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Michigan upsets Maryland in Ann Arbor: 5 things you need to know


Michigan upsets Maryland in Ann Arbor: 5 things you need to know

Some nights, it’s just not your night. On Tuesday night, Maryland ran into a hot-shooting basketball team and the Terrapins just couldn’t quite muster enough.

Even without star senior Caris LeVert, Michigan used 41 percent shooting on 29 three-point attempts to shut the door late on Mark Turgeon and Maryland, 70-67, at the Crisler Center in Ann Arbor.

Zak Irvin led the way for Michigan with 22 points. Maryland’s front court attack tried its best to keep the Terrapins in it, with Jake Layman, Diamond Stone, and Robert Carter, Jr. combining to score 55 of the team’s 67 points on the night.

Here are five things you need to know.

1) Hot start for Michigan from the outside, which gets crowd into it

Through the first four minutes, Michigan was 3-of-4 from three-point range and got the crowd into it. That was the concern for Maryland out of the gate. Though smaller, the Wolverines shoot it well from the outside.

Without LeVert, the shot creation was not there like it would have been if he were in the game. Because of that, they have had to shoot over the top. Maryland’s bigs again had trouble closing out, especially when switching on screens and ending up in tough matchups.

Duncan Robinson, the 6-8 former D-III player, got hot, too. He was 4-of-5 from deep in the first half. He finished with 17 points.

2) The Melo foul trouble and the Varun adjustment

Maryland guard Melo Trimble picked up his second foul with 9:30 to play and head coach Mark Turgeon turned to former walk-on Varun Ram instead of junior college transfer Jaylen Brantley. It was a smart move.

Brantley is a scorer. That was not the issue. Ram meant there were really only four offensive threats on the floor, but defense was more important if Trimble was going to be forced to the bench.

Trimble was held in check all night. He was just 1-of-7 from the floor for two points and he had four turnovers to just three assists. Taking him out of the game changes Maryland’s dynamic entirely as an offensive unit.


3) The front court powers a comeback

Turgeon came out of the half making the same adjustment he did when the team was struggling against Penn State at home. To the bench went Damonte Dodd and into the game came the team’s best interior spark, Diamond Stone.

The Wolverines did not have the size on the interior to match up against the five-star freshman. Down 13 points with 16:38 to play in the second half, Stone powered Maryland on an 11-2 run to cut the deficit to four with 12:27 to play.

During that stretch, Maryland finally got some defensive stops, which enabled Stone to go to work down low and make a dent in the deficit. He finished with a double-double of 22 points and 11 rebounds.

In addition, Jake Layman stepped up. He takes more than his fair share of criticism for how he plays in the team’s biggest games. He often fades into the background offensively, but he was the exact opposite on Tuesday night.

Working mostly out of the post -- where he tends to thrive -- he was aggressive and active, carrying the offense when the backcourt was almost non-existent. He had 18 points and 10 rebounds.

4) Wolverines punch back down the stretch

Maryland took the lead, 57-56, with 6:48 to play, but Michigan broke out of its slump and starting fighting back. Robinson, Zak Irvin, and Derrick Walton all saw jumpers fall again after they rimmed out prior.

Maryland got it as close as 69-67 late, but could not pull it off.

5) The reality? Sometimes you lose

Maryland entered this game 15-1 on the year, the best start in school history. They ran into a team that was hot from three, even when there were not defensive lapses on the perimeter. They were on the road in an electric environment. This was as close to a road back-to-back as you’ll get, having just played Wisconsin in Madison on Saturday.

You occasionally lose games because it is hard to win on the road in college basketball.

This is still a talented Maryland basketball team in a year where the road to the Final Four is devoid of any one, dominant team. Just look across the landscape. No. 1 Kansas lost of the road Tuesday night. Michigan State has taken a loss. North Carolina lost earlier this year on the road to Texas. Last year, the Terrapins lost on the road to Illinois in Big Ten play.

It happens and Maryland will move forward.

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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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