Maryland wasn’t supposed to be too good this season under first-year coach Kevin Willard — evidence being that the Terrapins were projected to finish 10th in the Big Ten and ranked 56th at KenPom.com two weeks ago.
Expectations were … modest.
But we’re now 14 days into the 2022-23 college basketball season and Maryland is arguably the sport’s biggest pleasant surprise. The Terps are 5-0 with five double-digit victories. They beat Saint Louis 95-67 on Saturday. They beat Miami 88-70 on Sunday. They’ve jumped 34 spots at KenPom.com in a span of just five games and are now 25th in the updated CBS Sports Top 25 And 1 daily college basketball rankings.
The statistical star so far is Donta Scott. The 6-foot-8 senior is averaging a career-high 16.8 points and a career-high 6.8 rebounds in 28.2 minutes per game. He’s shooting a career-high 52.5% from the field, a career-high 47.4% from beyond the arc and a career-high 84.6% from the free-throw line after averaging 24.5 points and 6.5 rebounds in the wins over Saint Louis and Miami that lifted Maryland to the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame Tip-off Tournament championship.
“I think we still have a long way to go,” Willard said while discussing the Terrapins’ 5-0 start. “I mean, we’re good. We have great players. But … they’re still trying to learn this system and still trying to get comfortable.”
Next up for Maryland is Friday’s game with Coppin State. Then comes a trip to Louisville on Nov. 29 that’ll be followed by the Big Ten opener against Illinois on Dec. 2.
Top 25 And 1 rankings
Source link : https://www.cbssports.com/college-basketball/news/college-basketball-rankings-resurgent-maryland-off-to-5-0-start-under-kevin-willard-joins-top-25-and-1/
Author : Gary Parrish
Publish date : 2022-11-21 18:39:14
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