The wait is over. It was announced today that Purdue will face Maryland in the Champs Sports Bowl on December 29 in Orlando, Florida. Clemson and Boston College were also in the discussion, but officials of the Champs Sports Bowl ultimately felt, "Maryland and their fans had a lot of excitement for Orlando." The Terps finished the regular season at 8-4, 5-3 in the Atlantic Coast Conference.
As I mentioned in my analysis of potential bowl opponents a week ago, the Terps have managed to win a lot of games this season without doing anything spectacular. Their last 6 wins came by a combined 17 points. The Terrapins rank sixth in the 12-team ACC in total offense (304.7 yards per game), including fourth in rushing offense (124.9) and eighth in passing offense (179.8). The Terps are seventh in scoring (21.7). Defensively, Maryland ranks 10th in the ACC in total defense (366.9 yards per game), including 12th against the run (174.8) and sixth versus the pass (192.2). Maryland is 10th in scoring D (23.1 points per game).
Ralph Friedgen's Maryland program and Joe Tiller's Purdue program are similar in a lot of ways. Both coaches enjoyed a lot of success early in their career as Friedgen started his Maryland career with three 10 win seasons in a row. Both programs missed the postseason last year going 5-6, and both are back this year after going 8-4 (I am not counting Hawaii) this season.
Much more analysis of the Terps Boilers match up to come.