Preview: Duke (21-1) v. Maryland (16-8)

Previewing the Blue Devils and Terrapins who tip off on Wednesday evening in Durham, N.C. The game will be nationally televised on ESPN beginning at 7:00 PM EST.


Duke (21-1, 9-0) vs Maryland (16-8, 6-3)
Durham, N.C. - Cameron Indoor Stadium
TV: ESPN / Tip: 9:00 PM ESPN

Program Vitals
Conference: Atlantic Coast
Nickname: Terrapins
Colors: Sky Red & White
Head Coach: Gary Williams (19th year)
Career Record at Maryland: 394-208 (601-336 Overall)

Projected Starters:
 5 Eric Hayes (6-4, 185, So.) – 10.9 ppg, 5.5 apg
22 Grevis Vasquez (6-5, 190, So.) – 16.9 ppg, 6.7 apg
50 Bambale Osby (6-8, 250, Sr.) – 11.6 ppg, 7.0 rpg
15 James Gist (6-8, 235, Sr.) – 16.4 ppg, 7.9 rpg
 1 Landon Milbourne (6-7, 207, Sr.) – 8.3 ppg, 3.7 rpg

Key Reserves:
24 Cliff Tucker (6-6, 190, Fr.) – 4.3 ppg, 2.1 rpg
22 Adrian Bowie (6-2, 190, Fr.) – 3.2 ppg
 4 Braxton Dupree (6-8, 260, Fr.) – 2.5 ppg, 2.2 rpg
35 David Neal (6-7, 265, Fr.) - 2.3 ppg

Storylines:

How They Got Here:
The Blue Devils have continued to exceed expectations in 2008 by running out to a perfect 9-0 start in the ACC, while establishing a two game advantage on pre-season favorite North Carolina. Overall Duke enters Wednesday night's game against the Terrapins with a 21-1 overall record and riding an 11 game win streak since losing 65-64 to Pittsburgh on December 20th.

Much like Duke, the Terrapins have also exceeding what many experts predicted in 2008 - at least when it comes to ACC play. Before starting conference play the Terps lost to teams such as Ohio, Virginia Commonwealth, and American University. Since entering ACC play Maryland has upset then No. 1 North Carolina, and enters Wednesday night's game having won four of their previous five.

Series History:
This will be the 163rd meeting between the two teams with Duke holding a 102-60 lead overall. Still, Maryland has had more success of late - winning five of the previous eight meetings including both last season. Duke is hoping the January 27th meeting, which resulted in a nine point win at the Comcast Center, signals a reversal of recent trends..

Injury Report:
Duke center Brian Zoubek returned to action, albeit briefly, against Boston College on Saturday afternoon and is expected to be in the rotation.

Big Guard Likes The Big Stage:
Fiery is one way to describe Maryland's Greivis Vasquez. The 6'6 sophomore point guard has put together some of his best games against the biggest opponents - including Duke. Last season at Cameron Indoor Stadium Vasquez recorded 13 points, 12 assists (against 1 turnover), and nine rebounds in 37 minutes of action - leading Maryland to an 85-77 victory. Throughout that night the then freshman floor general seemed to thrive off the taunting from the Cameron Crazies - giving back just as much (if not more) than he was receiving. This season Vasquez leads the Terps with 16.9 points per game. He is the fourth-leading scorer in the Atlantic Coast Conference. He's been even better recently, earning ESPN Player of the Week honors Monday after he averaged 19.0 points, 7.5 rebounds and 11.5 assists in wins over Boston College and NC State last week. He scored a game-high 25 points at Boston College and tied the school record with 15 assists against NC State. Vasquez narrowly missed just the second triple-double in school history as he ? nished with 13 points, 15 assists and nine rebounds against the Wolfpack.

Don't Forget The Other Terp On a Roll Either...:
James Gist was named the Sporting News National Player of the Week on Monday. Gist averaged 26.5 points, 8.0 rebounds and shot 76 percent (22 of 29) from the field, including 3 of 6 from three-point range. He scored 23 points and grabbed seven rebounds at Boston College. Gist then tallied a blocked shots against NC State. Last time, against Duke, Gist finished with 26 points and five rebounds in 37 minutes of action. He has scored in double figures in 19 games this year and has five double-doubles (Hampton, Boston College, Delaware, Charlotte and North Carolina).

[Lots of] Minutemen:
Three of Maryland's starters are among the top 11 players in the ACC for minutes played per contest. Sophomore Greivis Vasquez is second in the league, averaging 36.68 minutes per contest. Sophomore guard Eric Hayes is sixth in the ACC in minutes per game (34.05), while senior James Gist is 11th (31.07).

Coach K continues assault on wins list
Duke's victory over Boston College was Krzyzewski's 796th, good enough for sixth on the all-time list. Eddie Sutton is fifth overall and second among active coaches with 800 wins while first overall is Coach K's recently retired college coach, Bob Knight, with 902 wins. Coach K now has 723 wins at Duke, tied for seventh all-time for most wins at one school and third among active coaches. With 796 career wins in his first 33 seasons, Coach K is currently second on the NCAA's list of most victories in a coaches' first 33 season. He trails Dean Smith, who had 802 wins through 33 seasons.

Prediction:

Duke 88
Maryland 83


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