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Three things to watch: press defense, Milbourne, Young

In a few hours, Maryland will take on Clemson at Littlejohn Coliseum in a match-up that holds significant meaning for both squads. For the Terrapins, it marks an opportunity to gain a quality road conference win against an opponent that was ranked not too long ago. And for the Tigers, it marks a chance to snap a three-game losing streak. Here are a few things to keep track of during tonight's contest:

1) Handling the press. This will be important for both squads, as Maryland and Clemson frequenty employ press defenses. The Tigers have not shot the ball well of late, which means they'll be relying even more on their press defense to create easy transition buckets in the absence of efficient half-court offense execution. On Saturday, Maryland Coach Gary Williams discussed Clemson's press and how the Terrapins will try to react to it.

"One of the things you get out of pressure, without stealing the ball, is you take the other team out of their offense," Williams said. "They come down, they have a decent shot, they take that shot before you really set up in any type of an offense, so if you miss you're probably not going to get the rebound. That's what pressure does; it forces you to play quick and take shots you don't normally take. What we try to do against pressure is to make sure we take the ball to the basket. If we miss, we take the ball to the basket first and then we might kick it out, but you can't just come down and settle against pressure for that first open jump shot, because that's where you get burned quite a bit of the time. That's always the battle with pressure."

2) Landon Milbourne. The junior forward likely will be assigned to guard Clemson forward Trevor Booker, the Tigers' top scoring and rebounding threat. Booker has established himself as one of the elite frontcourt players in the conference during his career, though the Terrapins already have come across -- and done well to limit the effectiveness of -- several talented ACC big men. What makes guarding Booker different, Williams said, was that he can be efficient on the perimeter as well as in the post. Milbourne's athleticism and his own perimeter skills should make him a good match-up for Booker, who has been battling the flu in recent days but is expected to play tonight.

3) Andre Young. According to the Anderson (S.C.) Independent Mail, Clemson junior point guard Demontez Stitt is doubtful for Sunday's contest against Maryland. Stitt, who is dealing with a left foot sprain suffered two weeks ago at N.C. State, had been hopeful earlier in the week of returning against Maryland, but it appears his foot is not where it needs to be in order for him to be as effective as the Tigers desire. Clemson Coach Oliver Purnell told the Independent Mail before the team's practice Saturday that the Tigers would be "lucky" to get 10-15 minutes out of Stitt tonight against the Terrapins. With Stitt -- the team's primary offensive facilitator and a quality perimeter defender -- likely to miss tonight's game, backup guard Andre Young will run the point for the Tigers. He tallied seven points, five assists and four turnovers while starting in place of Stitt on Tuesday against Boston College.

By Steve Yanda  |  January 31, 2010; 12:06 PM ET
Categories:  Men's basketball  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Will Stitt play? Will he sit? Does it matter?
Next: Three up, three down: Maryland falls at Clemson, 62-53

Comments

But one thing you ALL should know... the only team in baseball is the Yankees. Now THAT is an elite program! :)

Posted by: petecard | January 30, 2010 9:11 AM | Report abuse

All -

Seriously - we know that Fake Barno posted to stir ups some muck yesterday. Not as much muck and animosity as Petcard's post from above. Explain yourself and come clean as to whether you are a Dallas Cowboys fan as well. If you are a Terp from NY/NJ then at least define which exit.

Having been accused of being Poopy in the past, and knowing that Poopy doesn't care when he gets blasted by others on the board, just do not see any motivation from his end to post under fake names. He says what he wants to under his own name, is often the funniest guy in the room and his reminiscences of MD in his responses on Friday were priceless. Enough. It doens't matter (although it probably does a bit to the real Barno).

I went to the Dairy yesterday morning and my kids loved it. The only reasonable place left to take the kids out for ice cream in the region. Came home with lunch from the Mrathon Deli as well before settling in with some redbox rentals.

I took my kids for a drive around campus and pointed out the hall where a bunch of miscreants made a slip and slide. Did not take them by the old Sigma Chi house to point out that it was the site of a meth lab (still laughing over that one). We drove back with the lot of them chanting "Tigers Stink, Tigers Stink."

My 6yo would like all of you to know that his prediction is Maryland winning - 147 to nothing and GV will hurt himself doing his shimmy. He backed off from 150 when his older siblings told him that was impossible.

We came home to snow, and as they were sledding down the driveway, they were playing "Wicomico Slip-n-slide."

So Poopy is an inspiration to future Terps...

Hope everyone has a chance to post after today's victory.

Regards -

-hgr

Posted by: HughGRection | January 31, 2010 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Real New Yorkers root for the Yanks and the Giants. I love fellow Terp Boomer, but the Jets are second class.

Don't even mention the Knicks, but the NBA can't touch college hoops.

Does it make sense for Milbourne to guard Booker? I was think the Williams would be the one...with help/

Posted by: petecard | January 31, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

He informed us that the antics would stop, gave us some "dad"-type speech and told us that up to this point we were the worst dorm on campus. It was kinda funny 'cause I remember when he said that I looked around at my fellow Wicomico male residents and you could almost get a sense that we all wanted to cheer and high-5 at getting the title of "worst dorm on campus" but we all just sat there and nodded our heads.

Posted by Poopy but I did not bother to cutpaste the end part.
--------------------------------------

Reminds me of that famous movie that came out in 77 (I was in 7th grade) and made us all want to go to college.

"Did we give up when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?"

Glad to hear you didn't give up.

-hgr

Posted by: HughGRection | January 31, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Petecard -

JW/DG/JP (in that order) on Booker all the way. Smoke screen by GW perhaps. LM on help D and collapsing on him as needed, but the guards will be doing that as well.

Regards -

-hgr

Posted by: HughGRection | January 31, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Petcard -

You gave yourself away. Having lived in Philly and NY I have learned that other cities do not root as unconditionally as DC does for its teams. Seriously, until this particular year, I myself was never really angry at Redskins mgmt for their mishandling of the team. I have heard folks in Philly blasting Andy Reid the day before Philly was set to play in the NFC championship game. NYers blasted the Eli Manning deal the season after a Super Bowl win. And real NYers feel that if the Yankees do not win the World Series, then the season was one of abject failure. Seriously. last year, during the midst of the GW-can't-recruit/can't-coach controversy, I didn't believe you were a MD fan (that was when I started reading this board). Now I get it. You are a serious MD fan (no doubt in my mind about that although other have accused you of being a Duke fan on this board). You just happen to be from NY.

we'll try to forgive this character flaw on your part (being from NY), but it would be easier if you would define which exit/borough/county, etc.

regards -

-hgr

Posted by: HughGRection | January 31, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

HGR,

I went to high school in Balt. County but grew up on the West Coast.

Have been in NY since I graduated from Maryland and got my first job in banking in NYC. I live in Westchester County.

BTW, Poopy's line by his dorm GR reminded me more of the speech given by the caddy master in Caddy Shack... about the bad caddying and the threat of replacement by carts...

Miami actually just beat VTech...the ACC is crazy...GO TERPS!

Posted by: petecard | January 31, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Gary Williams is still a vastly overrated coach. The inability to beat a slumping Clemson team without their starting PG is a terrible sign. MD was playing good basketball and they should be able to beat Clemson at this point in time. GV again shows his mercurial ways with bad shots and the inability to win tough games on the road. For all the talk about his triple double vs UNC last year and early year games against Duke, he cannot lead the team to tough road wins. MD still doesn't teach boxing out and GARY WILLIAMS STILL WON'T PLAY CLIFF TUCKER. News Flash: When you can't score - you might try playing your best offensive player just a little bit. Gary still can't recruit and MD is such a tease for an area longing for a major sports winner outside of the CAPS - which are awesome!!

Posted by: leed1911 | January 31, 2010 7:55 PM | Report abuse

Maryland didn't lose because Cliff Tucker wasn't on the court. If he had been, the Terps might have commited over 30 turnovers instead of the 27 they had.

You can't commit 27 turnovers and give up 21 offensive rebounds and win in the ACC. Clemson shot 32% for the game and should have lost had Maryland had ANY composure in bringing the ball up court.

I lost faith in this result after seeing Eric Hayes hand the ball to Clemson for yet another easy basket. I lost count at about 7 or 8 for him. Wow, either he is excellent or he's pure dog turd.

Can't expect to win on the road against anyone when 4 of your 5 starters don't post a credible performance. Who would have thought that Williams' 13 pts and 15 rebounds would be the top performance heading into the match?

Posted by: ARickey | January 31, 2010 8:42 PM | Report abuse

I will save my more thorough assessment of tonight's loss for tomorrow.

But let me provide a capsule review now. Vasquez sucked.

Played like a deer looking into headlights.

We feel behind by 9 early almost all because of him...and in crucnch time he sucked.

All I will say is that after his dis of Stitt he got what he deserved.

Posted by: petecard | January 31, 2010 9:34 PM | Report abuse

Agree with the overall assessment. The Terps played down to the level of thier competition again and paid the price for it. Too many unforced errors and horrid passing throughout. Yes Clemson played good defense, but they stunk up the place themselves with their abysmal shooting and their own errors. This should have been a win. GW needs to knock some sense into our guys because they have shown they can play (and should play) much better than this. Thoroughly disappointed.

At least the ice cream at the dairy lived up to expectations.

Regards -

-hgr

Posted by: HughGRection | January 31, 2010 10:32 PM | Report abuse

The above said, JW is a serious player. IF our guards had spent more effort getting him the ball, we could have won this one. AB played decently enough, and there might be some credibility in ARickey's comment aout Tucker; not so much putting Tucker on the floor but more getting GV off the floor when he starts getting messy. I still contend that GV plays his best upon re-entering a game. He seems to benefit from watching for a few minutes and perhaps getting some coaching from GW and the assistant coaches.

-hgr

Posted by: HughGRection | January 31, 2010 10:37 PM | Report abuse

It's tough to win on the road in the ACC, particularly, against a desperate Clemson team that had lost 3 in a row. The Terps had a chance to steal one on the road again just like at Wake a few weeks back, unfortnately, they didn't finish it out. I'm encouraged by the way the are playing. That being said, they have to come away with a win at FSU this week.

Posted by: Section505203 | January 31, 2010 11:22 PM | Report abuse

Leed1911....Did you watch the game?

Cliff Tucker was awful the few minutes he played. I would have sat him as well.

Vasquez also needed to be benched. The team played better without him.

Posted by: beas13 | February 1, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

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