Maryland Comes Up Short Against NC State

1/8/2012 8:38:37 PM For large stretches of the game, the Terps played a disjointed, frustrating style. 

Stoglin was his usual beast self and kept us in the game.  It was only at the end of the game did he start jacking up shots outside of the offense. 

Padgett showed flashes, Len did too but there just was not enough firepower coming from inside the paint. Padge has worked hard on developing his post play.  He has a variety of moves and, for the most part, is effective with his back to the basket.  The problem is that he lacks that finishing touch.  He must improve there if the Terps are to thrive this season.

Len, for the most part, disappointed tonight.  He's more robotic in the paint then I remembered.  He's basically a blank slate with his back to the basket.  His game in Europe appears to have been more of the face-up variety.  In the States, he will need to work on his post moves.  The good news is that his front court mate, Mr. Padgett can teach him a thing or two.  In fact, if you put these two guys together; you have the perfect post player.  Len still has lots to learn but I still believe he will be a force by season's end. 

As it stands now, there is no way that Alex Len is going to the NBA after the season.  He's not ready.  I actually saw him try to dribble through a double team in the paint.  At 7'1", that's ridiculous.  Maybe he could leave for Europe, but then again, why come to the States at all if his plan was to play Euroball?  He was already doing that. I think he plays next year.

Pe'Shon did not play well either.  He telegraphed 3 or 4 passes that led to turnovers and never looked for his own shot. He's too good of a shooter for that.  

Overall, the offense just looked like a bunch of guys running high screens for each other until one of the guards jacked up a three or drove to the hoop and shot.  If Len got the board, that led to a put back.  That was the only way he was able to get the ball in a position to score.

Still, the Terps were in the game until the end.  They out hustled the Wolfpack and I loved the effort.  In fact, the only real difference in the box score are the FT stats.  NC State shot 87%, while the Terps shot 62%.  That was the difference in the final score. 

The Terps were 11 point dogs coming, so a close loss is a bit of a moral victory.  Now, the Terps have 2 winnable home games coming up and they must win both.  At 12-4, the Terps would have another shot at a road win against a suddenly vulnerable FSU.  If the Terps can get a win there, the season could be transformed.

Before I sign off, two other quick notes: 
1. Sean Mosley played well tonight and really gave the Terps the only legitimate second option offensively.  Let's hope his little two-game hot streak continues.
2. Mychal Parker played solidly too.  He hit all of his shots 3-3 FG and 2-2 FT.  Defensively, he nabbed three steals.  I can't believe I'm saying this, but he could really become a surprise asset over the next two months. 
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