and has completed 51.2 percent of his passes.
The key will be Maryland’s rushing attack which is 5th in the conference and 58th in FBS against the strong Michigan State defense that ranks 4th in the conference in rushing yards allowed and 10th in the FBS. Whoever lines up at QB for the Terrapins, look for Michigan State to stack the box and try to force Maryland to beat them in the air.
Michigan State running back LJ Scott could have a big day. The Terrapins are allowing 173 yards per game on the ground. They gave up 160 last week to Michigan. On the year Scott has 135 carries for 584 yards and five touchdowns.
The Spartans even with stacking the box will be tested by Maryland. As a team, the Terrapins have rushed for 1,733 yards and 18 touchdowns on 380 carries. Ty Johnson and Lorenzo Harrison III have 119 and 117 carries respectively. Johnson has 770 yards and five touchdowns while Harrison has 512 yards and two touchdowns.
A win for the Terrapins would ruin senior night for the Spartans. Next week Maryland will have their senior night as they welcome Penn State.
Michigan State takes to the road to take on Rutgers.