Well, that was pretty brutal. The Terps are down big to Ohio State in the first half, 43-26, after shooting under 35% and playing some porous perimeter defense. Nick Faust, Dez Wells, and Jake Layman all have two points apiece, which is about all you need to know to deduce how badly things are going.
– The saying “he couldn’t throw a beach ball into the ocean” comes to mind when you think of Maryland’s offensive display in the first half. We are far removed from the great passing team we saw briefly against inferior competition in the Paradise Jam, because this Maryland team has taken some woefully inaccurate shots. Their selection has been completely terrible; Nick Faust set the trend, but Layman and Wells did nothing to dissuade it. If Maryland can’t settle it down and start attacking the basket with reckless abandon, they’re in for a long night.
– One thing I did like, is that Maryland has been able to penetrate very well against Ohio State. The problem is that they aren’t going in once the Terps get there. Getting to the rim and going to the line is a winning strategy, and I can see things evening out by the end of this game if Maryland can keep it up. That’s about the only bright spot I have for you guys, though.
– Last year’s team was absolutely terrible at defending the perimeter, and they’re making a bad shooting team in Ohio State look like Duke out there. The hands aren’t up on defense, and fighting through screens is an act of futility. Ross had five three pointers at the halfway point, and this game could be a rout if Maryland doesn’t fix that quick. Heck, it already is a rout.
– Finally, I think you have to get Smotrycz even more involved if Maryland wants to win this game. Smo has played in this arena before, he has played in this conference before, and he knows how to help his team win games. He’s about the only thing that’s right for Maryland so far, and that has to be key in the second half. It’s clear he has to keep it going or Maryland will be dead in the water.