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Dreadful 10 Minutes Dooms Terps

Things were going well for Maryland last night. Surprisingly well, actually. The Terps had sprinted out to a double-digit lead and were holding it.

But that, as it turned out, was the problem. The Terps were more concerned with maintaining their lead than with sticking to the plan that manufactured their advantage in the first place.

"We were pushing the ball well when we were up and winning by 17," senior forward Dave Neal said. "When we saw getting the clock down to nine or eight minutes, I guess we kind of slowed down and tried to milk the clock. You could say things went into a funk, but we should have executed better. We knew what we had to do, and we just didn’t do it as well as we should have."

With 10 minutes to play, Maryland led by 14 points. Then Miami's James Dews hit a three-pointer. Then Lance Hurdle hit another three. Then Jack McClinton -- whom the Terps had done a fairly good job of flummoxing in the first half -- nailed a three of his own.

With five minutes to play, Maryland's lead had been cut to five, yet it still seemed as though the Terps would pull it out. Sophomore guard Adrian Bowie slashed into the lane and scored. He tallied a career-high 23 points on the night.

With two and a half minutes to go, Maryland's lead stood at seven. The Terps appeared to have stopped the bleeding, though "appeared" turned out to be the operative word.

Hurdle nailed another three-pointer. Then McClinton followed suit to cut Maryland's lead to one with 1:41 left on the clock.

"They had wide-open shots," Bowie said. "We didn’t get back on defense and we didn’t drop on defense. They were supposed to knock those down."

Following two Eric Hayes' free throws with 41 seconds remaining, the Terps led by one and Miami Coach Frank Haith called a familiar play. It's called "dribble-up bump," and typically concludes with McClinton draining a three-pointer.

Much to the Terps' dismay, that's exactly how the call played out. McClinton launched a three from well beyond the arc and watched it sink through the net. Miami was up by two, which proved to be the margin of the Hurricanes' victory.

"You know, if one thing lost the game it was we lost our aggressiveness on the defensive end of the court," Williams said. "We gave up too many threes in those situations. We talked about it every timeout. We just couldn’t get them stopped."

By Steve Yanda  |  January 15, 2009; 7:15 AM ET
Categories:  Men's basketball  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Terps Falter Late In 62-60 Loss To Miami
Next: How To Describe The Miami Loss


It is time for three things to happen.

1) Fire Debbie Yow. She pushed moving the Terps into the sterile arena of Comcast. We have not been the same program since leaving Cole and this new building has given away the advantage we once had and has yet to land us a top flight recruit.

2) Fire Gary Williams. You have to recruit top level talent out of the area loaded with players. How do you let Durant, Carmello, Beasley and others over the years get out of town. Any one remember a Nate James tip-in at the ACC tourney or just last night Jack McClinton out of Baltimore. Either go get the talent or step aside for someone to come here and get it done. My suggestion...Mike Brey

3) Tell Braxton Dupree to get lost. Let him stay in school to get his education, but free up his spot on the bench. He makes Will Bowers look like Len Elmore. How do we miss so bad.

The program is in a total downward spiral and I will predict a 13 point loss to FSU as they will come out uninspired and lifeless.

I don't want to hear Gary say that the defense let them down last night. How about scoring 8 points in the last 12:30. It was 52-35 and they score 8 points. In the Morgan State game, they scored 11 points over the last 12 minutes as well. If they actually play offense and don't play scared or slow it down to a crawl, they win both games. While the defense did give up some open 3's, if you hold an ACC opponent to 62 points, you should win the game. They need to find someone who can shot. Mosley is not the answer at this point. How many open shots is he gonna miss this year???

NIT here we come.

Posted by: flounder049 | January 15, 2009 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Why isn't Cliff Tucker getting more minutes especially when Moseley is doing nothing. Firing Gary isn't the answer

Posted by: beas13 | January 15, 2009 9:16 AM | Report abuse

Yes, it's good to get out on the road away from Comcast! It's Gary's job to have the team playing at a high level and not sitting on a lead.

Gary's Job.


Posted by: petecard | January 15, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

Last year, even with Gist and Boom, I couldn't believe how the Terps were outstanding at not finishing games. Clemson, VA Tech, Duke (at home)--some many games where they were in control in the second half and for reason, they just--STOP. Nothing has changed it seems. I almost prefer seeing them get blown out than teasing me for 39 minutes.

Posted by: Trippey | January 15, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Firing Gary is not the answer. Does anyone remember where this program was 20 years ago? On life support. Gary brought it back to life and added two Final Fours and a National Championship to boot. He has earned the right to finish his coaching career here.

Gary also does not recruit one and done guys, and he does not stroke and cater to recruits either. The talent level has dropped off, and that is unfortunate. But, I think it has more to do with these prima donna's now then anything else. Gary is Bobby Knight Lite and kids don't want to deal with it and Gary is not going to blow sunshine up their butts either.

Posted by: Section505203 | January 15, 2009 10:28 AM | Report abuse

It's amazing how many people are in this doomsday mode everytime the Terps lose. "Oh my God! Fire the coach! Fire the AD! We can't recruit! We can't beat anybody! Burn down the campus! Cut off my head!" Folks, take a Prozac and get a grip.

Miami was a decent team to begin with, so losing is no disgrace. That said, the obvious problem is playing not to lose instead of playing to win. Because of the 3-point line in basketball, no lead is ever safe. A 10-point lead can whittle down to 1-point in a matter of 3 shots which can take just a few seconds.

The solution is simple: go for the jugular! Put 'em away for good. Don't let up until there's only 1 minute left.

Posted by: ecglotfelty | January 15, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

What a game, slowly realizing we should blame gary, check it out below.

Posted by: bennyob | January 15, 2009 11:19 AM | Report abuse


Just because this Donkey over at the Examiner says it's Gary's fault, then it is? Give me a break.

Posted by: Section505203 | January 15, 2009 12:40 PM | Report abuse

The team's tendency to tighten up down the stretch with a lead is a reflection upon their coach. Gary called a timeout after every 3 made by Miami within the last 10 minutes. Gary's always tense, but when we have a lead you can tell he's relaxed...less screaming. When he starts screaming as the lead chips away and takes 18 timeouts in 2 minutes, it rubs off on the team and they start playing "not to lose." Well guess what, we lost.

Posted by: nmccray | January 15, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Fire Debbie Yow, seriously? Have you seen what she's accomplished since she was hired? I don't have it off hand, but her record is amazing. See where the athletics program was before she got to MD and where it is now. Really, do your research before making such an ignorant comment.

Posted by: CYork1 | January 15, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

From Wikipedia:

Deborah A. Yow is the Director of Athletics of the University of Maryland's athletics program. It is currently her 15th year in the position.[1]

Under Yow, the Maryland athletics department balanced all 14 of its annual budgets, a feat that had not been done in the decade prior to her arrival. She reduced the program's debt from $51 million to $7.6 million. In the past three seasons, the school's athletic teams have captured seven national championships. Both U.S. News & World Report and Sports Illustrated ranked the Maryland athletics program in the nation's top 20.[1]

Posted by: CYork1 | January 15, 2009 2:20 PM | Report abuse

To fire or not fire (Gary), that is the question? There can be no doubt that Gary has failed to cash in regarding recruits post tourney championship. That being said, realize the guy goes up against the best of the best when it comes to recruiting (e.g. Duke, Carolina, Georgetown,..etc.).

I'll give Gary another year or two before I jump ship. I'm interested to see if his hiring of Keith Booth (Baltimore boy) results in landing the more coveted area talent. Also I think Mosley (recruited primarily by Booth) will be a money player come tourney time.

As to Yow, meh. The Fridge is definitely first on the canning list at UMD in my opinion.

Posted by: seanc98 | January 15, 2009 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Can the Fridge, Why?

6 bowls appearances (1 BCS) in 8 years since he was hired in 2001. None prior to his hiring since 1990 and we tied sorry ass LA Tech in the Independence Bowl that year I believe.

The football program was a disaster before he signed on. But, just like Gary, minus the National Championship, he turned it around dramatically.

Please explain I would love to hear your rationale

Posted by: Section505203 | January 15, 2009 3:17 PM | Report abuse

looks like a 6-10 ACC season, smells like one too. hope i am wrong.

vasquez is caner-medley re-incarnated. dave neal should not be starting in the ACC, just shows the sad state of affairs for our interior.

has one ever seen such an ineffective use of timeouts? (not counting the morgan st. loss).

Posted by: terpcentral1 | January 15, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Gary is still a top tier/HOF type coach. The reason he isn't signing Beasley, Carmelo, Dante Greene, etc is simple. Gary refuses to cheat. He plays by the rules. How did Dante have that nice Range Rover as a Syracuse freshman? Why would Beasley choose Kansas State. Kansas State? I want the type guys too, and would love to win more, but as silly as it seems to say, this is still College and these are still kids. Let the other bums cheat to win. I'll just hope Gary finds another under the radar guy like Juan Dixon before he retires.

Posted by: spraggabenz | January 15, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Gary doesn`t need to explain his actions to anyone, he has earned the right to finish his career at UM. All these wannabe`s who think they know what`s going on and have all the answers, you do not have a clue, stop crying about how you can do it better, because if you could, you would be on the bench with Turk, Chuck Driesell and the Joe Harrington.

I am thankful for what Coach Williams has done for the program, 3rd winningest coach in conference victories? Not too shabby considering that Deano and Rat face are the top two....

Posted by: terpfan4141 | January 15, 2009 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Why are people even shocked anymore when this team does something like it did last night against Miami? It has become the norm over the last five seasons.

Face it folks, Maryland basketball will never reach the heights it did during the 1990s and early 2000s unless change is made, whether that is at the top or among the assistants.

Posted by: ams1986 | January 15, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

I can understand all the people calling for Gary Williams head, and they have every right to. He has recruited horribly for a very long time. He can see the faults of all, but can't admit that he either doesn't want to recruit or stinks at it and hire people who can. Fridge has the same problem. Here is the thing though. In my opinion they can both keep their jobs until they die. Gary came here from Ohio State to save his alma mater when they were on probation and still reeling from the Len Bias death and Bob Wade fiasco. It took him 15 years to do it, but he won a National Championship. He could have gone anywhere in the country at any time, but he didn't. He gets a pass forever. I understanf those who disagree and are unwilling to accept that this as good as it is ever going to be for the forseeable future. I wish the Fridge would retire, but if he doesn't I also give hom a long leash after returning to his Alma mater and going to 6 bowl games in 8 years with one ACC Championship. As far as Yow goes, she is an administrator, not an athletic booster. Her job is to make money for her department and she has been fabulously successful at it. Her relationship with Gary has been strained to say the least. I don't really like her, but she does her job well. The only thing I would say my opinion would change if the way she has done it is to limit recruiting budgets or prevent the team from hiring some people that would have helped with that. I am not happy with the state of affairs of our two major sports, but until someone more deserving comes along, I will stick with these coaches.

Posted by: dbrine1261 | January 15, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

One thing that doesn't ever get mentioned is that Gary Williams makes millions and millions a year. He has been rewarded very very well for his National Championship. He is a state employee and people think he should have tenure on a several million dollar salary. Here is my obvious prediction..... unless things change with recruiting, people won't pay 40+ dollars a game to see a NIT team much longer and we will have a new coach.

Posted by: lkfkd876 | January 15, 2009 6:36 PM | Report abuse

I'm more puzzled how Mich St got to be ranked NUMBER SEVEN in the country (higher than HOYA SAZA). And Michigan is now ranked NUMBER TWENTY-FIVE? How and when did that take place?

It's early in the season, so save the GARY MUST GO rants until March. Then we'll see what this bunch of players are made of.

On a sidebar, does anybody know of any REMEDIES for razor bumps?

Posted by: iamasofaking | January 15, 2009 6:39 PM | Report abuse

This mindless hero worship of Gary Williams disconcerts me.

Personally I think Williams' success can be attributed to his assistants. After they bolted, the program has suffered immensely.

A consensus has arisen in this forum that he should have "a pass for life" because of past glory.

And perhaps that's the problem in a nutshell.

Since Williams believes he has a "pass for life", he doesn't have to work hard to land a recruit or force a kid to go to class.

So if you want 15 more years of mediocrity, stay in the Williams corner.

Posted by: imterpsfan2 | January 15, 2009 8:00 PM | Report abuse

I just don't understand all the fair-weather fans screaming for someone to get fired? Who? Yow? As accurately pointed out earlier, it her job to oversee the business side of the athletics problem (to which she has done magnificently) not to be a coach. Gary? You have to be kidding me! Face facts, U of M is not a big-time school for recruits. Football players will keep going to Penn State, Va Tech or others...Basketballers will keep going to Georgetown, UNC and Duke. Instead of wanting to fire someone, instead cast your mind back to 15 years ago and remember where both programs were...then thank your lucky stars Md got two coaches of integrity and respect.

Posted by: briandownunder | January 15, 2009 8:27 PM | Report abuse


Are you saying that fans can't expect some WINS with integrity and respect? I appreciate all that Gary and Ralph have done but Maryland is (supposedly) a D-1 operation. Sasha gets in done in Soccer, April in Women's Field Hockey and Brenda in Women's Hoops, all with fewer resources.

Look, I attended Maryland during the lost years of Ron Vanderlinden and followed the team through the Bob Wade fiasco. I KNOW the depths that Gary and Ralph dragged their programs up from but D-1 athletics is a business where you have to win and compete at a national level. You don't get free passes - everybody has to leave sometime. The trick is knowing when to leave.

Posted by: Ken_Davis1 | January 15, 2009 10:06 PM | Report abuse

Someone wrote, "Face facts, U of M is not a big-time school for recruits."

This quote underscores perhaps a deeper-seated problem endemic with the fans. They are beginning to accept mediocrity.

My reply is, "name a few reasons why Maryland WOULDN'T be a big-time school for recruits".

I can enumerate a few reasons why we should be.

1- Maryland is in one of the top five conferences in the country.
2- The campus resides in one of the top media markets in the nation.
3- The university is considered to be a preeminent public university.
4- The administration promotes academic and athletic excellence.

Posted by: imterpsfan2 | January 15, 2009 11:40 PM | Report abuse

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