Maryland's Terrapins - jet lag, sore throats and all - risk their 4-0 record against East Carolina, at Cole Field House tonight.

Meanwhile, across the state line, at Ft. Myer, George Washington will bump elbows with Wisconsin, a budding Big 10 team.

In other games, improving American University (3-3) gets a break in its contest at Clemson (4-0). The Tigers will be without standout guard Derick Johnson, who has a sprained ankle, and starting post man Jim Howell will play briefly or not at all because of a virus.

Only nine men will suitup for Georgetown's (2-2) home game against Wagner (2-1), while Navy (2-2) is ast Merchant Marine Academy (1-2) and Virginia (4-0) plays host to Penn (1-0).

Maryland returns from Disneyland, and a no-count loss against Athletes in Action, with guard-forward Billy Bryant and foward John Bilney sniffling and coughing.

Bryant has missed a practice and Bilney has put in some time at the infirmary, but coach Lefty Driesell expects both to play and probably start.

Maryland's best player in the last two games has been freshman point guard Greg Manning, a nonstarter who scored 23 in the victory over Penn State and 26 in the the 98-94 losing effort against AIA. In the two games Manning hit 22 of 26 shots from the floor and averaged just under a point per minute played.

Despite Manning's showings, Driesell intends to start the same five and play his top eight players almost equally.

East Carolina is 1-2 under new head coach Larry Gillman, a former University of San Francisco assistant who is one of the youngest head coaches in the nation at 28.

East Carolina, an 80-69 loser last year to the Terps, relies heavily on 6.3 guard Oliver Mack, who scored 36 points in a 102.95 victory over Alderson-Broaddus Monday night.

Inside, East Carolina has some slick shooters in Bowie High graduate Herb Gray (19-point average) and Northwood's Herb Krusen (17 points), but compared with Maryland, the front line is slow and skinny.

East Carolina was blown out in its first two games - 92.66 by UNC-Wilmington and 75.59 by Indiana.

Twelfth-ranked Maryland has five players averaging in double figures: Bryant (16.8), Manning (14.2), Albert King (13.5), Jo Jo Hunter (10.8) and Larry Gibson (10.1).

GW (2-1) has changed its lineup in an effort to add more scoring punch and some smoothness.

In its Eastern Eight opener Saturday, GW squandered a 10-point lead in the final 4 1/2 minutes and lost to Massachtusetts, 77-73.

A full-court press earned 16 straight points for Massachusetts.

"That may have been my fault," GW coach Bob Tallent said. "We worked on it more this week. I'm sure Wisconsin will press some."

In an effort to suppress the killer turnovers, Tallent has lifted guard Tyrone Howze from the starting list and written in Bob Lindsay, even though he is suffering from a badly bruised thigh. Tallent hopes Lindsay will be the steadying influence GW needs coming up the court.

Tallent also wants more up-front shooting from forward Tom Glenn, who scored 23 points in a 90-73 exhibition victory over the Australian Olympic team Monday.

Tallent is sacrificing the defensive skills of the Mike Samson, who takes a seat to make room fro the 6-8 Glenn.

"Samson has done everything I've asked him to do, and hit four of four shots from the floor." Tallent said. "This is an awfully tough thing for me to do."

GW will need several offensive explosions to surpass favored Wisconsin, an up-and-coming team in the physical Big 10. The stalwart is James Gregory from Collidge High, a 6-8 sophomore forward who leads the team in scoring with 17.5 points per game and also averages 12 rebounds.

The Badgers (2-0) are balanced. Talent especially fears the guards. Senior James Smith averages 14 points a game and Wes Matthews appears ready to detonate at any time.

They have the scoring edge at guard," Tallent said, "but I think we match up well inside, I'd hate to say we might have the edge there, but we've been playing awfully well. I don't think anybody can outscore or outrebound us up front."

Glenn's company on the front line includes 6.5 leaping forward Les (High Rise) Anderson and 6-10 center Mike Zagardo.