The Washington Times - March 3, 2009, 11:21AM

Maryland’s NCAA tournament resume has a chance to look a whole lot better at this time tomorrow.

That’s what beating a team in the top 10 of the national rankings and the top 20 of the RPI could do for the Terrapins. A loss? Not helpful, but not something that will bloody Maryland, either.

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For now, though, it’s best to compare the Terps to another team with some quality victories, a decent record and a complete inability to string together a winning streak after January:

Team

Maryland

Mystery 

Record

18-10

20-8

RPI

52

51

SOS

22

78

Noncon. SOS

119

144

Top-50

4-9

5-3

100+

11-1

11-2

Best wins

H: UNC (3)
N: Michigan St.  (4) 

H: RPI Nos. 9, 22
A: RPI Nos. 10, 22

Bad losses

H: Morgan St. (149)

A: RPI Nos. 153, 190 

Road

2-5

6-5

Road + Neutral 

4-7

6-5

Those are two pretty even teams.

Maryland has a stronger schedule and slightly better marquee victories, but the mystery team is better on the road and has more high-quality wins.

The bad losses are comparable. The performance against teams outside the top 100 is comparable. The RPIs are nearly identical.

Sometimes, the RPI can lie. For example, both of these teams are about 10 spots lower than UAB. In reality,  both of these teams have accomplished much more than the Blazers, who are a whopping xx-0 against teams outside the top 100.

In this case, though, the RPI has brought together two extremely even teams. Frankly, it’d be great to see Maryland an UNLV meet up at some point, however unlikely that might be.

At this stage, though, they’re about the same, and it’s a true coin toss as to which would be more worthy of tournament inclusion if it came down to them for a final berth.

Patrick Stevens