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Maryland vs. Northwestern Big Ten Tournament Preview: What's at stake?

Maryland vs. Northwestern Big Ten Tournament Preview: What's at stake?

The Maryland Terrapins make their postseason debut on Friday night when they take on the Northwestern Wildcats in the quarterfinals of the Big Ten Tournament.

The No. 3-seed Terps (24-7, 12-6) take on the No. 6-seed Wildcats (22-10, 10-8) in a matchup between two teams in great positions to receive at-large bids to the NCAA Tournament.

Maryland vs. Northwestern How to Watch

What: Quarterfinals of the 2017 Big Ten Tournament

Where: Verizon Center, Washington D.C.

When: 9:00 p.m. ET (Pending the finish of the preceding game)

TV Channel: Big Ten Network

Online Stream: BTN2Go

Bracket: Big Ten Tournament Bracket

Maryland vs. Northwestern Preview

Players to Watch: 
Maryland: Melo Trimble — 16.9 ppg, 3.7 apg, 43.8 FG% | Justin Jackson — 10.7 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 44 3P% | Anthony Cowan — 10.4 ppg, 3.7 apg, 1.2 spg
Northwestern: Bryant McIntosh — 14.5 ppf, 5.3 apg, 39.8 FG% | Scottie Lindsey — 14.1 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 42 FG% | Vic Law —12.6 ppg, 5.9 rpg, 39 3P%

Previous Matchup: Maryland defeated Northwestern 74-64 in Evanston, Ill on Feb. 15 thanks to a career-high 32 points from Melo Trimble. The Wildcats played without Scottie Lindsey, who missed his fourth straight game due to illness. The Terps would go on to lose their next three games following the biggest road win of the season.

What's at Stake: The winner will go on to the Big Ten Tournament semifinals to face the winner of the No. 2 Wisconsin vs. No. 10 Indiana game. The semifinal will take place at 3:30 p.m. ET on Saturday afternoon.

NCAA Tournament Implications: Both Maryland and Northwestern will garner at-large bids thanks to their strong resume and strength of schedule. This will be Northwestern's first-ever tournament appearance and is the only high-major program to never make an NCAA Tournament. Maryland is in the No. 4-7 seed range depending on their play in the Big Ten Tournament. Northwestern is expected to receive a seed somewhere between No. 8 and No. 10.

Maryland vs. Northwestern Betting Odds/Line/Spread

Line: Maryland -1.5

Over/Under: 134.5

Money Line: Maryland -125, Northwestern +105

ATS: The Terps are 17-12-1 against the spread this season. Maryland is 13-5 as the favorites and 3-0 on a neutral court. Northwestern is 19-11 against the spread. The Wildcats are 5-6 as the underdog and is 3-1 on neutral court.

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Huerter, the newest Hawk, introduced in Atlanta

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USA TODAY Sports

Huerter, the newest Hawk, introduced in Atlanta

It was just months ago that Maryland sophomore Kevin Huerter was a sure lock to return for the 2018-2019 season in College Park. 

At some point during the offseason, the 19-year-old changed his mind and decided to test his luck and enter the 2018 NBA Draft. 

After a solid performance at the Combine, Huerter began to soar up draft projection boards. 

Fast forward to the night of the Draft on June 21 from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. 

The Clifton Park, N.Y. native declined an invite to instead be with his family, friends and former teammates at a local country club. 

After watching 18 players get their names called by Commisioner Adam Silver, this happened: 

This viral video had the 518 (Albany, N.Y. area code) basketball community buzzing about the kid who brought Shenendehowa High School its first state championship since 1987. 

Huerter enjoyed outreach from many different names throughout the sports community: 

On Monday, Huerter was officially introduced as the newest Atlanta Hawk. His father, Tom Huerter, documented part of the special day on Twitter: 

In other news, if you don't see Kevin Huerter in Summer League, don't worry. Earlier this month, Huerter learned he needed to repair torn ligaments in his right shooting hand in order to be fully ready for the start of camp. 

Hawks general manager Travis Schlenk expressed his confidence in a full recovery for Huerter during the introductory press conference Monday. 

Clearly the organization is in the middle of a massive rebuild, and it's hoping that newcomers Kevin Huerter, Trae Young and Omari Spellman will be at the center of it. 

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NBA Draft 2018: Maryland basketball's Justin Jackson drafted by Nuggets, traded to Magic

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USA Today Sports

NBA Draft 2018: Maryland basketball's Justin Jackson drafted by Nuggets, traded to Magic

Maryland basketball had two players drafted in one night for the second time in three years Thursday night when the Denver Nuggets picked Justin Jackson with the No. 43 pick in the 2018 NBA Draft.

Jackson was subsequently traded to the Orlando Magic as part of a deal that brought the No. 41 overall pick, Kentucky's Jarred Vanderbilt, to Denver.

After his freshman season, in which he averaged 10.5 points and six rebounds a game while shooting 43.8 percent from beyond the arc, Jackson declared for the draft without an agent, but elected to return to Maryland for his sophomore season. But he'd play just 11 games before being shutdown for the year with a torn labrum. His draft stock was hurt, but obviously not totally erased.

He had surgery in January and ended up being the first Terp to declare for the 2018 NBA Draft back in March. Though Jackson's recovery kept him out of the NBA Combine, teams were still intrigued by what they'd seen from him in the past to be willing to take a flyer.

A 6-foot-7 forward with a 7-foot-3 wingspan, Jackson has the skill to play anywhere between the two or the four in the NBA, and the length to guard all kinds of players.

With Kevin Huerter headed to the last-place Atlanta Hawks, Maryland basketball's two draftees are slated to join last season's two worst teams in the Eastern Conference.