“If he doesn’t, we’ll remind him,” Wells said.
TERPS GROWING UP
Turgeon said the discipline the Terps showed basically without any set plays was impressive for a young team.
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“We couldn’t have done that six weeks ago, there’s no way,” Turgeon said. “We couldn’t have adjusted and done the things that we did. We made very few mistakes defensively down the stretch. That’s hard to guard.”
It was also difficult for Turgeon to give his players that much freedom. But Turgeon has seen a growth spurt in terms of his team’s collective IQ the past few weeks, starting right before the ACC tournament.
“What we did is play with poise. Normally when I give them that kind of freedom they go crazy on me. They’ve done that all year,” Turgeon said. “The last three weeks, four weeks, they haven't. Give the guys credit, they knew Dez had a mismatch. The guys played smart. They’re getting it. Guys just want to win. Winning is more important than individual things.”
LEN’S A SPECTATOR
The 7-foot-1 sophomore picked up his fourth foul with 12:46 left in the game and never returned. I thought there was a chance Turgeon would put him back in once Maryland got the lead and were having its own foul troubles, but the coach “went with what your gut told you.”
That was to leave the five guards – and occasionally Layman – in the game. Len said watching things unfold “was a lot of fun, five guys cutting and moving,” but knows that things should change in the quarterfinals.
For Maryland to win the NIT, given the competition Turgeon’s team will face next week in the quarterfinals and possibly in New York the first week of April, Len is going to have to play closer to a lottery pick.
Maryland (24-12) will play the winner of Saturday’s game between Alabama (22-12) and Stanford (19-9) in Tuscaloosa. It seems likely for the Terps to be playing the Crimson Tide, which hasn’t lost at home since Dec. 30. The Cardinal, coached by former Duke star and longtime assistant Johnny Dawkins, have won four of its past four road games. If Stanford wins, the quarterfinals will be at Comcast Center on Tuesday night. Otherwise, the game will be at Alabama on Tuesday.