The Maryland Terrapins were one of the biggest question marks in college basketball as conference play began.
And after just two games in conference play, they have suffered a loss that many did not expect. The Terps fell to an 8-6 Nebraska team, at home by a score of 67-65, where they are usually terrific.
While this is certainly not an ideal situation for Mark Turgeon’s squad, this is not a reason to give up on the Terps as a very good team in the Big Ten.
Yes, it showed that Maryland is very vulnerable, even at home, if their star player, Melo Trimble, struggles. But several other things went wrong in this loss, and these things are unlikely to all happen again, and Maryland was very close to still winning this game.
And really, it was the perfect storm for Maryland. Not only did Nebraska’s Tai Webster have a great performance, but the Terps were also shorthanded due to the injury to MIchal Cekovsky.
Maryland also had several key players struggle in this game.
Trimble had a very rough day from the field, shooting only 5-for-15 from the floor and scoring 14 points. That is not what one would call efficient. The talented freshman duo of Anthony Cowan and Justin Jackson also struggled mightily in this game.
Cowan shot only 2-for-8 from the floor, and struggled to create for others, tallying only one assist to three turnovers. Jackson registered only 6 points on 3-of-8 shooting, and was largely a non-factor on the offensive end.
As a team, the Terps only shot 35% from the field, and that number is inflated by the big day by Kevin Huerter, who had 26 points on 9-of-17 from the field (7-for-11 from three) and 5 assists.
This was, simply, an outlier performance from the Terps. They did not play well offensively, and missed the efficiency of Cekovsky on the inside. Don’t count on all three of Trimble, Cowan, and Jackson to struggle like this again in the same game.
Nebraska is also a hot team right now.
The Huskers knocked off Indiana in Bloomington in the game before this one. While the record at 8-6 looks very undesirable, this Huskers team appears to be that tough, gritty, gatekeeper team that will be a tough out for whoever faces them.
Maryland did not look great in this game. At all. But they were not exposed with this loss, as it will take several of these types of performances to justify panic.
As things currently stand, the Terps are still a big question mark. But a close loss like this does not make them a pretender. There is no need to panic just yet.