Penn State, Maryland not worried about past results in lopsided series
COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Maryland first-year coach Mike Locksley has no desire to look into the past before leading the Terrapins into Friday night’s matchup with No. 12 Penn State.
And with good reason: It has been all Penn State.
But Locksley insists recent results in the terribly lopsided Penn State-Maryland series will have no bearing on what happens before a rare sellout crowd in College Park for the Big Ten opener.
Nittany Lions coach James Franklin agrees with the assessment.
Although unbeaten Penn State is 39-2-1 against Maryland — including 66-3 and 38-3 blowouts the previous two years — Franklin is wary of a rejuvenated team that won its first two games at home by a combined 122 points.
“Obviously, we’ve got a lot of respect for what they have been able to do so far there in that program,” Franklin said. “Always felt like that program had a lot of talent, and I think Mike is doing a good job taking advantage of it.”
Locksley waved off the last two installments of this so-called rivalry because he wasn’t on the sideline. DJ Durkin absorbed the first bashing, and interim coach Matt Canada, who previously served as Pitt’s offensive coordinator, was the recipient of last year’s rout.
“As far as comparisons, I don’t know about the last two years, what they’ve done or what we’ve done on offense against them,” Locksley said. “We rarely worry about our opponent as much as we do about our execution. I think we’ll stick to that script.”
Both teams are coming off a bye. Penn State (3-0) squeezed past Pitt, 17-10, and the Terps (2-1) fell out of the Top 25 with a loss at Temple after walloping Howard, 79-0, and then-No. 21 Syracuse, 63-20.
Franklin spent eight years on the Maryland coaching staff from 2000-04 and 2008-10, overlapping with Locksley for three years at the outset of the first stint. Franklin coached the wide receivers, and Locksley was in charge of the running backs.
“Obviously, a program that we have some history with, and I specifically have some history with,” Franklin said. “Go back a long time with Coach Locksley.”
Locksley said, “We’ve maintained a relationship over the years. We both are guys that grew up in this program here.”
Maryland’s last win against Penn State came in 2014, when Locksley was the Terrapins’ offensive coordinator under Randy Edsall and Franklin was in his first season at Penn State.