One thing's for sure, it wasn't a boring night for college basketball in the Baltimore/D.C. area ...
FORTUNES RISING, TEAM
The Terrapins' 51-50 defeat of No. 14 N.C. State won't win any points for artistic merit, and it doesn't assure Maryland of much of anything besides having one victory it will probably be able to lean on come March.
One win, especially at home, isn't the foundation of a postseason profile. But it's something, which is more than what the Terps could boast at the start of the night.
It remains a bit early to be dissecting resumes (the regular season is just a bit more than halfway done), but at the very least Maryland bought some goodwill from its fans and won't have to face questions about how long it will be before they beat somebody.
The Terps' offense remains dubious (98 points in two games has a way of earning that description), but at least they're on the board with a decent victory and back to 2-2 in the ACC.
FORTUNES RISING, INDIVIDUAL
Jerrelle Benimon, Towson
The junior really is something else, piling up 19 points, 13 rebounds and five assists as the Tigers edged Delaware 69-66 in Newark. That's road victories at Drexel and Delaware since the start of league play for Towson, which improved to 9-9.
But Benimon is the central figure on this team, averaging 19.8 points and 12.0 rebounds in five conference games. Assuming he stays healthy and plays at even a decent clip over the Tigers' last 13 games, there is no CAA player of the year race; the only question would be who finishes second.
FORTUNES FALLING, TEAM
Local Patriot League outfits
If only American could have gotten away with a 12-minute game against Lehigh, which it led 23-9. That advantage was gone by halftime, and the Eagles (6-10, 1-1 Patriot) couldn't pull off the surprise of one of the conference favorites.
Meanwhile in Annapolis, Navy couldn't crack 50 points for the seventh time this season and second time in as many Patriot League games. The Midshipmen (6-12, 0-2) dropped a 62-47 decision to Holy Cross and have lost 18 straight games to conference competition (including 16 regular season contests in a row).
FORTUNES FALLING, INDIVIDUAL
Greg Whittington, Georgetown
The Hoyas' second-leading scorer, who was suspended for Saturday's defeat of St. John's, was declared academically ineligible before Wednesday's 74-65 victory over Providence. Enough said.
NUMBER OF NOTE
Record for Maryland at home against N.C. State since 1990. No one will miss the Terrapins when they move to the Big Ten less than the Wolfpack, who have been on the wrong end of all sorts of misery in College Park over the last two decades and change.
ELSEWHERE IN THE CORRIDOR
A tip of the hat to UMBC, which pounced on possible America East contender Hartford early and then held on for a 70-57 victory in Catonsville. The Retrievers (4-14, 2-3 America East) have won both of their home conference games. ... George Washington (7-9, 1-2 Atlantic 10) gave up the final 10 points in a 55-53 loss to Temple.
ON TAP THURSDAY
Loyola (12-6, 4-2 Metro Atlantic) plays host to struggling Marist (4-13, 1-5). ... Mount St. Mary's (6-9, 1-3 Northeast) looks to snap a two-game skid as it visits conference leader Bryant. ... Further afield, Virginia Commonwealth (14-3, 2-0 Atlantic 10) welcomes Saint Joseph's (9-5, 1-1) to Richmond.
--- Patrick Stevens