It was a close race with the awful first half of the Kentucky game, but considering the level of competition, tonight ended up winning that dubious honor. The first 20 minutes was a sloppy, discombobulated mess for the Terps.
In particular, Seth Allen planted some serious seeds of doubt with his inability to make the correct decision on the fast break. Allen’s athleticism and shooting ability make him fun to watch, but his point guard skills just aren’t up to the ACC basketball standard right now. With Howard’s injury history, and the point guard depth chart ending with Allen’s name, the thought of having Pe’Shon on the bench for any length of time is terrifying.
The young team excuse is wearing painfully thin 10 games into the season. It just seems like the players aren’t able to analyze and dissect a defense any earlier than 20 minutes into a game. This game was a truly a win in name only; against any sort of quality competition Terps fans would be waking up to 8-2.
The defense isn’t as good as it appears on paper
Make no mistake, Maryland is still a very good defensive team especially on the interior where it’s almost impossible to shoot over their length. But in nearly EVERY GAME this season, teams have had their opportunities from the perimeter and missed. Monmouth shoots poorly from the perimeter, so tonight was never really dangerous to begin with. But by all rights, Northwestern should have buried Maryland from three, and they were conveniently cold.
Florida State, NC State and Duke all rank in the top 50 in team 3-point percentage. If Maryland’s suspect perimeter defense combined with their ever present turnover problem, all three of those teams could bury them in a hurry.