The college football season may still be weeks away, but Telegraph reporter Coley Harvey is here to start getting you ready. As teams across the ACC prepare for the ACC Kickoff in Greensboro, N.C. on July 25-26, they can’t help but turn their attention toward the fall. With the conference as competitive as it has ever been, the ACC schedule boasts several key matchups this year that could help determine its eventual champion. Here is game No. 10 on our countdown:
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No. 10 — Florida State at Maryland
Date: Nov. 20
Where: Chevy Chase Bank Field at Byrd Stadium, College Park, Md.
Last meeting: Florida State edged out the Terrapins 29-26 in a back-and-forth nailbiter in 2009 that ended when the Seminoles capped a late-game comeback with a 1-yard touchdown run. Just before the score, the Seminoles were granted good field position when a punt to Florida State returner Greg Reid — which was supposed to be kicked out of bounds — was taken 48 yards and into MarylandMaryland had other forms of bad luck during the game: the Terrapins picked off three passes and largely couldn’t capitalize. The last one was the most bothersome as it came just before a poor offensive series led to the Reid punt return.
Recent history: The Seminoles own an 18-2 all-time record over the Terrapins and at one point went on a 14-game winning streak in the series. Despite a rare win in 2004, Maryland has not been able to solve Florida State since.
What’s at stake: In this late-season showdown, a win could vault the potential victor into serious contention for the Atlantic Division title. Maryland has been on the rise in recent seasons and remains a darkhorse favorite to stun the balance of power on its side of the conference. After a potentially strong season showing, a win over the Seminoles could help prove that. But victory for the revenge-minded Terrapins won’t come easy. Florida State, in its first season under long-lauded former assistant Jimbo Fisher, is also expected by some to run away with the division. With the Seminoles staring at the promise of a good season, this game could help put them back on the high national and conference plateau former head coach Bobby Bowden often placed them during his better-than 30-year tenure at the school.
Subplots: The last time these teams got together in College Park, Seminoles safety Myron Rolle stole the headlines. Arriving late to rain-soaked Chevy Chase Bank Field in 2008, Rolle had just flown in from an interview in Birmingham, Ala. for the Rhodes Scholarship. Before he stepped on the field, he learned he had qualified for the prestigious honor. While he is now done with his academic requirements and is set to play in the NFL this fall, the drama of his entrance that year likely will not go forgotten.