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Braxton Dupree's Salute, and Other Terp Questions

Questions and answers from yesterday's big Maryland win over Virginia.

How can one spot the family of Greivis Vasquez in the crowd?

Matching Greivis t-shirts, of course. This would be brother, sister-in-law, and nephew, sitting in the Terps family section last night. The shirts say "Vasquez, 21" on the back. Remember that next time you boo, anonymous students.

Why were Braxton Dupree and Adrian Bowie saluting each other before the game?

"It's just a personal thing," Dupree told me. "I'm just trying to let him know, he's the man when he gets out there, get him flowing. Today before the game was the first time we'd done it, just to try something different. We hadn't done it before, we just usually go through the same routine and I give him a chest bump at the end. It was my idea...just something to add to it. I told him before the game, when we were breaking off to go into the starting lineups, I was letting him know, 'Today I'm gonna give you a salute, so be ready for it.' "

In his role of team hype man, does Dupree do anything else?

"I don't know if you guys notice, but I back up to give [Greivis Vasquez] a little more of a runway when we jump into each other," Dupree said. "When Landon [Milbourne's] coming through, he's screaming, he's hollering, so I do the same thing as he's coming out: Scream with him."

Why was Fan of the Game Maxwell Bero wearing a Darth Vader helmet adorned with Terps stickers?

"I just found it in my closet today," he noted. "I got it when I was a kid. Then I put stickers on it today....By Tuesday I'm going to get a cape and black gloves. We're going shopping. Why not?"

And was he implying that Gary Williams is evil, or a wayward part of The Force?

"Gary Williams IS The force," Maxwell told me. "It's school colors, it has nothing to do with the evil guy."

What did Gary Williams say when he saw me after the game?

"Dan, how you doing?" he said. "What are you doing here? Must have been no Caps, no Wizards, Georgetown's not playing. You had nothing to do, just tell the truth."

How accurate was his assessment?

Very, very accurate. And also very funny.

What was with those guys in the front row toting a silver "white" board?

Adam Hammer wanted a white white board, but couldn't find one, so he settled for silver. He and his pals use it to post constantly updated notices for the benefit of the visiting team. Like, in the first half yesterday, the board said "Hates Jeff Jones," with the arrow pointing to Tanner Steidel. By the second half, it had changed to "Still Hates Jeff Jones."

"Because he wanted to go to Maryland and now he goes to Virginia," Steidel noted. "And I can't stand the sight of him. He just looks weird."

"Not good. At all," Hammer agreed.

Dave Neal, he of the oozing eye wound and YMCA game, seems like a ripe subject for nicknames. What do his teammates call him?

"We just call him 'Dave,' " Sean Mosley told me.

Why did I doubt this answer?

Because Dupree had already offered a tortured rendition of Neal's nickname, which he apparently uses every time the two cross paths.

"Dave the Real Neal Deal," Dupree offered, before correcting himself. "Hold up, I'm gonna try to get this right here. Alright I've got it: "The Real Deal Dave Neal," that's what we call him. I've got kind of a nickname for everyone here on the team, me and Dino."

(Dupree, in his role of the Terps' Fred Smoot, didn't want to share all of his names, but he did tell me that Jerome Burney is "Rome-a-Dome," and Dino Gregory is "Dino Brown," which dates from the AAU days. Neal, meantime, seemed partial to a nickname Chick Hernandez had given him: "The Grand Pa-pa.")

And finally, what was the fan reaction to Greivis, in the first home game since the booing incident?

Strongly supportive, near as I could tell. All the students I talked to said they hadn't booed Greivis, and would never do so. And then there was 12-year old Maggie Remsberg, in the upper level, with a sign paying tribute to both Vasquez and Jin Soo Kim.

"My cousin thought of it, to support Greivis and Jin Soo," Maggie told me. "Greivis is my favorite player, and now I like Jin Soo too, because they're from another country and they're really awesome."

By Dan Steinberg  |  January 21, 2009; 2:56 PM ET
Categories:  Terps  
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I like how Maryland is separate from America on that sign. It's true: We're better than you all are.

Posted by: Lindemann777 | January 22, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

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