Northwestern (15-4, 3-3 Big Ten) travels to College Park to take on Maryland (16-2, 5-1) Tuesday night at the Xfinity Center in what will be one of the toughest tests for the Wildcats all season.
Not only are the Wildcats coming off an underwhelming loss at home to 11-8 Penn State, a loss coach Chris Collins called "very disappointing," but the Xfinity Center is always a hostile place to play and the Terrapins have won 23 straight contests at home. Maryland, currently ranked No. 7 in the AP poll, will be looking for the season sweep of Northwestern, having already won in Evanston on Jan. 3 by double digits in what was coach Mark Turgeon's 100th victory. Sophomore sensation Melo Trimble filled up the stat sheet in that game, scoring 24 points to go along with 8 rebounds and 8 assists. Former Duke guard Rasheed Sulaimon added 16 points as well.
Maryland steamrolled Ohio State over the weekend, 100-65, at home while shooting 62.7 percent. If the Terrapins shoot it like that, Northwestern is going to have a hard time keeping up. The team should have starting center Alex Olah available for a bigger role than he had in the loss to Penn State, when the big Romanian only played seven minutes in his return from a stress fracture in his left foot. A victory here would certainly erase the sour taste in Collins' mouth after the disastrous Penn State loss as well as provide a season-defining win.
Game Time: 7 p.m. CT
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Betting Line: Maryland -13