Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Wiley, Nickens commit to Terps

It's been a busy month for Maryland head coach Mark Turgeon.

Just two and a half weeks into June, Turgeon has secured commitments from a pair of sharpshooting wings -- Dion Wiley and Jared Nickens -- to join combo guard Melo Trimble in the class of 2014.

The commitment from Wiley was significant for a number of reasons. First, he was clearly Maryland's top priority in the class. He was the top-ranked player in the state of Maryland, and he joins Trimble -- the top-ranked player in the state of Virginia -- to form the Terps' future backcourt.

Wiley's AAU outfit -- Team Takeover -- is a Nike program, and one that Maryland has not had much luck with over the past few years. Between Under Armour-sponsored DC Assault and Nike-sponsored Team Takeover, the DC Metro area has two of the nation's top AAU programs. So a pipeline into both programs would be huge for obvious reasons.

Next, Wiley's commitment came early. That allowed Turgeon to focus his efforts on landing another swingman (more on that in a moment) and a big man for a four-man class in 2014.

Wiley is ranked the No. 49 player in the class of 2014 by Rivals, No. 39 by 247sports and No. 22 by ESPN. And through 18 games on the EYBL circuit, he led Team Takeover (16-2) in scoring and three-pointers.

And just a week or so later, Turgeon landed commitment No. 3 in the class of 2014 with Pennsylvania swingman Jared Nickens.

Nickens, who plays for Under Armour-sponsored Sports U in Pennsylvania, reclassified from 2013 to 2014 to gain an extra year of AAU play. And it paid off. Through a strong start to the AAU season, Nickens held offers from Oregon State, Seton Hall, Rutgers, Temple, Providence, Wake Forest, Miami (FL) and a number of mid-major programs.

He's not as highly rated as Wiley, but he, too, is a phenomenal shooter in a lanky frame. Some have loosely compared his game to former Terp star Drew Nicholas. One Rivals analyst said he'd be a top 100 player in the next set of rankings, while 247sports has him the No. 152 player in the class of 2014. 

Turgeon has put together a three-man class full of elite shooters that ESPN and 247sports rank the third- and fourth-best recruiting classes in the country. Meanwhile, with one remaining scholarship to spend on a big man (i.e. Chinanu Onuaku, Pascal Chukwu, Trayvon Reed or Goodluck Okonoboh), the Terps' coaching staff can focus its efforts on closing out the class of 2014 on a strong note. 

You can watch game footage of Dion Wiley here...

And watch game footage of Jared Nickens here...

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

TerpsRecruiting exclusive: Trayvon Reed

By the look of the scholarship offers Maryland has extended in the class of 2014, one thing is clear: head coach Mark Turgeon is looking to add a big man.

One of the prime targets on Maryland's board is 7-foot-1, 210-pound Atlanta center Trayvon Reed. TerpsRecruiting recently caught up with Reed, who holds offers from several SEC and ACC schools, including Maryland.

This summer, Reed has split his time running with Under Armour-sponsored Atlanta Xpress and Florida-based and Nike-sponsored Each 1 Teach 1.

Since joining Each 1 Teach 1, Reed has averaged 4.1 points, 4.9 rebounds and 2.6 blocks per game on 53% shooting. The team is 8-0 on Nike's EYBL circuit and qualified for the Peach Jam next month since Reed joined the team. 

Reed's numbers aren't gaudy in AAU play, in part due to sharing touches with North Carolina commit and Each 1 Teach 1 point guard Joel Berry, who is averaging around 13 points per game on the EYBL circuit.

Reed says the schools standing out to him are "Florida, Auburn, Alabama, Tennessee, Florida State, Maryland and many others," but notes that he doesn't have a specific timeframe for making a decision. He told Rivals.com's Alex Kline last month that he plans to make his decision sometime next spring.

In the meantime, he'll soak in the recruiting process. He hasn't visited Maryland yet, but says "I plan to," adding that he's talked to the coaches "a couple times."

One thing that could play into Maryland's favor is that big man Charles Mitchell -- an outgoing personality -- is from Atlanta and is friendly with Reed. 

Reed compares his game to NBA veteran Tim Duncan, noting that his "strengths are offense in the post."

You can watch Reed (No. 5, in black) playing with Atlanta Xpress at the Pitt Jamfest from last month here: 

You can watch the second half here:

Friday, May 24, 2013

EYBL sends recruits' stocks soaring Part II

Picking right back up from where we left off earlier this week, five more high schoolers have considerably raised their stock since Nike's 2013 EYBL season kicked off.

One who has been particularly impressive is Texas Pro's Terrance Ferguson. What makes the 6-foot-5, 170-pound wing stand out is that he just finished his freshman year. While his frame may continue to fill out, putting on a few pounds may transform him from a wiry scorer into a more unstoppable player.

Beyond his stellar play on a 17U team -- when he could easily be playing 15U or 16U -- Ferguson's teammate, Emmanuel Mudiay, is the No. 2 player in the class of 2015 on Rivals.com. So big-time head coaches from schools like Arizona, Baylor, Kansas and Kentucky are watching Texas Pro games and seeing what Ferguson is bringing to the table as just a freshman.

Player AAU Team / Class PPG RPG APG
Terrance Ferguson Texas Pro (Texas) / 2016 12.4 3.7 2.1

Another player who has been outstanding is Ajon Efferson. The 6-foot, 155-pound point guard from California has been excellent in EYBL play alongside top 40 recruit Kameron Chatman, who has drawn in coaches' attention.

Efferson scored 34 points in a game against Wisconsin Playground, whose point guard Rashad Vaughn is a consensus blue-chip recruit. But for some reason -- potentially his transcript and ability to academically qualify -- schools haven't begun a full-out pursuit of the rising senior. Regardless, he's one to keep an eye on.

Player AAU Team / Class PPG RPG APG
Ajon Efferson ICP Elite (Ore.) / 2014 12.9 3.2 2.8

Class of 2015 big man Tyler Lydon did himself a huge service by reclassifying from 2014 earlier this year. The 6-foot-8, 180-pound big man from New York held offers from James Madison, Siena, Boston University, UAB and Fairfield prior to the reclassification.

Since then, his reclassification -- coupled with solid performances through three EYBL events -- has put Lydon on the radar of several high-major colleges. Suddenly, he holds offers from Boston College, Iowa, Iowa State, Minnesota, Penn State, Providence and Virginia Tech. And if he continues to perform well in AAU play, those offers should continue to roll in.

Player AAU Team / Class PPG RPG
Tyler Lydon Albany City Rocks (N.Y.) / 2015 7.0 8.1

Another relative unknown prior to this AAU season was Leon Gilmore, a rising senior in Texas. The 6-foot-7 big man wasn't getting big-time looks, but after averaging more than nine points and nearly four rebounds per game for a loaded Houston Hoops program, Gilmore caught some coaches' eyes.

He added offers from Nebraska, Texas, Houston, Creighton and Oklahoma State, according to 247sports' Jerry Meyer, and is now rated the No. 62 player in the class of 2014. Kansas State, Oklahoma and UNLV continue to monitor him. And while Houston Hoops and its high-major recruits -- Justin Jackson, Justise Winslow and Kelly Oubre -- continue their reign of terror in the EYBL circuit, Gilmore should continue to get looks.

Player AAU Team / Class PPG RPG APG
Leon Gilmore Houston Hoops (Texas) / 2014 9.2 3.8 1.9

The final recruit whose stock ought to be on the rise through three EYBL events is Pennsylvania big man Nana Foulland. Foulland held offers from Holy Cross, Bucknell, George Mason, Delaware, Rider and Boston University prior to the summer, with interest from most of the Atlantic 10 Conference schools.

But Foulland has been hearing from bigger schools since averaging more than eight points and seven rebounds per game for Team Final. He told CityofBasketballLove.com that "he's also hearing from 'Wake Forest, Seton Hall' and other higher-conference schools."

Player AAU Team / Class PPG RPG
Nana Foulland Team Final (Pa.) / 2014 8.3 7.2

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Watch Damonte Dodd play in the Nat'l Prep Championship

Folks unable to make the trek 90 minutes west of Washington D.C. to check out Terps commit Damonte Dodd -- have no fear. The Basketball Diary's YouTube page captured Dodd's Massanutten Military Academy game in the National Prep Championship against Notre Dame Prep.

Massanutten (30-4) came up just short in overtime, and he had to share touches all season long with Kansas commit Frank Mason, Miami (FL) commit Deandre Burnett and Boston College commit Garland Owens. But Dodd had a successful prep year, averaging 14 points, eight rebounds and four blocks per game.

And Massanutten coach Chad Myers told the Baltimore Sun that the 6-foot-10 big man "had an unbelievable year for us. ... I think he's going to help Maryland right away."

Watch Dodd and Massanutten face off against Notre Dame Prep below. Dodd bursts out of the gate with an athletic alley-oop followed by an impressive block.

Catch the first half here:

Catch the second half here:

And catch the overtime period here:

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

EYBL sends recruits' stocks soaring Part I

One of the best ways for a high school basketball player to get noticed -- and, in turn, earn a scholarship offer -- is to perform well on the AAU summer circuit in front of head coaches and assistants.

Through three Nike EYBL events, dozens of players have cemented their statuses as elite recruits in the 2014 and 2015 classes. Others have failed to live up to expectations. But the following 10 players have played their way from virtual unknown into bona fide high major recruits.

Player AAU Team / Class PPG RPG APG
Bonzie Colson BABC (Mass.) / 2014 20.1 6.5 1.6

Case in point is Bonzie Colson, an undersized power forward from Rhode Island. Colson -- whose father is an assistant at Boston College -- came into the AAU season with offers from Rhode Island, Vermont, Boston University, Seton Hall, George Washington, Harvard, Fairfield and Quinnipiac.

But Colson should be collecting plenty more offers soon. The rising senior has exploded in the early part of this summer's AAU events, averaging more than 20 points per game for BABC (9-4). Though he may be undersized as a big man, he's clearly one of the more cerebral players on the circuit and hasn't let his 6-foot-6 frame stop him from stat-stuffing the box score.

Player AAU Team / Class PPG RPG
Martin Geben Team Takeover (Md.) / 2014 8.2 7.2

Another player who has exceeded expectations is Team Takeover's Martin Geben. While his team has improved to 13-0 in EYBL play -- the only team still undefeated through three events -- Geben has been steady, averaging a hair over eight points and seven rebounds per game.

The Hagerstown big man had offers from Xavier, Temple and Dayton prior to AAU season, but has since collected offers from Maryland, Notre Dame, Virginia and Villanova, among others. Geben will miss the upcoming EYBL event as he travels to Lithuania to try out for its U19 national team.

Player AAU Team / Class PPG RPG
Aaron Falzon Expressions Elite (Mass.) / 2015 12.2 5.8

Expressions Elite's Aaron Falzon has made quite the splash so far. The rising junior big man plays alongside consensus blue-chip recruit Abdul-Malik Abu for the Massachusetts-based AAU team.

While coaches from all over the country plant themselves at Expressions' games all summer in hopes of landing a commitment from Abu, Falzon's stock will continue to rise. He holds offers from Providence, Boston College, Sacred Heart and Boston University, but Rivals.com reports he has drawn interest from Ohio State and Duke as well.

And best of all, he has an entire AAU season left to play after this year.

Player AAU Team / Class PPG RPG
Julian Richardson California Supreme (Calif.) / 2014 12.2 3.6

California Supreme's Julian Richardson -- whose father, Pooh, played NBA ball for a decade -- has emerged in EYBL play. Julian, a 6-foot-2, 160-pound shooting guard, came into the AAU season with an offer from Fresno State.

But he and blue-chip wing Bennie Boatwright, who holds high major offers from most of the Pac-12, have led the team in scoring through 13 games. And while coaches continue to scout Boatwright -- a top 40 recruit in the class of 2014 -- they'll get a glance at Richardson, whose stock should continue to improve as his numbers continue to impress.

Player AAU Team / Class PPG
Tyler Nelson BABC (Mass.) / 2014 13.2

While Colson collects accolades for his play thus far, another player on BABC -- shooting guard Tyler Nelson -- has turned heads, too. The 6-foot-1, 165-pound sharpshooter ranks second in scoring on the Massachusetts squad with 13.2 points per game. He's established himself as one of the premier three-point threats on the AAU circuit, hitting 38 of his 77 three-point attempts, good for 49%.

And while he holds mostly low major offers from the Ivies and Northeastern schools, his performance through 13 games has cemented himself as an elite sharpshooter on the circuit.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Watch Martin Geben play in the Nat'l H.S. Hoops Fest

More goodies from The Basketball Diary's YouTube page. We've got St. Maria Goretti big man Martin Geben (No. 23 in the white) squaring off against fellow Terps targets Marcus Derrickson (No. 24 in black) and Franklin Howard (No. 1 in black) for Paul VI in the National High School Hoops Festival back in December.

Paul VI came out with the 57-43 win. Geben finished with 10 points and four rebounds, while Derrickson tallied 18 points and 11 rebounds and Howard added 11 points and three three-pointers.

Watch the first quarter here:

Watch the second quarter here:

Watch the third quarter here:

And watch the fourth quarter here:

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Watch Melo Trimble and DC Assault at the Pitt Jamfest

Just stumbled on The Basketball Diary's YouTube page, which includes loads of full-game footage of AAU and high school games.

In the two videos embedded below, you can catch Terps commit Melo Trimble lead DC Assault against Kentucky-based Louisville Magic a few weeks back at the Pittsburgh Jamfest. Trimble is wearing No. 0 for DC Assault (in gray).

Catch Part 1 here:

And catch Part 2 here:

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Recapping Terps targets' performances at EYBL Dallas

The third event of Nike's EYBL season concluded earlier today in Dallas, and Maryland-based Team Takeover remains the only undefeated team at 13-0. That's a good sign for a team loaded with Terp prospects.

Player PPG RPG FG %
Dion Wiley 10.8 2.5 42%
Martin Geben 8.8 4.3 64%
Obi Enechionyia 4.3 2.8 53%

Through 13 games, Wiley is shooting 48% (38-for-79) from three-point range.

Elsewhere, Terp targets Rashad Vaughn, Abdul-Malik Abu and Terry Larrier all played fairly well. Abu had one uncharacteristically bad game offensively (3-for-19 shooting), which threw off his numbers for the rest of the tournament.

Phil Booth is a longshot to end up on Maryland -- Indiana would be my educated guess -- but he played well while Georgetown commit Tre Campbell had an off weekend.

Player PPG RPG FG% AAU Team
Rashad Vaughn16.86.336%Wisc. Playground
Abdul-Malik Abu 7.5 9.0 29% Expressions Elite
Terry Larrier 7.8 2.8 57% Team Scan
Phil Booth 9.0 3.0 42% Team Takeover
Tre Campbell 4.8 3.0 38% Team Takeover

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Terps targeting new possible transfer candidate

Per Alex Prewitt of the Washington Post, the latest name to appear on Maryland's potential list of transfers is Florida International's Malik Smith.

Smith is a rising senior who spent his first two years of eligibility at a pair of junior colleges before landing at FIU last season. He averaged 14.1 points and 2.7 rebounds on 36% shooting and started in 31 of 32 games for the Panthers.

The 6-foot-2, 170-pound Smith, like Memphis transfer and Terps target Antonio Barton, has one year of eligibility remaining. And because his former coach, Richard Pitino, left for the Minnesota job, Smith should be able to play right away.
Questions remain about what Smith's role would be on Maryland's roster. He would likely fill the role that fifth-year graduate transfer Logan Aronhalt was last year -- used situationally, and likely the team's fourth- or fifth-best scoring option.

As Prewitt notes in his tweet, Alabama and Arkansas are also potential destinations. But Smith grew up in Boston -- where Terp assistant Scott Spinelli attended college and spent several years, so there is a potential connection.

Monday, May 6, 2013

TerpsRecruiting exclusive: Romelo Trimble

Since his commitment to the University of Maryland last December, class of 2014 guard Romelo "Melo" Trimble has piled up the accolades.

He helped lead Bishop O'Connell to a 30-7 (15-3 WCAC) record, a WCAC Championship and the Alhambra Catholic Invitational title. Meanwhile, Trimble led the WCAC in scoring at 20.3 points per game, earning first-team All-Met honors. 

And though he has been a Terp for nearly five months, Maryland's coaching staff maintains regular contact with the 6-foot-2, 175-pound rising senior.

"Coach [Mark] Turgeon, he always texts me asking about how my games are going. When [DC Assault] was in Pittsburgh [for the Pitt Jamfest], he came to all my games," Trimble said. "We basically talk almost every day."

The Terps will look for Trimble to be an early contributor at the next level. But Trimble says he's ready for the challenge. "I've been playing big minutes since I was a feshman at O'Connell, so it'll be nothing new to me," he said. "I just have to keep working and getting better."

Trimble, who is rated the No. 56 player in the class of 2014 on Rivals and the No. 67 player on 247Sports, has kept in close contact with fellow Terps commit Roddy Peters, a talented combo guard from the class of 2013.

"We get to work out together with one of our trainers," he said. "So me and Roddy, we talk to each other a lot."

But Trimble isn't just focused on a successful AAU season, but also on recruiting other top-flight players to join him in College Park.

So when big man Chinanu Onuaku, who also plays for DC Assault, received a Maryland offer two weeks ago, Trimble sprung into recruiting mode. "When Turgeon offered him, he told me to look after [Onuaku]. I told him I was gonna put the good word in," he said.

Trimble is also attempting to sway top-rated shooting guard Dion Wiley to join the Terps, though he admitted Wiley has yet to tip his hand.

This summer, Trimble is traveling all over the country with DC Assault. After winning the Pitt Jamfest and losing in the quarterfinals of the Philly Jamfest, the team is headed to Hampton, Va. for the Southern Invitational this weekend and to Dallas for the Under Armour Invitational next weekend.

Despite an outstanding all-around junior season, Trimble isn't satisfied with his game. He says he wants to work on "everything, my shooting, ballhandling, defense, just everything." He has drawn comparisons to Michigan guard Trey Burke, a score-first point guard known for his defense.

"I see myself as more of a scoring-type guard [in college], like a Kyrie Irving," Trimble said. "But I still get a lot of assists, too."

He's aiming to earn All-Met Player of the Year next season in the WCAC and admits he'd like to move up in the recruiting rankings. And after strong showings in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, his odds of a bump by recruiting services are increasing. "But I'm not focused on that. I just want to get better," he said.

And though rumors briefly surfaced that Trimble was considering transferring to Oak Hill Academy for his senior season, he squashed the possibility. "I'm definitely gonna be back at O'Connell," he said. "I have no reason to leave, because I'm already committed to Maryland, and that was my dream school. So I'm good."

Sunday, May 5, 2013

TerpsRecruiting exclusive: Bryant Crawford

Another part of the deep local crop of talent in the class of 2015 is rising junior guard Bryant Crawford.

Following in the footsteps of North Carolina-bound point guard Nate Britt, who left the team to complete a year at Oak Hill Academy, Crawford was thrust into Gonzaga's starting lineup as a sophomore in one of the nation's most competitive high school leagues.

The 6-foot-2, 175-pound guard served as the floor general, helping to guide Gonzaga to a 27-5 (18-0 WCAC) record this season.

He was the team's fourth scoring option at 8.6 points per game and 3.2 rebounds per game behind a pair of seniors in Kris Jenkins and Charles Glover.

Crawford currently holds offers from Georgetown, Indiana, South Florida, Texas, Seton Hall, Penn State, UConn, Rutgers and Maryland, and admits "all schools are equal right now," adding that "Indiana and Georgetown have been on me the hardest so far."

He visited College Park once for a game this past season, and the staff will be sure to try to get him on campus a few more times next season.

He got his offer from Maryland over the phone after spring break. "I haven't really built a relationship with them yet," he says.

Crawford, who last month was named to the 2013-14 USA Basketball Developmental National Team, compares his style of play to Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo.

"[I'm] a pass-first point guard with nice vision and can knock down the three," he says, admitting he needs to work on his jump shot. "[I like] to get teammates involved and [I'm] a good leader."

And while several members of Team Takeover hold scholarship offers -- including big men Martin Geben and Marcus Derrickson and guards Tre Campbell, Franklin Howard and Dion Wiley -- Crawford says he hasn't discussed the possibility of the group playing together in college.

With two full years of high school left, he's not sure when he'll make his college decision yet.

DMVelite reveals Top 40 area recruits for 2015

When it's all said and done, the class of 2015 -- to-be juniors -- may be one of the most talented in the DC/Maryland area in years.

And DMVelite has been hard at work scouting the up-and-coming next big things, releasing its list of Top 40 players. While most of these kids are playing AAU ball for their 16U teams, the No. 1 entry on the list -- prized local big man Marcus Derrickson -- is a key part of Team Takeover's undefeated 17U squad.

Derrickson, who holds offers from Georgetown, Indiana, Miami (FL), NC State and Maryland, isn't in a starring role for Team Takeover just yet. But his team-leading performance as a sophomore for Paul VI this year -- 12.8 points and 10 rebounds per game -- earned him the No. 1 spot in DMVelite's rankings.

Another Paul VI sophomore -- guard Franklin Howard -- earned the No. 2 spot. He, too, was a critical piece to Paul VI's 23-8 season, averaging 11.5 points and 3.9 rebounds per game. Howard holds offers from NC State, Villanova, Florida, Maryland, Georgetown, Miami (FL) and Cincinnati, among others.

Unlike Derrickson, Howard and the No. 3 player in DMVelite's rankings -- Gonzaga guard Bryant Crawford -- are playing on Team Takeover's 16U team. Crawford averaged 8.6 points per game for Gonzaga, which was led by a pair of seniors in Kris Jenkins (Villanova) and Charles Glover (Mount St. Mary's). He holds offers from Georgetown, Indiana, UConn, Rutgers, Penn State and most recently, Maryland.

An interesting item of note: DMVelite isn't the only site that has these three players -- Derrickson, Howard and Crawford -- highly ranked. All three hold offers from Maryland. Derrickson is ranked No. 30 and No. 37 nationally the class of 2015 by Rivals and 247sports, respectively. Crawford is ranked No. 28 and No. 38, respectively. And Howard is ranked No. 33 by Rivals.

The fourth player on DMVelite's list -- rising junior Leroy Butts -- plays alongside current Maryland commit Romelo Trimble. The Maryland staff saw plenty of Butts' game this past season as he averaged 10.6 points and 8.1 rebounds this season. He suits up alongside Trimble on DC Assault, and if Maryland decides it wants him, the Terps will likely have the inside track.

Rank Player Pos. High School / College
1 Marcus Derrickson F Paul VI / Undecided
2 Franklin Howard G Paul VI / Undecided
3 Bryant Crawford G Gonzaga / Undecided
4 Leroy Butts F Bishop O'Connell / Undecided

Farther down on DMVelite's list are fellow Team Takeover 16U players Justin Jenifer, Taron Oliver and Kevin Dorsey. And with Maryland's staff sure to be catching plenty of Team Takeover's 17U and 16U's games this season, a brand-new pipeline could be in the works.

Catch the rest of DMVelite's list here.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

TerpsRecruiting exclusive: Martin Geben

After a solid performance at Nike's EYBL event in Hampton, Va. last weekend, Team Takeover big man Martin Geben has turned some heads -- and earned a handful of new scholarship offers.

Like his teammate Tre Campbell, Geben is blowing up early on in the AAU season. Through nine games, Geben and Team Takeover remain undefeated. The 6-foot-8, 220-pound big man is averaging 7 points and 7.7 rebounds on 46% shooting from the floor. (He's even knocked down a pair of three-pointers.)

Since the second EYBL event, Geben has added offers from Notre Dame, Maryland, Virginia and most recently, Villanova.

The Maryland offer came straight from head coach Mark Turgeon following the event, and TerpsRecruiting caught up with him earlier this week to talk about the recruiting process. "Coach Turgeon offered me a scholarship via phone call after the tournament in Hampton," Geben explained.

The rising senior, who plays high school ball at St. Maria Goretti in Hagerstown, Md., says "Xavier, Temple, Dayton, George Washington, George Mason, St. Joseph's, Notre Dame, Maryland and Virginia" -- in no particular order -- are recruiting him the hardest.

Every school on that list has offered a scholarship. But due to the sudden nature of interest from high-major colleges, he admits no school stands out from the crowd yet.

"Academics will play a big role in choosing between schools," he explained, adding that he has no set timetable for making a decision. And while several members of Team Takeover hold scholarship offers from the Terps, he and his teammates have not discussed staying local and playing at Maryland together.

As for folks unfamiliar with Geben's game, he calls himself a face-up power forward. "I have a pretty good game [with my] back to the basket," he said. "My game is kind of similar to [NBA star] Kevin Love."

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Transfer update on Eli Carter, Vertrail Vaughns and Antonio Barton

It initially sounded promising that Rutgers transfer Eli Carter had left Gainesville without committing to Florida. But he never made it down to College Park, committing to the Gators before the Terps could get him on campus.
Two other transfer candidates are still on the Terps' board. George Mason reserve guard Vertrail Vaughns is on campus today. According to CBS Sports' Jeff Goodman, Vaughn has visited North Texas, Georgia Tech and Tulane. He'll be eligible to play his final season immediately.
Another graduate transfer candidate is Baltimore native and Memphis transfer Antonio Barton. His brother Will spent two years at Memphis before going pro. And as Antonio's minutes dwindled, he decided to take a look at his options. In addition to Maryland, Barton is considering Syracuse and Kansas State, who both lost veteran point guards this offseason.

TerpsRecruiting exclusive: Tre Campbell

Through the first two Nike EYBL events, two teams remain an undefeated 9-0: Massachusetts' Expressions Elite and Maryland's Team Takeover.

A large part of Takeover's success can be attributed to starting point guard Tre Campbell, who the Terps recently offered.

Campbell has averaged 7.6 points, 4.7 assists and 2 rebounds per game this season on the AAU circuit. As a result, he's earned scholarship offers from La Salle, Penn State, Virginia Commonwealth, Massachusetts, Charlotte, Old Dominion, Towson and most recently Maryland.

Update: Shortly after publishing, Campbell received offers from Xavier and Pittsburgh. 

"Coach [Mark] Turgeon came to my school and we talked and he offered me," Campbell explained in an exclusive interview with TerpsRecruiting.

He admitted no single school stands out yet, but says he expects to make his decision in the fall. And despite the Terps holding commitments from incoming guards Roddy Peters and Romelo Trimble, Campbell says it doesn't hurt their chances in landing him.

"I think we can all get along and play together," he said. "We all do different things on the court."

Several of Campbell's AAU teammates hold offers from Maryland, including sharpshooter Dion Wiley, big men Obi Enechionyia and Martin Geben, and Franklin Howard and Bryant Crawford, both of whom are not on Team Takeover's 17U roster yet.

Campbell says he and Wiley -- a prime Terps target who Campbell says "is like my brother" -- have discussed the possibility of playing together at Maryland.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Update on Terps prospect Terry Larrier

One player whose name has appeared on the Terps' radar lately is rising senior big man Terry Larrier of Team Scan.

To this point, the 6-foot-8, 205-pound Larrier holds offers from mostly low- and mid-major teams: Delaware, Drexel, Florida International, Fordham, Iona, Monmouth, Sacred Heart, Siena and Towson.

But he's beginning to turn some heads through the early part of the AAU season. Through two EYBL events, Larrier is averaging 9.2 points, 6 rebounds and 0.8 blocks per game alongside Syracuse commit and fellow frontcourt mate Chris McCullough, the No. 9-ranked player in the class of 2014 on Rivals.com.

Larrier's performance has some high-major programs -- namely Maryland, Texas and Providence -- keeping tabs on him. And last week, Friar Basketball wrote a brief profile on him. Three recruiting analysts had positive things to say about him this weekend...

Catching up with DC Assault at the Philly Jamfest

While Maryland head coach Mark Turgeon was planted in Hampton, Va. watching Team Takeover, another Terps coach -- presumably Dalonte Hill -- was watching DC Assault.

Assault was playing at the Philadelphia Jamfest, where its 17U team lost in the quarterfinals, its 16U team lost in the semifinals, and the 15U and 14U teams both won their respective tournaments.

DMVelite's Edgar Walker was all over the event, compiling writeups on the 17U team's performance this weekend. Among the standouts were Maryland commit Romelo Trimble, who scored 27 points in a win over Crusader Nation, and big man Donte Grantham.

Here's what Walker had to say in the Day 2 recap...
DC Assault vs. Crusader NationFollowing a great performance last week at the Pitt Jam Fest, DC Assault guard and Maryland commit Romelo Trimble did it again, this time to the tune of 27 points. Trimble and fellow guard Byron Hawkins, who contributed 13 points to the cause, were able to escape a tough Crusader Nation squad that fought the entire way.
And here's what he had to say about Grantham's performance...
Donte Grantham | Forward | Martinsburg (W.Va) | 2014 | DC Assault 17U
A 6-foot-8 forward who can be a wing threat, Grantham (pictured) is an athletic specimen with major upside. A superb talent who finishes around the rim, the West Virginia native is a force in transition while his long, athletic frame and active feet make him tough to shake defensively. Grantham is not yet a major name on the national scene but will inevitably be after turning heads this weekend.
Along the way, Walker tweeted several Maryland-related news items...

How Terps targets fared at EYBL Event No. 2

Nike's second EYBL event of 2013 is in the books, and Team Takeover swept the event again, improving its record to 9-0 through two tournaments.

Maryland's coaches were planted front and center watching sharpshooting guard Dion Wiley lead the team in scoring. Recently offered point guard Tre Campbell averaged 8.8 points and 5.8 assists per game, and big man Martin Geben may soon earn an offer after a solid five-game stretch where he averaged 4.8 points and 7.6 rebounds per game.

Update: Edgar Walker reported Maryland offered Geben today.

Player PPG RPG APG BPG Offer?
Dion Wiley 15.8 2.8 1.6 0.6 Yes
Phil Booth 12.2 2.6 3.2 0.0 Yes
Martin Geben 4.8 7.6 1.2 2.0 Yes*
Tre Campbell 8.8 2.2 5.8 0.0 Yes
Marcus Derrickson 3.4 5.4 0.8 0.4 Yes

Elsewhere in the tournament, Terp targets performed well while the staff watched on. Big man Abdul-Malik Abu averaged 16.4 points and 6.4 rebounds for the tournament. Blue-chip point guard Rashad Vaughn was impressive yet again, averaging

Both players will be tough to pry away from other high-major programs. According to CBS Sports' Jeff Borzello, Kentucky's John Calipari, North Carolina's Roy Williams, Duke's Mike Krzyzewski, Louisville's Rick Pitino, Michigan State's Tom Izzo, Arizona's Sean Miller and Notre Dame's Mike Brey were all in attendance to watch Vaughn face off against Minnesota-based Howard Pulley.

Player PPG RPG APG BPG Offer?
Abdul-Malik Abu 16.4 6.4 1.0 1.6 Yes
Rashad Vaughn 17.0 6.0 3.0 0.4 Yes

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Tweets of the day 4.24.13

It's the live period for college basketball coaches right now. And that means two things: coaches get to watch prospects play on the AAU circuit and that leads to more scholarship offers.

Case in point is Maryland's latest offer to DC Assault big man Chinanu Onuaku, the younger brother of former Syracuse standout Arinze Onuaku.

The younger Onuaku averaged averaged 8.2 points and 10.8 rebounds per game for Riverdale Baptist this year en route to being named an honorable mention All-Met.
But while the Terps are actively recruiting high schoolers right now, they aren't limiting their scope to just that. With the departures of Alex Len and Pe'Shon Howard, Maryland has four open scholarships. (Three if you count rising senior and current commit Romelo Trimble.)

And Mark Turgeon and his staff are also looking to potentially add another fifth-year graduate transfer (as was the case with Albany grad and three-point specialist Logan Aronhalt this past season)... 
Vertrail Vaughns wasn't exactly a star player at George Mason. But he averaged 8.8 points on 42% shooting as a junior before his numbers dipped under first-year head coach Paul Hewitt.

The more interesting name popping up right now is Rutgers guard Eli Carter, who asked for a release after the firing of head coach Mike Rice. Due to the coaching change, he'd likely be able to play immediately.

Carter averaged 14.9 points per game on 38% shooting for the Scarlet Knights this year. And had Rutgers not been playing from behind so often, his efficiency would have likely improved.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Terps extend scholarship offers

An interesting development given that Maryland brought in a pair of ballhandlers in Roddy Peters (class of 2013) and Romelo Trimble (class of 2014). All three new offers are guards for Team Takeover.

Here's an introduction to the trio...

Tre Campbell helped lead Team Takeover's 17U team to a 4-0 record at the EYBL event in Los Angeles over the weekend. He averaged 6 points, 3.3 assists and 1.8 rebounds on 36% shooting.

The 6-foot-1, 160-pound junior was second-team All-Met last year after averaging 13.7 points per game for St. John's College High (20-10, 11-7 WCAC), hitting 73 three-pointers along the way. He holds offers from Maryland, VCU, George Mason, Penn State and St. Joseph's, among others.

Franklin Howard is a 6-foot-4, 175-pound guard for Paul VI high school. As a sophomore, he was second on the team in scoring (11.5), earning third team All-Met. He helped guide the school to a 27-5 (18-0 WCAC) record.

Howard holds offers from Maryland, Florida, Georgetown, Miami (FL), NC State, Ohio State and Villanova, among others.

Bryant Crawford finished his sophomore year with Gonzaga, helping lead the school to a 27-5 (18-0 WCAC) finish. The 6-foot-2, 175-pound guard ranked fourth on Gonzaga's roster in points per game this season (8.6). He reportedly holds offers from Maryland, Georgetown, Indiana, and Rutgers, among others.

With Indiana recruit Phil Booth and Terps target Dion Wiley commanding the majority of minutes for Team Takeover's 17U squad, Crawford and Howard are not on the roster. Both should be by next summer.

TerpsRecruiting's All-EYBL teams

The first Nike EYBL event finished up this past weekend. It was one of the first live AAU circuit events of the summer for college coaches to get a look at the talent out there.

And thanks to the EYBL's ability to collect box scores, here's your all-tournament team, with brief writeups of Terp targets. (Hey, it's cheaper than a plane ticket to Los Angeles.) Let's get started...


Rashad Vaughn is one of the top targets on Maryland's board this summer, and you can see why. The 6-foot-5, 200-pound junior is a consensus blue-chip player and proved it at the EYBL event, leading scorers with 24.3 points per game on 52% shooting.

Of the first team, all but Bonzie Colson were top 50 players in the class of 2014 -- and all were known commodities prior to the EYBL event. Look for Colson's stock to soar as he put BABC on his back. The 6-foot-7 junior held offers from schools like Quinnipiac, Vermont, Siena and Fairfield. But with a strong summer, he may earn himself a slew of high-major offers.

Player PPG RPG FG% AAU Team / College
Rashad Vaughn 24.37.0 52% Wisconsin Elite / n/a
Tyus Jones 20.0 3.0 57% Howard Pulley / n/a
Stanley Johnson 19.8 10.8 44% Oakland Soldiers / n/a
James Blackmon 19.0 4.3 53% Spiece Indy Heat / Indiana
Bonzie Colson 16.8 9.0 51% BABC / n/a


No Terps targets on this list, although two names are particularly intriguing. Allonzo Trier lived up to the hype. The 2015 point guard from Tulsa, Oklahoma did it all over the weekend, scoring points (18.7), grabbing rebounds (4.3) and serving as his team's floor general.

Perhaps the biggest out-of-left-field surprise all weekend was in Ajon Efferson. Though small in stature, Efferson was one of the most effective players in the field. The junior will need a few more performances like that to stay on the radar of college programs. But for the first event of the summer, it's a good start.

Player PPG RPG FG% AAU Team / College
Trevon Bluiett 18.7 5.0 42% Spiece Indy Heat / n/a
Allonzo Trier 18.7 4.3 43% Athletes First / n/a
Ajon Efferson 17.3 2.5 54% ICP Elite / n/a
Justin Jackson 17.3 5.0 66% Houston Hoops / UNC
Jae'Sean Tate 16.8 8.0 50% All Ohio Red / Ohio St.


Expect the Terps' coaching staff to be planted front and center for Expressions Elite's games this summer. Big man Abdul-Malik Abu is among the top priorities for Maryland. The versatile power forward holds offers from a dozen high-major programs, a number sure to rise after his performance this weekend. Abu averaged 15.5 points and 4.5 rebounds on an efficient 58% from the floor.

Expect D.J. Hogg's name to become more familiar over the summer. The 2015 power forward put up a stellar performance at the EYBL, scoring 29 of his team's 65 points in a win over Seattle Rotary.

Player PPG RPG FG% AAU Team / College
DJ Hogg 17.0 4.8 45% Texas Titans / n/a
Kelly Oubre 16.3 6.8 53% Houston Hoops / n/a
Reid Travis 16.0 9.3 42% Howard Pulley / n/a
Abdul-Malik Abu 15.5 4.5 58% Expressions Elite / n/a
Elijah Thomas 15.5 7.0 58% Team Texas Elite / n/a


Everyone on the fourth team is a top 50ish recruit, including one of Maryland's primary targets: sharpshooting guard Dion Wiley of Team Takeover. Wiley averaged 15 points, 3.3 assists and 2.8 rebounds on 46% from the floor and 48% from three-point range.

Keelon Lawson is one of the top players in the class of 2015 and one to keep an eye on this summer as his stock continues to rise.

Player PPG RPG FG% AAU Team / College
Dion Wiley 15.0 2.8 46% Team Takeover / n/a
Keelon Lawson 15.0 7.3 47% Bluff City Legends / n/a
Justise Winslow 14.5 6.8 52% Houston Hoops / n/a
Devin Booker 16.5 1.8 54% Alabama Challenge / n/a
Chris McCullough 12.5 7.3 78% Team Scan / Syracuse

Monday, April 22, 2013

DMVelite reveals Top 50 area recruits for 2014

The good folks at DMVelite released their Top 50 prospects for the class of 2014 last week.

Of note, Terps commit Romelo Trimble was listed as the No. 1 local player in the class. Other Terp targets made the list, too...

Rank Player Pos. High School / College
1 Romelo Trimble G Bishop O'Connell / Maryland
2 Dion Wiley G Potomac / Undecided
4 Phil Booth G Mt. St. Joseph's / Undecided
6 Obi Enechionyia F St. James / Undecided
8 Martin Geben F St. Maria Goretti / Undecided

View the full list and give the hardworking folks at DMVelite a hit by clicking here.