It's Basketball Season!

It's hard to fathom, but basketball season is upon us.  It's the most wonderful time of the year. 

Maryland tips off the season against UConn in Brooklyn this Friday.  I think the game is a toss up.  Surely, Maryland is going to be better than last year's team.  Yes the Terps have lost a lottery pick but I think the Terps can improve without the presence of Alex Len.

The front line will be bolstered by Shaq Cleare and Chuck Mitchell gaining a year of invaluable experience and off season training.  Damonte (Snoop Doddy) Dodd and Evan Smotrycz will supply much needed shot blocking (Dodd) and scoring (Smotrycz). 

The loss of Seth Allen for 6-10 weeks hurts the back court.  He was our starting PG.  I think Dez Wells is up to the task with a few caveats.  Wells wants (needs?) to showcase his PG skills if he is to make the leap to the next level.  He's not a good enough shooter to play the Two at the next level so he needs to make a name as a distributor.  That will provide Dez with all the motivation he needs to make this experiment a successful one.  This hope is belied by the fact that Wells demonstrated poor decision making at many points last season.  Will that change now that he is running the whole show?  I think the answer is yes because Wells knows his teammates and the offense much better now than he did last year. 

Regardless of who runs point for Maryland, the entire season depends on two things:

1.  Shot Selection
2.  Turnovers

Poor shot selection was the biggest reason why the Terps failed at times last year.  Nick Faust and Wells were two of the biggest offenders but the whole team suffered from the affliction. I optimistically attribute this to so many freshman and sophomores playing big minutes.  Now, the top returning players are all juniors and sophomores.  I expect most if not all (I wonder if Faust will ever get it) to make better decisions.  The key is to not force things (I'm looking at you Dez and Nick) and share the ball.

Turnovers are the scourge of every NCAA team and this week's exhibition against Catholic (15 TOs) did not exactly engender confidence that the Terps will be much better this year. Wells is strong with the ball and that should help.  Another factor that should make things better is that the Terps have three 3PT sharpshooters (Jake Layman, Evan Smotrycz, and Seth Allen) who should free things up for the big guys down low to operate in the low post.  With Wells and Faust slashing to the hoop, you've got all the makings of a team that beat you in multiple ways.

Turnovers and Shot Selection are all about good decision making.  Have our guys learned how to do that? 

We'll find out on Friday how far along these Terps are in the quest to reclaim the national prominence we once held.   Neither outcome would surprise me.


Author: Jeremy | 11/6/2013 2:20:01 PM | Tags: season preview, basketball |

Gameday: Maryland vs Clemson

Things to consider for tomorrow's game Clemson is coming off a blow out loss 6 of the top 7 Terps are out of the game including the starting QB, RB, top two wideouts, best cover corner, and the top pass rusher. It's homecoming. Maryland will be lucky to have 50,000 fans at the stadium. There are currently 325,000 alumni most of whom [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 10/25/2013 9:32:57 PM | Tags: gameday, football |

Disaster In Winston-Salem, Season In Jeopardy

The only thing that could have made yesterday's debacle worse would have been all of the QB's on the roster tearing their ACLs in a freak accident on the way back to College Park. Diggs and Long are now gone for the season.  Brandon Ross is injured.  CJ Brown isn't right.  The team showed no fight against a pedestrian Wake squad.  Not only were [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 10/20/2013 7:37:35 PM | Tags: football, analysis |

Gameday: Maryland vs Wake Forest

Today we learn which Terps team we will have for the final stretch of the season.  Will it be the one that CJ Brown led to an impressive 4-0 start or will it be the team that got embarrassed at FSU and barely escaped with a win against lowly UVA? There is no doubt that the Terps will be greatly improved with the dynamic CJ Brown directing the of [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 10/19/2013 8:26:18 AM | Tags: gameday, football, thread |

Maryland Escapes With A Win Against Virginia

The Terps won today but it didn't feel that great. Virginia came within a makeable FG attempt of beating Maryland in College Park.  That would have been a disastrous end to the game and rivalry for that matter. What went right?  Mostly, the offense played well.  Rowe made some big throws and the Terps moved the ball on the ground.  They had a TD [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 10/12/2013 8:37:25 PM | Tags: analysis, football |

Gameday: Maryland vs UVA

The question for today's game is: can the Terps move past last week's drubbing and prevent a decent into mediocrity.  With or without CJ Brown, Maryland should beat UVA at home nine times out of ten. Only the wrong mental approach can stop the Terps. Everything I've read indicates the players and coaching staff were angry after last week's game [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 10/12/2013 8:41:32 AM | Tags: football, gameday, thread |

FSU Knew When The Terps Were Running Or Passing

For me, one of the more unfortunate aspects of the Saturday's Tallahassee Beatdown was that it forced sports writers to dredge up the equally awful 70-7 drubbing Penn State meted out to the Terps in 1993. I was at that nightmare of a game. If it is any solace, that game was WORSE.  It was at home and if I remember correctly, the majority of the sco [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 10/7/2013 11:50:32 AM | Tags: football, fsu |

Gameday: #25 Maryland vs. #8 Florida State

The older I get, the harder it is to remember little things like "when was the last time the football team or the basketball team was ranked?".  I'm too lazy to look it up but I know that it has been too long.  In order to keep the current "ranked" status from being a fleeting one, the Terps are going to need a Herculean effort today in Tallaha [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 10/4/2013 9:25:35 PM | Tags: football, gameday |

Maryland Routs West Virginia

Today is a great day to be a Terp fan.  Not only did Maryland convincingly announce itself on the national stage; they did so against a border rival who has recently dominated the Terps. I honestly can't remember the last time Maryland pitched a shutout. I'm sure it has happened in the last 10 years but I can't remember.  Clearly, the Mountainee [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 9/21/2013 8:12:10 PM | Tags: analysis, football |

Gameday: Terps vs West Virginia

This game can be summed up in one sentence:  Are the Terps for real? Tomorrow's game in Baltimore is the quest for respect.  Maryland has easily disposed of its first three opponents yet there is been no recognition nationally.  That's probably deserved but it creates the opportunity for the West Virginia game to be the coming out party.  It won [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 9/20/2013 9:10:56 PM |
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