Sunday, February 24, 2008

Terps go BLAH at Miami, Lose

What a BLAH, nothing, lame performance at Miami. No one stepped up, no one decided "we aren't going to lose this one," the better team won the game, plain and simple.

So here we are, with 3 left in the ACC:
At Wake
vs. Clemson
at UVa.

Anything worse than 3-0 and I don't think you can make a credible argument for Maryland deserving to be in the NCAA tournament unless they get to the finals of the ACC tournament. That's how I see it. Run the table to get to 10-6 and they deserve to be in. Go 9-7, gotta be in the finals of the ACC tournament. Go 8-8 or 7-9, Md is going to have to WIN the ACC tournament.

Here's why, and it's not a news flash: their out of conference record sucks. Maryland has five losses out of conference to VCU, American, Ohio, UCLA, and Missouri.

And Gary can't have it both ways. He can't say that Md. would deserve to be in if they go 9-7 b/c that's a winning record in the so-called best conference in the country, when you can't hold serve against teams from the Colonial, Patriot League and MAC at home.

Those games were ancient history until the debacle at home vs. Va Tech. Losing at Miami was and is forgivable. The Canes are pretty solid this year and have owned Maryland the last few seasons. Hate to say it but it's true. Hate to admit it, but Maryland is not very good against the former Big East teams across the board. Terps are 1-4 against BC, Va. Tech, and Miami this year. None of those teams are locks for the tournament. Va. Tech has been just as bad as Maryland out of conference this year, but the Terps inexplicably laid down for them at Comcast last week. Saturday at Miami was just a bad performance. At home vs. Va Tech, blowing double-digit leads in the second half to a mediocre squad that was ready to lose... that's a complete train wreck.

No matter what happens, you won't hear me complain about whatever the Terps get come NCAA selection Sunday. It would not shock me if they went 3-0 to get to 10-6, but then if they lost in round one of the ACC tournament, they would not be safe. No, there are too many good teams out there that have proven they can play with and beat a team like Maryland. The Terps need to clean up this house but quick if they want to play meaningful basketball in March.

I've written it before: wouldn't it be a crime if James Gist went to one NCAA tournament in his career?
Such a big difference to the state of the program if they make it or don't this season. Make it, and you're back on track, having been to the tournament two straight years after two misses. Miss it, and that's three out of four years missing the tournament.

We shall see, soon enough.

1 comment:

ricksterps said...

I will have to disagree with you on your assessment of their chances to make the NCAA.

9-7 and one or two wins in the ACC tourney will get them to the big dance. Lunardi just said yesterday they had to get 10 wins in the ACC including the tournament. Now would they be a lock? No, but they would have a good chance. Their RPI would be around 50 with a top 20 strength of schedule which the committee loves.

I agree, the best way to get in is win the last three. That will be a lock.