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SDSU coach preaches 'gang mentality' in attempt to upset Maryland

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SDSU coach preaches 'gang mentality' in attempt to upset Maryland

SPOKANE, Wash. -- South Dakota State head coach Scott Nagy was about as blunt as he possibly could have been about his team as it enters Friday’s first-round game against Maryland.

“Physically, we don’t match up to them,” he said. “They’re much bigger than us really at every position.”

And he’s not wrong. South Dakota State typically runs a four-guard lineup to start with redshirt freshman standout Mike Daum coming off the bench.

Compare that to Maryland, which has 6-8 Jake Layman at small forward, 6-9 Robert Carter, Jr. at power forward, and 6-10 Diamond Stone at center.

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So that changes the approach for the Jackrabbits to a more collective mentality. Straight up, they will have difficulty defensively and on the glass. All together, that gives them the best chance at an upset. It extends to the backcourt, too.

“We can’t guard Melo Trimble one-on-one, particularly in all the ball-screen stuff that they do,” Nagy said. “The whole team has to get involved with it. It’s just going to have to be a gang mentality for us.”

That should feel like what gave Maryland issues against smaller, less-talented teams in the early part of the season. It even stretched into Big Ten play, where a team like Purdue beat the Terrapins not by dominating the Maryland bigs but by getting rebounding contributions from the wing and guard positions.

The difference is, the Terrapins have been limited in terms of their ability to use small-ball lineups because of a preseason injury to guard Dion Wiley. 

Now in the NCAA tournament, all the chips are in the middle of the table. That opens the door for Layman at the power forward spot to counter what South Dakota State throws at them. 

“They do create some tough matchups for us like we do for them at the other end,” head coach Mark Turgeon said. “It’s March. We’ve seen it all.”

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Maryland loses two as Justin Jackson declares for NBA Draft, will sign with agent

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USA TODAY Sports

Maryland loses two as Justin Jackson declares for NBA Draft, will sign with agent

COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- Maryland forward Justin Jackson will forgo his final two seasons of college eligibility to seek a career in the NBA.

Terrapins coach Mark Turgeon also says guard Dion Wiley will transfer before playing his senior season.

MORE TERPS: LEFTY DRIESELL IS FINALLY GOING TO ENTER THE HALL OF FAME

Jackson averaged 10.5 points as a freshman before missing most of the 2017-18 season with a shoulder injury.

Jackson says, "After talking with my family and weighing my options, it's my desire to turn my full attention to preparing for a career in professional basketball."

Wiley appeared in 83 career games, playing a backup role on three teams that advanced to the NCAA Tournament under Turgeon.

Maryland was 19-13 this season, including 8-10 in the Big Ten, and failed to reach the postseason.

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Lefty Driesell to be inducted into the Naismith Hall of Fame per report

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Lefty Driesell to be inducted into the Naismith Hall of Fame per report

Long-time University of Maryland men’s basketball coach Charles Grice “Lefty” Driesell will finally be inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame this year.

This is according to NBC Sports Washington contributor Jon Feinstein.

Driesell coached the Terrapins for 17 seasons between 1969-86. While guiding the program to eight NCAA Tournament appearances and an NIT Championship, Driesell transformed Maryland into a legitimate force in college basketball.

When hired by the Terps, Driesell famously announced that he wanted to turn Maryland into the “UCLA of the East.” After only four seasons he had made it to two ACC Championship Games and his first Elite Eight appearance. His success opened the door not only for the program but the school to compete at the highest levels of competition.

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Maryland made it as high as the Elite Eight twice under the reign of Driesell. He was named ACC Coach of the Year twice and won one ACC Tournament Championship in 1984. At the time of his NIT Championship with the Terps in 1972, the NIT was held in a similar regard to the NCAA Tournament.

He is second on Maryland’s all-time wins list (348), behind Gary Williams’ 461. Driesell however, still holds the best win percentage of all Maryland coaches with 68.6 win percentage.

After Maryland, the former Duke basketball coached at James Madison for just short of a decade and ended his coaching days at Georgia State. Driesell also coached at Davidson before taking the Maryland job to combine for over 40 seasons at the head of a Division I basketball program.

The 86-year-old was inducted into the College Basketball Hall of Fame back in 2007. He also the namesake for the NCAA’s best defensive player of the year award, which was first awarded in 2010.

The official announcement from the Naismith Hall of Fame will be during the Final Four on Saturday, March 31.

WANT MORE HOOPS?  Listen below as Troy Machir and Chick Hernandez discuss Lefty Driesell's legacy in the area and why the Terps icon was on the outside of the Hall of Fame for so long.