Looks like the Clemson Tigers will be a man down again against Maryland in their matchup on Sunday. Starting guard and floor general Demontez Stitt is reportedly "very doubtful" for the game, per Greg Wallace (h/t D1scourse).
Stitt is averaging 11 points per game, and Clemson has lost three games in a row since his injury. They even lost at Boston College. Clemson is lost without him; Jeff Goodman said it, as did a Clemson blogger. Greivis Vasquez, however, doesn't seem to think it'll make a difference:
"I mean, I don't understand why people making such a big deal whether he's in the lineup or not," Vasquez said. "I thought he wasn't a big difference last year. I thought they got K.C. Rivers, which was a way better ball-handler than him. I think the guy (Stitt) is good, give him credit, but, I mean, I don't think it's any difference, you know what I'm saying? We're ready to play Clemson, and if we talk about difference, maybe if Booker is out, that's a big difference. I mean, Stitt is a good player, you've got to give him credit, but I mean, we're not intimidated of him being out of or in the lineup. I mean, who is he in terms of the best players in the ACC? We're just trying to play a good game and just win this game."
Perhaps Greivis will be more impressed by this: in addition to Stitt's absence, Clemson's star, best player, and leader, Trevor Booker, is recovering from the flu. Sounds like he'll be less than 100% for the game.
No Stitt and a sick Booker means that this game is a lot easier than Maryland first expected. Seeing how winning one of the next two games seems to be a major objective of the team and fans, that's obviously great news (not that I'd wish harm, but you know).
This is a bit of a mixed blessing in some ways, though, because analysts, Maryland fans, and the team themselves still won't know how good the Terps are. Clemson without Stitt has been very bad, and if Booker isn't 100% either, the win might not be worth much in the eyes of analysts. Obviously you always take a devalued win over an overvalued loss, but it would be nice to know if this team is legit and start getting credit for it.
Anyway, Maryland will at least get back into a hostile venue, and that alone should say a lot about the team. I know a lot of people are excited for this game, and I am too. Maryland might have a slight upper hand in the injury department.