On Saturday, September 1st, the Texas Longhorns open up their college football season on the road against a familiar foe – the Maryland Terrapins. This game is a chance for Texas to get some revenge and for Maryland to bring some positivity to a horrific summer. Kickoff inside FedEx Field is at 12 PM ET.
|Texas Longhorns||-13.5 (-110)||-500||Over 56.5 (-110)|
|Maryland Terrapins||+13.5 (-110)||+400||Under 56.5 (-110)|
|Betting Data History||Texas Longhorns||Maryland Terrapins|
|Current S/U record||0-0||0-0|
|S/U in 2017||7-6||4-8|
|2017 ATS Home||4-3||2-4|
|2017 ATS Away||5-1||3-3|
|2017 O/U Home||3-4||3-2|
|2017 O/U Away||0-6||5-1|
This 2018 season opener is a rematch from the 2017 season opener where Maryland went on the road and shocked the Longhorns 51-41. It set the Longhorns on a disappointing path for the rest of the season. The Terrapins weren’t able to capitalize off this win as they also failed to live up to their expectations. In that contest, Maryland was getting 18 points and the O/U was 57 total points.
This year, Texas is expected to have a solid 2018 campaign as some pundits believe that the Longhorns could compete for the Big 12 title. They’re currently ranked #23 in the AP Poll and return over a dozen starters. Texas did get a bowl victory over Missouri last year and built some momentum heading into the offseason. A few bad breaks in 2017 prevented them from finishing with close to double digit wins. Will 2018 be a more promising year?
The Terrapins come into this season with a ton of off-field controversy and tragedy. It’s hard to imagine that this team will be prepared for a big-time rematch against the Longhorns. Oddsmakers have taken this into consideration as the Terrapins are getting nearly 2 touchdowns. Maryland also returns over a dozen starters and looks to rebound from finishing 2017 with 4 straight losses.
The spread opened at -9 for the Longhorns. Since then, it has shot up to -13.5 points. The Over/Under opened at 57 points and has come down slightly to 56.5 total points.
Texas officially announced that Sam Ehlinger (sophomore) will get the start in Week 1 against the Terrapins. Ehlinger played in 9 games last year, with 6 starts, and led the Longhorns with 1,915 passing yards and 385 rushing yards. He’s had a strong offseason and appears ready to lead this Texas offense.
Unfortunately, there’s still a cloud of uncertainty over the Longhorns running game. Last year, Texas ran the ball 31 times and only totaled 98 rushing yards against Maryland. Furthermore, Texas finished 95th in the country with 139.6 rushing yards per game. They have a new offensive line coach who is expected to restore the front 5, and the running game, to respectability.
The Terrapins enter this game with the confidence of knowing they can defeat Texas, but are they really mentally and emotionally prepared for on-field action? Maryland’s football program has been in the national spotlight for the death of a player and the “abusive” way the players were being treated. Head coach D.J. Durkin has been put on leave and it’s unknown whether or not this team is actually ready to play football.
Maryland does return 5 starters to the o-line, which is rare these days. You can expect another season of the spread offense even though they do have a new OC. However, the team does hope to improve from last year’s near-bottom ranking of 120th for total yards per game at 323.3. Their passing attack averaged 161 ypg. So, that begs the question as to how Maryland scored 51 on Texas last year.
I don’t see that happening this year. In fact, I see this game being a lopsided win for Texas as they show off their newfound confidence in Herman’s second year.
The Longhorns are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 grass games, 4-0 ATS in their last 4 neutral site games, 5-2 ATS in their last 7 September games, 5-2 ATS in their last 7 non-conference games, 5-1 ATS in their last 6 road games, and 9-3 ATS in their last 12 overall games. Digging deeper, and we find that the Longhorns are 11-2-1 ATS in their last 14 games where they’re favored by 10 to 15 points on the road.
For the Terrapins, they’re 2-6 ATS and 1-7 SU in their last 8 overall games, 5-9 ATS as an Underdog, 8-15 ATS in their last 23 Saturday games, and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 grass games.
Although this game is technically at a neutral field, it’s still very close to Maryland and they will be the home team. However, it should be noted that this will be on a grass field where Maryland went 0-1 last year and only scored 7 points. Texas went 4-1 ATS last year in grass games and averaged 21 ppg.
I see the scores being a little higher, but I love the Longhorns this game. The Terrapins are ripe for a Texas revenge and I expect them to blowout Maryland somewhere around 38 to 14 with Texas easily covering the spread.
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