Stroud, No. 7 Ohio State humming now as Maryland visits

Maryland (4-1, 1-1 Big Ten) at No. 7 Ohio State (4-1, 2-0), Saturday at noon EDT (FOX).

Line: Ohio State by 20 1/2, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.

Series record: Ohio State leads 6-0.

WHAT’S AT STAKE?

The Buckeyes routed upstart Rutgers last week as freshman quarterback C.J. Stroud and other young players continue to settle into their roles after some rocky outings early. Now back in the Top 10, Ohio State has the Terps and Indiana before a critical showdown with No. 4 Penn State. Maryland will try to rebound from a 51-14 pummeling by No. 5 Iowa last week.

KEY MATCHUP

Ohio State passing game vs. Maryland secondary. The Buckeyes have the second-leading offense in the nation, averaging 336 yards per game through the air. Stroud threw for 330 yards and a career-high five touchdowns last week before being relieved in the second half. He has been named Big Ten Freshman of the Week three times.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Maryland: WR Rakim Jarrett. With Dontay Demus out for the season with a knee injury, Jarrett may be Maryland’s top target going forward. He has 21 catches for 276 yards with four touchdowns so far in 2021.

Ohio State: True freshman TreVeyon Henderson has quickly emerged as a reliable No. 1 running back. He’s got 510 yards and seven touchdowns, and has been spelled in the second half in the last two Buckeyes blowouts. His ability to break into the second level has pumped up his per-carry average to 9.4 yards, second in the nation.

FACTS & FIGURES

Ohio State has scored an average of 58 points in six wins over Maryland. The Terps are averaging 22.3. … In the last meeting, the Buckeyes won 73-14 in 2019. … The two Big Ten East Division rivals did not play in 2020. The game was one of three Ohio State games canceled the week of the game because of the pandemic. … In his time as Maryland quarterback beginning in 2020, QB Taulia Tagovailoa has averaged 278.7 passing yards per game, the most in the Big Ten. … Ohio State secondary coach Matt Barnes, currently calling the defensive plays, was Maryland’s special team’s coordinator/linebackers coach 2016-18. … 23 freshman played for the Buckeyes in the win over Rutgers, including four who started. … In the last two games, Ohio State’s defense is allowing 287.5 yards per game and has given up just three touchdowns. … Maryland ranks second in the Big Ten with 18 sacks through five games.

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