Dashing Through the Snow, Just to Play the Terps

UNC has had a lot of problems with opposing teams this season, especially ones with quick point guards who can both penetrate and shot the three. Which is why my advice for this weekend's game at Maryland is going to seem a little odd, but nonetheless here it is.

If UNC wants to win on Sunday, they're going to want Greivis Vasquez taking the shots.

That won't be a difficult thing to accomplish. Vasquez – last seen complaining about opposing fans at FSU in what, given the fans on his side, is the most brazen disconnect from reality since J.J. Redick first complained to the media – likes to shoot the ball. He's 20% more likely to shoot than the next most prolific shooter on the team, Landon Milbourne. And he's the worst shooter in the starting five.

Really. For twos? The worst. Threes? The worst, unless you count center Jordan Williams, who hasn't tried one. Effective field goal percentage? Still the worst. The fact that he still manages to be in the ACC's top five in scoring average shows just how many shots he launches in a given game. He's a much bigger threat when passing it inside to Milbourne or freeing up perimeter shots for Hayes or Mosely; the more Vasquez is baited into trying to carry the team himself, the better off the Heels are.

Of course, to do that, it would help if Carolina could jump out to a decent lead early, something they have failed to do this conference season. And I don't expect that to happen Sunday, either, as Maryland is very suited to capitalize on UNC flaws. They have two of the conference's leaders in steals on their team in Vasquez and Mosely, and excel at pushing the tempo in the same sort of manner Wake did. If there's one place where UNC can grab an advantage, it's on the offensive boards. If UNC hits them hard like they do on their best days, and deny the Terps the rebounds on the other end as well, they have a chance of pulling off the upset. It'll take better play than we've seen from them this year, though, and a lot of bad shots from Greivis Vasquez.

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