Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Lonely Road Ahead for Terps

With another road game at Wake Forest this Saturday, the fourth in five games, Maryland faces a game that could be the final nail in their postseason coffin. The Terps still face odds so remote that even a degenerate gambler wouldn't touch a postseason wager. With five conference losses already and games against Duke, North Carolina, Clemson and Virginia remaining on the schedule the maximum number of losses Maryland can sustain for the rest of the season is three.

The efficiency ratings for last night are hard to look at:

Offense: 115.8
Defense: 139.0

You wouldn't need to see the rating to know it was the worst defense performance of the season. This team can't seem to get in rhythm with its offense and defense. When they play stout defense they can't shot a lick and when they are scoring the defense is totally absent.

Interesting quote in the Washington Post article about the game:

"There's no pressure," senior guard Mike Jones said. "We have several games left. We just try to get one on the road, if possible. We have our confidence where we can win at home. We just got to pick it up on the road. But there's no pressure. We know the type of team that we have."

Huh? Earth to Mike Jones, your season is in a shambles and you're in another NIT nose dive. These kinds of comments just drive me crazy. It is the same sort of after loss shoulder shrugging that this group has done the last two seasons. The lack of urgency or desire to be a great team is evident in that quote. If you're content to just be a mediocre group then there isn't any pressure I guess. It goes beyond Jones but if you are mystified as to why Jones hasn't developed into a complete player I suggest you just read that quote over again. This group of players doesn't have the desire to be great, in spite of the lip service to the contrary. They seem like a collection of nice kids, or at least not regularly on the police blotter like the collection of morons from last season, but they are not great basketball players.

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