Maryland's Gary Williams won't commit to starting lineup

Several Terps veterans saw extended time on bench late in loss to Temple

December 07, 2010|By Jeff Barker, The Baltimore Sun

COLLEGE PARK — — Maryland coach Gary Williams won't commit to using the same starting lineup after a loss to Temple in which the starters — except center Jordan Williams — came under criticism.

The Terps (6-3) host UNC-Greensboro (0-7) on Wednesday night.

The lineup "will be clear at about 6:15 [Tuesday night after practice] and I'm not going to tweet it," the coach said Tuesday. "Why would you tell Greensboro who we're going to start? I'm not that nice."

Senior starters Cliff Tucker, Adrian Bowie and Dino Gregory and junior starter Sean Mosley all found themselves benched for extended periods of the 64-61 loss to Temple on Sunday night in the BB&T Classic in Washington D.C.

"The best message is the second half when we subbed. There was a reason for that," Gary Williams said.

The substitutes — led by freshmen guards Terrell Stoglin (16 points) and Pe'Shon Howard (six points, six assists) — almost brought Maryland back from a 15-point, second-half deficit.

"We can do better than what we did," Williams said. "This isn't about experimenting. This is trying to put the best team out there to play Greensboro."

Williams is not averse to starting a first-year player. "Keith Booth comes here, Joe Smith comes here, they start right away," the coach said in an interview before the season. "Steve Blake starts right away because they were the best players. [Greivis] Vasquez started as a freshman. I recruit that way — I don't promise starting positions to anybody, but I tell them if they're good enough, they'll start."

Bowie was 0-for-1 from the field against Temple and scored two points. Gregory was 0-for-4 with one point, Tucker was 1-for-4 for two points, and Mosley scored four points on 2-of-6 shooting.

The coach said after the game that the starters had not effectively attacked Temple's packed-in defense. "We can't throw it in to Jordan [Williams] and stand around and have everybody watch him," he said.

Players were not made available at Tuesday's media availability at Comcast Center. Gary Williams said the players were busy and that their absence was not related to Maryland's performance in the last game.

Williams did not express anger or frustration Tuesday. Rather, he seemed resigned to the differences between this season and last.

Maryland lost senior starters Vasquez, Landon Milbourne and Eric Hayes. The trio accounted for more than half of Maryland's points last season.

"This year it's more difficult because we have six new players and we lost three really good players. It's good that the competition is there," Williams said.

He said a number of players had come to his office since the Temple game and watched video to try to learn from the defeat.

Williams did not criticize any players by name.

Asked about Mosley, a co-captain, the coach replied: "He had some really good people with him last year that allowed him to do some things. He has to adjust to that. You don't worry about Sean in terms of his caring."

jeff.barker@baltsun.com

twitter.com/sunjeffbarker

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