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Maryland’s Chances = Fading Fast

Maryland’s James Gist in failureMore bad news for the Maryland Terrapins Men’s Basketball Team (their play of late demands a formal address).

Bubble teams like the Terps have to hope that the mid-major conference tournaments go as planned. When a mid-major #1 seed loses in their conference tournament it creates one more bubble team for the selection committee to consider. That’s what happened tonight and yesterday.

First, it was VCU (last season’s Duke-upsetting heroes) losing in the CAA semifinals to William and Mary. W&M then lost to George Mason, giving Mason an automatic bid.

Lots of people feel VCU might deserve a spot anyway. I’m one of those people.

Then tonight, San Diego knocked off #22 Gonzaga in the WCC tournament final to get their own automatic bid. This was after SD took down Saint Mary’s — a team that had been nationally ranked this season. The WCC will likely now send three teams to the tournament. Cue the “ACC of the West” comparisons/jokes.

This means three spots (VCU, Gonzaga, Saint Mary’s) that would have been open to a team like Maryland are now taken. For the Terps to make it now they have to win at least two games in the ACC tournament — over Boston College and then Clemson. Three games is more realistic, and that third one would probably be against Duke.

Not going to happen. This is UMBC‘s year. They’re playing their conference tournament final at home on Saturday. I’m going to try to make it out there, but if I can’t I’ll be with them in spirit. I hope you’ll all do the same.

7 comments to Maryland’s Chances = Fading Fast

  • Hey are we filling out brackets on CBS Sportsline again this year? I can’t wait to kick your ass.

  • neal s

    Ahh, yes. Thanks for mentioning it. I don’t know what — if any — prize structure we’ll have (PayPal shut me down last year), but I’m still going to set up the group and invite everyone to participate. More to come on that after Selection Sunday.

  • Zak

    I really hope you bought your ticket for the UMBC-Hartford game in time, Neil. We’re all sold out.

    I gotta say, the excitement for this game is phenomenal. I’ve never seen this campus so jacked up for an athletic event. It’s incredible. Our school chartered a three buses for students to support the team up in Binghamton for the conference tournament. My roommates and I — who compose The Retriever Weekly sports section — have articles in our school paper this week that past alumni and UMBC Athletics staff members have graciously thanked us for writing. It’s a fun time to be a Retriever.

    Forget biggest athletic moment of our 41-year old university’s history. This could be the single biggest moment, period.

    Go Dogs!

  • Zak

    Whoops. Neal, not Neil. Apologies, good sir.

  • Andrew in Rochester

    I hope you guys didn’t go out on State Street after hours in Binghampton. I was just there last week and it was too many damn drunks. Like 500 hundred between 3 bars and pizza place on one block, right near the arena (though I’m not sure where the game was at).

    Fuck me, I hate Binghampton.

  • neal s

    Damn – I didn’t jump on that ticket in time. Such is life – I’ll watch it on TV if I can.

    I wish something like this had happened when I went there. The Retrievers were bad then — and I mean so bad that it was practically embarrassing. This wasn’t that long ago, either. So cool to see them on the brink of the Dance.

    Thanks for chiming in, Zak. Stick around awhile.

  • Zak

    I took the bus back home Saturday evening and rode it back up Sunday morning. Some of our students stayed overnight, but I’m guessing that Binghamton fans were trying to drink away their loss to Vermont on their home court. Binghamton strikes me as a pretty crappy place. (Of course, I live in a town where The Wire is filmed.)

    This is definitely my first taste of success in my tenure here. Hell, we’ve been so bad recently that our fans rushed the court when we beat St. Peter’s College in our season opener this year (I don’t think I’ve ever been so embarrassed for a group of individuals in my life — we’re new to this being good thing).

    Anyway, ESPN-2. Saturday. Noon. The place will be rocking. Hopefully our students will be given a chance to redeem themselves with some appropriate court storming.