Maryland Madness Reactions: Still Kind of Boring, But Freshmen Impress

See this? This is called excitement. This didn't happen tonight.

Well, Maryland Madness still isn't fixed. It's getting there, don't get me wrong, but after hyping - twice - a "surprise", I expected more than Maryland gave.

A cheesy Top Gun themed video is better than nothing, and it's better to get the players walking down from the stands than just having them stand on the court. But after all that "surprise" stuff and Gary Williams saying that he would enter "in a way never done before", I'm a little disappointed. The cheesy intro video? That's been done before.

(And maybe it would be better if Top Gun was still relevant/semi-recent. Just sayin'.)

Georgetown didn't do it perfectly, but they did it better: bring in Wale plus a list of recruits that numbers in the 20s, and have a 3-point shooting contest. Throw in a dunk contest instead of the 3pt contest, and I'd be pretty contented with that for Maryland. By the way, the Hoyas picked up a top 100 2012 commitment tonight.

Look, there are two purposes to Maryland Madness: recruiting, and exciting the fans. Maryland's Madness tonight didn't really fulfill either of those two purposes. It wasn't bad; it was just boring. Maryland has a major, relevant rapper that would appeal to both fans and recruits (Wale) right down the street; they have another that loves the team and would, if nothing else, appeal to the fans (Asher Roth).

I know Gary's old-fashioned, but Maryland Madness is just a toned-down event right now. Whether or not you believe in the new era of Madnesses, the fact remains that recruiting and fans are the two reasons this exists, and if they're not helping with those, it's not really doing anything. Replace the first two quarters of the scrimmage with a dunk contest; do something truly unique for the coach intro; let players pick their own intro songs; move it back to midnight. Do something. Maryland's trying to be an elite program, but the Michigan States, Indianas, and Kentuckies of the world have events; Maryland, right now, doesn't.

And before anyone says anything, please read this: I am entirely aware that MM is a mostly pointless exercise that isn't important in the big scheme of things. I'm ranting on an unimportant issue, but just indulge me for tonight.

(Before I get accused of being one-sided, though, Nick Faust was there, along with Sterling Gibbs. Haven't seen confirmation on anyone else, but I'm guessing Greg Lewis was there, too.)

Anyway, there was a scrimmage at the end, and though it's little more than useless - Jordan Williams notoriously looked bad last year - I will say that Pe'Shon Howard looks legitimate. He's got a lot of flair, a decent shot, a solid handle, and a surprising court awareness. If this game is any indication - and it might not be - he'll be pushing for major minutes.

Terrell Stoglin actually looked pretty good, too, though. He hit a three at one point and drove the line nicely a few times. He looked more confident than I imagined. Mychal Parker, keeping with the freshman trend, is definitely athletic and fluid. I'm not sure if he has a game to put around that, but it's better than nothing.

Past that, I didn't see a lot that's definitive. J-Dub is utterly jacked and clearly lost a lot of weight. He's a lot more coordinated and smooth on the floor, and he's due for a huge year. Sean Mosley hit a three. Berend Weijs looked a tad uncoordinated. Haukur Palsson made a terrible pass. Ashton Pankey has a great build. And that's about all I got.

Did you go? What'd you think? Anybody stand out to you in the scrimmage?

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