5 Thoughts - 2008 Humanitarian Bowl
Maryland RB DaRel Scott
Maryland RB DaRel Scott
Posted Dec 30, 2008

Maryland beats Nevada 42-35 ... 5 Thoughts on the 2008 Humanitarian Bowl

5 Thoughts ... 2008 Humanitarian Bowl

Maryland 42 ... Nevada 35

GAME RECAP: Maryland runs wild on Pack 
- 2008 CFN Humanitarian Bowl Preview
2008 Humanitarian Bowl Player Profiles, Histories, & More

1. This game's most revealing moment? It might not seem like much, but when one considers that this game was a mirror of Maryland's up-and-down season (sometimes awesome, sometimes horrible, and always unpredictable), it's worth examining.
With just under nine minutes left in regulation, gutsy Nevada quarterback Colin Kaepernick--fighting off an ankle injury to keep his team competitive--was on the ground and looking for a helping hand. A Maryland defender offered that hand, only to retract it at the last instant. The classless display--besides needing a stern reprimand from Terps coach Ralph Friedgen in a film analysis--showed something about a team that was up one moment, and down the next. Character counts, and players who would insult a brave and gallant opposing quarterback are the kinds of players who are inconsistent, distracted, and lacking in the levelheadedness that characterizes a championship team. Perhaps Friedgen can use this moment as a way to teach his kids (the good ones, not the bad apples) how to behave in all times and seasons. With a better attitude, perhaps Maryland will make Orange Bowls in the future, not Humanitarians.
- Matthew Zemek

2. Maybe there's something to this whole benching thing. Maryland RB DaRel Scott was suspended for the entire first half and half of the third quarter after violating curfew, and then he looked like he was shot out of a cannon when he finally got on the field. Of course he was fired up to make up for the problems and come through with a big performance, but more importantly in a game like this, he had fresh legs. While Nevada QB Colin Kaepernick was trying to fight through a bum wheel, spraining his ankle early on, here comes Scott off the bench playing fired up and as good as new. Remember, time off is a big factor in these bowl games and it gives some players time to heal up, and it also makes it hard to get the 60-minute conditioning back. Scott showed that it's sometimes better to be held in the barn and then unleashed on a tired team late.
- Pete Fiutak

3. Couldn’t Da’Rel Scott have come up with a more severe infraction than a measly broken curfew? You know the Nevada sideline was thinking that as the Maryland back repeatedly ripped through its defense in the second half. Scott was suspended until halftime by Ralph Friedgen, but made up for lost time with 174 yards and two critical scores on just 14 carries in the final two quarters. Every time the Pack rallied, he stepped up and provided the backbreaker. Looking like the player who led the country in rushing for a time in September, he’ll enter 2009 as one of the ACC’s premier offensive playmakers. - Richard Cirminiello
4. Although he was the losing pitcher in the game, Nevada QB Colin Kaepernick delivered one of the gutsiest efforts of the bowl season so far. Hobbled by a badly sprained ankle that limited his trademark mobility, he still managed to throw for 369 yards and three scores, rush for a touchdown, and nearly rally the Wolf Pack to a come-from-behind win. Had his receivers not dropped a million passes and his defense made an occasional tackle, he might have brought Nevada all the way back. Even without the W, though, he gained the respect of the Maryland players and anyone who caught the Humanitarian Bowl. Believe it or not, you only caught a fraction of Kaepernick, who’s far more dangerous when he’s working on two healthy wheels. 
- Richard Cirminiello
5. Yes, big boys don't like scheduling road games against WAC opponents. If college football is to grow at all levels, top teams should be willing to take on decent teams in the better non-BCS conferences. Scheduling is always a subject in which teams from the WAC (and the Mountain West, and the MAC, and C-USA) will have a legitimate gripe on an annual basis.
With that said, the WAC has just concluded a 1-4 bowl season, with the one win coming against 6-7 Northern Illinois on a virtual home field (Louisiana Tech). If Utah doesn't deliver the goods against Alabama, it will be very hard to take Rocky Mountain and upper-tier non-BCS conferences very seriously. Nevada played with heart, but Maryland clearly had the superior skill people and linemen. Given the ACC's slew of bowl losses in 2008, the inability to beat the schizophrenic Terps in a WAC stadium (belonging to league champion Boise State) represents a huge missed opportunity for Nevada and the WAC at large. The conference needs a better bowl season in 2009... and, in future seasons, a willingness on the part of BCS conferences to travel to places like Boise, Fresno, Reno, Honolulu, and Ruston (La.).
- Matthew Zemek