October 31, 2007

Terps 'D' needs to wrap one up

The Maryland defense will focus this week on, among other things, its most elemental task - tackling.

The Terrapins have struggled to bring opposing ball carriers to the ground all season and the problem reached a peak in last Saturday's loss to Clemson.

Maryland had a tackle rate in the low 60s, its worst mark of the season, and the result was 249 yards rushing and 428 yards of total offense for the Tigers in a 30-17 win.

"I think people just aren't wrapping up," linebacker Dave Philistin said. "It doesn't need to be an explosive hit. Everybody wants to make an explosive hit but it's just a matter of getting the ball carrier on the ground."

Maryland's defense has struggled in recent weeks, allowing at least 178 yards rushing in five of the last six games. The most oft-cited reason for the unit's struggles has been poor tackling, a problem that is vexing players and coaches alike.

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