Maryland vs Penn State Thread

12/1/2010 1:42:58 PM The Terps tour through the Keystone state continues tonight as Maryland heads up to State College, PA.

The ACC is down 4-2 in the Challenge; but I don't care one bit so long as the Terps win.

If history is the judge; the Terps should win easily tonight.  Maryland has always fared will in the ACC/Big10 Challenge and Penn State is historically a minnow in terms of its basketball prowess.

However, tonight's fixture features an experienced Penn State squad.  The Nittany Lions start four seniors and a sophomore, while the Terps are more inexperienced.  Granted, Maryland starts three seniors; but I think we can all agree that as first-year starters, our seniors are not quite as seasoned as a typical senior-laden team.

Programs like Penn State try to build around one class so they can make a run at the Dance once every three or four years.  This is their year.  Maryland on the other hand, recruits to compete and win every year.

The question for tonight's game is can Penn State beat us on their "up" year since Maryland is in a "transition" year? My answer is no.

The Nittany Lions will have no answer for Jordan Williams down low and Gary will look to exploit that for 40 minutes.  If Jordan gets in foul trouble, then all bets are off.  J Will must be careful not to pick up early fouls.  We need him out there for 30 minutes. 

Penn State likes to keep the score in the 60s and 70s, so it will be a contrast in styles out there. If the Terps can force more turnovers, than they create; we win. 

Another key point is that Maryland's guards can't fall in love with the three ball.  We should be shooting threes within the flow of the offense only.  Otherwise, we need to work it down to J Will or look to drive and dish for the open 10 footer.

Some other things to look for:

-Sean Mosley has been a disappointment.  It would be nice to see him get off the schnide with a good shooting game.

-Penn State freshman guard, Taran Buie, chose the Nittany Lions over the Terps.  I'm interested to compare him to our freshman guards.

-How does Gary continue to evolve his rotation at the power forward position?  Does Dino play all of the crunch time minutes or do we start to see Padge and Weijs getting some of those?

I can't stress enough how important tonight's game is for Maryland.  A road win against Big 10 opponent will be huge come March.  The ACC is going to be down this year and we can't rely on our conference record to get us into the Dance.
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