The Maryland Terrapins put in their 2nd public scrimamge of the preseason Saturday afternoon at Comcast Center in College Park-in preparation for Tuesday night’s exhibtion game against Indiana University (Pennsylvania). Greivis Vasquez lead the Terps with 30 points, freshman big man James Padgett impressed again, chipping in 17 points and 11 rebounds.
I could sit here and bore you with the details of a practice game in which players switched sides at halftime and again in the 2nd half; but I’d rather take a look at the roster and pass along my impressions from what I’ve seen thus far from each player.
Greivis Vasquez: It’s hard to find a fault in the way the senior from Venezuela is approaching the game right now. Vasquez has maintained his explosiveness and incorporated a level of discipline into his overall game. He joked with the media that it would be disappointing for him to see Padgett replace him as the leading rebounder, but he will still find his way to the ball plenty for this team. His outside shooting consistency is the only question mark in his game at this point-he was 2/4 today. If he continues to improve as an outside shooter, he will make a run at ACC Player of the Year and All-American honors.
Eric Hayes: The senior guard improved from last Saturday’s scrimmage to this Saturday’s, piling up 18 points and adding 5 assists. Hayes has not shown the explosiveness we saw from him at times during last year’s run to the NCAA Tournament, but that isn’t always his game. He continues to be the team’s best outside shooting option, which should allow him the chance to get to the basket more as the season progresses. The biggest question mark will be his confidence should he struggle at stretches during the ACC season. As a senior, you expect him to be the type to pick those around him up, but he has not always been the most vocal of leaders.
Sean Mosley: Praise continues to be sung about the 2nd year wing from Baltimore; who scored 16 points and added 7 assists in the scrimmage. Mosley will still remind many of us Byron Mouton (who played the 3 on the ’01-’02 NCAA Championship team); but has more to offer offensively when he has things together. He was just 1/3 from beyond the arc, a number that is not really expected to be far from what he offers on a regular basis. He was inconsitent as a finisher, but finished the game 6/11 from the field. He will have plenty of chances to score points this season with layups, putbacks, and short jumpers-and he cannot leave points on the court.
Landon Milbourne: Landon was exceptional at times Saturday (7/11 from the field, 6/6 from the charity stripe for 21 points to go with 6 rebounds), but he appeared frustrated at other times (committed 8 fouls over 40 minutes played). Milbourne would prefer to continue taking his go-to jumper from the baseline; but this team needs him to continue to show toughness around the rim; as he will get the bulk of the playing time at the 4. He’s going to score points, there’s no doubt about that. However, can he muscle up with the better Power Forwards in the ACC without giving up fouls? That remains to be seen.
Dino Gregory: The Terps’ likely starting center when the season opens put together a pretty nice game Saturday, with 8 points and 9 boards while only being whistled for 2 personal fouls. Gregory enjoys going to the stepback jumper from the 4-6 foot range, but it is not a perfect shot from him. He will be out-muscled, and will have to make up for it with energy and determination. If James Padgett was a few inches taller, I’d imagine he’d take over as starter very quickly into the season. He still might.
Adrian Bowie and Cliff Tucker: I pair these two together because they are equally frustrating to figure out. Tucker has the body (6’6″, 205) to be a major offensive contributor; but just hasn’t found the consistency in his outside shot to make his size and quickness more devastating. On the flip side, Adrian Bowie has the burst of a NFL running back (like Ray Rice); and will draw a number of fouls this season if he can get space. However, he also lacks the outside jump shot (it MIGHT be improvd-but it still isn’t pretty) to force defenders to play up on him. Bowie finished the day with 13 points, Tucker 11 (as well as 5 boards and 6 dimes). However, the two combined to shoot 2/10 from beyond the arc and 1/4 from the free throw line.
James Padgett and Jordan Williams: The interior freshmen are certainly a big part of why fans and analysts each feel as though this team will be improved this season. Thus far, the duo has shown us no reason to think otherwise. Padgett was awesome Saturday, tallying 17 points and adding 11 rebounds. He was 6/12 from the field and 5/9 from the free throw line; he also was called for 5 fouls in 39 minutes. He has the ability to find his shot quickly; which reminds Gary Williams of Joe Smith (Gary compared Joe Smith playing alongside Allen Iverson at the AAU level to Padgett playing alongside Lance “Born Ready” Stephenson at Lincoln High School in New York). Jordan Williams is even MORE intriguing, as he brings a much bigger body to the paint; where he chipped in 11 points and 10 rebounds on the day-while being whistled for 6 personal fouls. The development of these two will have an impact on this team well into the future, but will be very evident as this team goes up against talented bigs throughout the season.
Jin Soo Kim: Jin Soo had his moments Saturday (8 points on 3/6 shooting); but as Gary Williams quipped following the scrimmage, he has to offer “more than a jump shot.” He appears to have bulked a bit, and even went at the hoop a couple of times. But the future Hall of Fame coach doesn’t appear to just be willing to hand his Korean sophomore minutes; no matter how popular he is on campus.
Steve Goins: Did not play today due to his knee injury. Gary noted that they are going to have it checked out by the doctor in Chicago who performed his surgery, saying “something’s not right, and we could really use him out there, too.”
David Pearman and Ersin Levent: Both really seem like nice guys. Levent is no Mike Grinnon, though.
You can hear from Gary Williams, Greivis Vasquez, Sean Mosley and Landon Milbourne following today’s scrimmage NOW in the Audio Vault.