Looking at Duke

Maryland travels to play a Duke team Saturday that is 17-1 and entered Tuesday night's game ranked third in the nation in scoring margin at 19.9 points a game.

Duke is excellent on the boards, ranking 10th in the nation in rebounding margin. Maryland, with its three-guard offense, has often been outrebounded. The Terps rank 135th.

It's probably more instructive to look at Duke's lone defeat than at its wins. The Blue Devils lost 81-73 to Michigan in Ann Arbor on Dec. 6.

In that game, the Blue Devils took 33 three-pointers and made only seven (21.2 percent). They went to the foul line only six times compared to Michigan's 22.

I've blogged before about getting to the line. In this game, it will really be critical. I think the Terps need to get to the foul line 20-plus times to stay competitive.

It will really help the Terps if Duke has a Michigan-game sort of drought from behind the arc, but don't count on it. Maryland has been pretty good defending the three this season, and will have to be exceptional Saturday afternoon. Duke is shooting near 40 percent on threes in its last four games -- victories over Florida State, Georgia Tech, Georgetown and N.C. State.

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