Maryland Terps

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Rob Gronkowski helps former Maryland football player pull off WrestleMania 33 upset

Rob Gronkowski helps former Maryland football player pull off WrestleMania 33 upset

On Sunday night, The WWE held WrestleMania 33, their biggest pay-per-view of the year.

In the event's opening match, a bevy of WWE superstars competed in the annual "Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royale," and in a stunning turn of events the match was won by Mojo Rawley.

While this may not mean much on the surface, it should be pointed out that Mojo Rawley is the character portrayed by former Maryland Terrapins defensive lineman Dean Muhtadi.

After a solid career at Maryland in which he set numerous team weight room records and became the only player in school history to play every position on the defensive line in a single game, Muhtadi spent two seasons in the NFL as a member of the Cardinals and Packers practice squad. Muhtadi turned to pro wrestling and signed with WWE in 2012, becoming Mojo Rawley .

On Sunday night, Rawley scored undoubtedly the biggest victory of his career, besting the likes of Sami Zayn and Braun Strowman. But it wasn't without some outside help from none other than Rob Gronkowski. The real-life friend of Muhtadi hopped into the ring and helped Mojo Rawley gain the upper hand and eliminate the final two superstars.

As you will see in the video, Rawley's trunks and pads were emblazoned with the Maryland state flag.

Yes, wrestling is scripted. But heading into WrestleMania, few could predict Rawley be one of the final superstars left in the Battle Royale, let alone win it. But it wouldn't be WrestleMania without some outside celebrity help, and there are few celebrities inside the sports world bigger than Rob Gronkowski.

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Hot start propels No. 17 Terps over Purdue

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USA Today Sports Images

Hot start propels No. 17 Terps over Purdue

Jalen Smith had 18 points and 10 rebounds, freshman Donta Scott scored 13 and No. 17 Maryland held off Purdue 57-50 on Saturday to remain unbeaten at home.

The Terrapins (14-4, 4-3 Big Ten) scored the game's first nine points, led by 16 at halftime and managed to stay in front after Purdue closed to 52-47 with 6 minutes left.

Aaron Wiggins scored 12 points and Anthony Cowan had seven assists for Maryland, now 11-0 at home. The Terps were coming off two straight losses on the road, where they're 0-4.

Nojel Eastern scored 14 points for the Boilermakers (10-8, 3-4). Looking for an encore to its 71-42 rout of Big Ten leader Michigan State last Sunday, Purdue instead fell to 1-5 on the road -- its lone win at Ohio last month.

The Boilermakers trailed by 18 in the first half but outplayed the Terrapins over the final 20 minutes. The deficit was 10 points before Trevion Williams hit a jumper and Isaiah Thompson connected from beyond the arc to cut the margin to 5.

It was 53-50 before Smith followed a Purdue miss with a resounding dunk with 2:06 remaining. A series of missed shots and turnovers followed before Cowan made two free throws with 12.5 seconds to go.

Maryland won despite shooting 28 percent in the second half, including 0 for 9 from 3-point range.

The Boilermakers went scoreless over the final 3 minutes, 52 seconds. They were 8-0 this season when holding the opposition to 59 points or fewer.

The Terrapins held Purdue scoreless over the opening 4 1/2 minutes and took a 20-4 lead while getting assists on each of their first seven baskets. Five of those field goals were 3-pointers, including two apiece by Smith and Wiggins.

Minutes later, Scott hit a jumper and a pair of 3-pointers to make it 28-10. At that point, the Terps were 7 for 10 from beyond the arc.

On the other end, the Boilermakers shot 29 percent during the first 13 minutes and misfired on all four 3-point attempts.

BIG PICTURE

Purdue: The Boilermakers just don't seem to have the same intensity or shooting touch when on the road. That's how it is for most Big Ten teams, but this defeat is hard to fathom immediately after a rout of Michigan State.

Maryland: If the Terrapins are going to struggle on the road, which seems to be the case, they've got to excel at home. And fortunately, that's exactly what Maryland has done in College Park.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

The Terps hope this victory offsets their disappointing 56-54 loss at Wisconsin on Tuesday and enables them to move up a notch or two in the Top 25.

UP NEXT

Purdue hosts Illinois on Tuesday night. The Boilermakers were blown out by the Fighting Illini 63-37 on Jan. 5.

Maryland's quest for its first road win continues Tuesday night at Northwestern, the cellar dwellers of the Big Ten.

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Maryland falls to No. 17, Virginia out of top 25 in latest AP Poll

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Maryland falls to No. 17, Virginia out of top 25 in latest AP Poll

A 1-1 week dropped the Maryland Terrapins men's basketball team five spots in the latest Associated Press poll.

Maryland defeated then-No. 11 Ohio State handily at home this past Monday, 67-55. It was the Terps best win of the season, where they played lockdown defense for much of the evening.

But on Friday, Maryland was embarrassed by unranked Iowa on the road. The Hawkeyes held Maryland to just 49 points, cruising to an 18-point victory.

In three true road games this season, Maryland is winless. It's worth noting that Maryland remains perfect at the Xfinity Center, however.

The Big Ten has five teams in the latest Top 25, but none higher than Michigan State at No. 15 overall.

The Terps weren't the only MId-Atlantic team to slip. Virginia fell outside the Top 25 following a loss to Syracuse this past weekend.

You can check out the full poll below.

Full poll:

1. Gonzaga
2. Duke
3. Baylor
4. Auburn
5. Butler
6. Kansas
7. San Diego State
8. Baylor
9. Florida State
10. Kentucky
11. Louisville
12. West Virginia
13. Dayton
14. Villanova
15. Michigan State
16. Wichita State
17. Maryland
18. Seton Hall
19. Michigan
20. Colorado
21. Ohio State
22. Memphis
23. Texas Tech
24. Illinois
25. Creighton

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