alienrace

Big win for Terps @ Uconn

8 posts in this topic

No, that's not a misprint - this was essentially a home game for Uconn. 

 

Really this was Diamond Stone's coming out party against a tough opponent on a national stage.  Uconn was ranked just outside of the top 25, and most feel they will be in the top 20 at season's end.  Last night was a nice example of the potential of this Maryland team, and showcasing the extraordinary depth they have.  This Terps team goes 10 deep, and has so many offensive weapons it's mind boggling.  The three-headed monster of Trimble, Sulaimon, and Stone is backed up by the likes of Carter, Dodd, Nickens, Layman, Chekovsky - all formidable players in their own rights.  Last night they showed what they can do when their big men are able to dominate as Stone did. 

 

You can't really knock them for Uconn storming back to make it close near the end, hitting a number of contested 3's.  Uconn is a good team, and can shoot the rock from downtown.  What you have to like is Trimble and Sulaimon taking charge and putting it out of reach in the final 2 minutes.  Regardless of the idiotic technical that Uconn's coach incurred - Maryland's backcourt was not going to let Uconn take the lead. 

 

Overall a really nice response by the Terps since losing a tough game @ #3 North Carolina - which IMO was a good showing as well, things just didn't go their way at the end on the road. 

 

The Terps have all the pieces they need to cut down the nets in Houston this year, this is the most talented and deepest team the Terps have ever had, bar none.  The question is, still, does Turgeon have the feel for the game he needs to make the right moves in winning big games.  I think the jury is still out, but winning a game like this is a good omen.

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It was a good game. They were showing a lot of their potential last night. I'm hoping Stone and Trimble hang around for at least one more year.

 

The one thing that does bother me is the rankings. Maryland loses to #9 Carolina who was a previous #1 and drop to 6th in the AP and 9th in USA Today. Then you have Kentucky who was #1 at the time losing to an unranked UCLA and they dropped to #5 in the AP and #6 in USA Today. Always seem to be a bias towards Kentucky, Carolina, & Duke who can do no wrong in the polls it seems.

 

B)

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I am OK with Maryland lurking in the lower part of the top ten.  The first 5 spots put a target on your back

 

I am too, but come selection Sunday, I want them to be firmly in the top 5 and get a top seed in the dance.  I believe they will be, as I don't see the Big 10 being much of an obstacle for them this year.  MSU is way overrated, and the rest are down, IMO. 

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I can't wait until Big 10 play; this season could be a very special one for the Terps.

 

If there is one area of concern I have with an otherwise very loaded team, it is the lack of guard depth behind Trimble and Sulaimon. While MD may very well boast the best starting backcourt in the nation, I worry a bit about what's behind them. Up to this stage, backup PG Brantley, the JUCO transfer, has been bit of a disappointment. He is going to have to start looking for his shot to some degree so that opposing defenses will be unable to play off him. And Nickens is really just more of a three point specialist (and an effective one at that), without much of a handle. This is where the loss of Wiley really hurts; he was a good perimeter defender as well.

 

But otherwise, I absolutely love this team. Stone, Carter, Layman, Dodd, Chekosky, and now Bender give Turgeon so many options in the front court. If Melo and Sulaimon can stay healthy and fresh, there is no reason to believe the Terps will not go very, very deep in the tourney.

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"You can't really knock them for Uconn storming back to make it close near the end, hitting a number of contested 3's."

What I was thinking watching the second half, "Why are we letting these guys back in it?" How quickly we get spoiled. UConn is no cupcake, and I'm sure they're not used to getting dominated like the Terps were doing to them in the first half.

 

I look forward to having some fun watching this team.

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Another thing to consider is that time is of the essence, as we could be looking at a completely different starting 5 next year. Obviously, the seniors Layman and Sulaimon are gone. But I'm pretty sure that Melo is as well. And then you have Stone who could very well be a one and done (in fact, he was advertised as such upon his arrival), and lastly I wouldn't be surprised that Carter doesn't go pro as well--not that I would agree with his decision to do so.

 

While they do have some nice pieces coming in next year, this is the time for the Terps to make some serious noise in March.

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Another thing to consider is that time is of the essence, as we could be looking at a completely different starting 5 next year. Obviously, the seniors Layman and Sulaimon are gone. But I'm pretty sure that Melo is as well. And then you have Stone who could very well be a one and done (in fact, he was advertised as such upon his arrival), and lastly I wouldn't be surprised that Carter doesn't go pro as well--not that I would agree with his decision to do so.

 

While they do have some nice pieces coming in next year, this is the time for the Terps to make some serious noise in March.

All too true.

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