Bowl season has reached its final week, but arguably the most important weekend of the entire bowl season is upon us as our Maryland vs. NC State prediction kicks off a terrific Friday slate of action.
Maryland vs. NC State Betting Preview
NC State (-1)
NC State (-115); Maryland (-105)
- Game time
Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, NC
- Predicted weather
68 degrees, partly cloudy, minimal winds
- How to watch
As with any bowl game, it’s imperative to sift through whatever news you can find on who is actually playing. And, more importantly, just how well each team will play with their given players on the roster.
The transfer portal, bowl-game opt-outs, and the general state of flux that is the month of December makes it difficult to figure out which pieces are where and just which players you can count on to perform for their teams.
In the case of Maryland and NC State, the questions immediately start at the quarterback position.
Prediction for Maryland vs. NC State
We all knew that Devin Leary’s time at NC State was nearly over when the year started. However, after a midseason arm injury sidelined him for the remaining portion of the season, the hope that he may return for 2023 began to shine through.
However, he’s officially signed with the Kentucky Wildcats, and the journey to finding consistency at the QB position hasn’t yielded quite a positive return for the Wolfpack just yet.
Jack Chambers and MJ Morris split the reps in Leary’s absence and, after starting 5-1, fell to 8-4 on the season following Leary’s injury. As it stands now, Ben Finley remains the last quarterback to start for the Wolfpack, as he led NC State to a victory over North Carolina in the season finale.
Despite the questions surrounding their QB position, NC State is a single-point favorite over the Maryland Terrapins. This is, of course, because Maryland QB Taulia Tagovailoa is unsure on his plans to enter the 2023 NFL Draft or return to College Park next season.
Tagovailoa has stated he’s unsure of his plans, and that likely leads to him playing in the Duke’s Mayo Bowl, but with the way postseason depth charts and starters have been announced (or not been announced), anything is up for interpretation this year.
What we do know is that both teams have staunch receiving corps. Longtime veteran of the sport Thayer Thomas leads the charge for NC State, while the Terps are a formidable bunch despite the loss of a few pass catchers in the transfer portal this offseason.
The defenses will be tested by the aerial assaults on sheer talent at the receiver position alone. Yet, NC State presents a unique challenge in the secondary to figure out. The Wolfpack secondary has a few NFL draft-caliber players, and their length is enough to push the catch point and keep the Terps at bay.
If NC State gets enough positive play from their quarterback — whoever that is — the Wolfpack can hold on for head coach Dave Doeren to get a Mayo Bath after all.
Prediction: NC State 27, Maryland 23