With the start of the NCAA live recruiting on Wednesday, Comcast SportsNet will be publishing previews, reviews, and features on commits, targets, and outlooks for the Maryland Terrapins. Check back daily for updates.
Maryland is in about as good a position as it could have hoped for, heading into the 2013 live recruiting period, which starts on Wednesday at 5 p.m.
The live period (of which CSN will give a full rules-oriented breakdown on Wednesday) is the first opportunity of the summer for Division I coaches to evaluate players, though they cannot communicate with them in person at events.
How They Got Here
Perhaps the biggest glaring weakness of the 2012-13 Terrapins was at the point guard position, where it became apparent that center Alex Len could not be as effective without the ball being fed to him in the post.
Along with Roddy Peters, who will suit up for Maryland this fall, the Terps took care of that in December with the commitment of D.C.-area guard Romelo Trimble.
Trimble and Peters comprise the point guard combo of the future, both players who can create off the dribble and free up space for others.
That led to a need to bolster the shooting guard position, which Turgeon did by keeping Potomac (Md.) guard Dion Wiley in-state. Not only is Wiley one of the elite shooters in the class, but he also breaks down a barrier that had been a major hurdle for the Maryland program.
Wiley comes from the powerhouse Team Takeover (D.C.) AAU program, which is rivaling D.C. Assault as the preeminent talent factory in the area. By tapping into that pipeline, Turgeon sets the program up for a string of other high-majors.
And then came the final commitment, swingman Jared Nickens of New Jersey. Like Wiley, he brings a perimeter shooting touch. He also has good size and length at 6-6.
What Do They Need Now?
With the backcourt of the future and the small forward position set, the focus for Maryland shifts to the frontcourt.
Shaquille Cleare, Charles Mitchell, Damonte Dodd, and transfer Evan Smotrycz make up the front line for at least the next two years, but the Terps are in line to add at least one major impact player to the mix.
The commitments of Trimble, Wiley, and Nickens, likely knock the Terps out of the running for players like Phil Booth (PG, Baltimore), Rashad Vaughn (SG, Minneapolis), and Isaiah Whitehead (SG, New York).
Who Might They Add?
There are three 2014 prospects at the power forward/center position who could make an instant impact in a rotation at the college level: Trayvon Reed, Abdul-Malik Abu, and Goodluck Okonoboh.
Comcast SportsNet will have full-length profiles on each in the coming days and weeks, but here's a brief look at each:
As a legitimate seven-footer, Reed is the tallest of the group, but also the lankiest. He is athletic and runs the floor well and can block shots around the rim. He will still need to expand his offensive repertoire in order to be more effective than just dunks and put-backs near the basket.
Abdul-Malik Abu (Power Forward, Boston, Mass.)
Two summers ago, Abu was a below-the-rim space-eater on the interior with some baby fat and good foundation of skills. Then he completely reshaped his frame and grew into his body. Now he is an elite talent who can run the floor, block shots, and play above the rim. There are a lot of schools interested in him now, but the staffs ties to the New England area could help.
Okonoboh reclassified from 2013 to 2014 and has since seen his stock rise astronomically. Maryland will have to fight for him against teams like Duke, Connecticut, and Syracuse, who have all taken more of an interest in him since he reclassfied.
Live Period Info
Once again, the live period begins Wednesday at 5 p.m. On that day, Comcast SportsNet will release a schedule breakdown, including major events and possible locations for Maryland staff.