The NC State Wolfpack and the Maryland Terrapins meet tonight in ACC Tournament play, as the Terps must win to save any chance of a NCAA Tournament bid.
Two teams that
hope to come out of nowhere to make some noise in the ACC Tournament meet in
Greensboro tonight as the
Maryland Terrapins will look to keep their dim NCAA Tournament hopes alive when
they take on the NC State Wolfpack. Tip time is set for 7:00 ET. NCAA Basketball odds boards have installed Maryland as 6 point favorites tonight, and from the looks of things, the sportsbooks made the right pick.
Both Teams Sliding at Wrong Time
It wasn't all that
long ago that Maryland was probably on the right side of the NCAA Tournament
bubble, but they ended the regular season with losses in three straight and
five out of seven to really slip out of the equation.
However, we have seen
teams come back from worse positions than this to steal bids into the NCAA Tournament, and we'd bet that a win in this one and one over the Duke Blue
Devils in the quarterfinals would at least get the "bubble" rolling
in the right direction again. Getting into the finale might actually put the
Terps in the field as an at large team if the rest of the bubble doesn't shrink
any more than this.
The NC State Wolfpack always
looked like it had a dim hope of getting into the field of 68, something that
Head Coach Sidney Lowe really needed to help save his job. However, losses in
four out of five (with the one win coming against the lowly Georgia Tech Yellow
Jackets) to end the regular season really didn't help things any, and now, the
Pack do actually have to win this tournament to go dancing.
One thing is for
certain, and that's that a loss would end NC State's season, and potentially
Lowe's tenure as the team's head coach.
Can Anyone Stop Williams?
This has really
been the question that every team has been asking since the start of the season
when it has taken on the Terps. Can Jordan Williams be stopped? The big man has
done a good job this season of staying out of foul trouble, and as a result, he
has really had the ability to put up some tremendous numbers. Williams is
averaging 16.9 PPG and 11.6 RPG, and he is clearly the leader on the inside for
a team that relies heavily on getting points in the paint.
There are plenty
of bigs to throw Williams' way for NC State, but none really have us all that
excited about the matchup. CJ Leslie, Richard Howell, and Tracy Smith will all
take their turns at the big man, but all three are definitely giving up some
size and probably some talent as well. Smith is as good as it gets for the
Pack, averaging 14.0 PPG and 5.6 RPG, but those numbers clearly pale in comparison
to what Williams brings to the table.
Maryland's Domination Should Lead to
NCAA Basketball Betting Victory
season, NC State was lucky to stick inside of the 10 point spread at the Comcast Center in an 87-80 defeat. That was the eighth straight SU
loss in this series for the Wolfpack. The Terrapins had an eight game cover
streak against the Pack stopped by that ATS defeat, but Head Coach Gary
Williams clearly didn't mind. NCAA Basketball bettors should let these statistics warn them from siding with the Wolf Pack.
On this day
though, it is all about the Turtles. Williams should dominate and get his
expected double-double, and the end result should push Maryland comfortably
into the second round of the ACC Tournament.