Tag Archive | "Greivis Vasquez"

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NBA Stars To Hit Baltimore For Exhibition Monday at St. Frances Academy

Posted on 02 November 2011 by WNST Staff

UNDER ARMOUR’S NBA PLAYERS BRANDON JENNINGS, DERRICK WILLIAMS, KEMBA WALKER, AND GREIVIS VASQUEZ KICK-OFF

“ARE YOU FROM HERE?” EXHIBITION TOUR IN BALTIMORE ON NOVEMBER 7

WHAT:To bring basketball back to the fans, Under Armour’s up-and-coming roster of NBA athletes, Brandon Jennings, Derrick Williams, Kemba Walker and Greivis Vasquez will take on three of the Northeast’s top high school programs in exhibition games that are free and open to the public.  The “Are You From Here?” Tour starts in Baltimore, on November 7, where the UA athletes will play an exhibition game against St. Frances Academy.

After the game, Jennings, Williams, Walker, and Vasquez will visit Foot Locker in the Mondawmin Mall to interact with fans, sign autographs, and participate in a Q&A session.

For more information, please visit facebook.com/uabasketball

WHO:                   Brandon Jennings of the Milwaukee Bucks

Derrick Williams, #2 overall 2011 NBA Draft pick of the Minnesota Timberwolves

Kemba Walker, #9 overall 2011 NBA Draft pick of the Charlotte Bobcats

Greivis Vasquez of the Memphis Grizzlies

WHEN: Exhibition Game: Monday, November 7, 2011

3:30PM – 5:30PM

Foot Locker Appearance: Monday, November 7, 2011

6:45PM – 8:45PM

WHERE: Exhibition Game: St. Frances Academy

501 East Chase Street
Baltimore, MD 21202

Foot Locker Appearance: Mondawmin Mall

2401 Liberty Heights Ave
Baltimore, Maryland 21215

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Nets Select Maryland’s Jordan Williams in Round 2

Posted on 23 June 2011 by WNST Staff

Williams Picked by Nets in Second Round

Maryland center led ACC in rebounding in 2010-11

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Jordan Williams, who earned All-Atlantic Coast Conference recognition after leading the league in rebounding as a sophomore, was chosen by the New Jersey Nets in the second round of the NBA Draft Thursday night.

Williams, a 6-foot-10 center, was the 36th selection overall in the draft and was the Nets’ second selection of the night.

I’m excited for Jordan that he realized a longtime dream of his to have his name called in the NBA Draft,” said new Maryland head coach Mark Turgeon. “It’s a testament of his hard work and the great opportunity he had to play college basketball at Maryland.  We wish Jordan the best as he begins his professional career, and we will follow him closely as he adds his name to the long list of Maryland alumni to play in the NBA.”

Williams averaged 16.9 points and 11.8 rebounds per game for the Terrapins, who went 19-14 in the 2010-11 season. He set a school record with 13 straight double-doubles this season and ended the year with 25, which was second in the nation.

With 388 rebounds, he finished second on the single-season rebounding list at Maryland and was only the seventh sophomore in the history of the ACC to grab at least 600 career rebounds (672). He finished third nationally in rebounding and was the first Maryland player to lead the ACC on the glass since Joe Smith (1993-94).

He was a third team All-America pick by Yahoo! Sports and FoxSports.com, and earned honorable mention All-America consideration by the Associated Press.

Williams’ selection gives the Terrapin men’s basketball program picks in back-to-back seasons for the second time since 2007. Greivis Vasquez, the ACC Player of the Year in 2010, was selected on the first round by the Memphis Grizzlies and was the 28th pick overall in last year’s NBA Draft.

D.J. Strawberry (2007) and James Gist (2008) were the most recent back-to-back picks, while Maryland had players taken in 2001 (Terence Morris), 2002 (Chris Wilcox, Juan Dixon, Lonny Baxter) and 2003 (Steve Blake).

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Terps land prized Montrose Christian wing Justin Anderson

Posted on 17 March 2011 by Luke Jones

Needing uplifting news after a deflating week for the program, the postseason-less Terps landed their highest-rated recruit in eight years.

Montrose Christian small forward Justin Anderson announced his intentions to play at the University of Maryland, choosing Gary Williams and the Terps despite serious interest from ACC rivals Virginia and North Carolina. The junior wing is a consensus four-star recruit and top-50 talent who has shown explosive athleticism and defensive tenacity while playing for the distinguished Stu Vetter. Should his current standing hold up or improve, Anderson would be the highest-rated freshman for Maryland since Mike Jones in 2003.

“I wanted to get the decision over with,” Anderson said in a televised interview with Comcast SportsNet. “Not in a rush, but I felt as though it was about that time I can start creating a relationship with coach Williams and with his assistants and start working on the game in the way that they want me to to be ready for Maryland when I get there.”

Anderson pointed to location and the success of former ACC player of the year Greivis Vasquez, who also attended Montrose Christian, as major factors in his decision to commit to Maryland so early. He labeled College Park as the “best fit” for him and his family.

Listed anywhere between 6-foot-5 and 6-foot-7 according to several sources, the recruiting sites have raved about his athleticism and potential to get better in his senior season. From the looks of his highlights (below), the Terps may have landed their most athletic recruit since Chris Wilcox.

Though his athleticism and defensive prowess are his biggest strengths, Anderson has room to improve over his final prep season before taking his talents to Maryland. Ball-handling and shooting ability are areas in which the junior needs to improve. Unlike the athletic Mychal Parker, who just finished a quiet freshman season at Maryland, Anderson has the advantage of playing at a school known for preparing its players for the next level.

“You should always improve your game,” Anderson said. “Coach [Vetter] always tells me, ‘Justin, you can be happy, but don’t be satisfied.’ And I live off that everyday. I’m never satisfied, but I am happy with my progressions.”

For a program heavily criticized for its inability to recruit locally, the Terps have now plucked a premium talent from the state of Maryland for the second consecutive year (City shooting guard Nick Faust is an incoming freshman this fall). With Anderson’s early commitment, it also opens the door for other top recruits to take the Terps more seriously when making their own college choices.

“I think it was a great decision for me and my family. We thought it over, and I think we’re ready to get this show on the road.”

After adding another high-ceiling player to the mix, that show could prove to be very exciting in the not-so-distant future.

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Maryland’s J. Williams, Stoglin grab ACC honors

Posted on 07 March 2011 by Luke Jones

Having completed one of the most successful seasons by a big man in the history of Maryland basketball, Jordan Williams was selected to the all-ACC first team on Monday afternoon.

The sophomore from Torrington, Conn. received 210 points from the 75 members of the Atlantic Coast Sports Media Association, second-most overall behind Duke’s senior guard Nolan Smith who was the only unanimous choice. Virginia Tech senior — and Baltimore native — Malcolm Delaney, Duke senior Kyle Singler, and Boston College junior Reggie Jackson round out the first team of all-ACC players.

Williams led the ACC and was third nationally in rebounding (11.6 per game) and posted a single-season school record of 23 double-doubles in his second season in College Park. His 16.9 points per game average was sixth in the conference and 54.1 percent field-goal percentage was second in the ACC.

The national recognition continues to pour in for Williams as he also earned third-team selections on the FOXsports.com and Yahoo! Sports All-America basketball teams.

Point guard Terrell Stoglin capped off a spectacular finish to the regular season by grabbing all-freshman honors, joining North Carolina’s Kendall Marshall and Harrison Barnes, Wake Forest’s Travis McKie, and N.C. State’s C.J. Leslie.

The freshman from Tuscon, Ariz. averaged 19.1 points per game over the season’s final eight contests, boosting his scoring average to 11.6 and overtaking Cliff Tucker for second on the team. Stoglin grabbed ACC Rookie of the Week honors on Feb. 21 after back-to-back 25-point efforts and again the following week by scoring 17 against Florida State and a career-high 28 in a loss at North Carolina.

Stoglin scored 20 or more points in four of the team’s final six games — starting the final five — and led the Terps in free-throw percentage (83.5).

2011 marks the second straight year in which a Maryland player received first-team all-ACC honors (Greivis Vasquez in 2010) and a freshman received an all-rookie selection (Williams in 2010).

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Maryland-NC State pre-game notes

Posted on 20 February 2011 by Luke Jones

***Join us in the Turtle Power live chat beginning at 5:30 as the Terps take on the Wolfpack***

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Despite Maryland’s NCAA tournament hopes looking bleak with five games remaining in the regular season, Comcast Center is abuzz for tonight’s contest with NC State.

Former Terp and current Memphis Grizzlies guard Greivis Vasquez will have his No. 21 jersey raised to the rafters at halftime in what figures to be an emotional moment in College Park.

And while he wouldn’t admit, Gary Williams has some extra incentive taking on NC State with former Maryland athletic director Debbie Yow now holding the same position in Raleigh.

Despite the subplots, the Terps (16-10, 5-6 ACC) desperately need to stack wins to keep their remote tournament hopes alive and figure to have an excellent chance against Sidney Lowe’s Wolfpack. North Carolina State (14-11, 4-7 ACC) has won two in a row against Clemson and Wake Forest but has underachieved in what appears to be Lowe’s swan song season with the Wolfpack.

Maryland has won seven straight against the Wolfpack and looks to rebound from a disappointing 0-2 road trip with critical losses at Boston College and Virginia Tech in the last eight days.

Tonight’s game will be televised on Fox Sports Net (locally on Comcast SportsNet) beginning at 5:30 with Ron Thulin, Dan Bonner, and Debbie Antonelli calling the action.

As always, join us in the Turtle Power live chat at 5:30 and follow us on Twitter (@WNST) as Glenn Clark and I bring live updates and analysis from College Park.

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Lights go out on Terps in 80-62 loss to Duke

Posted on 03 February 2011 by Luke Jones

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — As media waited for Gary Williams’ post-game press conference, the lights went out in the auxiliary gymnasium where the Maryland coach speaks to reporters after games.

It was an appropriate ending to a disappointing night for the Terps in an 80-62 loss to No. 5 Duke, a game in which Maryland tried to climb back in it at several points behind an electric atmosphere at Comcast Center.

Poor shooting, the surrendering of second-chance baskets, and lackadaisical perimeter defense spelled out what anyone who watched Wednesday night’s game could plainly see.

“It’s a team thing,” said Williams, questioning his team’s energy level much like he did after a home loss to Virginia Tech two weeks ago. “You have to be ready to play. You have to believe that you can win that game. That’s what we have to work on.”

To beat Duke, Maryland (14-8, 4-4 ACC) needed to play a near-perfect game to compensate for their deficiencies on the perimeter, using its size and playing tough defense (ranked ninth in the nation in opponent field-goal percentage entering Wednesday night’s game) to knock off the more-talented Blue Devils.

The Terps did neither as Duke (20-2, 7-1 ACC) scored 18 second-chance points and went 10-for-23 from 3-point range. Maryland was outrebounded 34 to 31 and allowed Duke to shoot 52.6 percent from the field.

Even when given opportunities to take control in the first half as three Duke starters battled foul trouble, Maryland fell behind by 15 points before a late run cut the deficit to seven at the half.

Offensively, Jordan Williams again led the way with 20 points and 10 rebounds despite being swarmed in the paint, as the Duke defense had no reason to respect any other options offensively for the Terps. Maryland shot just 40 percent from the field and went 2-for-9 from beyond the arc.

The Terps cut the Duke lead to five with 9:20 remaining, but the Blue Devils responded with a 10-3 run to push the deficit to 66-54 with 5:42 to play. Maryland would not challenge again.

“It’s hard coming back,” Williams said. “You have to really dig down deep against a good team, and then when you do, to get over the top that’s when it gets tough. I don’t know what happened to tell you the truth. I’d have to look at that and see exactly what happened.”

The Terps coach refrained from expressing what’s become painfully obvious about this team 22 games into the season.

Against the stiffest competition, Maryland doesn’t have enough to complement the fantastic play of Williams.

Not nearly enough.

Yes, Cliff Tucker has had his moments — he scored only seven points in Wednesday’s loss — in an up-and-down career as a role player. Adrian Bowie has played well since sliding to the off-guard position, chipping in 11 points against the Blue Devils, but lacks the size and perimeter game to be a consistent threat night in and night out.

And freshmen point guards Terrell Stoglin and Pe’Shon Howard have shown enough promise that they can be effective backcourt players in the ACC — one day.

But when the chips are down against the better teams, Williams is the only man the Terps can count on, a difficult proposition with a player who doesn’t handle the ball in the guard-dependent world of college basketball.

In contrast, Duke’s senior leadership — and overall ability — prevented the Terps from really challenging despite cutting the lead to five in the second half. Forward Kyle Singler had 22 points — 13 in the second half — while guard Nolan Smith scored 13 points after halftime to finish with 21. Even underclassmen Andre Dawkins (three 3-pointers) and Seth Curry (two triples) hit shots at opportune times for the Blue Devils, who avenged an embarrassing 15-point loss at St. John’s on Sunday in an emphatic way.

Maryland simply lacks the guard play necessary to beat good teams, at least with any kind of consistency. While it’s easy to say the Terps should give the ball to Williams every time down the floor, you need the players to get him the ball in the optimum position to score. And it certainly doesn’t help that defenses can collapse the lane at will, with no real trepidation of being burned by the perimeter shot.

“I felt like they couldn’t stop me without fouling me,” the Maryland sophomore said. “That’s why I tried to get the ball inside more. They did a good job of getting guys on me. We need to hit shots. I missed a couple of shots towards the end that I normally make. It’s an all-around team effort.”

An all-around team effort that has now produced the Terps’ two biggest margins of defeat (a 17-point defeat to Virginia Tech on January 20 being the second worst) in the nine-year history of Comcast Center.

To be fair, no one expected the Terps to be as good as they were last season after the departure of Greivis Vasquez, Eric Hayes, and Landon Milbourne, but two blowout ACC losses — at home — are tough pills to swallow.

Despite the disappointment of Wednesday’s loss to Duke, the Terps still have plenty to play for in terms of their postseason hopes. Whether they’re good enough is the real question as they continue deeper into February.

“We have to win games, that’s the bottom line,” Jordan Williams said. “We don’t have a quality win under our belt. We beat some tough teams, but we don’t have a win against a ranked opponent. … We just have to keep moving forward and trying to improve.”

The Terps should find few problems in their next two games as they host Wake Forest Saturday and Longwood next Wednesday night in what amounts to a pseudo bye week before back-to-back road games at Boston College and Virginia Tech in mid-February, critical contests indetermining their postseason fate. Gary Williams will undoubtedly use the next week to challenge his players’ intestinal fortitude and prepare them for the second half of the conference schedule.

Finding alternative options to Jordan Williams as well as the consistent, 40-minute effort will be the continued quest in determining the Terps’ destiny over the regular season’s final month.

“There comes a point in the season where you either do it or you don’t do it,” Gary Williams said. “There’s no magic answers to those situations. You have to get it done.”

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Terps beat Colgate in 95-40 laugher as sobering challenge awaits in Durham

Posted on 05 January 2011 by Luke Jones

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — The game wasn’t over at tip-off, but it was pretty darn close.

After freshman Pat Moore’s opening bucket gave Colgate a 2-0 lead, Maryland’s 22-0 run led to a dominating 95-40 win at Comcast Center on Tuesday night. With the easy victory, the Terps closed out a month-long homestand with a three-game winning streak, albeit against less-than-stellar competition.

Forward Jordan Williams earned his eight straight double-double and 12th of the season, continuing his early-season dominance with 12 points and 11 rebounds. Senior Adrian Bowie led all scorers with 16 points, continuing his strong play since being shifted to the off-guard position late last month.

Earning his first career start at point guard, Terrell Stoglin added 12 points and four assists as coach Gary Williams continues to search for the right answer in the backcourt. Fellow freshman Pe’Shon Howard had started at the point the last two games following the loss to Boston College last month.

“I think [Stoglin] did a great job,” said Dino Gregory, one of five Terps scoring in double figures with 12 points. “He brought a lot of energy to the game. He brought a lot of defensive energy, a lot of offensive energy. For the first time — a freshman starting like that — I think he did a very good job.”

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A runaway win against the 1-12 Raiders — alley oops and all — won’t teach us much of anything about the unsettled backcourt with a sobering task awaiting Maryland on Sunday:

Cameron Indoor Stadium and No. 1 Duke.

If a road trip to take on the top-ranked team in the country isn’t intimidating enough, remember the Terps have lost by a combined 62 points in their last two trips to Durham, N.C.

And that was with Greivis Vasquez and Eric Hayes in the backcourt.

Yes, the unproven Terps will need to play a near-perfect basketball game on Sunday to have a chance against undefeated Duke, the only ACC team currently ranked in the top 25. Despite playing competitively with ranked teams such as Pittsburgh and Illinois, Maryland has been undone by poor free-throw shooting, occasional lapses in perimeter defense, and inconsistent play in the backcourt at critical times this season.

It’s a scary formula that could lead to the Terps being on the opposite end of what fans witnessed against overwhelmed Colgate.

Well, maybe not that bad, but you get the point.

However unlikely a win might be, the competitiveness in Maryland’s four losses —  by a combined 20 points — is exactly what Gary Williams is looking for against his biggest rival.

“In terms of how we want to play, I don’t think you can back off,” Williams said. “You’re going to have to bring your game, and if it’s good enough, fine. If it’s not, at least you went down playing the way you [want to] play, so I’ve always believed in that. And hopefully we’ll prove that on the floor.”

If Maryland is to have a chance against Duke — whose last loss came in College Park on March 3, 2010 — the freshmen tandem of Stoglin and Howard will need to play beyond their years in arguably the most hostile environment in college basketball. Both have shown flashes — Howard’s game-winning shot against Charleston and Stoglin’s showy passing and scoring — but have been just as frustrating to watch at other times, looking like the inexperienced players that they are.

A freshman point guard going into Cameron has won before, but it takes a special performance that might be too much to ask of Stoglin or Howard. Just four years ago, it was a freshman Vasquez who narrowly missed a triple-double with 13 points, 12 assists, and nine rebounds in an 85-77 upset on Feb. 28, 2007.

However, the three subsequent years produced no more Cameron victories for one of the greatest players in school history, proving just how difficult it is to beat Mike Krzyzewski and the Devils on their home floor.

“It’s going to be a war,” said senior Adrian Bowie, who will have his final opportunity for a win in Durham. “Cameron Indoor Stadium is not for the weak. It’s going to be a war, and everybody needs to be ready to play.”

A war, indeed. One this Maryland team will have a tough time surviving.

NOTES: The 55-point win was Maryland’s largest margin of victory this season as 11 of the 12 Terps who played managed to score in the game. … Williams’ eighth straight double-double moved him past Joe Smith’s streak of seven set in 1995. He is only four away from tying Len Elmore’s school record of 12 straight in the 1973-74 season. The sophomore also had three blocks. … Over the last eight games, Bowie has 35 assists and only 11 turnovers. … The Terps matched a season high with nine 3-pointers made. … Colgate made its first shot of the game before missing the next 15. … Maryland had six runs of at least 6-0 in the game. … Maryland’s bench scored 37 points, only four shy of the Raiders’ 40 total for the game.

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Terps flatten NJIT as Howard steps into starting role

Posted on 23 December 2010 by Luke Jones

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Rarely has the focus of Maryland athletics been solely on football so late in December during Gary Williams’ 22-year tenure in College Park, but the drastic changes of the last week would overshadow any top basketball program.

The lack of buzz is also due in part to the utter mystery surrounding Gary Williams’ young team as it plays out a string of three nondescript games before traveling to Durham to face Duke on January 9. The Terps have competed well with top-25 teams, but they haven’t beaten any either. Through the season’s first dozen games, Williams continues to search for the right combination in the backcourt to complement the dominating inside presence of sophomore Jordan Williams.

Returning to the hardwood Wednesday night after a nine-day layoff, the Terps cruised to a 89-50 victory over lowly NJIT that highlighted the shortcomings of the Highlanders more than any real potential of this Maryland team. In the final 3:54 of the first half, Maryland used a 20-1 run to turn a comfortable 16-point lead into a comical 53-18 halftime deficit.

However, the significant story to come from the blowout victory was a new lineup sent out by Gary Williams after weeks of speculation that change was coming to the backcourt. Freshman Pe’Shon Howard replaced Cliff Tucker in the starting lineup and ran the point as Adrian Bowie slid to the two-guard position against the Highlanders. Williams had used the same starting lineup in the team’s first 11 games, deferring to his senior backcourt with Howard and fellow freshman Terrell Stoglin coming off the bench.

In his starting debut, Howard finished with four points and four assists, at times looking hesitant running the halfcourt offense but earning praise from Williams and his teammates. Bowie scored 13 points, including three 3-pointers in an impressive shooting night by the senior.

“Everything depends on practice this year, and that is why Pe’Shon was out there tonight,” Williams said. “A lot of it is how we play different people on the court. He came in [in previous games] and Adrian was playing well at the off-guard, so it made sense to put [Howard] into the game.”

In contrast, Tucker responded well to the demotion, posting nine points, five assists, and four steals in only 12 first-half minutes. The senior looked comfortable in a similar role to the one he held for his three previous seasons as a collegian.

“You never know how subbing a player is going to affect them,” Williams said. “You may lose a player, or you may motivate them. I really thought bringing Cliff off the bench would help him.”

Whether the move results in a stabilization of the backcourt or is simply another blip on an already-inconsistent radar, a change hardly comes as a surprise. The Maryland coach has never hesitated to start freshmen guards, with Eric Hayes and Grevis Vasquez the most recent examples. It was only a matter of time before Howard or Stoglin broke into the starting lineup; the better question is whether both freshmen will be there at some point this season.

Despite last year’s ACC regular season co-championship feeling like a distant memory and the early-season struggles of this season, the Terps find themselves in nearly an identical position to where they were at this point a year ago. The 2009-10 team’s only notable non-conference win came against Indiana, a team not much better than the dreadful Penn State team the Terps defeated a few weeks ago.

The ACC looks like a one-horse race with Duke blowing all competition out of the water, but how the rest of the conference standings will look is anyone’s guess as we approach January. Maryland could easily find itself fighting for one of the top four or five spots or languishing in mediocrity.

We know how dominant Jordan Williams can be — the sophomore posted his sixth straight double-double — but the fate of the Terps’ NCAA tournament hopes rests with their backcourt.

“A large part of the point guard’s deal is to get us to play well offensively, whether that is making the shot or the pass,” Williams said. “It is a tough position, and that is why a lot of coaches were point guards because you have to be so intelligent.”

Perhaps the Terps took a step forward with Howard sliding into the spot, but if not, Williams will continue rearranging the puzzle pieces.

“It was good to see if [Howard] could take that role, and I think as a freshman it’s kind of tough,” said junior Sean Mosley, who started 16 games as a freshman forward two years ago. “I think he came out and did a great job. And no matter if Cliff is starting or Pe’Shon, we’re a team, and that’s the thing coach is trying to see. He’s trying to see what’s the best five out there for him. He’ll probably switch it up next game.”

It’s an answer Gary Williams needs to find sooner rather than later.

NOTES: Maryland’s 39-point win was its largest margin of victory this season. The Terps’ 58.1 percent shooting from the field was also a season-best clip. … Dino Gregory has scored 14 points in back-to-back games, matching his career high. The senior also grabbed nine rebounds, narrowly missing a double-double. … The Terps set a season high with nine 3-pointers. … Six Maryland players scored in double figures, the first time since the Illinois game earlier this season. … The Terps will now have a week off for the holidays before hosting North Florida on December 29.

***Visit the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault to hear from Gary Williams, Adrian Bowie, Jordan Williams, and Sean Mosley about the Terps’ easy victory over NJIT.***

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Questions abundant as Terps tip off practice at Maryland Madness

Posted on 15 October 2010 by Luke Jones

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — The lavish, smoky spectacle of Maryland Madness tipping off is always full of surprises, from the over-the-top dancing to the unpredictable entrance of coach Gary Williams, this year as a fighter pilot right out of “Top Gun.”

The event always provides conflicting feelings of optimism and uncertainty. The distinct absence of departing seniors and the premiere of freshman faces is an annual ritual in mid-October, but through all the smoke and pyro, Williams faces a much thicker cloud of questions this season.

The graduation of ACC Player of the Year Greivis Vasquez, Eric Hayes, and Landon Milbourne leaves behind a 43.6-point hole in the offense and an even bigger void in leadership after guiding the Terps to a share of the ACC regular season championship. You just don’t replace one of the more decorated senior classes in the Gary Williams era without significant doubt and tempered expectations.

“What we lose [in the three seniors] is guys who know how to play,” said Williams, beginning his 22nd season at Maryland.

Of course, Williams is not starting from scratch, returning five players who averaged more than 14 minutes per game a year ago. Junior guard Sean Mosley (10.1 points per game) and sophomore big man Jordan Williams (9.6) — the only returning starters — will feel the most pressure to help replace the 55 percent of the scoring pie vacated by the graduated trio.

Mosley has shown the ability to score at times, like in his 26-point effort in a loss to Villanova last December, but the Baltimore native must show more consistency from the perimeter and better ability to finish near the hoop to take his game to the next level where the Terps need it to be.

Williams, on the other hand, appears destined for stardom after a wildly successful freshman campaign in which he averaged nearly a double-double and often looked like one of the most dominant big men in the ACC. The 6-foot-10 center looks leaner and more muscular after providing a powerful presence in the paint as a frosh.

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In terms of leadership, Maryland will look to three seniors who have spent their entire careers as role players. Adrian Bowie, Cliff Tucker, and Dino Gregory have all had their moments in College Park, but none have provided enough consistency to instill confidence that they can fill the shoes left behind by Vasquez, Hayes, and Milbourne.

Among the three seniors, the wildcard who could potentially see the biggest scoring increase is Tucker (5.7 per game as a junior), an enigmatic player who admittedly has spent more time in Williams’ doghouse than in the spotlight of the hardwood. Of course, Tucker has had his moments of brilliance, with his 22-point performance in an overtime win over North Carolina two years ago and his electrifying game-winning three-pointer to top Georgia Tech last season, one of the most exciting moments in the history of the Comcast Center.

“That’s helped me out a lot,” said Tucker about his heroic shot in the 76-74 win on Feb. 20. “It gives coach [Williams] more confidence in me.”

While Maryland will initially lean on its experienced players to start the season, Maryland Madness and the start of fall practice is largely about the newcomers, which include five freshmen and a junior-college transfer.

Guard Pe’Shon Howard has made the bold decision to wear Vasquez’s No. 21 jersey and has already earned praise for the heart with which he plays. Early signs point to him being an emotional player and potential fan-favorite, but will that translate to freshman success?

Mychal Parker’s athleticism and Terrell Stoglin’s quickness appear promising, but how will they translate to the college game?

Can 6-foot-9 forward Ashton Pankey provide help in the frontcourt despite spending the spring and summer recovering from a stress fracture in his left leg?

Is Haukur Palsson — a forward from Iceland — an ACC-caliber player?

All remain question marks with answers we won’t begin to uncover for several more weeks. However,  Williams is eager to unwrap his new presents when practice officially begins on Saturday.

Within the group, perhaps there is a Joe Smith, Juan Dixon, or Vasquez who will shine from Day 1 and pacify concerns over the loss of so much scoring and leadership.

“That’s what’s fun about [starting practice Saturday],” Williams said. “You’ll get some surprises. … You want to stay open to everybody — no preconceived notions.”

Notes: Juan Dixon, Johnny Rhodes, Byron Mouton, Rodney Elliott, and Dave Neal were among the notables present for the annual alumni game. Dixon hit a myriad of three-pointers in his return to College Park. … The basketball team sported their new black uniforms while performing the annual team dance for Maryland Madness. However, it is unknown whether the Terps plan to wear the uniforms due to their lack of success wearing black uniforms in recent seasons. The basketball team’s uniforms have been tweaked this season and are still supplied by Under Armour.

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Thursday’s PM Crab Cakes and Light Beer

Posted on 01 April 2010 by Chris Bonetti

Suggested Reading

WNST.net: “Wigginton has 2 hit, 2 RBI in Orioles win.” Jake Arrieta, who’ll start this season at Triple-A Norfolk, tossed four innings and allowed two runs on five hits while striking out four in the Birds 4-3 win over Tampa today in Port Charlotte.  Tomorrow’s game in Tampa against the Yankees will be shown on ESPN starting at 1:05pm.

WNST.net: Glenn Clark was at the Donte Stallworth Introduction Press Conference today.  You can hear it all live in the Buy-a-Toyota.com Audio Vault.

SI.com:  It’s April Fools Day.  Here’s George Plimpton’s, “The Curious Case of Sidd Finch.” I can still remember my Dad telling me the story and reading it for the first time.  Awesome stuff.

SI.com: Senior Baseball Writer Tom Verducci, like myself a Seton Hall Preparatory School alumnus, give us his, “Top 10 for ’10: What I’m most looking forward to this season.” Rookies Jason Heyward of the Braves and the Nationals’ Stephen Strasburg are Tom’s #1 and #2 storylines respectively.  My take on that… hmmm not sure.

FanHouse: Ed Price compiles an incredible list of, “Baseball’s Best Promotions of 2010,” while offering his own one liners that make the giveaways sound even more ridiculous than they already are.  Some favorites: “Orioles, April 11th – Plush Chick-Fil-A cows. Mooo rhymes with booo.”  “Reds, April 24th – Grow your own pot of Great American Ball Park turf.” Tim Lincecum doesn’t need it, thank you.”  “White Sox, Sept. 17th – Halfway to St. Patrick’s Day. Green White Sox caps given away. Ozzie O’Guillen throws out the first pitch.” “Nationals, Sept. 24th – Team photo and “early bird” 2011 schedule. Because it’s always better for Nats fans to look ahead.”  It’s a long list.

CBSSportsline.com: Breaking News here late… more “behavior” issues for the NFL.  “Browns’ Rogers bust at airport for loaded gun in luggage.” Good.  That’s good.

Deadspin.com:  “Last night’s Winner: Newark, NJ,” I’d just like to say… good for you, Newark, NJ.

Video of the Day

Kevin Garnett thinks Kevin Durant is, “Michael f*cking Jordan.”  Yikes not for the kids!  I don’t think his tone was complimentary there.  KG was clearly not happy with his team (and the refs!) giving up 37 points, including 15-15 FT shooting, to Durant on the parquet.

Tweets of the Day

The Nasty One himself, Nestor Aparicio – WNST

Nestor: Never ceases to amaze me that #Capitals have grown fan base like this. The sea of red here in D.C. is a marvel! #Ovechkin #Caps

Comcast Morning Show Producer, Glenn Clark – WNST

GMC: By the way, Greivis #Vasquez WAS officially announced as Bob #Cousy Award winner-nation’s top point guard. #Terps

Live from the Donte Stallworth Press Conference at 1 Winning Drive today, Glenn Clark – WNST

#Stallworth: “I’ve become a better decision maker”…”making one bad decision can snowball into a whole terrible incident.” #Ravens

The Sporting News Senior College Basketball Writer, Mike DeCourcey – tsnmike

Can’t imagine a better way to spend 90 minutes than watching “The Street Stops Here.” What an impressive film. If it’s rerun, don’t miss.

CBS College Basketball Analyst, Seth Davis – SethDavisHoops

Worst AD in America? Holy Cross’s Richard Regan Jr. fired coach Sean Kearney after ONE season. Since Regan hired him, he should resign too.

FoxSports.com Senior College Basketball Writer, Jeff Goodman – goodmanonfox

Wake Forest’s Al-Farouq Aminu has declared for the NBA Draft AND will hire an agent.

New York Newsday New York Knicks Beat Writer, Alan Hahn – alanhahn

Either the BlazerDancers are unquestionably loaded with nines or this has already been a looong road trip.

ESPN Personality, Skip Bayless – RealSkipBayless

Rams should take Suh, then hope Colt there top of 2nd. Bradford little better than Colt, but Suh much better than Sam. Colt tough leader.

ESPN NFL Insider, Adam Schefter – Adam_Schefter

Herm Edwards on NFL Live suggested 49ers trade for Donovan McNabb AND Brandon Marshall. And they still would have a leftover 1st-rd pick!

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