Maryland basketball vs. Boston College: Previewing the game

February 19, 2013

(Associated Press)

THE INFO

Who: Maryland (18-7, 6-6 ACC) at Boston College (11-14, 3-9).

When: Tuesday, 9 p.m.

Where: Conte Forum, Chestnut Hill, Mass.

Washington-Baltimore TV: WDCA (Channel 20), WNUV (Channel 54).

DMV radio: 105.7 FM, 980 AM, 1300 AM.

Coaches: Terps — Mark Turgeon (second season, 35-22). Eagles – Steve Donahue (third season, 41-49)

Pomeroy ratings: Terps 57th, Eagles 120th.

RPI: Terps 62nd, Eagles 149th.

THE SCRIPT

Tuesday night’s game will dictate whether Saturday’s win over Duke pushed the Terrapins over the hump, or whether it, like last month’s win over North Carolina State, simply paved the way for an even bigger fall on the road during the next game. Maryland followed up its dramatic, buzzer-beating win over the Wolfpack on Jan. 16 with a dud at North Carolina three days later, so how the Terps respond on Tuesday night against the Eagles could dictate the rest of their season. Boston College has been stingy at home this season and played Maryland tough in a five-point loss in College Park on Jan. 22, but the Terps are riding the emotional highs left over from Saturday’s thrilling win over Duke. Whether it carries over, manifested through either another strong performance or a fizzling disappointment, remains to be seen.

THE QUESTIONS

1. Keep Len going? Maryland center Alex Len was a monster against Duke, rolling through Mason Plumlee and other post players with ease en route to a 19-point, nine-rebound performance. The last time Len scored more than 12 points? Against Boston College earlier this season, Len posted his most recent double-double (16 points, 13 rebounds). Keeping Len motivated and competitive in the paint could both carry Maryland and kick-start a little run for the 7-foot-1 sophomore.

2. Travel well? It seems like ages ago, but Maryland only scored its first ACC road win against Virginia Tech on Feb. 7. Since then, the Terps have lost to Virginia and beaten Duke. So how will they fare in another test away from College Park? Boston College suffered one-point losses to both Duke and Miami at Conte Forum this season. Even in an atmosphere that certainly won’t measure up to Cameron Indoor Stadium or elsewhere in the ACC, the Terps must keep their cool and avoid the standard issues that have plagued them on the road this season.

3. Cut down the turnovers? Granted, this could be a question for every single game this season. But in the win over the Blue Devils, really the only negative for Maryland was the season-high 26 turnovers. The Terps were sloppy at times, almost offering the game up to Duke with careless errors and lackluster passing. Playing on the road, such miscues could spell doom for them.

THE STATS

10.7: Maryland’s average rebounding margin, which ranks second nationally. The Terps doubled up Duke, 40-20, on the boards in Saturday’s game.

8.5: Minutes per three-point field goal for Maryland guard Logan Aronhalt. For comparison, North Carolina State’s Scott Wood, the ACC’s three-point leader, makes one every 12.5 minutes. Aronhalt is averaging 12.9 minutes per game this season.

1: The Terps were ranked by just one voter in the latest AP ballot: Matt Vautour of the Daily Hampshire (Mass.) Gazette had them 24th.

THE QUOTES

“It’s why we met last night. We talked about it, moved on. I told them to enjoy the Duke game until they fell asleep that night, that morning, whichever it was, and to wake up thinking about Boston College, academics, whatever. Hopefully they did that. That’s why we met last night, talked about those things. We’ll get after them today.” – Turgeon, on a potential letdown at Boston College.

“I think we got the point with being committed. Coach is being hard on us, but he really wants the best for him and this team. He sees more things than us, that we can change around this program to take it to the next level. I’ve been loving it. The workouts have been intense, he’s pushing s and running us and getting us in better shape, making us mentally tough. All of that comes into the word commitment. This is a family. Basketball heritage is big at this school. We just have to carry it on. It’ll come with hard work, do the little things. I think we’ll be successful. But we have to stay committed 100 percent if we’re going to be the team people want us to become.” – Shaq Cleare

THE TERPS TUNE OF TODAY

Come Together” by The Beatles.

THE POLL

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Alex Prewitt covers the Washington Capitals. Follow him on Twitter @alex_prewitt or email him at alex.prewitt@washpost.com.
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