Jordan Williams 'on a fine line'
Maryland freshman forward Jordan Williams continues to impress during his inaugural ACC campaign. In conference play, Williams has averaged 9.4 points and 7.7 rebounds per game. That rebounding average ranks fourth in the ACC. And aside from his statistical production, Williams has been more than a capable defender against some of the top front-court players in the conference.
On Wednesday night -- for the second time this season -- Williams played a large role in helping to negate the effectiveness of N.C. State forward Tracy Smith, who Coach Gary Williams said earlier this week would be considered one of the top post players in the ACC were it not for the Wolfpack's poor record. Smith collected 10 points and six rebounds, but never was a major factor in the game, not even during the first half when N.C. State built a 12-point lead.
"Just being smart," Jordan Williams said when asked how he's been able to defend players such as Smith so well this season. "Beating him to the spot, putting a hand up. Just trying to be smarter than him. He's an experienced player, so if I can outsmart him as a freshman, that's a good thing."
It would certainly seem so. His coach, though, gave a more reserved assessment after Jordan Williams posted his fifth double-double of the season (19 points, 11 rebounds).
"At this point in his career he's on a fine line between being good and not being so good, because he's not a great athlete yet," Gary Williams said. "I think there's a great athlete there if he works hard this spring and summer in the weight room, just like Lonny Baxter. He's the best reference I can use. ... Lonny became a much better athlete. Chris Wilcox became a much better athlete after their freshman year. What they do is they get a look at what they have to work on, not just hear it from a coach but see it for themselves and then get it done if they're so inclined, and hopefully Jordan will go that way."
February 18, 2010; 10:23 AM ET
Categories: Men's basketball
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