The Washington Times - January 19, 2009, 04:55PM

The player Maryland needs on the floor more than any other is … Adrian Bowie?

The numbers bear that out to a remarkable degree. Bowie’s season-long plus-minus is +176. When he isn’t on the floor, opponents have outscored Maryland by nine points.


So when you look back at the last two games, both losses, the fact Bowie fouled out twice really stands out.

It hurt a ton at Miami, when Bowie enjoyed a career day. But it didn’t help against Florida State, even with Sean Mosley playing well.

In short, Maryland needs Bowie on the floor.

“It’s very important,” coach Gary Williams said. “I’ve looked at Adrian’s fourth foul when he was called for fouling the 3-point shooter and, uh, so it’s one of those things where he’s aware of it. You don’t want him to take away from the way he’s playing. You don’t want him to change. It just worked out that way. Hopefully, it won’t happen again.”

That’s a nice bit of verbal jujitsu on Gary’s part, criticizing without actually criticizing. If only everyone possessed that skill.

But in all seriousness, there has to be something to tell a player —- especially one as valuable as Bowie —- after those back-to-back games with five fouls.

“Just don’t get a cheap one,” Williams said. “Sometimes you get a cheap one when you don’t foul anybody.”

—- Patrick Stevens