Temple Owls guard Quinton Rose looks to score against VCU.

Temple Owls guard Quinton Rose looks to score against VCU. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire)

There will be plenty of sports action for bettors to gobble up this Thanksgiving, starting with a matchup between undefeated teams Maryland and Temple.

The matchup in the Orlando Invitational tournament is Maryland’s first game away from home this season, and will be the first challenge for the potential title contender. The Terrapins’ first five wins came against Holy Cross, Rhode Island, Oakland, Fairfield and George Mason. Maryland won those games by an average margin of 22.8 points, and the Terps held opponents to 55 points or fewer in three games.

Pierre-Louis and Rose have been giving teams fits

Maryland will need to keep that defense up to stop Temple guards Nate Pierre-Louis and Quinton Rose. Pierre-Louis is averaging a double-double, with 15.8 points and 10.8 rebounds per game. He is also the team leader in assists, with 14 through four games. Rose is a third-year starter for Temple, and he has averaged double digits in scoring each season. Last season he averaged just more than 16 points per game, and he is averaging 15 this season.

Outside of their top guards, shooting woes have haunted the Owls. They’re shooting just 39.1% from the field, which ranks last in the AAC.

Thursday’s game will be an important test for Maryland

On paper this matchup looks heavily tilted in the Terps favor, and it will provide many lessons and many firsts for this Maryland team. Although the Terps’ first true road game won’t come until December 10, when they travel to take on Penn State, the neutral-site tournament environment will be a challenge for this highly touted team. The three-game stretch over four days also should test the team’s readiness for the rigors of the Big Ten and the NCAA Tournament.

Coach Mark Turgeon’s team will get it done and has a good shot to win the Orlando Invitational.

Pick: Maryland


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