Nov. 26, 2011
RALEIGH, N.C. - C.J. Brown rushed for two touchdowns and threw for another one, but it was not enough to hold off NC State, which rallied for a 56-41 victory on Saturday.
Mike Glennon threw for a career-high five touchdowns, ran for another score and led NC State's rally from 27 points down in the second half. James Washington ran 1 yard for the go-ahead score with 7:08 left for the Wolfpack (7-5, 4-4 ACC).
They trailed 41-14 with six minutes left in the third quarter before reeling off five straight touchdown drives during the second-biggest comeback ever in an ACC game.
The Wolfpack scored 35 points in the fourth quarter as part of a rally surpassed in an ACC game only by Clemson's comeback from a 28-point deficit to beat Virginia 29-28 in 1992.
Davin Meggett's 6-yard scoring run in the third quarter gave the Terrapins their biggest lead.
Glennon finished 36 of 55 for 306 yards with touchdown passes covering 4 and 11 yards to Tony Creecy, 7 yards to Jay Smith, 6 yards to Tobais Palmer and 7 yards to George Bryan for N.C. State, which needed to win seven games to become eligible because two of its victories came against FCS teams.
It took a remarkable rally to make that happen.
Glennon started the comeback with his touchdown pass to Palmer with just under 6 minutes left in the third. Then he threw a second scoring pass to Creecy on the first play of the fourth quarter, pulling N.C. State within 13.
Meggett fumbled on the Terrapins' next play, and four plays later, Glennon sneaked in from 1 yard out to make it 41-35 with 13:28 left.
Earl Wolff then intercepted Brown's deep pass and brought it out to near midfield. Glennon's 20-yard pass to Creecy on third-and-9 set up Washington's go-ahead touchdown run.
Maryland went three-and-out and punted back to N.C. State with 5:21 left, and the Wolfpack ran about three minutes off the clock. Glennon's scoring pass to Bryan put N.C. State up by eight with 2:18 remaining.
C.J. Wilson then iced it with a 59-yard interception return for a score with 27 seconds to play.
Brown finished 12 of 23 for 166 yards with a pair of 1-yard touchdown runs and a 24-yard scoring pass to Kevin Dorsey for Maryland.
Dexter McDougle returned a fumble 66 yards for a touchdown and A.J. Hendy took an interception 32 yards for another score for Maryland, which was trying to spoil things for N.C. State for the third time in five years. The Terps kept the Wolfpack out of the postseason in 2007 with a rout in the finale, and beat Russell Wilson's final N.C. State team in the last game of the 2010 regular season to deny it a spot in the ACC championship game.
Early on, it seemed all but certain that it would happen again - especially after Maryland took two of those giveaways back for easy points.
McDougle started the scoring when James Washington caught a pass and simply dropped the ball for N.C. State's second fumble. The Maryland cornerback scooped it up and had an easy path down the sideline for the touchdown roughly 6-1/2 minutes in.
Hendy made it 28-7 with 8 minutes left in the half when he picked off Glennon's pass and breezed into the end zone.
Brown's second short touchdown run pushed the Terps' lead to 21-7 with just under 9 minutes left in the half, and his TD pass to Dorsey made it 34-14 with 33 seconds before the break. Meggett then made it 41-14 with his long scoring run barely 4 minutes into the third.
The Associated Press contributes to all game recaps