Some of the Indiana guard’s top performances this year have come against the Terrapins.
His two-game totals are staggering. He averaged 23.5 points per game and hit an impressive 13-of-17 shots from 3-point range against Maryland. That’s a 76.5 percent clip. Overall, he made 16-of-26 shots against the Terps.
But he was efficient with the basketball, too. In two games, he had 11 assists and no turnovers against Maryland.
“I just go out and play hard every game,’’ Ferrell said. “But when we played Maryland, especially at home, everything just seemed to be going in.’’
That’s because everything practically did go in for the Hoosiers at home against the Terrapins. Indiana posted an 89-70 victory. IU hit 30-of-50 shots from the field (60 percent), 15-of-22 from 3-point range and 14-of-18 from the line.
Ferrell made 8-of-10 shots overall and 7-of-8 3-point field goals.
In the second meeting, Ferrell hit six more 3’s but had a chance to win it for the Hoosiers in the closing seconds but missed a good look from 3-point range as time expired. Maryland hung on for a 68-66 victory.
Ferrell was particularly emotional after that game, feeling he had let his teammates down.
“When I get open looks I expect to knock them down,’’ Ferrell said. “That was a big game for us and it would have been a big road win.’’
Looking back, it may have been the difference between IU feeling comfortable with its NCAA Tournament possibilities coming to Chicago this week as opposed to feeling as if it had work to do to get in the dance.
One defensive challenge for Ferrell Friday will be facing Maryland guard Melo Trimble. Ferrell limited Trimble to 10 points in the first meeting and didn’t allow him to get the foul line, something he is known for being able to do. In fact, in two games against IU, Trimble only attempted five free throws. Still, he averaged 14 points against IU in the two games and is a tough match up.
“He can pretty much do it all,’’ Ferrell said. “What we have to do about him is we have to play great defense. Stay in front of him and don’t let him get any easy looks. That’s the biggest thing really. We feel like he’s maybe the energy guy that really gets them going.’’
In the postgame interviews in the locker room Thursday night after IU beat Northwestern 71-56, Ferrell was asked if he thought IU looked like an NCAA Tournament team right now.
He paused for a moment before delivering an answer.
“I don’t know,’’ he finally said. “We’ll find out tomorrow.’’