Posts Tagged ‘Duke Blue Devils


Terps lay an egg at Duke

By Ben Linton

A disheartening loss for Maryland as they traveled to Durham only to suffer a 21-point beatdown at the hands of the Blue Devils. After much anticipation and build up for this game, it was truly a shame that Maryland did not even show up to play. With the loss, Maryland goes from second to fourth in the ACC, with a record of 16-7 (6-3), while Duke has cemented itself as the number one team in the conference.

Maryland had a lead at one point, 6-5, but then Duke went on a 15-0 run to go up by 14, and eventually led by 16 at half time. Greivis Vasquez only had two points, and the Terps were 0-7 from three. In the second half, Maryland had a little spurt, cutting the lead to 54-44 with 9:28 remaining, but could not complete a full comeback. Vasquez scored 15 of his 17 points in the second half, but Maryland ended the game with 2-13 shooting from three and had 14 turnovers.

What truly makes this loss disappointing is the fact that Maryland did not give its best effort. Normally a strong three point shooting team, Maryland was missing open looks from behind the arc. Also the fact that the Maryland bigs allowed Brian Zoubek to have a career game (16 pts, 17 rebs) is just flat out embarrassing. He was a little bit taller than the Maryland big men, but nowhere near as athletic. At the end of the day it came down to who hustled and wanted it more, and Zoubek and Duke did so.

Now Maryland must rebound by playing 2 games in three days, starting with a home contest with UVA.


Maryland/Duke Preview

By Ben Linton

When the Maryland Terrapins head to Cameron Indoor Stadium to face the Duke Blue Devils on Saturday, it will have a different feel then previous contests. For the first time in a while, Duke and Maryland are on top of the ACC Standings, almost resembling the early 00’s when these teams were both so great and competative with one another.

For Duke, this is simply just another game against a wannabe Rival. For Maryland, it means so much more. It hasn’t exactly been smooth sailing since Maryland won the National Championship in 2002, they went on a steady decline from 13 straight NCAA Tournaments to 2 straight NIT appearances. At one point, the coach with the most wins in school history who basically resurrected the program, Gary Williams, job was threatened. Last year Maryland survived a roller coaster to make it to the dance. This season they are in a different position, with a solid record and resume good enough to make it to the tournament, unless they tragically slip up.

So how does Maryland accomplish this feat and beat Duke on Saturday? It won’t be simple. First, they have to limit, not shut down, Duke’s big three (Jon Scheyer, Nolan Smith, Kyle Singler). These three players combine to average 52 points per game, more than half of Duke’s scoring. If the Terps can keep these guys under their average and play good perimeter defense (Scheyer shoots 40% from three, Smith 42%, Singler 38%), they will have a good shot.

On offense, Maryland has a big three of its own that will have to step up. We all know about Greivis Vasquez, but complimentary players like Eric Hayes and Landon Milbourne must perform in big games like this to keep the pressure off Maryland’s star guard. Milbourne is a key player in tomorrow’s matchup as his athleticism may be too much for Duke to handle. He scored 19 in both contests against the Devils last year, and a similiar performance could do wonders for Maryland’s chances. Eric Hayes, however, has struggled against Duke. The usually cool and calm guard has turned the ball over and missed open shots, He scored two points and had four turnovers in the Terps’ disaster at Duke last season. Tomorrow he needs to do the opposite: Make smart decisions and hit the big three (46% on the season).

As a team it is imperative that Maryland does not turn the ball over. This only gives Duke easy opportunities to score, and as shown before if you make them work for it in their half court offense, that’s when they run into some trouble. Young players like Jordan Williams need to be composed and ignore the rowdy crowd at Cameron. It is my no means going to be a cake walk, but a win is definitely obtainable for the Terps.


Maryland/Duke History Pt. 2: 2004 ACC Tournament

By Ben Linton

After the 2002-2003 season, the Maryland Terrapins Basketball team had only one player remaining from its National Championship team, reserve Forward Mike Grinnon. In a year that the ACC was most brutal, Maryland had the youngest team in the conference. They took their shots from the more powerful teams in the regular season, finishing at 16-11 (7-9 in the ACC). Maryland was riding a 12 year streak of making the NCAA Tournament, and all hope was gone for that trend to continue.

Then the Terps went to Greensboro for the ACC Tournament, its last breath for a chance to dance. It was time for Maryland’s youth to grow up and finally put it all together, or else. In the first round game, Maryland surprised Chris Paul and three-seeded Wake Forest 87-86. In the second round, Maryland rallied from 17 points down at halftime to defeat two-seeded NC State, the largest defecit a team had overcome to eventually win in ACC Tournament History.

In the finals Maryland faced off with one-seeded Duke, led by Guards Chris Duhon and J.J. Redick, and Forward Sheldon Williams. Duke had swept the Terps during the regular season, but this time Maryland had momentum and was determined to get it done. Here’s how it went down:

In arguably the best three days in a row of Maryland Basketball, the Terps knocked off the ACC’s top three seeds en route to an automatic NCAA Tournament berth and ACC Championship. John Gilchrist was named Tournament MVP, averaging 22.6 points in three games. It was a great moment in Maryland Basketball History, and only added more fuel to the fire of the Maryland/Duke Rivalry.

Check back here tomorrow for a full preview of Saturday’s contest between Maryland and Duke.


Maryland/Duke History: The Miracle Minute

By Ben Linton

It was arguably the worst meltdown, defeat, debacle, collapse, or any other negative adjective in Maryland Basketball History. On January 27, 2001, the Maryland-Duke rivalry began in horrific fashion. The site was Cole Field House, with the #2 Blue Devils facing off against the #8 Terrapins.

Everything was going according to plan, The Terps were up 10 with 54 seconds to go. The crowd was on its feet, the announcers started praising Williams and his squad for their performance. All of a sudden, this happened (Sorry, the quality isn’t great):

Due to many Maryland mistakes (turnovers, missed free throws, fouls) the Devils were allowed to tie the game, send it into overtime, and eventually win the contest. A total heartbreak and demoralizing loss. I remember Me, my Dad, and my brother Sam were all watching the game at Champ’s Sports Bar and left with a minute to go, only to find out that our beloved Terps had lost once we got home and turned on SportsCenter. A sort of sinking feeling in my stomach followed, kind of like when you find out something you wish you hadn’t.

This was only the beginning of the sparking new rivalry. Maryland somewhat redeemed themselves by winning at Duke 91-80 on Shane Battier’s senior game, but Duke would have the last laugh as they beat Maryland in the semifinals of the ACC Tournament and in the Final Four of the NCAA Tournament. Duke would go on to win the National Championship that season. One word to describe Maryland at the end of the 2001 season: Salty.

What you readers out there must realize is that Maryland-Duke was THE Rivalry in the early 00’s. Remember, North Carolina was 8-20 in 2002. Duke and Maryland were consistent Top 10 programs, and battled for more than just bragging rights: National Championships and ACC Championships were on the line as well. Think of all the great players that played for these teams: Duke had Carlos Boozer, Jayson Williams, and Shane Battier; Maryland had Juan Dixon, Steve Blake, and Chris Wilcox. Also don’t forget that Maryland would win the National Championship in 2002. This was the peak of the intensity in this rivalry, with more great games and memories to come. Tune in tomorrow for another special moment in this special rivalry.


Blessing in Disguise? Duke/Maryland Preview

Duke fans' favorite enemy will be making his last trip to Cameron Indoor on Saturday

By Ben Linton

As mentioned earlier on this site, the Maryland-Virginia game has been postponed for February 15th (next Monday). This means that the Terps will four days to prepare for Duke on Saturday, while the Blue Devils will play on Wednesday in a big rivalry game at North Carolina ,which could possibly be physically and emotionally draining. This also allows Maryland to put its full focus on Duke, and could have possibly avoided the dreaded “look-ahead” game against UVA.

The Duke/ Maryland Rivalry heated up back in the early 00’s when both teams were dominant in the ACC and nationally, mainstays in the Top 5. In 2001, Duke beat Maryland in the Final Four on its way to a National Championship. The following season, Maryland countered with a Championship of its own. In 2004, Maryland and Duke faced off in the finals of the ACC Tournament. The Terps prevailed in overtime by a score of 95-87.

However, recently the Blue Devils have had the Terps, and Guard Greivis Vasquez’s number. Duke has won five straight over Maryland, including a 41 point beat down last year at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Maryland Guard Greivis Vasquez is 2-5 in his career against the Blue Devils, averaging only 11 points per game. The Terps’ best player must play better than he has in recent history to give the Terps a shot.

For the rest of this week leading up to the big game, I will be getting everyone’s juices flowing by recalling a key moment in the Duke-Maryland Rivalry, leading up to the preview of Saturday’s game and eventual recap of the contest. Stay tuned.

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