Three Thoughts on Maryland’s Win at Boston CollegePosted by Matt Patton on December 14th, 2013
Maryland stopped its two-game skid with a road win to open conference play, and meanwhile the Eagles slipped to 3-7 in another poor defensive performance.
- Ryan Anderson and Joe Rahon are in shape this year, and Anderson kept the game close at the beginning. He was really the only active Boston College player early, cutting and finishing with a couple of two-handed dunks that kept Maryland from running away. However, a big concern was how Anderson disappeared after the first four minutes and throughout the second half. He only took two shots in the second period (making both; he also had two assists), which just won’t cut it in most games. Anderson needs to work on staying aggressive. Most of the game Steve Donahue played him at the four, where he’s really tough to guard because of his perimeter shooting. Rahon is listed at the same weight, but it’s clear he worked on his conditioning this summer. He finished last season on a high note, and his stats this season are a cut above. That said, I’m pretty sure Steve Donahue would happily take Rahon’s offensive stats from last season in exchange for him becoming an elite defender.
- Mark Turgeon sounded absolutely wiped after the game. It’s clear the early season struggles for Maryland have really taken their toll on him. After the game he joked that the win might not fix any basketball problems, but “food will taste better” and that he might be able to get a little sleep. Truthfully, it didn’t sound like much of a joke at all. Turgeon is right that the basketball problems are still there: his most efficient scorer (Jake Layman) disappears for large stretches of the game because his roster has too many shoot-first guards and Roddy Peters has a Pe’Shon Howard turnover rate. Additionally, what looked like one of the best frontcourts in the conference on paper has turned out to be a mess because Evan Smotrycz doesn’t play defense, Shaquille Cleare is in a slump affecting all aspects of his game, and Charles Mitchell is better as a spark plug than a starter. But when push came to shove, Dez Wells delivered the knock-out blow and Maryland walked away with an ACC road win (halving its total from last season).
- Seth Allen’s injury has put Roddy Peters in the spotlight a little faster than anyone expected, but in the long term that might be a good thing. While Allen is effectively a two trapped in a point guard’s body (he averaged fewer assists than Nick Faust and Dez Wells last season), Peters looks like more of a distributor. He needs to make better decisions — his foul immediately after his and-one in the last minute of the game comes to mind (and Turgeon even thought the and-one might have been the wrong decision). But getting to know the offense should only accelerate Peters’ ascension. Look for him to make a solid leap and develop into a great four-year guy for Maryland. (Sidenote: currently Ken Pomeroy lists Peyton Siva’s and Demontez Stitt’s freshman seasons as the two best comparisons to Peters so far this season)