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April 8, 2009

Five questions on Terrell Stoglin

Before I came to The Baltimore Sun in July 2007, I worked as an online producer/videographer/blogger for the Arizona Daily Star in Tucson.

So imagine my surprise last week when the Maryland men’s basketball program landed its first commitment of the 2010 class from my old stomping grounds, nearly 2,300 miles southwest of College Park.

Santa Rita point guard Terrell Stoglin, 6 feet 1, 160 pounds, picked the Terps over offers from Texas A&M, Penn State and San Diego.

To get a better feel for Stoglin’s game, I called on Josh Gershon, the senior editor of Gershon, a Tucson native and University of Arizona graduate, took a break from the Sean Miller hoopla to discuss all things Stoglin.

What type of game does Stoglin have, and what are some of his strengths and weaknesses?

Gershon: He’s a really good, high-basketball IQ point guard. Good handles, good shooter, good vision. He’s deceptively quick, although he doesn’t have the best basketball body and he’s not overly athletic. So improving his body, gaining strength and improving his lateral quickness -- those kinds of things are going to be important for him. He’s extremely talented, and really the only thing keeping him from being considered one of the top-rated point guards is his body and athleticism, which isn’t necessarily bad, just not what you’d want from an elite point guard either. ... But he’s as good a high school player this city has had in arguably two decades. Tucson isn’t known for producing talented basketball players. So getting a guy like Terrell Stoglin at an ACC school is just a tremendous success for both him and the city of Tucson. It’s such a rare thing to happen here.

Tucson’s not known for its high school basketball, but some of Stoglin’s biggest games have come against top-notch competition (he scored 30 against five-star point guard and Washington commitment Abdul Gaddy’s team, and had 35 as a sophomore facing USC standout DeMar DeRozan’s team). What does that say about Stoglin?

Gershon: I think that in terms of being a high school basketball player, it’s not that these other players in the country are much better than Terrell Stoglin. The reason other point guards are ranked higher is just because they have higher upside due to their bodies. Stoglin’s a little on the short end. He’s athletic, but he’s not a great athlete. He doesn’t have a great basketball body. So he can play with these point guards right now. But Abdul Gaddy, once he gains 15-20 pounds, he’s going to be a completely different player. So the question is whether Stoglin’s body will allow him to do [those same things in college].

What was Arizona’s involvement with Stoglin?

Gershon: U of A liked him, but the biggest problem with his recruitment was having three coaches in three years (Lute Olson, Kevin O’Neill, Russ Pennell). Recruiting has been so off and on. The 2010 class, nobody from Arizona has really touched that yet. I think the biggest thing with Terrell is that, he’s always been on the Arizona radar because he’s such a talented kid, but there hasn’t been a coaching staff yet that’s looked at the 2010 class, so it’s just a matter of bad timing. Maybe if he were to have remained uncommitted, the new staff would’ve seriously looked at him, but I know he’s been in communication with Arizona all these years. But the coaches have never been able to look far enough ahead to offer him a scholarship or anything like that.

From some message-board scanning, it seems like some UA fans were hoping Stoglin would wait things out and give the new coaching staff a chance. Stoglin told the Arizona Daily Star earlier this week he’s “going to stick with” his commitment to Maryland, even if Sean Miller does show interest. Now that Miller’s got the job, do you expect Arizona to go after Stoglin again?

Gershon: Well I’m sure that at some point, Sean Miller will evaluate him and determine for himself whether he’s good enough to play for Arizona. It’s tough to predict what Miller’s going to think. I haven’t talked to Terrell since [Miller was hired], but I imagine if Arizona offered and recruited him hard, it might be tough to leave the city of Tucson. But that’s just logical speculation on my part, and I shouldn’t speak for Terrell.

What type of college success do you think Stoglin’s capable of having?

Gershon: Honestly, he’ll be as good as his body allows him to be. I think the stronger he gets, the better basketball player he’ll be. I assume Maryland’s going to recruit pretty good point guards [in the future], so I assume he’ll have pretty good competition. I don’t think there will be many players as talented as him right away, but will they be more athletic? But Terrell is an outstanding kid; as nice and humble and good a kid [that I’ve covered] for as long as I’ve been doing this. Maryland’s really getting a good person, a hard worker, and someone that’s going to represent the school really well. I know he has a lot of people in the city of Tucson pulling for him. Regardless of how successful he is, he’ll always be a great representative of what’s been a really successful basketball program (Santa Rita) over the past several years.

Posted by Matt Bracken at 10:25 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Five questions


Great stuff, Matt!

The more I hear about Stoglin, the more he sounds like Duane Simpkins, but with better PG skills and more upside. And one of his biggest detriments - height - could easily change in the next year or two. He's only, what 16 or 17? I just hope he doesn't jump ship if/when Miller goes after him hard.

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About Matt Bracken

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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Area high school commitments -- 2009
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