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Maryland-Bowie State Preview: 5 things you need to know


Maryland-Bowie State Preview: 5 things you need to know

No. 2 Maryland faces Division II Bowie State on Tuesday evening in College Park.

Here are 5 things you need to know about the matchup.

1) Still not No. 1 -- but that might be fine

Head coach Mark Turgeon talked more about rankings than he typically does to the media, now that Maryland is No. 2 but still shy of No. 1, which went to Villanova this week. Turgeon says the team has dealt with being No. 5, No. 4, and No. 3, so No. 2 should be no different.

With all of the shuffling in the polls -- and the tendency for No. 1 teams not to remain there long -- this year, settling in out of the direct spotlight at No. 2 isn’t necessarily the worst thing.

2) Unique timing

It’s not often that a Division II opponent pops up on the schedule in the middle of conference play, but that’s where Maryland finds itself on Tuesday when they face Bowie State.

In a way, it kind of breaks the conference schedule up with 12 games behind them and six ahead. Turgeon said it could help to keep some rhythm. Outside of that, it should help Maryland to get some more work in on areas they have been forced to ignore because of the crunch of games in recent weeks -- things like zone offense.


3) Chance to pull back?

The minutes load for Maryland’s starters, especially its backcourt of Melo Trimble and Rasheed Sulaimon, has been heavy. Because of either spotty struggles or the lack of a proven extended minutes, the starters have been relied upon in big games.

If all goes as planned against Bowie State, we should see a reduction in those minutes on Tuesday. The hope for Maryland is that it can be something of a tune-up if the Terrapins can impose their will early, then shift the responsibility to the bench to close the deal.

4) What to expect from Bowie State

The Bulldogs feature a balanced scoring attack that includes three upperclassmen in double figures. Justin Beck, a Baltimore native and senior guard, is the team’s leading scorer at 14.8 points per game. Fellow senior Julian Livingston averages 10.7 points per game. Silver Spring, Md. native Miles Jackson averages an even 10 points per game.

Bowie relies heavily on the three-point shot, taking nearly 21 attempts per game from deep as a team and hitting on 32.9 percent of their shots from that distance.

Maryland struggled with perimeter defense earlier in the season, but has turned it up a notch on that end of the floor of late.

5) Not to look ahead...but looking ahead

If all goes as planned and Maryland gets its win Tuesday, they will officially be in the home stretch of the Big Ten season. Six games remain in the regular season -- three on the road and three at home.

As has been said before, there are no real opportunities for signatures wins. But there are four of those (vs. Wisconsin, vs. Michigan, at Purdue, at Indiana) that would be solid March resume builders -- and tough for that resume to take a loss, considering they still have work to do to lock in their projected No. 2 seed or reach higher and be in the conversation for a No. 1.

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Maryland reacts to latest FBI investigation reports

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Maryland reacts to latest FBI investigation reports

The world of college basketball has been on high alert since last fall when reports first surfaced of a longterm FBI investigation into the worst-kept secret in sports: college athletes being paid to play.

News surrounding the scandal died down after the inital wave of arrests, but Yahoo! Sports released a warning of sorts recently and followed it up on Friday by naming players (both past and present) for the first time. There were dozens of programs and players implicated, including Maryland's Diamond Stone.

Maryland head coach Mark Turgeon released the following statement Friday afternoon.

"Late last night we were alerted of a report associating one of our former student-athletes with an agent. We are extremely disappointed, and we will fully cooperate with any investigation. I do not have a relationship with Andy Miller or anyone from his agency, and at no time have I ever had a conversation with Andy Miller or his agency regarding any Maryland basketball player. We remain steadfast in upholding a program of integrity that reflects the values of our University community."

Stone played for the Terps during the 2015-16 season, after which he left for the NBA. That Terps team was highly-ranked entering the season but ended up losing in the Sweet 16 to top-seeded Kansas.


Andy Miller is the agent whose financial records were used to implicate so many players in the Yahoo! Sports report. It's no surprise that Turgeon would deny having a relationship with Miller regarding any of his players, but the question remains: What does this mean for Maryland basketball?

You can be sure that Turgeon will be meeting with both past and current assistant coaches Friday to confirm they have not had any involvement with Andy Miller. He'll also certainly be meeting with higher-ups at Maryland, as they try to cover their bases. 

That said, it seems unlikely Maryland would take an action as drastic as firing Turgeon over these allegations. There has been no evidence released so far that implies Turgeon had any knowledge of Stone's actions. Barring further information coming to light, it seems as though this is a case of Stone developing a relationship with Miller's agency separately from Maryland.

Some of the more vocal members of Maryland's fan base would like to think Turgeon is on the hot seat. The truth is, given his long-term contract and the current state of Maryland's finances, it's not currently feasible to fire him and expect to afford a more accomplished coach. Though if further reports indicate Turgeon was complicit, then all bets are off.

It remains possible the NCAA will impose punishments on the schools involved with this scandal, in the form of reduced scholarships, postseason bans, or worse. But that's likely off the table until further evidence comes out regarding how much schools and coaches actually knew. It is a near-certainty that some schools were in cahoots with Miller and other agents; the problem is identifying which schools were intentionally breaking the rules, and which were simply unaware. Ultimately, however, some degree of responsibility falls on the head coach.

For now, the biggest worry on the minds of Maryland fans should be vacated wins. If Diamond Stone was ineligible, then it's possible the victories Maryland recorded during the 2015-16 season will be erased from the record books. Unfortunately, this could include their run to the Sweet 16, which was the program's first in more than a decade.

Given the expectations surrounding the team during Stone's year in College Park, his tenure could already be considered a disappointment. Losing those wins would further dampen the memories fans have from that season.

On the bright side, at least the Terps didn't have a Final Four run to lose.

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Palmer's big 2nd half lifts Huskers past Maryland

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Palmer's big 2nd half lifts Huskers past Maryland

LINCOLN, Neb. -- James Palmer Jr. scored 24 of his 26 points in the second half, Isaiah Roby had all 11 of his after half, and Nebraska held off Maryland 70-66 on Tuesday night.

Palmer and Roby combined for 35 of the Cornhuskers' 40 second-half points, and they secured their first 20-win season since 2008. They won a sixth straight conference game for the first time in 20 years.

Palmer scored 15 straight points for the Huskers (20-8, 11-4 Big Ten) over a 10-minute span that ended when Roby hit one of two free throws with 2:57 left for a 64-59 lead. Roby had a double-double, with 10 rebounds, and he also blocked three shots.

The Terps (17-11, 6-9) had a chance to take the lead with a minute to play, but Glynn Watson Jr. blocked Anthony Cowan Jr.'s 3-point try, Evan Taylor came up with the loose ball and got it to Watson.

Watson missed a 3-pointer coming out of a timeout, and Roby got the rebound and was immediately fouled. He made both free throws for a 66-63 lead. Kevin Huerter's layin cut it to one point before Watson made two free throws.

Huerter went to the line with 2.8 seconds left, and after making the first free throw he intentionally missed the second. Palmer got the rebound, was fouled and put the game away with two free throws.

Bruno Fernando led the Terps with 21 points and nine rebounds. Huerter added 12 points and Darryl Morsell had 11.


Maryland: The Terps' fading NCAA Tournament hopes might have been dashed with their seventh straight road loss.

Nebraska: The Huskers are resting firmly on the NCAA bubble and absolutely needed this win. They got it, thanks to Palmer and Roby's efforts in the second half.


Maryland hosts Rutgers on Saturday. It's the teams' only meeting this season.

Nebraska visits Illinois. The Huskers beat the Illini 64-63 in Lincoln on Jan. 15.

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