Maryland Terrapins (16-12, 6-8 ACC) At #6 North Carolina Tarheels (25-4, 12-2 ACC)
Wednesday, Feb. 29th– 7pm at Dean E. Smith Center, Chapel Hill, NC
Leading scorer: MD- Terrell Stoglin 21.2 ppg
UNC: Harrison Barnes 17.7ppg
Last game: MD- lost to GTech 63-61
UNC- def. UVA 54-51
Well, the greatest month in sports is just around the corner and barring every other team in the ACC not making it to Atlanta for the ACC Tournament, the Terps will once again be watching March Madness just like the rest of us, but certainly North Carolina expects to be playing deep into March. Carolina is 3rd in the country in points scored, and to make matters worse for their opponents, they average almost 46 rebounds per game which is 1st in Division 1 play, and you can expect similar numbers like that on Wednesday night. John Henson and Tyler Zeller are total mismatches for the likes of Weis, Pankey and Len, and both should have no problem recording a double double. North Carolina looks to be rolling and their height inside will likely lead to a deep run to the Final Four. It is likely they will be looking past this game, but truthfully it won’t matter as the Tarheels’ ability to turn it on at any second is enough to beat any opponent.
This has been one of the most frustrating Terps teams in recent memory, and Saturday was microcosm of a frustrating season that is likely to get even worse. Just imagine where this team would be had they gotten any consistent scoring outside of Stoglin, or if they had been able to hold on to some leads against the likes of UNC, Duke and FSU. There is just not enough depth or offensive talent for the Terps to compete with the upper echelon teams in the conference: this will be seen very quickly against the Tarheels. I can’t wait to see this team next year– unfortunately 2012 is not quite over, so I and the rest of Terp nation will have to suffer through a few more games. Stranger things have happened but I doubt it will happen on Wednesday night in Chapel Hill.
There really is only one compliment Terps fans like to give North Carolina: at least they aren’t Duke…but they are hated almost as much and are even more talented. The first game between these two teams in College Park was close until the final few minutes, but this one will likely be over when the Terps get off the bus. Carolina’s one flaw is that they seem to not care and play the entire 40 minutes because they know they are that much better than everyone they play. Even just playing a half will be enough as Carolina runs the Terps out of the gym.
UNC 88 Terps 71.
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