Maryland stays local for 1st bowl appearance since 2010, will play Marshall in Military Bowl

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Maryland won't have to cross the state line for its first bowl appearance since 2010.

The Terrapins (7-5) will face Marshall (9-4) in the Military Bowl on Dec. 27. The game will be held at the home stadium of the Naval Academy, which is around 28 miles from the Maryland campus.

"We get a chance to play in our state capital," Terps coach Randy Edsall said Sunday night. "We hope we can get all our fans and people from this area to come out and support us and be part of the great game-day atmosphere that's going to take place in Annapolis."

Maryland finished 7-5 this season to earn its first bowl bid under Edsall, now in his third year with the Terrapins. The last time Maryland played in the postseason, it beat East Carolina when the Military Bowl was held in the nation's capital and Ralph Friedgen was head coach.

This will be the sixth Military Bowl, the first in Annapolis.

"Being close to home, it allows us to play in front of our recruiting base," Edsall said. "Our players' parents and families will be able to come out in full force to watch us."

Marshall received its invitation on Saturday. The Thundering Herd went 9-4 and won the Conference USA East Division title before falling to Rice in the league championship game.

Marshall and Maryland have never played each other in football.

"Maryland has built plenty of momentum and finished this season strong, while Marshall features a high-powered offense," Military Bowl President & Executive Director Steve Beck said. "We're excited about this game being one of our best ever."

The Thundering Herd is led by quarterback Rakeem Cato, who ranks second in Conference USA in passing (275.3 yards per game) and has thrown 36 touchdown passes.

"I have great respect for the ACC and great respect for Maryland," Marshall coach Doc Holliday said. "Randy has done a tremendous job there. ... I think our football team as a whole is excited to be able to play a team the caliber of Maryland."