Once again, the Maryland Terrapins put up a fight in a big game, but once again, the Terps could not close the deal. In Wednesday's 80-62 loss to the Duke Blue Devils, the Terps fell down early, fought back before halftime and cut the lead down even further in the second half. Yet, it didn't matter as Maryland fell to 14-8 and 4-4 in the ACC. With no big games coming up, are the Terps' chances for marquee victories over?
Washington Post's Eric Prisbell discussed that notion Wednesday before the game. According to Prisbell, the Terps must win their only two games left against top-50 RPI teams (Boston College and North Carolina, both on the road) and hope not to lose to inferior opponents like Virginia and Wake Forest. Prisbell predicted what the rest of the Terps' schedule would look like:
Wake Forest, W
At Boston College, W
At Virginia Tech, L
North Carolina State, W
Florida State, L
At North Carolina, W
At Miami, L
Those results would give Maryland a 20-11 overall record and a 9-7 mark in the ACC. It would give the Terrapins a 3-7 record against top 50 RPI teams (assuming Penn State, Boston College and North Carolina don't collapse). And it would give the Terps a less-than-impressive 6-11 record against top 100 competition. They finish 22-12 overall, perhaps with a 7-12 mark against top 100 teams.
Are those marks good enough for an at-large bid? A winning record in conference play doesn't mean as much since it is a down year for the ACC. A 20-11 mark is mediocre at best. Maryland needed the win Wednesday and will now have to find a way to get off of the bubble before it bursts.