Previewing Maryland

Despite two feet of snow in College Park, North Carolina and Maryland will still meet Sunday. Tip-off is scheduled for 2 p.m. and will be televised by Fox Sports Net.

North Carolina (13-9, 2-5) vs. Maryland (15-6, 5-2)
College Park, Md. -- Comcast Center
2:00 p.m., Fox Sports Net (Mike Hogewood, Mike Gminski)


"The fans here were crazy, the craziest I've ever had since N.C. State. They were being racist, they were talking about deporting me and sending me back home, calling me Mexican when I'm Venezuelan. It was pretty bad, so they deserved to lose. That's why they lost. I showed up like I showed up, like I'm the best player on the court and they have to take it like that... It's not about me. I was trying to win the game. I've become more mature. I feel more mature, and I'm not trying to get that much attention. I'm just trying to win the game and be the best player on the court." – Maryland guard Greivis Vasquez following his team's win at Florida State on Thursday

"We know that we have to put together a winning streak." – UNC forward John Henson

"It would have been fun if Will [Graves'] 3-point shot had stayed in, but when things are going tough they usually do spin out like that." – UNC head coach Roy Williams on Graves' in-and-out attempt that would have cut Virginia Tech's lead to 71-70 with 22 seconds left on Thursday


Season to Date: Maryland enters Sunday's contest with a 15-6 (5-2 ACC) record. The Terrapins dropped key nonconference games against Cincinnati (69-57), Wisconsin (78-69) and Villanova (95-86), as well as losing a shocker to William & Mary (83-77), but Gary Williams' squad has turned things around in conference play by winning four of its last games.

The Venezuelan Sensation: While Williams has rarely been praised for his recruiting prowess, the 21-year Terrapin head coach succeeded in convincing Greivis Vasquez to return for his senior season. A two-time second-team All-ACC performer, Vasquez is averaging 17.7 points, 6.0 assists and 4.5 rebounds per contest. He has upped his scoring in conference play to 19.6 points per game. The senior's lone downside has been a career-long knack for committing turnovers, and that trend has continued this season as he's coughing up 4.3 turnovers in conference play. Regardless, Vasquez's complete game is well documented throughout the Maryland record books as he currently ranks in the career top-10 in eight different categories, including points, assists, steals, field goals and 3-point field goals.

In Their Defense… : Maryland has held each of its last six opponents to 67 points or less (60.7 ppg). The Terrapins currently rank sixth nationally in field goal percentage defense (.371), good for third in the ACC. In conference-only statistics, Maryland leads the league with a .388 field goal percentage defense mark. Helping those numbers is the fact that the Terps are T-2nd in the conference in steals per game (7.3) while also forcing the third-most turnovers (15.6) out of the twelve league members.

An Offensive Bonanza: The Terrapins' 5-2 ACC record can be explained just by looking at the conference statistics on the offensive side of the ball. Maryland leads the league with a 45.3 field goal percentage mark in conference games, including a lights-out 43.9 shooting percentage and 6.1 makes per game from 3-point territory. Virginia is second from long range with a 35.7 mark. It's always a little easier to score when your teammates find you in an ideal position, and Maryland has done just that, leading the league with 15.0 assists per outing.

The Value of Senior Leadership: While Vasquez receives the bulk of the media spotlight, senior starters Landon Milbourne (14.4 ppg, 5.4 rpg) and Eric Hayes (10.9 ppg, 3.3 apg) are providing essential secondary options for Williams' squad. Milbourne ranks 11th in the ACC in scoring, while Hayes stands second behind Duke's Jon Scheyer in assist-to-turnover margin with a 2.4 ratio.

Last Meeting: Maryland scored nine unanswered points in the final 98 seconds of regulation to force overtime and ultimately defeated No. 3 North Carolina, 88-85, at the Comcast Center in College Park, Md. The Tar Heels led by as many as 16 points in the second half, but Vasquez led the comeback in delivering his program's first triple-double in 22 years with 35 points, 10 assists and 11 rebounds. Ty Lawson guided UNC with 24 points, while Danny Green added 18 points and nine rebounds.

Series History: The Tar Heels lead the all-time series with Maryland, 114-56, and have won six of the last nine meetings. North Carolina is 45-35 against the Terrapins in games played in College Park, including a 2-4 record at the Comcast Center.

Projected Starters:
21 Greivis Vasquez (6-6, 200, Sr.) – 17.7 ppg, 6.0 apg
5 Eric Hayes (6-4, 180, Sr.) – 10.9 ppg, 3.3 apg
14 Sean Mosely (6-4, 210, So.) – 11.7 ppg, 5.7 rpg
1 Landon Milbourne (6-7, 205, Sr.) – 14.4 ppg, 5.4 rpg
20 Jordan Williams (6-10, 260, Fr.) – 8.4 ppg, 8.0 rpg

Top Reserves:
24 Cliff Tucker (6-6, 205, Jr.) – 5.7 ppg
22 Adrian Bowie (6-2, 190, Jr.) – 4.4 ppg
35 James Padgett (6-8, 225, Fr.) – 3.9 ppg, 3.5 rpg
33 Dino Gregory (6-7, 230, Jr.) – 4.5 ppg, 3.7 rpg

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