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Three things to watch

Later this evening, Maryland will host Winston-Salem State at Comcast Center in what should be a close affair right up until tip-off. Regardless, here are a few things to keep track of during tonight's game ...

1) Perimeter defense. Maryland's defensive effort was called into question by several players following an 11-point win Dec. 12 over Eastern Kentucky, which shot 47.8 percent from three-point range that night. Over their 10-day hiatus from competition, the Terrapins said the honed in on several components of their defense, and perimeter play neared the top of the list. Maryland is allowing opponents to shoot 36.0 percent from beyond the arc this season, which ranks No. 11 in the ACC (only Virginia, which is allowing foes to shoot 39.2 percent from three-point range, is worse).

"We got burned against Eastern Kentucky a little bit, which was an unusual team, but we’ll see that type of offense very quickly coming up here, so we have to be able to cover big people on the three-point line, as well as guards," Coach Gary Williams said. "All those Princeton-type offenses employ big people on the three-point line, so you have to be able to cover that."

Winston-Salem State does not run a Princeton-style offense, nor do the Rams shoot well at all from three-point range (28.0 percent), which means tonight would be appear to be a prime opportunity for the Terrapins to show some improvement in that regard.

2) Frontcourt rotation. To be clear, the frontcourt rotation you see tonight will not necessarily serve as any sort of indicator as to the frontcourt rotation Gary Williams will employ once ACC season begins. Still, given that junior forward Dino Gregory played 33 minutes Dec. 12 against Eastern Kentucky, while freshman forward Jordan Williams -- who has proven to be a capable contributor on both ends of the court -- played nine and fellow freshman big man James Padgett did not play at all, it is worth following how the minutes are doled out among those three players tonight.

3) Reserve guard play. Junior guards Adrian Bowie and Cliff Tucker have not played up to their potential thus far this season, and while one game will not cure their woes, it certainly could go a long way toward restoring some of their confidence in their respective offensive games. Look for Bowie and Tucker to get plenty of opportunities tonight to start the process of turning things around.

By Steve Yanda  |  December 22, 2009; 2:07 PM ET
Categories:  Men's basketball  
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Next: Pearman, Goins out against Winston-Salem State

Comments

Since after more than 70 posts to "Looking Toward the Future" new comments have been cut-off, I want to share some additional thoughts...as follows.

The Fog’s have spoken and here is what they are saying:

“Petecard, your criteria for Elite Status are too difficult…how can you require 3 Elite Eights in 10 years?”

“Petecard, what about teams that don’t even make the NIT in a season?”

“Petecard, rather than setting your own too-high criteria, look at these obscure websites that say we were among the best…”

Here is what the FOG’s don’t/won’t do:

They won’t talk about the last 6 years.
They won’t deal with the facts (actual records).

So let me put it as simply as I can:

The NIT doesn’t mean “jack.”
The Terps are behind 40 teams in their performance in the National Championship Tournament over the past 6 years.
40 other teams have been to “the Dance” at least 3 times and have made the Sweet 16 at least 1 time. The Terps have NOT made 1 Sweet 16.
40 teams over 6 years have a better record.

Here are 2 questions for the FOG’s”

1.How do you think we will do this year relative to the 40 schools that are ahead of us?
2.What are you going to say if we don’t get better?

And a final thought…

In the latest AP poll 9 schools in the ACC are rated ahead of Maryland. Now I know the AP Poll is only a poll and we have a lot of basketball to play, but... how do you really feel about where we stand 10/11 games into the season???????

But start with the first issue: WHAT ABOUT THE LAST 6 YEARS???

Posted by: petecard | December 22, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

PeteHoops,

As I have previously posted,

I agree that MD cannot hang their hat on the 2001 and 2002 seasons. That happened too long ago.

I also agree that it is reasonable to expect to be consistently ranked in the top-25, maybe not every year, but certainly over any given 5-year period.

Expecting to be top-10 year in and year out is unrealistic, although it is still a worthy goal.

This year's team will underachieve if it is not a top-25 team by year's end.

Posted by: larry31 | December 22, 2009 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Larry,

Why can't we have an elite program?

Why should we settle for being the 3rd best team in the ACC and the 40 something over 8 years?

Do we want to be good or great?

Posted by: petecard | December 22, 2009 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Pete,

Because proper finacial support is a necessary ingredient to elite success and I don't think D. Yow provides the necessary support. Maybe Gary is not very efficient with his budget, but I don't think so.

As I mentioned previously, I will attempt to look into comaprable Men's B-ball budgets at other schools.

D. Yow has a pipe dream that she will make Women's B-ball a revenue generator like they have a Tennessee. I don't think it isa wiase use of limited funds.

Posted by: larry31 | December 22, 2009 7:39 PM | Report abuse

As I mentioned previously, I will attempt to look into comparable Men's B-ball budgets at other schools.

D. Yow has a pipe dream that she will make Women's B-ball a revenue generator like they have a Tennessee. I don't think it is a wise use of limited funds

Sorry for the typos in my previous post. I was in a hurry and did not proof read it.

Posted by: larry31 | December 22, 2009 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Larry,

Why can't we have an elite program?

Why should we settle for being the 3rd best team in the ACC and the 40 something over 8 years?

Do we want to be good or great?

Posted by: petecard | December 22, 2009 4:55 PM | Report abuse
------------------------------

Pete,

Because proper finacial support is a necessary ingredient to elite success and I don't think D. Yow provides the necessary support. Maybe Gary is not very efficient with his budget, but I don't think so.

Posted by: larry31 | December 22, 2009 7:39 PM |
------------------

Maybe too it's because not all UMD fans take the rout petecard and I take, which is to expect greatness year-in and year-out and since the majority seem to take the other approach (that above average to average is okay with them) the administration and Yow don't feel quite the pressure to provide it's following with greatness year-in and year-out.

Posted by: Poopy_McPoop | December 22, 2009 8:30 PM | Report abuse

Poop,

So, how does one go about applying pressure to D. Yow and/or Pres. Mote?

Posted by: larry31 | December 22, 2009 9:46 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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