Jan. 24, 2003
Game 15: Clemson vs. Maryland Tipoff: 4:06 PM Site: Littlejohn Coliseum (10,500) TV: Jefferson Pilot Play by Play: Tim Brandt Color: Dan Bonner Radio: Clemson Tiger Sports Properties (Jim Phillips, Tim Bourret)
Series Notes Overall: Maryland 80-42 At Clemson: Clemson leads 31-23 at Littlejohn: Clemson leads 18-16 at Maryland: Maryland leads 47-8 Last Year: Maryland 84-68 at Clem, Maryland 99-90 at MD
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* Clemson has had each of its last two games decided by exactly one point. Clemson is 1-1 in those two games. This is the first time since the 1980-81 season that Clemson has played back to back games decided by a point. That season Clemson actually had three straight decided by one point, a loss to Marquette and consecutive wins at the Rainbow Classic over Louisiana Tech and Bobby Knight’s Indiana team.
* Clemson will be playing the defending NCAA Champion when it plays host to Maryland on Saturday. Clemson has defeated the defending NCAA champion five times in history. The last time the Tigers accomplished that feat was in 1996-97, a season opening victory over Kentucky in Indianapolis.
* Heading into this week’s play, Clemson had a #53 RPI rating according to collegerpi.com. That was an improvement of over 100 positions over the end of last season when Clemson was ranked #154.
* Forward Olu Babalola is coming off his top game as a Clemson player in ACC competition. The sophomore shot 5-8 from the field and scored a team best 12 points in Clemson’s loss to Florida State. He also had four blocked shots and two steals in 30 minutes of play.
* Saturday’s game will feature two senior point guards who should soon join the ACC’s exclusive club of players who have 1000 points, 500 assists and 400 rebounds. There are only seven ACC players currently in the club. Clemson’s Edward Scott needs 29 points and 23 rebounds to join, while Maryland’s Steve Blake needs just 47 points and two rebounds to become a member.
* Forward Sharrod Ford is the only native of Maryland on the Clemson team. Hhas made at least 50 percent of his field goal attempts in 23 straight games dating to last season. He is shooting 66.7 percent for the season, best on the Clemson team, and also leads the club in rebounding at 7.6 per game. He is third among Clemson scorers with 10.2.
* Saturday’s matchup will feature the #1 field goal percentage defense team in the nation in Maryland (.360) vs. the #15 field goal percentage shooting team in Clemson (.493).
* Clemson has a +7.7 rebound margin for the season, and ranks 12th in the nation. The Tigers have been out-rebounded just twice all year, ironically, games Clemson has won (Winthrop and Virginia).
* Clemson faces a Maryland team ranked in the top 12 in the nation in both polls. Clemson has not beaten a ranked team this year, but has defeated at least one ranked team every year since 1986-87.
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