Overall Rank: #3
Conference Rank: ACC #1
Maryland Team Page
During the 1980s, it used to be the road to an Atlantic Coast Conference championship went through College Park. Maryland won six titles during that illustrious decade, but after 1989 the well went dry. Flash forward 20 years, and you find the next time (2009) that the Terrapins hoisted the ACC trophy. Last year they did it again, and Maryland hopes to repeat for the first time since 1988-89. With a strong cast of characters that includes seven letter winners and four returning starters, Maryland might have the strength to deliver the goods.
2011-12 record: 31-5, 12-4
2011-12 postseason: NCAA
Coach: Brenda Frese
Coach Record: 309-116 overall, 252-86 at Maryland
Maryland could easily have reached the Final Four last year were it not for a strong Notre Dame team that blew the Terps out of the water by 31 points. The top three scorers all return, and Alyssa Thomas, Laurin Mincy and Tianna Hawkins accounted for a combined 42 points per game. Considering the team scored 77 points on average, to have over half your scoring back is a big deal. Thomas and Hawkins grabbed 17 rebounds per game combined, and the Terrapins averaged 42 per game. You can’t take that stat lightly, either. This is also a team that believes in sharing the basketball (593 assists) about as much as giving it away (598 turnovers). That’s a good ratio.
Speaking of assists, Anjale Barrett had 177 assists on her own a year ago. Barrett is the only starter not returning, and the team needs to find a replacement for her quickly. Barrett’s ball-handling skills and the ability to pass the ball around helped guide the Maryland offense. Although Mincy and Brene Moseley, the team’s top 3-point shooters, are back, a few of the other perimeter players have graduated so the team needs to find perimeter help.
Maryland was one Notre Dame blowout away from a trip to the Final Four and a shot at its first national championship since 2006. No one is saying the Terrapins are going to the national championship game yet, but they might have a solid shot at another Elite Eight trip. The non-conference schedule looks a little weak, save for a big December game against Connecticut, but the ACC will more than make up for that.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA
Projected Starting Five:
Alyssa Thomas, Junior, Forward, 17.2 points per game (113 assists)
Laurin Mincy, Junior, Guard, 40 percent 3-point shooting
Tianna Hawkins, Senior, Forward, 12.0 points per game (39 blocks)
Alicia DeVaughn, Junior, Center, 58.4 percent shooter
Brene Moseley, Sophomore, Guard, 98 assists, 40 percent from 3-point range
Madness 2013 WNBA Draft Rankings:
#16 Tianna Hawkins
Madness 2012 Women's Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#8 Malina Howard
#13 Tierney Pfirman
#140 Chloe Pavlech