Maryland Lands No. 10 Seed in NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament
March 15, 2009
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - The Maryland men's basketball team will make its 23rd appearance in the NCAA Tournament when the Terrapins face the California Golden Bears on Thursday in a first-round game in Kansas City.
The Terps (20-12) earned the 10th seed in the West Regional, while the Golden Bears (22-10) are the seventh seed. Tipoff is set for approximately 2:55 p.m. ET from the Sprint Center.
The winner of the Maryland-Cal matchup will advance to Saturday's second round and face the winner of the game between second-seeded Memphis and 15th-seeded Cal State Northridge. That game will tip off at either 3:30 or 5:50 p.m. ET.
The West Regional semifinals are scheduled to be played on Thursday, March 26 in University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz.
The Terps, who watched the selection show in the team lounge in Comcast Center, didn't have to wait long to hear their name called.
"I was glad it was the second region," Maryland head coach Gary Williams said. "It got tough in there. We saw Arizona's name go up (as a No. 12 seed) and you never know."
Maryland was likely helped by its performance in the ACC Tournament. The Terps advanced to the semifinals by defeating NC State in the opening round and upending No. 9 Wake Forest in the quarterfinals.
Cal was eliminated in the quarterfinals of the Pac-10 Tournament by eventual champion USC. The Golden Bears are led by junior guards Jerome Randle and Patrick Christopher, who were each first-team All-Pac-10 selections.
The Bears are one of the top shooting teams in the country. They lead the nation in 3-point field-goal percentage (43.4) and ranked ninth in field-goal percentage (48.5).
Though they've only played each other once (1996), Maryland has some familiarity California.
"(Current Cal head coach) Mike Montgomery was the coach at Stanford when we played them in 2001 (on the way to the Final Four)," Williams said. "Mike's a great coach. He coached in the NBA at Golden State and did a great job at Stanford. And it took him just one season to turn things around at Cal."
The Terps haven't faced a Pac-10 team in the NCAA Tournament since they defeated Stanford in the 2001 West Regional final.
Maryland's last appearance in the NCAA Tournament was in 2007. The fourth-seeded Terrapins played the first and second rounds in Buffalo, beating No. 13 Davidson, 82-70, and losing to No. 5 Butler, 62-59.
This will be Maryland's second time in the NCAA Tournament as a 10 seed (also 1994).
The postseason appearance will be the 16th straight for the Terrapins. Maryland has won eight straight NCAA first-round games, dating back to 1998, and reached at least the Sweet 16 in four of its last eight NCAA appearances.
Maryland won the NCAA Tournament in 2002, defeating Indiana, 64-52, in the 2002 championship game.
Tickets for Maryland's first-round and second-round games are priced at $63 per session and can be purchased through the Maryland Athletics Ticket office (1-800-462-TERP). There are a limited number available and tickets may only be purchased to a session in which Maryland participates.