A couple of teams have separated themselves in the muddled ACC standings and one of those teams is the Maryland Terrapins. Gary Williams' club is 8-3 in conference play and 18-7 overall.
A team that sits right in the middle of the pack is Georgia Tech who at 6-6 in league play is fighting for an NCAA Tournament bid.
The Yellow Jackets try to steal just their second ACC road win this season in College Park Saturday.
Keys To The Game:
1. Greivis Vasquez
Maryland's point guard is the engine that makes them go. If Paul Hewitt's team wants to pull off the upset, they have to slow Vasquez down and frustrate by not allowing him into the lane.
I would expect Ga. Tech to match up Iman Shumpert who is of similar size with the 6'6" Vasquez. If GT cannot contain Vasquez, then it is lights out for the Jackets.
2. Foul Trouble
Maryland is allowing their ACC opponents to the free throw line about 18 times per game. But Georgia Tech opponents get to the line a whopping 23 times, which ranks 10th in the ACC.
Also, Ga Tech is shooting just 60 percent from the free throw line in league games. The Terrapins are hitting 72 percent. Made free throws could be in the difference in a tight ball game.
3. Pace of the Game
Maryland is playing their fourth game in eight days and third game in five days due to the snowstorm that hit the DC area last weekend.
I see Gary Williams wanting his club to slow the game into a half court pace, while Paul Hewitt continually pushes his team up the floor.
That excited pace could cause the Yellow Jackets some unnecessary turnovers where they rank last in the ACC at 23 per game.
But if GT can push the ball and get easy buckets they could tire the worn out Terps.
Georgia Tech has the talent to be better than 6-6 in the league with just one road win, but something is holding them back right now. The Yellow Jackets are just 6-33 on the road in the four plus seasons.
Even with a tired Maryland team, I don't see Ga. Tech executing well enough on offense to pull off the road upset.
Other ACC Games This Weekend:
Boston College over North Carolina
Wake Forest over NC State
Clemson over Virginia
Duke over Virginia Tech
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