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Three Terps projected in top 35 of new NBA mock draft

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Three Terps projected in top 35 of new NBA mock draft

Three Maryland Terrapins are projected to be taken in the first 35 picks of the 2016 NBA Draft, as reflected in the latest edition of a DraftExpress.com mock released on Monday. 

They are as follows:

Diamond Stone | Freshman | Center | No. 17 overall

Since being shifted into a role off the bench, Stone has found his stride. Being split apart from redshirt junior Robert Carter, Jr. -- with whom he shares a number of skills -- and being paired with Michal Cekovsky or Damonte Dodd, he has been an offensive spark and revitalized the second unit.

The question for Stone continues to be on the defensive end of the floor, where he is learning to defend by simply staying vertical and challenging shots without fouling. Especially in pick-and-roll situations on defense he will have to improve. The good news? He has progressed quite a bit from the season's first game, so it is clear he absorbs coaching well.

MORE TERPS: HOW PRINCETON SURPRISED MARYLAND

Melo Trimble | Sophomore | Point guard | No. 21 overall

Trimble came into this season needing to prove that he can be more of a true point guard. He has done that so far this season, averaging 15.0 points and 5.7 assists per game. He is nearly doubling his assists per game total from last season. 

He has also shown the ability to take over games down the stretch, which he first showed last season. On the road against North Carolina he shined offensively. He did the same against Connecticut at Madison Square Garden. There will be questions about his ceiling, considering his lack of explosiveness -- but that's not his game anyway. 

Trimble has always been more of a cerebral point guard who excels in the pick-and-roll and by changing speeds, which can be winning traits at the pro level, too.

Jake Layman | Senior | Forward | No. 32 overall

There have been stretches of the season where Layman has faded into the background offensively, but he has been better as a defender and remained a solid rebounder in his senior season. 

Layman is the type of guy who will be a workout superstar, with his combination of size, athleticism, and shooting ability. All it takes is one team to buy in and see him as an asset -- especially in small-ball situations where he has shown he can play the power forward spot.

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Not listed are two other Maryland starters, guard Rasheed Sulaimon and power foward Robert Carter, Jr. 

Sulaimon has expanded his game to be more of a distributor since coming to Maryland, which should help his stock and could get him a shot in the league.

Carter is a versatile offensive player and very strong passer out of the post, but the question for him will be whether he needs good players around him to succeed in an NBA lineup or whether he can be a standalone option. The answer to that may determine whether he is a first rounder or a second rounder. His size and offensive skill alone should attract teams.

For the full mock draft from DraftExpress.com, click here.

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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.

BIG PICTURE

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.

UP NEXT

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.

RELATED: DMV College Basketball Power Rankings: Missed opportunities

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Maryland overwhelmed by Penn State in close loss

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USA TODAY Sports

Maryland overwhelmed by Penn State in close loss

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Lamar Stevens feels like he's playing his most consistent basketball right now, a bad omen for upcoming opponents considering Penn State expects its hybrid forward to do a little bit of everything.

Just like he did on Wednesday.

Stevens scored 25 points on 10-of-12 shooting with 14 in the second half to lift Penn State over Maryland 74-70.

RELATED: UPDATED DMV POWER RANKINGS

"Lamar really stepped up for us," Penn State coach Patrick Chambers said. "We needed every one of those points that he had tonight."

Tony Carr added 16 points, Josh Reaves scored 14, and Mike Watkins added 11 for the Nittany Lions (17-9, 7-6 Big Ten Conference), who equaled their previous best mark for conference victories under Chambers.

"The best teams always find ways to win," Stevens said. "We locked down when we had to, got huge stops, huge rebounds and I think that's a huge step for this team."

With Maryland (16-10, 5-8) up 20-14 midway through the first half, Stevens nailed his first of two 3-pointers to spark a quick 9-0 run that helped Penn State take control.

He rolled layups off his fingers and sank midrange jumpers on multiple back-to-back possessions in the second half, where he scored 11 of his team's first 20 points.

"He made some incredible, incredible shots," Maryland coach Mark Turgeon said. "He was terrific, he was so efficient."

Stevens added four rebounds, two assists and was 3-for-4 on free throws with all three makes coming in the final 5:48 as Maryland threatened.

MORE TERPS: MARYLAND STILL CONSIDERED BY MANY BRACKETOLOGISTS

Anthony Cowan Jr. led Maryland with 15 points while Kevin Huerter and Bruno Fernando added 13 apiece.

Darryl Morsell had 10 points for the Terrapins, who cut a 10-point deficit with 8:11 to play to just three with 1:13 left.

"I didn't think we competed in the first half defensively," Turgeon said. "I thought in the second half, we were really trying hard."

BIG PICTURE

Maryland: The Terrapins' disappointing season continues and they have dropped to 7-7 since stalwart forward Justin Jackson's season was ended by a torn shoulder ligament in late December. Although they shot better than their season average, the Terrapins were badly outplayed in the paint, getting outscored 32-22 and outrebounded 27-23.

Penn State: The Nittany Lions are playing an exciting brand of basketball as of late. They have a combined 22 dunks over their last three home games and opponents are finding it hard to play fast against a team that thrives on speed.