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Terps Earn No. 6 Seed In The NCAA Tournament

March 17, 2019
After missing the NCAA Tournament last season, the Maryland men's basketball team is headed back to the Big Dance.

The Terps were selected as a No. 6 seed in the East Region and will play the winner of No. 11 Belmont and No. 11 Temple on Thursday in Jacksonville, Fla.

Belmont and Temple will face off on Tuesday in the play-in game in Dayton, Oh.

Belmont (25-6) was regular season co-champions of the Ohio Valley Conference with Murray State. They still qualified for the tournament despite losing to the Racers in the OVC conference championship game Mar. 9, 77-65.

Temple (23-9) lost in the American Athletic Conference quarterfinals, 80-74, to Wichita State, but still qualified with an at-large bid thanks to a fourth-place regular season finish.

The Terps will look to bounce back from a disappointing opening-game loss in the Big Ten tournament. Maryland lost, 69-61, to short-handed No. 13 seed Nebraska March 14. The loss marked the third consecutive year the team has failed to win a game in the conference tournament.

Only three players on the roster have played in an NCAA tournament game -- little-used seniors Andrew Terrell and Ivan Bender and junior guard Anthony Cowan. The rest of the team will be dancing for the first time.

This is the fourth time during Mark Turgeon's eight seasons in College Park, Md., that the team has qualified for the tournament. The Terps qualified in three consecutive years from 2015-2017.

In 2015, Maryland earned a No. 4 seed -- the highest of Turgeon's tenure -- and lost to West Virginia in the second round. The following year, the fifth-seeded Terps defeated South Dakota State and Hawaii to advance to their first Sweet Sixteen since 2002-03 before losing to No. 2 seed Kansas. And finally, a Melo Trimble-led Maryland team was upset by No. 11 seed Xavier in the first round in 2017.

Heading into the Big Ten tournament, ESPN bracketologist Joe Lunardi had Maryland as a No. 5 seed in the East Region. But the Terps' seed appears to have slipped after their early exit from the conference tournament.

Follow Brooks on Twitter @b3dubose