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ESPN's Rece Davis weighs in on Maryland's NCAA Tournament chances, Capital One Cup

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The ESPN commentator spoke to Testudo Times about his work with the Capital One Cup, and he offered his thoughts on the Maryland men's basketball team's postseason.

Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

ESPN's Rece Davis, the well-regarded commentator who is set to take over the network's College GameDay show next year, said Wednesday the Maryland men's basketball team is a "real force to be reckoned with" in the NCAA Tournament.

Davis has covered Maryland on a few occasions this year, and he said he's been particularly impressed with the Terrapins' backcourt.

"I think it's been a great bounce-back season for Maryland," Davis said in a phone interview. "Melo Trimble has been tremendous. Dez Wells, since he's gotten healthier, has been a clutch player for them who doesn't mind taking the big shot or making the tough drive."

Davis likes Maryland's chances, he said, to reach the Sweet 16. But he's got an apt description for what comes next.

"Obviously, if they were to make it to the Sweet 16," he said, "it would be a Herculean task to deal with Kentucky."

Probably fair to say.

Davis was calling not just to talk Maryland, but (fine, primarily) to discuss his involvement in the Capital One Cup – the interscholastic, inter-sport competition that seeks to crown the best universities annually for both men's and women's sports. Davis is an advisory board member for the Cup, where Oregon currently leads in the men's standings and Penn State leads in the women's race. On the Cup's advisory board with Davis is a nifty cast: Lisa Leslie, Brandi Chastain, Doug Flutie, Jennie Finch and Clark Kellogg.

Maryland isn't especially in the race, but if you're into this kind of thing, you can follow the Capital One Cup on Twitter. If the Terps are to make up much ground in either men's or women's competition, they'll probably need to have successful runs in the basketball tournaments, which the Cup weights heavily. It's not a playoff, per se, but it's logistically a tough trophy to win because of how many sports are involved (all of them, basically).

Between them, the schools that win receive a combined $400,000 to support scholarships for student-athletes, so it's not as if there aren't any stakes here. The winning schools get their prizes in July at ESPN's award show, the ESPYs.