COLLEGE PARK -- Melo Trimble and Rasheed Sulaimon have had to shoulder a lot this season. As depth has been difficult to build in the backcourt, the sophomore and the senior have been leaned on to take the lion's share of the minutes.
Add that to the fact that Maryland has played four games in 10 days -- a stretch during which Trimble has averaged nearly 37 minutes per game and Sulaimon 32 -- and Tuesday's game against Bowie State may finally give those two an opportunity to rest for the home stretch of the Big Ten season.
That is, if all goes smoothly.
"We want to be mentally ready to play," head coach Mark Turgeon said. "I'd like to have a pitch count tomorrow, but we'll see. Most importantly, I want to play well."
Playing well should allow Turgeon to hand the keys over to the bench by a certain point and have them take it home.
Reduced minutes, combined with the significant stretch of time off before Saturday's game against Wisconsin at home and Turgeon insistence that players take this past Sunday off to rest, the hope is that his team is in better shape for the final six regular-season games. Included in that is also one more "bye" -- or a week with no weekday conference game.
That should help to fend off any worries about a recurrence of the injury Trimble worked through earlier in the season -- a back and hamstring issue that forced him to play limited minutes against Rutgers -- and keep Sulaimon and others fresh.
Not that they would admit it publicly, anyway.
"Me personally, I'm feeling great. I know a couple of guys as well, just talking to them, they're feeling great as well," Sulaimon said. "We're fine and we're ready to battle each and every time our name is called."