Terps, Temple trying to find selves tonight

September 28, 1998|By BOB PARASILITI

COLLEGE PARK, Md. - There's a lot of double talk going on surrounding today's Temple-Maryland matchup.

Don't get alarmed or upset. It's not like Temple coach Bobby Wallace or Maryland coach Ron Vanderlinden are lying or fibbing.

It's just everything is so redundant because each coach seems to be repeating what the other one is saying.

But if you think about it, Maryland and Temple are in the same boat. Both are young, rebuilding teams that are trying to learn new offenses. And neither has been rousingly successful.

The only thing separating the Terps (1-2) from the Owls is one win this season, and Maryland's coach doesn't have a southern drawl. Tonight's game, which starts at 6 at Byrd Stadium, will go a long way toward becoming the third difference - consistency.


"Temple has an explosive quarterback (Kevin Harvey) that we saw a year ago," Vanderlinden said. "They move the ball well, but put it on the ground and make some mistakes. That's going to happen when you have young players, but they have some good players."

Coach Wallace?

"We'll need two game plans. (Quarterback Ken) Mastrole can run and throw but (backup Randall) Jones is a great athlete," he said. "Maryland has some great players, especially that linebacker (Eric) Barton."

How about when they talk about their own teams. Vanderlinden?

"Offensively, we couldn't get anything going (in last week's 42-20 loss to West Virginia)," Maryland's second-year coach said. "When you keep putting your defense on the field, (the opponent) is going to score some points. I still believe this is the team that is really starting to turn the corner at Maryland because their attitude is great. ... We still have a lot of good football left in us."

And Wallace?

"I think our big problem is execution," the first-year coach said of last week's 31-7 loss to Boston College. "The biggest problem is learning and executing the offense. We are getting better. We are kinda excited about playing another football game. When you lose on Saturday, it gets you excited about playing next Saturday."

Mirror images and likenesses aside, tonight's game could become the perfect time for Maryland to break free from its twin from Temple.

The Terps are favored by 8 1/2 points, even though Vanderlinden hasn't established who will start at quarterback - Mastrole or Jones.

Mastrole struggled against West Virginia, rushing for one yard and throwing for only 27, while running back LaMont Jordan was held to one yard rushing before leaving the game with a scratched eye.

Jones came in late in the game to lead Maryland to three scoring drives - all against WVU's second-team defense. Jones rushed for 49 yards in Maryland's option-style attack and threw for 70, setting up fullback Matt Kalapinski's 80 yards rushing and two touchdowns.

"I still have a lot of confidence in Ken," Vanderlinden said.

"He has a lot of good football left in him. But Randall has earned more practice time and every consideration to be in the game plan. We will think through carefully on what direction to go in. We aren't anxious to make a move or make change radically."

Whoever quarterbacks Maryland will get his final chance to tune up his game before the Terps head into the heart of the Atlantic Coast Conference schedule, starting with Florida State next week.

"Every decision is predicated on trying to win," Vanderlinden said.

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