Following the success of two games against Navy at M&T Bank Stadium, the University of Maryland has agreed to play two more football contests at the NFL venue in Baltimore.
The Terrapins will face interstate rival West Virginia on Saturday, Sept. 21, 2013 and Atlantic Coast Conference foe Virginia Tech in 2014 at the 71,008-seat stadium. The date for the Virginia Tech game will be determined when the ACC releases its schedule in early 2014.
The Baltimore Ravens, who played host to the NCAA Men's Lacrosse Championships last month, are excited to bring another football event to their stadium.
"We are delighted that the University of Maryland has agreed to host two premier college football games at M&T Bank Stadium," said Dick Cass, president of the Baltimore Ravens. "With Maryland's large and loyal fan base and the many supporters of West Virginia and Virginia Tech in the area, we expect both games to be sellouts. We are committed to bringing major events such as Maryland football to the Stadium and Baltimore and look forward to hosting other major events at the Stadium."
Maryland played Navy in Baltimore in 2005, as well as in the 2010 season opener. Both games were played before near-capacity crowds (67,809 in 2005; 69,348 in 2010). The Terps downed Navy, 17-14, last season, a win that included a thrilling goal-line stand by the Maryland defense as time expired.
The games in Baltimore continue broadening the exposure of both the University and Maryland football.
"We are committed to providing the best experience possible for everyone involved with Maryland football – student-athletes, coaches, fans and alumni," said Maryland director of athletics Kevin Anderson. "We've been successful in our recent games in Baltimore in every aspect. The feedback from our players and fans has been overwhelmingly positive. Since our arrivals, (head coach) Randy Edsall and I have traveled throughout Maryland. In those travels, it's become clear that since our University represents the entire state, we must have a strong presence everywhere, particularly in Baltimore.
"While Capital One Field at Byrd Stadium will always be our home, having the opportunity to take some games to venues around the state enables us to generate positive exposure for the entire university, to take Maryland football to new fans and recruits, and to enable our fan base and players to have a high-quality experience at another outstanding venue. This opportunity is part of our commitment to strengthening our home football schedules in future years."
The Terps renewed their rivalry with West Virginia last season and the teams will continue to play in coming years.
The Mountaineers visit Capital One Field at Byrd Stadium this fall (Sept. 17) and due to a change in the scheduling of the series, the Terps are set to face WVU at home in 2013 and 2014. West Virginia will visit Capital One Field at Byrd Stadium in 2014. Maryland travels to Morgantown, W.Va., in 2012 and 2015.
Maryland head coach Randy Edsall feels playing in Baltimore is a plus on a number of levels.
"This is a great opportunity for our student-athletes and the entire state of Maryland," Edsall said. "We get a chance to increase our fan base, as well as reach out to our alums and followers in the Baltimore area.
Playing in M&T Bank Stadium also helps in our recruiting efforts since Baltimore is one of our prime areas. In addition, our current players are always excited to play in an NFL stadium."
Maryland fans will also get to experience all that the City of Baltimore has to offer.
"We look forward to hosting these two exciting games in Maryland and welcoming tens of thousands of loyal fans to M&T Bank Stadium," said Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley. "In addition to watching their favorite team play, residents and visitors alike will have a unique opportunity to enjoy the many events and festivities in and around downtown Baltimore as we commemorate the bicentennial of the War of 1812."
The Terps, who open preseason football camp on Aug. 9, will return 13 starters (six on offense/seven on defense) from last season's 9-4 squad.
Edsall's first game as Maryland's head coach is scheduled for Monday, Sept. 5 against Miami at Capital One Field at Byrd Stadium.
Season tickets for the 2011 season start as low as $130. Maryland's home schedule also includes games vs. West Virginia, Clemson and Virginia.
"The Maryland Stadium Authority is delighted M&T Bank Stadium will be the site where the University of Maryland plays two strong powerhouse rivals. As we experienced with the Maryland-Navy game last season, our downtown location and convenient transportation options make M&T Bank Stadium the perfect choice for games with great regional appeal."
John Morton III
*Chairman *Maryland Stadium Authority
"The Baltimore Ravens' announcement that the University of Maryland will play two premier opponents in Maryland's world-class M&T Bank Stadium is very exciting and enhances the state's image across the country. M&T Bank Stadium offers one of the best fan experiences in all of football and we are fortunate to have the Terrapins play both West Virginia University and Virginia Tech in our stadium."
*Director *Maryland Office of Sports Marketing