The sixth game of the season will be Michigan’s first contest against a Big Ten East foe, kicking off head coach Jim Harbaugh’s fourth circuit against the division.
Maryland stole the first conference matchup between the two squads back in 2014, but the scales have tipped heavily since then.
Harbaugh enters Saturday with a 3-0 record against the Terrapins, with every victory spanning at least a four-possession margin. The two sides have looked quite unmatched in their recent outings, and that trend is likely to continue this weekend. As a 17-point favorite, Michigan’s real challenge is bouncing back from last week’s near defeat with a convincing start-to-finish performance.
2015: Michigan 28, Maryland 0 (College Park)
The 2015 affair was Harbaugh’s first Big Ten game at the helm and ended with the team’s second of three straight shutouts. The offense only managed two field goals in the first half, but No. 22 Michigan’s defense allowed just 105 yards while recording three interceptions.
Jake Rudock passed for a modest 180 yards with a score and a pick, as most of the work was done on the ground. Drake Johnson scored both rushing and receiving touchdowns, totaling 99 yards overall. The biggest play of the game came from Jehu Chesson, who took a jet sweep 66 yards to the house.
2016: Michigan 59, Maryland 3 (Ann Arbor)
Maryland’s return visit to Ann Arbor was less than pleasant, as No. 3 Michigan scored early and often. By the time the Terps got on the board, Michigan was already enjoying a 45-0 lead with plenty of backups seeing the field. Six different Wolverines found the end zone, led by De’Veon Smith’s 114-yard, three-touchdown day.
Wilton Speight was excellent, throwing for 362 yards and scores to both Chesson and Amara Darboh, who tallied 112 and 77 yards, respectively. Khalid Hill joined in on the fun as well, hammering his way in for a score from one yard out. However, it was Speight’s scramble into the end zone that was the most memorable, faintly mirroring the Air Jordan logo.
2017: Michigan 35, Maryland 10 (College Park)
Like the year prior, last season’s matchup was over pretty quickly. Michigan was far too much for Maryland to handle, and four first-half touchdowns quieted any chances for the home team. The Terps actually out-gained the Maize and Blue, but a pair of interceptions and a dismal 3-for-16 third down conversion rate doomed any chances of stealing the win.
Brandon Peters made his second start of the season and did enough when called upon. He only passed for 145 yards, but threw for two touchdowns without turning the ball over. Chris Evans saw the majority of the work out of the backfield and notched a pair of touchdowns himself, rushing for 80 yards along the way. Tight ends Zach Gentry and Sean McKeon were the recipients of Peter’s scoring throws, helping out the young quarterback.