Saturday, March 14, 2009

ACC Tournament: Duke-Maryland Prediction

3. Duke Blue Devils vs 7. Maryland Terrapins
Saturday 3:30 PM
TV: Raycom/ESPN

Duke and Maryland dance for a third time this season and if Maryland is able to pull off the upset then they will punch their ticket to the Big Dance (if they have not already). The Blue Devils are looking to get back to the ACC Finals after a short drought of two years. Can Duke beat Maryland for a third time this season or will the Terps continue their run to the finals?

In the teams first meeting of the season, Duke dominated Maryland 85-44 giving Gary Williams his worst loss as Terps coach. Maryland team leader Greivis Vasquez made comments to the effect of Cameron Indoor being "his house". The junior from Venezuela had just four points in the loss. Fast forward to February and Maryland needs a home win over Duke. But the Blue Devils stymied the Terps hitting big threes late for the win.

To pull off the upset, Maryland has to slow down Duke from the outside where the Devils hit eight from long range in the last meeting. For Duke, they need to keep Vasquez out of the flow of the game. The more he is involved, the more he has the ball in his hands, the better the Terrapins offense runs.

It is very tough to beat a quality team three times in a season, but Duke is also very good in the ACC Tournament winning five straight not too long ago. It will be tough for Duke to come back from such a late game the previous night, but Maryland will be playing their third game in three days. I like Duke to advance to the finals.

Pick: Duke

Season: 35-28 SU through 3/13

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  1. Us Terp fans think we are in, but it certainly wouldn't hurt to beat Duke and remove all doubt. Plus we have some pay back we need to dish out to the Dukies. There will be a lot of Terps pacing the floor waiting for 3:30 today, I'll tell you that much. Hopefully Greivis will stay out of foul trouble.

  2. FYI, the Terps are 5-2 this year against teams they have faced twice. One of the loses is to Duke. Do you think the third time will be the charm?

  3. I think Maryland is in as now too. They will be very tough to beat a third time. Good stat about the Terps and repeat opponents.

    I do wonder about Duke's legs after a very late game last night. But Coach K is so good in the ACC Tournament so I went with them. But it will be a five point game either way.


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