Turgeon's take on Maryland heading into Puerto Rico Tip-Off

November 16, 2011|By Don Markus | The Baltimore Sun

After surviving UNC-Wilmington in Sunday's season opener, first-year Maryland coach Turgeon dissected the film from his debut with his team.

It wasn't exactly a feel-good, popcorn movie.

"We didn't do a lot of things well," Turgeon said during a session with the media at Comcast Center Tuesday before the team left for Puerto Rico, where the Terps play No. 17 Alabama on Thursday. "Our transition defense was poor, which I felt during the game but it was even worse on film."

When asked to comment  on the play of his guards, Turgeon hesitated.

"How can I say this? I'm concerned about our whole team every day, about how much they're willing to do," he said. "We have a lot of work to do."

Then, breaking down the individual performances of the guards, Turgeon said, "Nick [Faust]  didn't play well. Terrell [Stoglin] for the most part, if we didn't have him, we don't get to 70. He made plays. He's got to become a little more of an assist guy. [Sean] Mosley settled after the first minutes. He was very good defensively for us. And [Mychal] Parker was twice the player in that game compared to the exhbiiton games."

Stoglin was benched at the start of Sunday's game for a number of reasons related to his lack of effort in practice. Though his shot selection remains an issue, Turgeon has seen improvement from Stoglin in terms of his defense.

Turgeon wouldn't commit to starting Stoglin against the Crimson Tide.

"It's a long time between now and Thursday," Turgeon said with a smile. "He played better, I was proud of him. A little more effort defensively. He's practicing better and he's making better decisions in practice. Usually when a guys does things in practice, it carries over to the game."    

Which means that Stoglin probably takes his share of bad shots in practice, based on what he did against UNC-Wilmington.

It appears at times that Stoglin doesn't trust his teammates, or at least thinks he has a much better chance of making shots than they do, settling at times for off-balanced, 20-footers with more than a few seconds left on the shot clock.

"You'd better ask him that. I hope that he trusts his teammates because he's got good players around him and he sees them every day in practice," Turgeon said. "I think when he's got the ball in his hands he thinks he can score every time. I wasn't good enough to have that feeling. He thinks he can score on anybody at anytime. I don't mind Terrell taking a couple of bad shots especially when he's feeling it. But when things are going well, we can't have another bad possession."

After the Terps shot 0-for-9 on 3s against UNC-Wilmington, Turgeon said he was confident that the team had good shooters, but added,  "I'm sure Alabama is going to play more zone than they planned on playing. Their zone looks like they're playing six or seven guys out there. It's pretty active. We'll make shots." 

The bright spot for the Terps in Turgeon's debut was the play of forwards Ashton Pankey and James Padgett.  

Pankey, who sat out his senior year in high school and what would have been his freshman year at Maryland after not fully recovering from a stress fracture in his leg, had 13 points and eight rebounds . Padgett, who played sparingly his first two years in College Park, had 12 points and seven rebounds.

"I think they're just going to continue to grow," Turgeon said. "Ashton has come leaps and bounds since August. James actually has a knack to score down there. When you see my teams in the past, we've developed post players and make them better.  It's early. There are some games when we're going to be going up against really big, strong, tall guys where they might not be able to score down there, but the majority of the game I think we could have a great balance with those guys. Just keep them confident and playing well."

The Terps will certainly be tested in San Juan Thursday night. Jamychal Green, a 6-8, 240-pound senior forward, scored 18 points in each of Alabama's first two games. Tony Mitchell, a 6-6, 220-pound junior, is averaging 14.5 points and 9.5 rebounds.

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