Mark Turgeon won't be inheriting a great situation next year at Maryland. With Jordan Williams gone, minimal front court depth, and Terrell Stoglin and Sean Mosley the only proven starters on the team, the best-case scenario at this point seems like the NCAA bubble.
That stands in stark contrast to what he would've enjoyed had he stayed in College Station. Those ridiculously early pre-preseason top 25s had Turgeon's Aggies sitting pretty high. Take, for instance, Rivals' early poll, which had A&M at #13.
The only two Aggies who averaged in double figures - Khris Middleton and David Loubeau - are set to return. Guard depth will be boosted by Washington transfer Elston Turner, who will be eligible after sitting out a year. Defense will remain the Aggies' calling card.
And Andy Katz, who had them at #20:
The Aggies got great news Sunday with the return of David Loubeau; they also have Dash Harris and new star Khris Middleton back for another go at challenging for the Big 12 title. The key now will be if coach Mark Turgeon doesn't get plucked away by Maryland. If Turgeon is back on board, the Aggies are a real threat to win the Big 12.
And Jeff Goodman, who put them at #13 as well:
Mark Turgeon is as underrated as it gets in the coaching ranks, and he'll add a talented guard in [Jamal] Branch, who should come right in and make an impact, along with big-time transfer Turner.
And Jon Wilner, who had them at #21:
Khris Middleton and David Loubeau will form one of the top forward tandems in the country. Don't be surprised if the Aggies are the best team in the Big 12.
The thing about these ridiculously early "polls" is that there's a ton of variability amongst them. It's not hard to find a poll with the Ags in the "also considered" section, and it's far from a guarantee that they would've finished the year up there.
With that said, I didn't see Maryland get a mention in any of them. That alone should be enough for you to respect Turgeon, even if you are - like me - not exactly thrilled by it. At least not yet.