The Washington Times - February 21, 2009, 10:32AM

It was an especially short session with Maryland coach Gary Williams yesterday; my digital recorder checks in at 7 minutes, 38 seconds for anyone who is interested.

So there wasn’t a whole lot to come out of it in general.


Still, as a matter of course, there’s always a chance a session that seems to be sputtering rather quickly can pick back up. And since I was curious about Gary’s take on sophomore forward Jerome Burney‘s return earlier in the week, I brought it up at about the seven-minute mark.

“He was great for a first time out,” Williams said. “He got some rebounds for us. He gives us another big guy and that’s important for our upcoming games that he can give us some minutes. He doesn’t have to play a lot of minutes, but he has to play, so that was good to see.”

It turned out to be the last question of the session (note to self: Nuts-and-bolts question does not halt sputtering interview).  But Williams’ comments are significant.

North Carolina and Wake Forest are two obvious games during which Maryland could use Burney’s presence, even for 10 minutes. They have size and athleticism. Burney is probably the best combination of those traits the Terps possess, even if he did just play his first game since early December.

Remember, it was about this time last year that Burney emerged from the witness protection program bench to become something of a regular in the final half-dozen games or so. At times he looked good, at others he didn’t. But he helped some, and Maryland should probably take all the assistance it can muster at this stage of the season.

—- Patrick Stevens