Opponent: Mount St. Mary’s Mountaineers (17-6, 14-4 Northeast Conference)
Location: Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas
Tipoff: 4:00 EST, Monday, March 22
Last matchup: December 6, 2017 — Maryland 97-57
Last game: Maryland defeated Iowa 104-84; Mount St. Mary’s defeated Wagner 70-38
What to watch for Maryland: Keep on scoring
Maryland remains — by far — the highest-scoring offense in the nation, so all they need to do to seamlessly advance to the round of 32 is to stay true to its statistics. Mount St. Mary’s may pose as a strong defense against the Terps, holding opponents to 60.1 points per game, but Maryland’s offense has been especially hot in its recent stretch. The Terps have scored 83+ points in their past five games, capped off with a 104-point performance in their Big Ten championship game win over Iowa with all five starters scoring in double digits. As long as the Terps offense keeps up those offensive numbers, they can likely make their first-round matchup a breeze.
What to watch for Mount St. Mary’s: Getting to the foul line often
There’s nearly a 20-point gap between the scoring offenses of Maryland (91.3 ppg) and Mount St. Mary’s (72.8 ppg), so on paper it’ll be a tough climb for the Mountaineers. However, with the third-best free throw percentage in the nation (79.65 percent), they could very well hang in there if they can get inside and draw fouls often. The only problem there is that Maryland also has an elite FT%, coming in as the eighth-best free-throw shooting team in the nation (78.96 percent). As long as the Mountaineers can stay ahead in that battle, they can make it a game.