Maryland is one of the best women’s programs in the country. They were ranked No. 6 in the AP Preseason Poll, won 31 games and a Big Ten title last season, and added four elite recruits to the mix this season.
They’re young, but they’re loaded.
Which is why it shouldn’t come as all that much of a surprise that the Terps demolished poor Bluefield State, a Division II program that went 2-23 last season, in an exhibition on Wednesday night.
Maryland won 146-17.
“I thought tonight was a good tuneup for us,” said Maryland coach Brenda Frese, per the team’s website.
C’mon now, coach.
This was no a good tuneup for you. Sunday’s exhibition game against Mary Baldwin, a Division III program that went 0-24 last season, won’t be, either. It will be another massacre. Bluefield State didn’t score in the second half against Maryland. Mary Baldwin could legitimately get shut out.
How is that a good tuneup?
The gap between the best women’s teams and the worst women’s teams is much bigger than on the men’s side. Some of that is because the women’s programs don’t lose the most talented players to early entry. Some of that is because there isn’t the same depth of talent, and the clustering at power programs keeps that talent from getting spread throughout the country. There are going to be actual games where Maryland, and programs of their ilk, beat Division I programs by 60 and 70 points.
And I also understand why a coach would want to play lesser competition in an exhibition game with a young team. Get them used to the arena, used to running offense against a team that doesn’t know all the calls, used to playing with referees, etc. Preseason games do have value for coaches trying to build a team.
Exhibition games against programs you can beat by 129 points do not.
I don’t care all that much about the scoreline. You won’t get embarrassed if you don’t suck. Whatever. I’m not mad about it at all.
I just think that it’s dumb, and a waste of time for the Maryland program.
How can any team get anything out of a game where the competition is so dreadfully overmatched?