If I wrote this entry at halftime yesterday, it could have been reversed.
The Terrapins in an effort to defeat the top team in the nation and the #3 team in a span of 8 days failed. They put on an excellent showing in the first half, but sputtered when hitting the floor in the second half and lost 93-84. Bambale "Boom" Osby had a double-double and a career high in points with 20 in the losing effort.
Sure, MD-Duke does not have the same flavor and stature as 5 years ago. Even three years ago, Maryland had lukewarm seasons and NIT bids, but these games were always a show. But despite losing games to American and Ohio (not State), the Terrapins came to play. They played a great first half, leading by 9 at the break, only to have it turned around on them.
The Sports Freak would like to blame me for the loss since I wanted to go home and watch the second half. Sorry, it's a school night and I'm getting up there in years. Need to get to bed early. Sure, I don't go to be at 9, but still, I didn't need to get home at 10 PM and wake up at 5 AM Monday.
I however blame it on Fox Sports. How dare they broadcast the game and not show Scott Van Pelt? OK, he works for a competing network. And this morning on the Mike and Mike radio show, I understand that he was on a plane to Arizona for Superbowl coverage. So maybe we should blame the ACC. How dare they schedule MD-Duke when SVP was possibly unavailable. He's been to every MD-Duke game in College Park since at least 2002.
Kidding aside, it appears the week off between NC and Duke did not help enough. MD put on a great effort. The only thing I can fault is that Paulus and Singler both sat with 4 fouls each with a few minutes left on the clock. Duke was up by 2 at that point. MD should have taken the lead or at least kept it close. Instead they fell further behind.
Too bad, this would have been one of those attention getter games. Paired with the win over the Tarheels, it would have at least kept MD in the discussion for an at large bid. If the game hadn't turned so badly in the second half, maybe it still would have been. Well, maybe we'll have to mop up the Blue Devils at Cameron Indoor in 2 weeks.