Terps prepare for matchup with Ohio State
COLLEGE PARK--Evan Smotrycz has played more games against Ohio State in his three-year college basketball career (6) than the Maryland program has in its entire history (5).
That’s why, as the Terrapins prepare to travel to Columbus to take on the No. 5 Buckeyes, the Michigan transfer Smotrycz has become the de facto spokesperson for this pre-Big Ten Maryland team.
“Hopefully I can do some celebrating after the game. I haven’t had a chance to get a win there,” Smotrycz said. “It’s definitely a place I’m familiar with and hopefully these guys have played in enough big-time venues … have played tough road games so it shouldn’t be anything new.”
Smotrycz played two seasons at Michigan before transferring to College Park and sitting out a season before being eligible to play in 2013-14. He might have been beardless back then, but he remembers his six matchups against the Buckeyes.
“I definitely had some bad games, had some good games,” Smotrycz recalled. “Not sure numbers-wise. I know I only beat them once and that was at home. It would be nice to get one on the road.”
In those six games, Smotrycz averaged 5.8 points and 3.5 rebounds per game. His career high vs. Ohio State came in his first game against them, Jan. 12, 2011, when he tallied 14 points and six rebounds.
His Michigan teams were 1-5 against the Buckeyes.
Now Maryland looks to get the win in its first true road game of the season against a team that ranked ninth in the NCAA in attendance last season at just over 16,500 fans per game.
“It’s obviously a really good team we’re playing,” Smotrycz said. “All road games are tough, but Coach [Scott] Spinelli was joking, ‘The red’s not much different.’ So Comcast [Center] gets loud. I’m sure it’ll be really loud there. We’ll be ready to play.
“The more big games you get in a different venue, the better off you are, especially with young guys.”