Two Big Ten teams coming off big wins will clash Sunday afternoon when Maryland visits Nebraska in Lincoln, Neb.
Maryland (18-8, 9-6 Big Ten) pulled off a 68-54 upset on Thursday night against No. 3 Purdue, the conference leader, for its first win over a Top 5 team since 2016. The win moved the Terrapins into a three-way tie for third place in the Big Ten entering the weekend, putting them in good shape for a double bye in next month’s league tournament.
“It was a fun moment, just being able to get a big one like that,” first-year Maryland coach Kevin Willard said. “It’s what college basketball is all about, especially this time of year.”
The Terrapins have won six of seven and enter the weekend 19th in the NET rankings, all but assuring themselves of an NCAA Tournament bid.
Jahmir Young leads Maryland with 16.3 points per game to go along with 4.8 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.3 steals.
Nebraska (13-14, 6-10) returns home after a dominant 82-72 win at Rutgers, its third victory in the past four games despite having been without two starters for nearly a month.
The six Big Ten wins are already two more than the Cornhuskers have had in any previous season under Fred Hoiberg and are their most since a 6-14 mark in 2018-19.
The Cornhuskers took two days off after coming back from New Jersey on Tuesday, and Hoiberg said that led to a sloppy first practice in preparation for Maryland.
“We were throwing it all over the place,” Hoiberg said. “If we do that on Sunday, it’s not going to be a recipe for victory.”
Nebraska is near the bottom in the league in turnover percentage, while Maryland is among the best in the Big Ten in forcing turnovers. Another place the Terrapins would have a distinct advantage is at the foul line, where they’re shooting 77.5 percent in league play compared to 62 percent for the Cornhuskers.
Keisei Tominaga scored 22 points at Rutgers, leading Nebraska for the fourth straight game.
Maryland won the teams’ first meeting 82-63 on Jan. 28 in College Park, Md. Young led the Terrapins with 18 points and Derrick Walker had 16 for Nebraska.
–Field Level Media