clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Maryland basketball vs. Howard preview: The Terps take a mid-major break

New, 49 comments

The Bison are the Terps’ last local opponent of the season.

Barclays Center Classic Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Maryland basketball is coming off a notable win over Oklahoma State that ended the hardest part of its non-conference schedule. After four games in eight days, the Terrapins will have had three days off before facing Howard on Wednesday.

The Bison are 1-5, but are coming off their first win of the season against a team Maryland didn’t beat by much. Howard beat American 71-54, while Maryland barely held on to a 62-56 victory to open the season against the Eagles.

Howard has lost to Michigan, Marquette, and Georgetown as part of a rather difficult non-conference slate.

A victory over the Bison will not be a resume-building win, but loss here would tarnish the Terrapins’ NCAA tournament chances. If Maryland cannot snap out of its three-point shooting woes from beyond the arc, then this could be another close one.

This game will tip at 9 p.m. on ESPNU.

Howard Bison (1-5)

2015-16 record: 12-20

Head coach: Kevin Nickelberry is in his seventh season as the Howard head coach and has a 60-135 (.308) record during his stint.

KenPom ranking: 293 (Maryland is 64)

Players to watch

James Miller G, junior, 6'4/185, No. 33. Miller is the Bison's leading scorer at 18.8 points per contest. He’s coming off of back-to-back 30-point performances against both American and Georgetown. Miller is a high-volume shooter who attempts nearly 14 field goals per game and averages five free throw attempts. Miller has also contributed three rebounds, 1.8 assists, and 2.3 steals per game this season, but is also good for nearly four turnovers.

Solomon Mangham F, senior, 6'7/230, No. 12. The Bison's second-leading scorer, Mangham averages 12.7 points per game and is his team's leading rebounder by grabbing 5.5 balls off the glass. The senior has increased his three-point shooting to a respectable 40.7 percent even though he only shoots a career 63.3 percent from the free throw line.

Damon Collins G/F, senior, 6'6/190, No. 15. Collins plays the most for Nickelberry's team at 32.5 minutes per game and he can do a little bit of everything. The senior from Texas averages 11.7 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 2.8 assists per game for Howard. Collins is the team's most efficient shooter at 54.8 percent from the field, but is only a 22 percent shooter from beyond the arc in his career.

Strengths

Getting to the free throw line. Despite shooting a mediocre 66.3 percent from the charity stripe, the Bison have shot an impressive 169 free throws for 28.2 attempts per game. Howard ranks second in the country in free throw attempts per field goal attempt.

Weaknesses

Defending the three-point arc. Howard ranks 280th in the country by allowing 77.8 points per game. Howard is also 329th in the country, 17th-worst, in three-point defense by allowing opponents to shoot 23 attempts per game at 41.2 percent.

Defensive rebounding. When there is only one man in a team's main rotation that is taller than 6'7, Marcel Boyd at 6'10, it is likely that team will struggle on the glass. Howard ranks 337th in the country in defensive rebounds per game at 21, which could allow Damonte Dodd a chance to grab double-digit rebounds.

Prediction

KenPom: Maryland wins, 78-60. The Terps have a 94 percent chance of winning.