The Maryland Preview
Location: College Park, MD
Record: 12-8 (4-5 Big Ten)
Head Coach: Kevin Willard (2nd Season)
Maryland, a grand state. The home of crabs (blue), Pit Beef, and the U.S. Naval Academy. It is also home to one of the eastern most outposts of the Big Ten, the University of Maryland. Home to a storied basketball program that is trying to bring back their winning ways.
Can they boost their profile with a win against Nebraska?
The Huskers shall take their talents out east this Saturday to take on the mighty Terrapins. They will battle in the Xfinity Center. Another difficult place to play if your a visiting team. Just like most of the venues in the Big Ten. Very few away games are easy.
The Terps have so far won twelve games this season and have lost eight. A record that has actually improved as the season has gone on. They started out fairly rough. Going 1-3 before finally hitting a three game winning streak at the end of November.
Since then, it has been a bit better but not great. They have a few good road wins on their resume. Namely #10 Illinois in Champaign and most recently Iowa in Iowa City. But they need more.
They sit at #93 in the NET rankings so they need as many wins as they can get to have a chance at the NCAA Tournament. A win against #47 Nebraska could help their cause.
The Terrapins are lead by senior Jahmir Young. The 6’1” guard as been a leader on this team for the past two seasons. Transferring to Maryland from Charlotte before last season. He made second team All-Big Ten in both coaches and media polls for his efforts. This season he was unanimous preseason All-Big Ten. Jahmir is currently averaging 20.8 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 4.1 assists per game.
Next to Jahmir is Julian Reese. Julian is 6’9” forward from Baltimore. A preseason All-Big Ten pick he is averaging 13.6 points, 9.8 rebounds, and 2.3 blocks per game.
Also of note is senior Donta Scott. The 6’8” forward is averaging 11.2 points and 4.8 rebounds a game.
Both Jahmir and Julian will cause problems in the paint for the Huskers. It will be up to Rienk Mast and Josiah Allick to do everything they can to dominate under the basket for both rebounds and shots for the Huskers to have a chance in this rowdy away environment.
This team is better than their record and are finally starting to show their talent on the court. Like I state above, there are few if any easy places to play in the Big Ten and College Park is no exception. The Huskers will have to come out strong and hot to want to sneak back home with a win on Saturday.