College basketball preview: Maryland Terrapins
Coach:Mark Turgeon. First season; 250-159 overall
Key player:G Terrell Stoglin. The sophomore will run the point out of necessity for the season’s first two months, and he’ll also likely need to provide a significant scoring boost and stay out of foul trouble for the depleted Terrapins. No pressure.
Biggest loss: F Jordan Williams. The walking double-double slowed down a bit late in his sophomore season, turned pro and was an early second-round pick. If he’d stayed, Maryland would be picked much higher in the ACC.
Top newcomer: G Nick Faust. The only one of three signees who remained in the fold after Gary Williams‘ retirement, Faust will play plenty out of necessity. That will include some work as a backup point guard.
Best case: Guard Pe’Shon Howard (foot) and center Alex Len (NCAA-mandated suspension) return in time for the conference schedule and help the Terps finish around .500 in ACC play.
Worst case: Howard ultimately redshirts and no consistency emerges among untested frontcourt options, leaving Maryland with its first losing season in 19 years and a date with the ACC cellar.
* UNC Wilmington at Maryland, Nov. 13. No fist pump. No maniacal sweating. No Garyland. This is going to take some getting used to, starting with the Terps’ season opener in College Park.
* Albany at Maryland, Dec. 28. Len, a 7-foot-1 freshman, will sit out the first 10 games of the season. This is the Terps’ 11th game. Maryland’s Christmas gets extended a couple days this year.
* Duke at Maryland, Jan. 25. Gary Williams‘ court-naming ceremony will take place this night, as if it wasn’t already guaranteed of being the most raucous atmosphere of the season.
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