Topic: On This Date: 1988 (16)Clemson- 40 Maryland- 7
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On This Date: 1988 (16)Clemson- 40 Maryland- 7

Posted: Nov 16, 2020, 8:36 AM

Clemson, SC


By Steve Berkowitz
November 17, 1991
Washington Post

CLEMSON, S.C., NOV. 16 -- Citrus Bowl associate executive director Carol Monroe meant well. But it seemed almost cruel, the way she enthusiastically introduced herself to Maryland Coach Joe Krivak not long after his team had lost to Clemson, 40-7, this afternoon at Memorial Stadium.

Ever gracious, Krivak returned the greeting and said, "Maybe we'll see you in the Citrus one of these days."

Maybe Krivak will be the person who leads them there. But right now, it's uncertain if he will lead them anywhere beyond next week's season finale at North Carolina State.

This was the third consecutive lopsided loss for Maryland, which lost its two previous games to North Carolina, 24-0, and to Penn State, 47-7. Despite the difficult schedule, the injuries and the players declared academically ineligible, this was not what anybody had in mind after last season's 6-5 regular season record and Independence Bowl tie.

"I'm just ####" upset, sophomore H-back Chad Wiestling snarled. "I don't know. I'm tired of . . . the team getting kicked around every #### week. I'm just tired of it. That's the way I feel, and I know everyone else feels the same way too. It just gets old."

Asked if he was glad the Terrapins (2-8 overall, 2-4 ACC) have just one more game, Wiestling replied: "The way it's going I am. It isn't getting any better."

Krivak, in the first year of a four-year contract, knows he has detractors, but today he said he also knows he has backers.

"For all of that {criticism} that I'm getting," he said, "I can show you letters and calls that I'm getting that are very, very positive about what I'm doing. So that's the other end of it . . . "

Once again today, the bad far outweighed the good as the 15th-ranked Tigers (7-1-1, 5-0-1) clinched their first ACC championship since 1988 and a berth to the Citrus Bowl. In addition to the loss, the Terrapins came away with an eight-player injury list although team physician Stan Lavine said he did not think any of the injuries were serious.

After opening the game with a 56-yard touchdown pass from Jim Sandwisch to Jason Kremus, Maryland disintegrated. Some of it was Clemson's doing. The Tigers, who have one of the nation's top defenses, held Maryland to 39 rushing yards. Also, of Maryland's 214 yards total offense, 81 came on its first possession.

However the Terrapins did plenty to themselves. They were called for a delay of game penalty when they had a fourth and inches. They interfered with an opposing punt returner for the fourth time this season. They ran into the opposing punter. They overthrew receivers who were open deep for possible touchdowns. They allowed a punt to be returned for a touchdown for the second consecutive week -- Darnell Stephens going 89 yards to make the score 40-7 with 13 minutes to play.

On and on and on.

"There's obviously some work to be done," Krivak said. "The talent base is such, and the key to the whole thing is recruiting."

But senior center Mitch Suplee insisted: "We have good players, good talent. We're playing beneath ourselves."

The first half could not have begun better or ended worse for the Terrapins. They took the opening kickoff and moved from their 19 to their 44 on four running plays and an offside penalty against Clemson.

Sandwisch then hooked up with Kremus for Maryland's first passing touchdown in more than 12 quarters, since its last-minute game-winner against Wake Forest on Oct. 19.

The lead lasted slightly more than three minutes, however. Keyed by a 52-yard pass to Terry Smith, Clemson drove 77 yards for a one-yard touchdown run by Tony Kennedy.

Maryland's offense did not reply. It went without a first down on its next five series. Meanwhile, the Tigers moved in front, 10-7, on a 27-yard field goal by Nelson Welch late in the first quarter. They made it 17-7 the next time they had the ball when Smith caught a 43-yard touchdown pass on third and 13.

The Terrapins finally got another first down with a little less than seven minutes left in the half, but it was followed by a series of penalties.

On fourth down and inches at Clemson's 36, Sandwisch's sneak for an apparent first down came just after a penalty flag was dropped for delay of game. That forced Maryland to punt.

Dan DeArmas lofted a kick inside Clemson's 10, and Robert O'Neal signaled for a fair catch. However, Brett Stevenson apparently didn't see the signal. He jostled O'Neal aside and caught the ball, earning a penalty.

Clemson consumed the half's final five minutes, driving from its 13 to a 22-yard field goal as time expired. The Tigers made it 27-7 early in the third quarter after a fumble by Maryland running back Troy Jackson.

Another hard-to-explain sequence helped set up a 28-yard touchdown run by backup quarterback Richard Moncrief late in the third quarter. With Clemson facing fourth and two at Maryland's 44, the Terrapins called a timeout.

When play resumed, the Tigers suddenly rushed their punting unit onto the field and their offense off. Maryland players started scrambling from their bench, and the Terrapins had to call a timeout to avoid a penalty for too many men on the field. "One coach was giving punt safe, one was giving punt rush," said Mike Jarmolowich, who then compounded the problem by running into the punter, giving Clemson a first down. Three plays later, Moncrief scored.

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