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Embracing Expectations: 4 Thoughts On Rutgers 74-60 Win Over Maryland

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NCAA Basketball: Rutgers at Maryland Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Geo Baker came back. Ron Harper Jr. continued his torrid pace and Myles Johnson was a beast. Rutgers win 74-60.

Four Thoughts:

Ron Fire Still: The thing missing from Harper’s game in his first two seasons was consistency. But that doesn’t appear to be an issue right now. Harper was dominant again, scoring 27 points. He went 5-8 from three. Every time the Terrapins tried to get close, Harper was able to answer with a bucket. He got to the rim with ease too. Maryland didn’t have an answer for him, and it’s why Rutgers pulled away in the end.

Geo Baker’s Back: The heart and soul of the Scarlet Knights returned tonight and it wasn’t just minor minutes to get his feet wet. No, he played 27 minutes off the bench and it looked like he didn’t miss a beat. He had 15 points, with 3 three point shots (including one off the glass for Geo Banker). And, he continued the closer mentality, hitting a fade away jumper in the final minute to really put the icing on the cake. Welcome back, Geo. We missed you.

This Is Why You Get Old and Stay Old: At one point, Steve Pikiell was able to put 4 juniors and a senior on the court. Rutgers never ever panicked, even though it was a road game. Every time Maryland made a run, Rutgers responded to extend the lead, particularly in the second half. Myles Johnson was a beast, showing off how his redshirt year helped him. He had a double double with ten points and sixteen rebounds. When things go bad, this team has the experience to lean on to fix it.

Road Win: Last year, it was tooth and nail on the road and we all remember it. Rutgers needed until the (sadly) last game of the season to get a quality road win (after beating a bad Nebraska team early). This was a good win—it’s not a vintage Maryland team, but they are talented. But they had no answer for this Scarlet Knights squad who clearly earned their top 20 ranking tonight.

On to Illinois for a huge match up on Sunday.