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September 30, 2008

Severna Park's Bald commits to Vermont

Severna Park guard/forward Brendan Bald will bring his high-flying, headband-wearing act to Vermont next year.

The 6-foot-5, 195-pounder committed to the Catamounts on Saturday, choosing Vermont over offers from Quinnipiac, Centenary, North Florida, Rider and St. Francis (Pa.) among others.

“It was a big weekend. A lot of pressure off my shoulders,” Bald said. “It feels really good.”

Bald, who averaged approximately 15 points and six rebounds as a junior, visited Vermont’s campus unofficially over the summer, but wanted a return trip to Burlington during the school year. Bald said he was impressed with just about every aspect of the visit.

“I got to hang out with everybody and loved it. I love the team and love the school,” Bald said. “It’s a big college town and there are no professional teams. ... So basketball players are like celebrities there.”

Severna Park head coach Paul Pellicani said Bald’s game and personality will make him an immediate hit with Vermont fans.

“He’s extremely athletic,” Pellicani said. “More than one coach likened him to Rex Chapman when he was young. He’s a slasher, he can finish and penetrate. He has a very good perimeter shot. ... [The Vermont staff feels] he can be an impact player right away. With Vermont and the university community, they just feel that he’s going to be a rock hero up there. [The] kid jumps out of the gym; he’s just going to be electrifying. They feel he’s going to turn the basketball fan base up there inside out.”

Bald will join a program just two seasons removed from a regular-season America East championship. In 2005, Vermont stunned Syracuse, a No. 4 seed, in the first round of the NCAA tournament.

“They’re definitely a powerhouse in their league,” Bald said. “My recruiting class is going to be a monster this year. The other ‘09 guys are really good as well, so I’m really pumped for that.”

Bald said it was helpful going through the recruiting process just a year after his older brother, Brad Bald, committed to UNC Wilmington. After tagging along with his older brother to numerous college visits, the younger Bald knew exactly what he was looking for in a school, and found it all in Vermont.

“It’s definitely a great feeling,” Bald said. “Now I can just concentrate on my senior year and not worry about recruiting. I can just work on my game and focus on the season. ... [Next year Vermont fans] can expect a show.”

Click on the video player for highlights of Bald.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 10:37 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: Local recruiting
        

September 29, 2008

Weekend wrap -- Graham leads rout

Maryland safety/running back commitment Avery Graham rushed for three touchdowns in Clarksburg’s 49-7 rout of Wootton on Friday.

The crowd had barely settled into their seats when Graham put the Coyotes ahead 7-0 on an 80-yard scamper on the game's opening play. The 5-foot-11, 185-pound speedster finished with 193 yards on 11 carries.

• Offensive tackle commitment Ryan Schlieper‘s North Allegheny (Pa.) team bested quarterback C.J. Brown‘s Seneca Valley squad, 56-14.

Under pressure from NA's pass rushers throughout the game, Seneca Valley quarterback C.J. Brown completed 16 of 31 passes for 164 yards and a touchdown. He was sacked twice. …

Brown also rushed for 67 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries.

• Terps running back pledge D.J. Adams helped power his Norcross (Ga.) team to a 38-7 win over Chattahoochee.

D.J. Adams rushed for 164 yards and Prince Kent had two long TD receptions. But the big story was the relentless Norcross pass rush.

Nick Ferrara accounted for eight points in St. Anthony’s (N.Y.) 38-14 win over Xaverian.

Nick Ferrara, who nailed all five extra-point kicks, made a 37-yard field goal as time expired in the half for a 31-14 lead.

• Linebacker pledge Avery Murray took care of business on the ground in West Florence’s 30-14 win over Wilson (S.C.).

In the first half, West Florence (4-1) used its offense to gain a foothold of the contest. Two Avery Murray touchdown runs and a Paul Pizzuti pass to Matt Connelly gave the Knights a 21-7 halftime advantage.

• The foot of Maryland tight end commitment Dave Stinebaugh was the difference in Perry Hall’s 17-14 overtime win over Hereford on Friday.

Stinebaugh hit a 19-yard field goal that turned out to be the game-winner. Hereford (2-2) missed a 39-yard field-goal attempt that would have forced a second overtime, allowing Perry Hall to jump to 4-0.

• Quarterback Danny O’Brien returned to the East Forsyth (N.C.) lineup a week after suffering a hip injury. But the future Terp and his EFHS squad dropped a 35-13 game to West Forsyth.

But the Eagles' offense could never get going, as the Titans intercepted East quarterback Danny O'Brien three times. East avoided a shutout with two late touchdown drives led by Erick Smith, the backup quarterback.

• Good Counsel recorded a 42-0 victory on homecoming against Paul VI, but Terps running back commitment Caleb Porzel had a very brief night.

On GC’s first play from scrimmage, Caleb Porzel injured his ankle on a 13-yard run, and unfortunately, he was done for the evening.

Two non-football links

• For those that missed it, Brooklyn, N.Y., forward James Padgett committed to Maryland on Friday, becoming the Terps’ first class of 2009 pledge.

TurtleSportsReport.com‘s Jeff Ermann caught up with Torrington, Conn., power forward Jordan Williams after the 6-foot-9, 240-pounder finished his official visit to College Park. Click here for the story.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 10:42 AM | | Comments (0)
        

September 27, 2008

Terps land New York power forward

Brooklyn, N.Y., power forward James Padgett verbally committed to Maryland yesterday, becoming the first member of the Terps' 2009 recruiting class.

Padgett, 6 feet 7, picked Maryland over offers from Pittsburgh, Providence, St. John's, Seton Hall and several others.

Padgett told the New York Daily News that he chose UM for Gary Williams' track record in developing players for the NBA.

"Coach Williams has a real good track record with power forwards like me," Padgett said. "The ACC is one of the best conferences in the country and I will improve playing against that competition."

Padgett's coach at Lincoln High School in Brooklyn, Dwayne "Tiny" Morton, told Zags Blog that Padgett has to get stronger, but he has a chance to contribute early in College Park.

“He’ll be a tough power forward for them,” added Lincoln coach Dwayne “Tiny” Morton. “I think he can have a nice college life, go to a campus and be coached by probably a Hall of Fame coach. And he’ll probably get some playing time early in his (college) life.”

Click here for ESPN's scouting report of Padgett.

Check back with Recruiting Report next week for more on Padgett.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 10:27 AM | | Comments (8)
        

September 26, 2008

Weekly recruiting roundup

Barring a completely unforeseen turn of events, Georgia offensive guard Ricky Hart won’t sign with the Terps come February.

According to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Maryland withdrew its scholarship offer to Hart.

Charlton County coach Rick McWhorter said Maryland had concerns about Hart meeting college entrance requirements. “We were worried about this happening,” McWhorter said. “[However] Maryland said they’d love to see him go to a prep school next year.”

• Quince Orchard defensive tackle Jason Ankrah and cornerback Travis Hawkins are formulating their lists of official visits. QO head coach Dave Mencarini updated The Washington Post‘s Josh Barr with their plans.

Mencarini said that Hawkins and Ankrah will visit Michigan on Oct. 4. Hawkins also plans to visit Maryland, Oregon and two other schools while Ankrah also plans to visit Virginia Tech, Penn State and Tennessee, according to Mencarini.

• Sam Webb, who covers Michigan recruiting for The Detroit News and Scout.com, caught up with Maurice Jenkins, father of Good Counsel linebacker Jelani Jenkins. Jenkins talked about his son’s recruitment and criteria for picking a school.

"Basically we have a matrix that we did on each school," Maurice Jenkins explained. "Part of that matrix is the strength of academics and academic facilities. In Michigan's case, they have an awesome facility there, so you can see they take the academics very seriously.

"One other criterion was that we wanted a team with national exposure that potentially plays in the (BCS) bowl games. Diversity is very important, as is a city that we feel is safe. We want an environment that is diverse where they have respect for different people.

Basketball recruiting

• Maryland freshman center Steve Goins finally passed through the NCAA Clearinghouse this week. The Washington Post‘s Steve Yanda caught up with Terps coach Gary Williams, who explained why it took so long for Goins to be cleared by the NCAA.

… Goins was late to pass through NCAA Clearinghouse because the Chicago public school system recently switched computer systems and that prevented Maryland from getting the necessary papers to the NCAA until September. Williams said another factor in the delay was that Goins needed to pass two summer school classes (he received As in both) before his transcripts could be sent to the NCAA.

• Patterson (N.C.) School power forward Arsalan Kazemi is focused on two schools, according to Zags Blog.

“The only two schools he’s definitely going to be visiting are Seton Hall and Maryland,” [Patterson coach Chris] Chaney said.

“It will probably be back-to-back. Seton Hall wants to go first. I think Maryland wants him to visit Oct. 18″ for Midnight Madness.

• Brooklyn, N.Y., forward James Padgett canceled his visit to Pittsburgh last week. According to Zags Blog, Padgett is considering at least four other schools.

Padgett said he was uncertain what schools he is certainly considering, but said Maryland, St. John’s, Seton Hall and Providence were in the mix.

“I’m not even sure, really,” he said. “(There are) a lot all coming at one time.”

• Hargrave power forward Chris Braswell visited to College Park last weekend. The former Georgetown commitment told Hargrave coach Kevin Keatts that he enjoyed his visit.

“He had a good visit (to Maryland),” Keatts said. “He got back (Sunday) evening. I talked to him briefly on the visit and he was enjoying it thus far.

“He’s going to Indiana this weekend, and on Oct. 4 he’s going to go to Virginia Tech. His last visit will be with Charlotte Oct. 18 for Midnight Madness.”

• DeMatha shooting guard Victor Oladipo, a 2010 prospect, has an offer from Maryland and several other major DI programs.

Junior forward Victor Oladipo holds offers "all over the place," according to Stags Coach Mike Jones: Maryland, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Clemson, Providence, Massachusetts, George Mason, Auburn and a few others.

"But I don't think he's anywhere near making a decision," Jones said.

• Georgetown Prep point guard Markel Starks committed to the Hoyas earlier this week, according to The Washington Post.

"My phone has been ringing like crazy," Little Hoyas Coach Dwayne Bryant said. "Angry coaches. You have no idea."

The 6-foot-1 Starks averaged 14.2 points per game last season. He also took unofficial visits to Maryland, Wake Forest, Georgia and Georgia Tech before taking a trip to Georgetown on Tuesday, Bryant said.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 12:26 PM | | Comments (11)
Categories: Weekly recruiting roundup
        

September 25, 2008

Aberdeen's Saddler commits to Delaware

Devon Saddler will continue his basketball career less than an hour away from home.

The Aberdeen combo guard committed to Delaware on Tuesday, picking the Blue Hens over Central Florida, Drexel, Fairfield, Providence, TCU and several others.

Saddler, a 6-foot-2 senior, said Delaware’s proximity to home wasn’t a factor in his decision. The school and program had more than enough positives besides location, Saddler said.

“It’s like 45 minutes [away from home] but it wasn’t that. I just liked the school,” Saddler said. “I wasn’t trying to stay close to home at first -- I was trying to get away. But it’s a good school so I couldn’t turn it down.”

Saddler received an offer from the Blue Hens in August. He thinks his play at the Hoop Group Elite camp in New Jersey, where he earned top shooting guard honors, piqued the interest of UD head coach Monte' Ross and his staff.

Saddler, who averaged approximately 18 points, six rebounds and six assists as a junior, said Ross’ honest approach won him over -- especially his take on playing time.

“The coaches said they don’t go by the upperclassmen thing -- they go by who works hard in practice,” Saddler said. “A freshman could come in and take someone’s spot [if they perform better than the upperclassman]. They said they do it fair.”

Saddler, who plans on studying sports medicine in college, was also immediately struck by the Delaware staff’s emphasis on academic support. He said he was sold on the UD coaching staff and education, but a visit to the school pushed Delaware over the top.

“I went like three weeks ago on an unofficial visit. I liked it,” Saddler said. “I liked the players and I liked the atmosphere. It was real positive. I went to the football game and saw a lot of basketball players, and I just loved it up there. ... It feels real good [to be committed]. My parents are excited; so are my teammates and my coaches.”

Saddler said he’s glad his phone will finally stop ringing off the hook. He’s now focused on studying for the SAT with a tutor everyday after school, and working on his game so he’ll be ready to contribute immediately in Newark.

“Delaware fans can expect a hardworking player and a big-time player from Aberdeen.”

Posted by Matt Bracken at 7:38 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Local recruiting
        

September 24, 2008

NCAA clears Goins

Freshman center Steve Goins is officially eligible to play for Maryland this season

“He was cleared by the [NCAA] Clearinghouse yesterday so he is a full qualifier,” said Kathleen Worthington, UM’s senior associate athletics director.

Worthington said freshman Jin Soo Kim is still waiting on NCAA Clearinghouse approval.

Click here for a Q&A with Goins.

Click here for Chicago AAU coach Nick Irvin’s take on Goins.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 10:42 AM | | Comments (0)
        

Jackie Nared update

Maryland women’s basketball signee Jackie Nared has left College Park and returned to Oregon.

Greg Nared, Jackie’s father and a former Maryland basketball player, said there was “a hiccup” with one of the classes she took, resulting in an issue with the NCAA Clearinghouse.

“She has to sit out the first semester and she plans on attending school in January,” Nared said. “She found out after the first week of school [at Maryland].”

Jackie Nared is back home now, “preparing to make sure she can get in in January,” her father said. She plans on rejoining the Maryland team and redshirting her freshman year, Greg Nared said.

“She’s bummed because she was there all summer, took her second session of summer school,” Nared said. “It kind of came from nowhere. But as you know, situations like this make people a lot stronger in the end. So I think she’ll be fine.”

Click on the YouTube player for highlights of Nared.


Posted by Matt Bracken at 9:58 AM | | Comments (1)
        

September 23, 2008

Local hoops notebook: Selby to Tennessee; Mount lands Edgewood native

DeMatha point guard and Baltimore native Josh Selby will head south for college.

The 2010 prospect committed to Tennessee on Saturday night, picking the Volunteers over offers from Memphis, Texas, Clemson, Louisville and several others.

“They love the way he plays. They love his heart and his passion for the game,” DeMatha coach Mike Jones said. “I know that’s what they’re looking forward to ... when he gets there.”
joshselby.jpg
Selby played his freshman year at John Carroll before transferring to DeMatha for his sophomore season. He averaged approximately 15 points, seven rebounds and five assists per game last year, Jones said.

After spending his summer on the AAU circuit with Baltimore-based Team Melo, Selby vaulted up the recruiting rankings. Rivals.com ranks Selby a five-star player and the No. 2 point guard in the country for the class of 2010. Jones said those accolades haven’t gone to Selby’s head.

“He’s a pretty confident kid anyway, so I don’t think any of those things have any effect on him other than him realizing a lot of other players are actually gunning for him now,” Jones said. “But Josh is Josh, so I don’t think anyone telling him he’s good affects how he approaches anything.”

Barber picks Mount

Mount St. Mary’s received its second verbal commitment for the 2009 class last week when Paul VI Catholic power forward Raven Barber offered his pledge.

Barber, 6 feet 8, picked Mount over offers from Robert Morris, Quinnipiac and St. Francis (Pa.) among others.

“Raven really wasn’t on a lot of people’s radar screens, so I’ve got to give credit to [Mount head] coach [Milan] Brown and his staff,” Paul VI head coach Glenn Farello said. “They offered him last August, actually. ... When other folks got interested in spring and summer, [Mount was] ahead of the game.”

Barber spent his first two years of high school at Edgewood, where he still lives. Last year he transferred to Paul VI. He commutes to the Fairfax, Va. school.

Farello said Barber has a college-ready physique that should serve him well at Mount.

“Raven’s got a big frame on him, so physically he’ll be able to play,” Farello said. “He’s long, athletic, can rebound on the block, can step out and shoot from 17 feet. He’s got a nice high-low game to him. He’s a physical presence and does a nice job running the floor. He’s kind of a traditional post in that he can play with his back to the basket and is willing to mix it up under the boards.”

Oquendo lands in North Carolina

Anthony Oquendo, a 2008 St. Frances graduate, will play this season at Laurinburg Prep in North Carolina.

Oquendo, a second-team Baltimore Catholic League selection as a senior, arrived at Laurinburg on Sunday. He said he’s fine academically, but decided to enroll in prep school to develop as a player and receive more recruiting exposure.

“It’s going to be good and worthwhile,” Oquendo said. “I’m going to make the best out of it.”

Baltimore Sun photo of Josh Selby by Christopher T. Assaf / Nov. 24, 2006

Posted by Matt Bracken at 11:00 AM | | Comments (4)
Categories: Local recruiting
        

September 22, 2008

Weekend wrap -- Brown directs rout

Quarterback C.J. Brown directed his Seneca Valley (Pa.) squad to a 40-21 win over Knoch on Friday night.

Seneca Valley quarterback C.J. Brown, a Maryland recruit, accounted for 365 yards. Brown went 19 for 35 passing for 249 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. He also rushed for 116 yards on seven attempts and two scores.

"We tried to put pressure on him," [Knoch coach Mike] King said. "We got a little bit early on. To try to keep the pressure going on all game long is just hard for us."

• Maryland running back pledge Caleb Porzel rushed for Good Counsel’s first two scores in a 27-14 win over St. Peter’s (N.J.).

Good Counsel's inexperienced offensive line once again proved skilled beyond its years, pushing aside a huge St. Peter's front and opening holes for Jenkins and Caleb Porzel, who rushed for the Falcons' first two touchdowns en route to 147 yards on 19 carries.

• Terps running back commitment D.J. Adams had a big day on the ground for Norcross (Ga.), but the Blue Devils allowed 33 unanswered points in a 33-19 loss to North Gwinnett.

The Blue Devils' offense was led by running back D.J. Adams, who rumbled for 173 yards on 26 carries and two TDs. His 18-yard score in the second quarter gave Norcross a 19-0 advantage.

Danny O’Brien rushed for a two-yard score in East Forsyth’s 28-19 win over Mount Tabor (N.C.), but the Terps quarterback commitment was knocked out of the game late in the third quarter.

"We knew this was going to be our turning point in our season," O'Brien, who injured his hip, said. "Beating a good team like Mount Tabor and being undefeated; we knew it was going to be a real big game and it just sends a message out to the whole state."

• Tight end Dave Stinebaugh caught a touchdown pass in Perry Hall’s 22-6 win over Woodlawn.

The Warriors pulled within 7-6 in the first quarter on a touchdown run Dalonte Bruton, but [quarterback Davonta] Farrell extended the lead to 14-6 in the second with a two-yard scoring run. Stinebaugh, who's given a verbal commitment to the University of Maryland, caught a short three-yard pass from Farrell in the final quarter. The Gators added a safety for the game's final points.

• UM safety commitment Eric Franklin picked off a pass in Archbishop Curley’s 27-20 loss in double overtime to Archbishop Spalding.

Spalding's first drive was thwarted by an Eric Franklin interception, one of three picks by the Friars in the contest, and Curley promptly drove 48 more yards for a 14-0 lead, as Dandrige went the final four yards.

Nick Ferrara kicked eight extra points in St. Anthony’s 62-13 rout of Holy Trinity (N.Y.).

Posted by Matt Bracken at 11:12 AM | | Comments (0)
        

September 19, 2008

Weekly recruiting roundup

Maryland coach Gary Williams, Syracuse’s Jim Boeheim, Georgia Tech’s Paul Hewitt were a few of the more notable Division I coaches in Albany, N.Y., last weekend for a coaches clinic at Bishop Maginn High School.

The clinic gave Williams, Boeheim and Hewitt an opportunity to be seen by Maginn junior shooting guard Taran Buie, even if they couldn’t speak to him. The Times Union‘s Mark McGuire explains:

We want you, Taran. Here I am, in your home gym on a September Saturday, just so I can say hi -- even if I can't.

And that's primarily why Jim Boeheim (Syracuse) and Gary Williams (Maryland) and Hewitt and others came here.

"They are recruiting Taran, I'm not going to lie to you," said [Rich] Hurley, coach of the reigning state champion Golden Griffins. "Everyone knows it. ... They want to show Taran how much they want him by helping out our program."

• The Terps brought in one 2009 target last weekend and have another that intends to visit sometime next month, according to Zags Blog. Brooklyn, N.Y., forward James Padgett called his trip to College Park “fair”, while Torrington, Conn., power forward Jordan Williams said an official visit to Maryland is definite and the Terps are solidly “in the mix.”

• Findlay (Nev.) Prep forward Clarence Trent sported a Terps offer, but according to FoxSports.com, he’s decided to stay out west for college.

Findlay Prep's Clarence Trent will choose from Cal and Washington, according to Findlay coach Todd Simon.

Terrelle Woody was back in the news last weekend. The trainer/advisor of former Terp Gus Gilchrist coached a summer league team that featured a few South Florida players that weren’t approved for play by the school’s athletic director, causing USF to self-report four minor men’s basketball violations to the NCAA.

Terrelle Woody coached one of the teams, shortly before he was hired as USF's new video and conditioning assistant. Woody coached Gilchrist, Jones and Verdejo on the same team in the Tampa Bay Pro-Am League. Only two players per school are allowed per team unless approval is obtained from the school's athletic director, which it was not.

On Aug. 17 in Orlando, in the Tampa Bay-Orlando league final, Woody coached Team Impact, which consisted of only five players: Gilchrist, Jones, Verdejo and non-USF students Renaldo Balkman and Jerell Davis.

However, a Tribune photographer witnessed Woody entering the name "Marlon Jackson" in the official scorebook and excluding Verdejo. The photographer and the league's Web site confirmed no one named "Marlon Jackson" played and that Verdejo played in the game, scoring 10 points.

• Two 2010 prospects with reported Maryland offers/interest committed to Duke last weekend. Spotsylvania, Va., forward Josh Hairston and Gonzaga (D.C.) point guard Tyler Thornton pledged to the Blue Devils on Saturday.

Hairston first visited Duke in July. He also was offered scholarships by Georgetown, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Maryland, Clemson, Ohio State and Kansas.

"After his first visit in the summer, he was leaning toward Duke," Nino said. "It was just a matter of him getting comfortable when Coach K got back from China (and the Olympics). He had a good feeling about the elite status of the program, and I think that just solidified this decision."

Football recruiting

• Terps quarterback commitment Danny O’Brien sat down with the Winston-Salem (N.C.) Chronicle’s Anthony Hill this week for an extended Q&A.

Anthony: Why did you choose Maryland again? Did Wake recruit you?

Danny: Uh, a little bit. It was between, Maryland, Duke, ECU and Virginia. But I wanted to go somewhere that I knew I was wanted.

• Quarterback C.J. Brown and his Seneca Valley squad will face a Knoch (Pa.) team tonight that is well aware of the challenges Brown presents for an opposing defense.

Senior quarterback C.J. Brown, a University of Maryland recruit, has passed for an average of 291 yards per game through three weeks. Brown is 60 for 93 for 874 yards, and perhaps more impressive are the facts he has thrown only one interception as opposed to six touchdown passes and done so with a 65 percent completion percentage and 14.6 yards-per-completion average.

"I think the Brown kid is just probably one of the best quarterbacks I've ever seen as far as being able to evade the rush and stay cool under pressure and put the ball where it needs to be put," [Knoch coach Mike] King said. "And then their wide receivers, against Baldwin [a 42-7 win last week], I'm not sure they dropped one ball all game. You can tell there's a confidence level in what they're trying to do offensively."

• Hoboken, N.J., defensive end Bernardo Nunez told Rivals.com this week that he plans to make an official visit to Maryland on Nov. 22 for the Florida State game.

“As for Maryland, it’s not too far from home. It’s close and they play in a tough conference in the ACC. They don’t have a lot of recruits at my position, so I may get a chance to start early there.”

Posted by Matt Bracken at 11:43 AM | | Comments (4)
Categories: Weekly recruiting roundup
        

September 18, 2008

All things Stinebaugh

For today's Varsity section, Baltimore Sun reporter Katherine Dunn conducted a Q&A with Perry Hall tight end and Terps commitment Dave Stinebaugh.

Stinebaugh, who has caught six passes for 108 yards and recorded 13 tackles for the Gators (2-0), discusses his high school season, commitment to Maryland and what he’s looking forward to most about his first game at Byrd Stadium.

Just coming out through the tunnel, seeing 50,000-60,000 people and knowing that the people that are there have probably already heard of you, being from the hometown and they're there to support you. And just being in the atmosphere of a Division I college game and playing under Ralph, something probably everyone dreams about.

Click here for an extended Q&A with Stinebaugh.

Click on the video player below for Stinebaugh’s interview.


Posted by Matt Bracken at 10:49 AM | | Comments (0)
        

September 17, 2008

Philmore headlines John Carroll's 2009 class

Last year John Carroll sent three seniors to Division I basketball programs -- guard Mike Maczko (New Jersey Institute of Technology), center Jakub Kusmieruk (Central Florida) and power forward Josh Wiegand (Loyola).

The Patriots’ 2009 class could equal or better that number, according to head coach Tony Martin.
iphilmore.jpg
Isaiah Philmore, a 6-foot-7 forward and three-star player according to Rivals.com, recently trimmed his list to nine schools, all of which have offered. Those nine are George Washington, Oklahoma State, South Florida, Providence, St. Joseph’s, Temple, UMass, Central Florida and Michigan.

“A lot of schools have tried to get in on him late in the summer, but he made the decision pretty early on that schools that came in late, he wasn’t going to entertain,” Martin said. “He wanted a manageable number of schools to evaluate.”

Schools within driving distance (St. Joseph’s, Temple, and George Washington), have already or will soon receive unofficial visits from Philmore. He also plans on taking official visits to Central Florida, Oklahoma State and South Florida. Providence, UMass and Michigan are under consideration for Philmore’s final two official visits.

Forward Wyatt Smith, a 6-foot-5, 230-pound “man-child” has garnered several DI looks after a successful summer on the AAU circuit, Martin said.

“Wyatt’s had a great summer. He played for Team Melo and has obviously been all over the country this summer,” Martin said. “... He has a wide range of schools [recruiting him]. George Mason was just in Saturday to take a look at him. It’s a combination of too many schools to list and no official offers yet. But there’s not a question he’s going to be a Division I scholarship athlete.”

Erick Smith, a 6-foot-3 guard and returning captain, picked up an offer from Bryant University in Rhode Island last weekend. Bryant was Smith’s first scholarship offer, but is not the only DI school to express interest in him.

“Cornell is heavily involved, and they obviously went to the [NCAA tournament this year] and have a lot to offer,” Martin said. “The Naval Academy has recruited him for over a year. And a number of other mid-major schools are in the mix. He will take an official to Bryant at the end of this month. And he’s also decided to sign early.”

Martin thinks Raphael Jordan, a 6-foot-1 guard, is a likely DI player as well.

“He’s going to take an official at Philadelphia University, one of the best DII programs on the East Coast,” Martin said. “... And a host of mid-majors are looking at him, most recently Stony Brook (N.Y.). Much like Wyatt and Erick, there’s just a long list of schools. Hopefully it’ll shake itself out between now and November 3rd.”

John Carroll’s other seniors, forward Dan Brooks, guard Dejan Gaspic, guard Ryan McQuaid and guard Craig Ryan, are likely small-college players. Gaspic, a member of Croatia’s junior national team, could play at a higher level, but his progress was stunted after breaking both wrists against Calvert Hall during a midseason matchup last year.

“I wouldn’t rule out the possibility [of playing college basketball] for any of the eight guys,” Martin said. “But four of them [in Division I] would be a lot.”

Baltimore Sun photo of Isaiah Philmore by Elizabeth Malby / Dec. 11, 2007

Posted by Matt Bracken at 12:10 PM | | Comments (0)
Categories: Local recruiting
        

September 16, 2008

Leftover UM women's hoops recruiting notes

ESPN HoopGurlz scout and analyst Chris Hansen joined Recruiting Report last week for an edition of Five questions on Maryland women’s basketball recruiting.

Here are some leftover notes from the interview with Hansen:

• Maryland’s 2008 frontcourt recruits, Lynetta Kizer and Dee Liles, can be expected to make major impacts for UM this season, Hansen said. The goal for 2009 is to pair UM commitment Tianna Hawkins with one additional, elite post.

“It’s good timing to need bigs,” Hansen said. “Fives and fours, in any other year, you’re going to be down on those [throughout the class]. With [Laura Harper and Crystal Langhorne graduated], it’s the perfect class to need a big [because there are so many]. And I think they can definitely address that depth right away. Demauria Liles is coming in and she’s going to be probably as good of a player that you’re going to find out of [junior college] ball. She was that ahead of everyone else. You can tell by her being included in USA Basketball. And you’ve got Lynetta coming in. Those are the two [major additions], so it’s not the deepest class last year. Getting an elite player out of this class is going to help them.”

• Benton Harbor, Mich., forward Destiny Williams is one of many top-flight players Maryland is after, according to Hansen. He said Williams, and basically every prospect UM is targeting, has immediate-impact potential.

“If you get … Destiny Williams and one of the guards they’re recruiting, that’s a pretty good class,” Hansen said. “You’re not talking about players projected as good college players. These are players they’re waiting on that could be really good college players, immediate impact players. ... Those kids are stepping on campus from Day One and making [an impact].”

• Many of the big-time players in the 2009 class remained uncommitted. With official visits under way, Hansen thinks there could be a lot of movement soon.

“Most of the post players haven’t started making their decisions, but [Sugarland, Texas center Kelsey Bone]'s not going to same place as [Long Beach, Calif., post] Monique Oliver or [Waco, Texas center] Cokie Reed. Once the first one goes, I think this whole class will take off.”

• One of those aforementioned dominoes fell over the weekend. The Terps were in the running for Oliver, according to Hansen, but she committed to Southern Cal on her official visit Sunday.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 12:03 PM | | Comments (1)
        

September 15, 2008

Weekend wrap -- Brown leads rout; Goree stands out

Another week, another big game for Terps quarterback commitment C.J. Brown.

Brown led Seneca Valley (Pa.) to a 42-7 win over Baldwin, piling up more than 300 all-purpose yards.

Maryland quarterback recruit C.J. Brown passed for 266 yards and rushed for 87 to lead the Raiders (2-1) to a rout of host Baldwin (0-3) in a non-conference game. Brown threw four touchdown passes and completed 13 of 16 attempts. He also scored on a 1-yard run.

• Linebacker commitment L.A. Goree helped C.H. Flowers record a 43-0 shutout over Parkdale.

Highlights: Lorne Goree recorded 14 tackles, had three sacks and three forced fumbles in a rout of the Panthers.

• Terps kicker recruit Nick Ferrara was responsible for 10 points in St. Anthony’s (N.Y.) 52-14 win over Delbarton (N.J.).

Nick Ferrara, who missed last week’s game with a foot injury, kicked the first of seven extra points to tie things at 7..

Ferrara also converted a 30-yard field goal.

• Running back D.J. Adams rushed for two four-yard touchdowns in a 19-0 Norcross (Ga.) win over Mill Creek.

Adams, who has committed to Maryland, was limited to 79 yards in 24 attempts, but Norcross’ defense kept Mill Creek from threatening. The Blue Devils recorded eight sacks and held the Hawks to nine first downs and 47 yards rushing, 143 yards total.

• UM quarterback pledge Danny O’Brien threw a five-yard touchdown pass and ran for a 32-yard score, guiding East Forsyth (N.C.) to a 35-14 win over Atkins.

Caleb Porzel rushed for 131 yards on 11 carries, including an 80-yard touchdown run, in Good Counsel’s 42-0 win over Friendship Collegiate.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 10:35 AM | | Comments (2)
        

September 12, 2008

Weekly recruiting roundup

Maryland coach Gary Williams made good use of an in-home visit this week by traveling to Torrington, Conn., to see 2009 power forward prospect Jordan Williams.

According to NBE Basketball Report, Williams came away impressed with Maryland's presentation.

About the Maryland visit, he said that “it went real well. They spoke to me for an hour at my school about what the program has to offer, and then they came to my uncle’s house. I feel real comfortable around both of them. It was kind of surreal having both of them there.” Still, Williams insisted that nothing has changed, and that although he would like to be able to decide by November, he’ll most likely wait until April.

“It’s tough to say right now, every day I get calls from new schools. It’s tough to remember them all,” he said. Williams said that St John’s was the school that was on him the first, stating that “they’ve been there from the beginning. They’ve been recruiting me since I was in the 10th grade.” Now he said that it’s been the Terrapins that have been coming at him the hardest. In addition to those two schools, he said he also has offers from Arizona, California, UMass, Penn St, Marquette, and Georgetown.

• Gary Williams will be back in the Northeast this weekend. The Terps coach will speak at the school of Albany, N.Y., guard Taran Buie during a coaches clinic.

Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim, Maryland coach Gary Williams, Georgia Tech coach, and former Siena mentor, Paul Hewitt, Penn State coach Ed DeChellis, Fairfield coach Ed Cooley, Rutgers coach Fred Hill and Siena assistant Mitch Buonaguro are all slated to give an hour clinic each beginning at 9 a.m.

All of these prominent college coaches are known for being very giving of their time, but they also were quick to sign up to help Hurley for another reason — each school is heavily recruiting Bishop Maginn junior guard Taran Buie.

• New Jersey forward David Bruce reportedly has a Maryland offer and is favoring the Terps. Alex Schwartz of Northstar Basketball spoke with Bruce recently.

I just got off the phone with Linden (NJ) big man David Bruce '09, one of the premier post players in the New Jersey/New York/Pennsylvania area in the class of 2009. I discussed his college list with him, and he informed me that he has a top two of Maryland and St. Joseph's, with the Terrapins out in front. Despite getting involved in Bruce's recruitment "around [the] end of the summer," Gary Williams and Co. are currently the favorite to land the Garden State star.

• According to Zags Blog, Westchester (N.Y.) Community College center Jarrid Famous was expecting to be seen by Terps coaches this week.

Coaches from St. Peter’s, DePaul and Arkansas turned out today to watch Westchester Community College 7-footer Jarrid Famous. Maryland comes tomorrow and St. Bonaventure on Friday. Seton Hall is also involved.

Click here for more on Famous.

Football recruiting

• Dunbar’s 25-game winning streak came to an end this week with a season-opening loss to Gwynn Park. Terps target Tavon Austin was held somewhat in check.

Two-time All-Metro Offensive Player of the Year Tavon Austin was kept quiet, as he ran for 79 yards and caught three passes for 12 yards. ...

Austin ran for a 7-yard touchdown and a two-point conversion with 8:08 left. He then ran for an 11-yard touchdown on the next drive that was set up by an interception by Davon Muse.

• New Jersey defensive tackle Isaac Holmes remains on the Terps’ wish list. According to GatorCountry.com, Florida is targeting Holmes and two other DTs for what could be just one spot.

At defensive tackle, the Gators are still recruiting Curtis Porter (6-0, 220, Charlotte, N.C. Victory Christian), Antwan Lowery (6-4, 335, Miami Columbus) and now Isaac Holmes (6-3, 295, Hoboken, N.J.). Holmes came in for an official this past weekend and it is our belief that the first one to commit will most likely fill the spot for 2009.

The Progress-Index of Petersburg, Va., profiled Terps linebacker commitment Bradley Johnson and his Dinwiddie teammate, quarterback Adam Morgan, this week. The story details Johnson’s transformation into a DI prospect.

Johnson epitomizes the growth of the Generals program, especially in the strength and conditioning category. According to Mills, he came into the program a 160 to 170-pound youngster and will be leaving as a 6-2, 215-pound chiseled man. His hard work in the weight room is a testament to what has accomplished and one of those things will be a free education on College Park, Md.

However, he admits the program has made “him a better player and a better person.”

“Bradley and I have been playing together since we were 9-10 years old,” Morgan explained. “Bradley brings leadership, determination, and a hard work ethic to this team as well as being one of the best defensive players in the state.”

Posted by Matt Bracken at 7:56 AM | | Comments (4)
Categories: Weekly recruiting roundup
        

September 11, 2008

Five questions: UM women's basketball recruiting (part one)

Joining Recruiting Report for today's edition of Five questions is Chris Hansen, girls basketball scout and analyst for ESPN HoopGurlz.

Hansen didn't get a chance to see 2009 Terps commitment and Riverdale Baptist forward Tianna Hawkins this summer, but he did watch Bear, Del., point guard Dara Taylor, and came away very impressed.

How did Maryland’s commitments fare on the AAU circuit this summer?

Dara Taylor is the big early commitment and her play this summer was fantastic. We saw her early in the summer at the Regional Skills Academy [in Houston]. They do a lot of drill work, but her play at the Nike Nationals [in North Augusta, S.C.], which is arguably the biggest, most competitive tournament of the summer, with only 24 elite teams, [was great]. The way her team plays is five in, five out and that’s kind of tough to find a groove. But she came in and hit the floor for the Philly Belles and she was awesome. They knocked off one of the best teams in [Dallas-Fort Worth Elite]. She helped orchestrate the win against DFW, the first time they lost all summer. [2010 point guard] Odyssey Sims is an excellent defender and she was all over her, but she just handled it. She plays with a lot of poise. She’s not the strongest build, but she plays stronger than her build. He’s got enough individual skills one-on-one, she can shake players, create her own shot and she knows how to run a system. When the shot clock is running down, she’ll make that Kristi Toliver play.

Taylor was unranked by HoopGurlz when she committed last year. Now she’s up to No. 52 in the country. How did she elevate her stock so much?

Especially in that last tournament, the stakes don’t get any higher. So the opinion we had of her before [was when she was] not one of the upperclassmen [on her AAU team]. That team ran through Caroline Doty and some other players. Caroline’s at UConn this year. But I think we just got the chance to see more of her. I know we elevated her. We just had to get a really good look at her. She played well all summer for them. She played at the AAU invitational right at the beginning of the summer, they brought 16 teams in and [the Philly Belles] made the final four. She played well at the right times. A lot of these kids prove it against average high school competition. The level [of play this summer] is against the best [competition], and she proved it. She definitely proved it this summer.

What can Maryland fans expect from Taylor as a freshman?

Don’t be surprised if she earns playing time. I don’t think she’s going to come in and be an all-conference player right off the bat, but once she builds strength, you’re going to see a lot of things you like in Kristi Toliver. It’s interesting they recruited a player with so many of the same attributes. She’s a shifty point guard. She’ll knock down the 3, and she can create her own shot. I might have seen her play her best game ever, but she has plenty of basketball IQ. You talk after the game and she’s a team-first interview. Personality-wise, Maryland fans are going to fall in love with this kid. On the court she’s going to get it done. Getting physically stronger will allow her to make an even bigger impact.

What are the Terps looking for to fill out their 2009 class?

I’m not sure how many scholarships Maryland has open, but I can see they’re trying to find a post. [UM is involved with] Kelsey Bone (Sugarland, Texas), Monique Oliver (Long Beach, Calif.), Joslyn Tinkle (Missoula, Mont.), Waltia Rolle out of Texas and Kristi Bellock out of Louisiana, a big, strong forward as well. Alyssa Bennett out of Virginia, I think most people overlook her because there are so many stars on Boo Williams. Tamika Willis out of Georgia, I believe they made her final five. So it looks like they’re going to add at least one post player in the class.

They’re trying to recruit Skylar Diggins (South Bend, Ind.), probably the top point guard in the class. Also Destiny Williams out of Michigan, who probably improved her stock as much as any player over the summer. She’s our No. 1-ranked forward right now. And she just had a heck of a summer. Maryland, Georgia, Illinois, Louisville and I believe Western Michigan. She’s really high on Maryland, so that would be a huge get.

Who’s the highest ranked player that UM has the best shot at landing?

I think the highest ranked player ... that [could be] leaning toward [Maryland] is Destiny Williams, the No. 8 player in the class. She’s going to make her visits. I know she has scheduled official visits. She scheduled her official for Maryland and then she also scheduled the other four. I think Maryland was on her early. So I think they have a real good shot at her.

Check back with Recruiting Report next week for more from Hansen.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 12:22 PM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Five questions
        

September 10, 2008

Towson lands Philly shooting guard

Towson landed its first commitment of the 2009 class Monday when shooting guard Will Adams from Philadelphia’s Imhotep Charter pledged to the Tigers.

Adams chose Towson over offers from Drexel, James Madison, Rider and several others.

The 6-foot-4, 195-pounder visited Towson a week and a half ago with his coach, Andre Noble. Adams said he was immediately sold on Towson.

“It hit me when I was there, right when I stepped out (of) the car,” Adams said. “I really liked the campus. It’s really a nice-sized campus. I really like the environment and everything is nice. It’s not too far away from my area, but not too close. And it’s just a beautiful campus.”

Adams said he wanted to commit immediately, but Noble advised him to return to Philadelphia and give it some thought. Adams said it wasn’t easy waiting a week and a half, when he knew all along exactly what he wanted to do.

“It was nice and it was a good opportunity for me, so why not take it?” Adams said. “It was one of the best opportunities for me recruiting-wise, so I said 'we’ve got to get this done.' I took a week and a half to think about it, made the decision to [pick Towson]. As soon as I went home I still knew I wanted to go to Towson.”

The Tigers started recruiting Adams at the beginning of the summer. According to Noble, Adams was immediately impressed with Towson head coach Pat Kennedy.

“Coaches have been on [Adams] all summer, going to all the things he’s been at,” Noble said. “From the first conversation [he had with Kennedy], at the beginning of the summer, Will called me and said, ‘I really liked that guy, coach Kennedy.’ ... I felt really good about coach Kennedy and felt he was someone Will could develop with.”

Adams said his relationship with Kennedy made his choice even easier.

“Coach Kennedy, he’s a really good guy,” Adams said. “I liked him when I first talked to him. He didn’t pressure me or fill my head with a lot of stuff. It felt like I could relate to him. It seemed like he helped out so much with his players. He just approached me the right way. He just made me want to hop on board and play for him.”

As a junior, Adams led Imhotep Charter in scoring with 15 points per game. He’s on pace to become the school’s all-time leading scorer. Noble said he expects Adams to make an impact at Towson immediately.

“Primarily what Will does is he’s an athletic shooter that’s very athletic in transition,” Noble said. “A lot of shooters are just shooters, and that’s their role. But Will is a very good finisher in transition and has very good athletic ability. This year we’re going to use him all over court. He has good size, 6-4, 195. He’s put together pretty well, so he’s very good in transition and can really shoot the deep ball. Will can pretty much shoot the NBA 3.”

Adams said he’s excited to get back on the court as a senior and then fulfill the Towson staff’s expectations of him next season.

“They want me to come in and work hard [and hopefully I’ll] get a lot of time as a freshman,” Adams said. “I’ll just come in, work my tail off. It should be nice. ... I’m just [excited] to go with Towson.”

Posted by Matt Bracken at 10:54 AM | | Comments (1)
        

September 9, 2008

Edet's status with Terps uncertain

Eteyen Edet has switched prep schools. Now there’s a good possibility he’ll have to switch his college commitment.

The former Fort Washington Friendly linebacker and 2008 Maryland signee went to Milford Academy in Berlin, N.Y. in August, but is now enrolled at North Carolina Tech in Charlotte, according to former Friendly assistant Ray Thorpe.

Edet’s stint at Milford ended almost as soon as it began.

“This went down ... I would say about the third week in August. He was [at Milford] for a week,” Thorpe said. “The impression that I got from the whole situation -- I talked to the head coach and they felt he wasn’t in shape when he came. ... It was [Edet's] fault, but he did work hard to lose weight [after going to Milford] and he was moving in that direction. Then apparently something went down between him and his position coach and I guess the head coach was perturbed by it and upset about it.

“The whole thing just got really blown out of proportion. Eteyen was very disheartened by it. He admitted he was probably just as accountable as his position coach. He tried, he said, but he couldn’t make any headway with them, and it was a matter of a difference of opinions and philosophies.”

Thorpe said he didn’t know if there was a specific incident that took place, but both parties agreed it would be best for Edet to find another school.

According to Thorpe, the Milford coaches told Maryland’s staff about the situation. Now Edet’s status as a Terps commitment is up in the air. It’s possible that he could end up in College Park -- assuming he qualifies academically -- but the Maryland coaches will have to be convinced all over again that Edet merits a scholarship.

“He’s not blaming Maryland,” Thorpe said. “He knew [coach Ralph] Friedgen showed him a great deal of respect and he wanted to prove to coach Friedgen he was capable of playing at that level and going by the rules and regulations of Maryland’s program. He was willing to do that, but he just got a bad taste with the prep school coach and it really bothered him. It concerned me too because I was disappointed in him in that I don’t think he handled it the proper way. As a young man he has to be accountable for his actions. And that’s how I explained it to him. So his attitude has now changed drastically.”

Thorpe said Edet’s off to a good start at North Carolina Tech. He’s working himself into playing shape and becoming acclimated to the school. He recorded approximately “six solos, two fumble recoveries and one interception in his first game,” Thorpe said.

While Edet’s “dream of playing for Maryland” may not become a reality, Thorpe said he will likely have other options -- provided he takes care of business on the field and in the classroom.

“There are several other schools interested in him, one being North Carolina,” Thorpe said. “They came back on him. I think Pitt is interested and Ohio University. Those guys are very much interested.”

Whether Maryland becomes interested in Edet again remains to be seen.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 9:32 AM | | Comments (4)
        

September 8, 2008

Weekend wrap -- Big games from UM QB commitments

Pennsylvania high school football followers are still buzzing about Maryland quarterback commitment C.J. Brown‘s 304-yard, three-touchdown performance Thursday in Seneca Valley’s 38-33 win over Erie (Pa.) McDowell. Erie Times-News columnist John Dudley said Brown looked like “the total package.”

I watched the Seneca Valley-McDowell game the other night and I'm still trying to recall a high school quarterback who impressed me as much as Seneca Valley's C.J. Brown. Pittsburgh Central Catholic's Tino Sunseri was good, but Brown has the total package of size, arm strength and running ability. He repeatedly looked off McDowell's deep coverage help and hit the second or third receiver in the progression. Maryland got a good one in Brown.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette said Brown compares favorably with other recent Pittsburgh-area quarterback standouts.

But Brown isn't just about statistics. He is talented. It says here he's the best quarterback in the WPIAL this season and he might eventually be good enough to have an impact at the University of Maryland. He made a verbal commitment to the Terrapins in the spring. It also says here that he's as good in high school as Pitt quarterback Bill Stull was at Seton-LaSalle. He's also at least as good as Pitt's Pat Bostick was at Manheim Township. In fact, Brown might be even better than both. That's not a knock at Stull or Bostick, but Brown is more athletic.

• Maryland’s other quarterback recruit, Danny O’Brien, threw four touchdown passes in East Forsyth’s 49-7 win over Glenn (N.C.).

O'Brien completed 19 of 26 passes for 253 yards, with one interception, and the Eagles rushed 40 times for 157 yards. The Eagles had 21 first downs to five for the Bobcats.

• Maryland running back commitment Caleb Porzel and Terps target Jelani Jenkins had big nights on offense in Good Counsel’s 42-12 win over Dunbar (D.C.).

Jelani Jenkins only carried the ball seven times, but he scored four times while Caleb Porzel (Maryland) rushed the ball 13 times for 107 yards and one touchdown.

TurtleSportsReport.com scouted Clarksburg safety/running back Avery Graham on Friday night. According to TSR, Graham rushed for 15 yards on three carries, recorded seven tackles and forced a fumble in Clarksburg’s 12-7 win over Walter Johnson. Click here for video highlights of Graham.

• Terps commitment David Mackall had one carry for four yards and led the way on defense in Edmondson’s 16-7 win over Friendly.

The Red Storm's University of Maryland-bound linebacker-defensive end David Mackall made eight tackles, and linebacker-defensive end Anthony Rice had six tackles, one sack and a fumble recovery.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 10:33 AM | | Comments (1)
        

September 5, 2008

Weekly recruiting roundup

Last week Maryland quarterback recruit C.J. Brown threw for 301 yards in a loss to Norwin (Pa.).

Last night, Brown bettered that statistical performance, leading his Seneca Valley (Pa.) team to its first win of the season.

Quarterback C.J. Brown threw for 304 yards on 25-for-37 passing and ran for three touchdowns, and Seneca Valley beat Erie-Mcdowell, 38-33, at home Thursday night.

The display is becoming routine for Brown, who threw for 301 yards and ran for 52 in a loss last week against Norwin. Brown, the WPIAL's leading passer and a Maryland recruit, has accounted for 740 yards of offense in Seneca Valley's two games.

"We knew they were a pretty good team, and we knew we had to bounce back from last week," Brown said. "It's a great feeling right now."

The Gazette profiled Good Counsel linebacker and Maryland target Jelani Jenkins this week. The five-star prospect is taking his time with recruiting.

Despite all of that intense attention, Jenkins, who traveled all over the country this past summer, said the recruiting process has been anything but burdensome because of the help of his parents, Stephanie and Maurice.

Jenkins also said he has no real timetable for making his final choice. In fact, he has yet to narrow down his suitors to a more manageable list, choosing to keep all of his options open.

"It really hasn't been tough [and] it doesn't mess up my schedule too much," said Jenkins after practice last Tuesday. "It didn't bother me in terms of lifting or anything. I'm putting it aside for the most part and worrying about school. I still get mail and people contacting me from the [recruiting] Web sites. It's cool. I feel blessed."

• Good Counsel cornerback Louis Young's recruitment could mirror Jenkins' in terms of interest and intensity. According to The Washington Post, Young -- a 2010 prospect -- already has plenty of options in football and basketball.

Increasingly, though, many of those college recruiters are paying attention to Young, whose stock shot up after he stood out at a one-day camp at Maryland this summer.

"Evidently he threw some people around," Milloy said. "They offered him that night."

Virginia Tech, Boston College and Stanford soon followed suit. Clemson and Maryland had been recruiting him to play basketball, Young said, but attention from the football scouts "has picked up recently."

• The Terps are still reportedly in the running for North Carolina offensive tackle Travis Bond. According to the The Virginian-Pilot, the 6-foot-7, 330-pounder is still looking at all suitors.

According to Bond and Bertie head coach Tony Hoggard, Virginia Tech, North Carolina, North Carolina State, South Carolina, Stanford, Oregon, Virginia, Maryland, East Carolina and Michigan all are after the giant lineman.

"He hasn't tipped his hat either way. He's keeping his options open," Hoggard said. "Anywhere he goes, the coach is going to have an outstanding player."

WashingtonPost.com’s latest Recruiting Spotlight video looks at Quince Orchard defensive back Travis Hawkins, who sports offers from Maryland, Penn State, Michigan, Oregon, Virginia Tech, Tennessee and many others. Click here to see the video.

Basketball recruiting

• Brooklyn, N.Y., power forward James Padgett was supposed to check out Maryland, Pittsburgh, South Carolina and West Virginia last week, but scheduling conflicts prevented the 2009 prospect from making those trips. According to South Carolina recruiting analyst Phil Kornblut, Padgett still plans on visiting College Park.

He has, however, scheduled official visits to Pittsburgh for this weekend and Maryland for September 27th.

• The Terps are still in the running for Dix Hills, N.Y., power forward Tobias Harris. The 2010 prospect recently trimmed his list of schools to 10.

Harris also cut his list of potential schools to 10: Louisville, Syracuse, Rutgers, Georgetown, Virginia, Maryland, Marquette, West Virginia, Wake Forest and USC.

Harris just completed a tour of numerous schools, including Virginia, Maryland, Georgetown and Syracuse.

ESPN.com updated its 2010 player rankings this week, and Harris was one of the country’s highest risers.

Also making big strides this summer was 6-7 combo forward Tobias Harris (Dix Hills, N.Y./Half Hollow Hills West), vaulting 20 spots to No. 18 overall. A matchup nightmare for defenders, he possesses the ball skills to use a catch-sweep-go move, shoot the jumper from the perimeter and score inside. With his aggressive play Harris scores a good percentage of his points from the free-throw line.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 11:58 AM | | Comments (3)
Categories: Weekly recruiting roundup
        

September 4, 2008

Davis picks Drexel; Hurricanes top $1M in scholarship money

Arundel’s Ashley Davis is headed to Drexel.

Last month, the 5-foot-9 shooting guard picked the Dragons over offers from St. Joseph’s, Loyola, Towson, Hofstra and Richmond.

Davis, who averaged 14 points as a junior, committed to Drexel on a visit to the Philadelphia school a few weeks ago.

“When I was playing pickup with the girls, it just felt like I was here still, like at Arundel. It was basically the same style of play and everything,” Davis said. “I was relieved a lot. I was happy as well.”
ashleydavis.jpg
Davis’ commitment brought the 2008 Maryland Hurricanes AAU squad over the $1 million dollar mark in athletic scholarship support -- a calculation of four years of tuition, room and board. Eight former Hurricanes and class of 2008 members will begin their college-basketball careers this season: McDonogh’s Becky Cox (George Mason), St. Frances’ Kandice Green (Seton Hall), McDonogh’s Destiny Jacobs (Stony Brook), Dulaney’s Danielle Parker (Delaware), Arundel’s Ayanna Randolph (Furman), Glenelg’s Katie Biggs (Shepherd (W.Va.) University), Atholton’s Brittany Coughlan (Berry (Ga.) College) and Old Mill’s Bethany Hart (Shippensburg).

Davis, the Hurricanes’ lone 2009 prospect, had to branch out on her own this summer. While her former teammates were preparing for college, Davis was back on the AAU circuit with the Fairfax (Va.) Stars.

But while the team scenario was different, her support system was the same. Hurricanes team manager Kevin Randolph continued to handle much of the logistical aspects of Davis’ recruiting and coach Michael Coughlan returned to the sidelines with Davis’ new team.

"They were very involved. ... [Randolph] was like a father to me. He had a lot to do with it," Davis said. "He was always there for me and so was [Coughlan]."

Coughlan, a career research and development teacher at Oakland Mills, planned on spending his summer taking classes to keep his teaching certification up to date. He accomplished that, but also took on the unexpected task of coaching Davis and the Stars.

“Once I finished up my spring classes, it was the middle of May and [the Stars] were without a coach,” Coughlan said. “Ashley and her mom asked me, and when the kids ask, I’ll make sacrifices. So we practiced down in northern Virginia a couple times a week. I just wanted to make sure they had a stable environment.”

Coughlan said he enjoyed spending one last summer on the AAU circuit, especially since he was able to help Davis find a home after coaching her for the last three-plus years.

“It was awesome,” Coughlan said. “I’ll be honest, with Ashley, I’ve got a lot of respect for her. [She came to the Hurricanes] a year younger [than her teammates] when she was 14 and the kids were 15. It benefitted her because she was already further along. ... [Going into this summer] she had the three solid offers (Drexel, St. Joseph’s, Loyola) before the July period. The July period was just to see what opportunities came up. She got three more, Richmond, Hofstra and Towson. So she was ahead of the game because of the groundwork that was laid.”

For Randolph -- who was instrumental in formulating the Hurricanes’ business plan -- hitting the one-million dollar mark in scholarship and tuition money brought great satisfaction, particularly since all of the girls found good situations.

“Well I’ll tell you, the whole one-million thing didn’t come into fruition until girls started making their commitments,” Randolph said. “Then we had the potential to keep pushing, even on the girls who went [Division II]. But the goal was to get them into schools. The girls landed at some pretty good academic as well as athletic programs. But all the credit goes to the ladies, for sure. They put in the work. ... [We’ll be] doing more travel [to see the girls in college, so] it’s going to be quite interesting. Quite a few of the girls have great potential, so it’s going to be exciting.”

Read more about the Hurricanes’ Million Dollar Team

Baltimore Sun photo of Ashley Davis by Amy Davis / March 10, 2008

Posted by Matt Bracken at 12:23 PM | | Comments (0)
Categories: Local recruiting
        

September 3, 2008

AAU summer recap: Maryland/Severna Park 3D -- 2009

Tim Miller had to pick his spots this summer.

The Maryland/Severna Park 3D coach pared down his team’s summer AAU schedule, thanks to scheduling conflicts and a desire to choose the best opportunities for his team to be seen.

“We knocked off some tournaments off the beaten path that didn’t showcase our team,” Miller said. “The other thing that hurts is the limited number of days the colleges can see you. A whole bunch of showcase tournaments began to overlap.

“If you can’t play -- there’s so much riding on these guys. If you’re not going to be good and you’re beat down, they only get to see them so many times. We really want them to be fresh and have enough to go.”

Miller had several players prove their worth all summer long, starting with St. Mary’s point guard Nick Groce and Loyola shooting guard Matt Rum. Miller thinks UMBC got a steal in Groce, who committed to the Retrievers in June.

“Well UMBC just got a tremendous player in Groce,” Miller said. “He’s a selfless player and he can score. He’s as good an on-the-ball defender as you’re going to find. He’s got a great feel for the game. UMBC is just jumping up and down there because they got him. ... He’s got everything you’d want in a point guard. He’s bringing the whole package to the table.”

Miller has similarly high expectations for Rum at the next level. Rum, 6 feet 3, committed to William & Mary in June.

“Rum is going to be unbelievable,” Miller said. “This kid is just a tremendous athlete, almost a freaky type of athlete. He’s got very good speed and quickness, a tremendous vertical ... he has no fear of taking people on. ... I think there’s going to be some people really, really surprised at what he’s going to be able to do in the CAA."

While Groce and Rum finished their recruitments early in the summer, several of their 3D teammates emerged as Division I players on the AAU circuit.

St. Paul’s forward Sidney McCray is receiving serious interest from St. Francis (Pa.) -- and will visit the Northeast Conference school next weekend -- in addition to Wagner and Rider.

“McCray is about 6-6 -- he’s going to be a step-out 4-man,” Miller said. “He can handle it well, shoots very well, battles very, very tenaciously. He does a lot of good things. He’s going to get there, there’s no doubt in my mind. He’ll be a DI guy, if not a DII guy getting a full ride. I’m very certain he’s a DI guy.”

Ben Montgomery, a rugged 6-foot-7 power forward/center from the Severn School, seems destined to end up at one of the country’s more prestigious academic institutions, according to Miller.

“Right now he has both Harvard and Princeton recruiting the daylights out of him,” Miller said. “Their situation is different because they’re Ivy League [and can‘t give athletic scholarships]. This fall they can provide a ‘likely to accept’ letter based on their indexes. We’re pretty certain he’ll get a likely to accept letter. ... He also had MIT call, which is a Division III school. It’s basically the best engineering school in the world, and they’ve really begun to recruit the hell out of him.”

Mount St. Joseph’s guard Matt Miller, 6 feet 2, 170 pounds, is receiving serious recruiting interest from Holy Cross, Bucknell, UMBC and Boston University. Radford and Ohio University are also monitoring Miller’s progress.

Rounding out 3D’s roster of 2009 players are Annapolis Area Christian’s Pat Lapinski, Glen Burnie’s Tyler Rudd and St. Mary’s Trey Quinn, all of whom are Division III prospects. Quinn sat out most of the summer with tendonitis, but Catholic University, Hamilton (N.Y.) and St. Mary’s have shown interest, according to Miller. Marymount (Va.), McDaniel, St. Mary’s and Navy are recruiting Rudd, while Lapinski is “getting a bunch of DIII looks,” according to Miller.

Miller and his 3D squad will be back in the gym this week. Off the court, he’ll continue to try and find the right fits for his seniors.

“We’ve had a great summer,” Miller said. “[Seeing where the players end up is] going to be interesting.”

Posted by Matt Bracken at 9:53 AM | | Comments (2)
Categories: Local recruiting
        

September 1, 2008

Weekend wrap -- Murray shines, O'Brien rebounds

Avery Murray will suit up for the Terps as a linebacker, but the 6-foot, 219-pounder stood out Friday night on offense.

Murray had two carries for two long touchdown runs in a 42-6 win for his West Florence (S.C.) squad.

Murray broke a scoreless tie with an 80-yard touchdown run with 7:18 left in the first half. The score opened the floodgates for the Knights, who went up 17-0 at the half and led 27-6 after three quarters.

Murray, Terance Gamble and Leon Richardson each had touchdown runs of 50 yards or more. Murray led the team with 107 yards and two scores while Gamble had 97 yards and a touchdown.

• UM quarterback commitment Danny O’Brien rebounded from his team’s opening-week loss by leading East Forsyth (N.C.) to a 37-16 win over Reynolds.

O’Brien threw for one touchdown and rushed for one score. East Forsyth coach Todd Willert called for O’Brien -- who rushed for 120 yards on 20 carries -- to do most of his damage on the ground.

And Willert obliged, calling O'Brien's number for 20 carries, and for once, the strong-armed quarterback did more with his legs than his arm. O'Brien smiled and said his rushing total was "easily" a career high.

"Coach decided I would have to run more this game because last year they didn't key on me running the ball," O'Brien said. "I said whatever I had to do to win the game, whatever it took, and so that's what I did.

C.J. Brown threw for more than 300 yards, rushed for one touchdown and threw for another, rallying his Seneca Valley (Pa.) team from a 14-point deficit. But Norwin pulled ahead on a late field goal, and Brown’s comeback attempt fell just short.

With his team clinging to a late three-point lead, Norwin coach Dan Conwell's risky fourth-down play call gave Seneca Valley the ball at his team's 29-yard line. But the Norwin defense stopped Brown, a Maryland recruit, who had completed 21 passes and controlled the play for most of the second half.

• Terps linebacker recruit Bradley Johnson led the Dinwiddie (Va.) rushing attack in a 14-10 loss to Clover Hill.

Bradley Johnson led the Generals with nine carries for 66 yards.

• Running back D.J. Adams helped Norcross (Ga.) to a 24-17 win over South Gwinnett. Adams also reaffirmed to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that his only visit this fall will be to College Park.

Norcross tailback D.J. Adams has five opportunities to take official visits this fall, but he’ll only need one. The Maryland commitment plans on visiting the Terrapins and only the Terrapins sometime during the season.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 10:20 AM | | Comments (3)
        
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Matt Bracken was a lightly recruited football and tennis prospect out of East Lansing (Mich.) High School in 2001, but spurned all (nonexistent) scholarship offers to attend the University of Michigan. Matt graduated from UM in 2005, earned a master's degree in new media journalism from Northwestern University in 2006, and spent the first 11 months of his career as an online producer / videographer / blogger at the Arizona Daily Star in Tucson. He has worked at The Baltimore Sun since July 2007, where he currently serves as the deputy sports editor for digital.

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