Maryland (3-2, 1-1 Big Ten) will hit the field for its Homecoming game on Saturday to take on Northwestern (2-3, 0-2 Big Ten)-a team in search of its first Big Ten victory of the season-for the first time in program history.
Matchup: Maryland vs Northwestern
Location: College Park, MD
Time: 3:30 p.m.
TV/Stream: ESPN 2/Watch ESPN
Maryland’s 62-14 loss to Ohio State wasn’t too surprising as the Terps were clearly outmatched at both ends of the field going into the game.
The Terps’ focus is now on getting back in the win column against Northwestern, while figuring out if sophomore quarterback Max Bortenschlager will be able to play. Bortenschlager was taken out of the Ohio State game after he took a hard hit to the face.
Head coach D.J. Durkin doesn’t know for sure if Bortenschlager will be available. He’s been evaluating Bortenschlager throughout the week to see if he is at full strength.
“Max Bortenschlager is our quarterback. I’m saying, we’re going to work through the week, see how he is later in the week and make that evaluation,” Durkin said at the press conference on Tuesday. “Can’t make an evaluation on Tuesday for a game on Saturday, exactly who’s healthy, who’s in our best situation.”
Bortenschlager went 1-3 with 16 passing yards before being replaced by Caleb Henderson, who made his 2017 debut.
“Caleb – he’s healthy, he did some good things in the game under the circumstances,” Durkin said. “That’s his first game reps, or really any reps with the ones since he’s been here at least.”
The Terps hope to have better success offensively against Northwestern as they were held to 66 total yards by Ohio State’s rigid defense.
“We lost touch in that game pretty quickly,” Durkin said. “I’m looking forward to see how our guys respond, how they bounce back. I have a pretty good feeling of how they will.”
Northwestern, who is riding a two-game losing streak that features a 31-7 loss to No. 4 Penn State, will try to limits Maryland’s ability to run the ball. The Wildcats tallied five sacks and 12 tackles for loss against Penn State.
Freshman linebacker Paddy Fisher has quickly made a name for himself as he leads the team with 46 tackles and averages 8.6 tackles per game.
“They’re [Northwestern] physical, they’re stout up front on their defensive line and they have good answers for things in their scheme,” Durkin said. “It’s a big challenge for our guys, we’ve been working on that since Saturday night.”