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Slowly But Surely, Maryland's Frontcourt Depth Returning

Jin Soo Too
Jin Soo Too

It sounds all but official at this point that Dino Gregory will be making his return to the team on December 12, just in time for the big showdown against Eastern Kentucky. Now word also comes out that Jin Soo Choi could be back against New Hampshire tomorrow, and, if not then, he's likely a go for Maui.

While Choi's presence isn't entirely important, it does provide a solid five to eight minutes a game that Jordan Williams, who has looked a little rough at the end of contests, doesn't have to be on the floor. He's also a safety net if any of Maryland's three current big men get injured.

From that same link, it also sounds like Steve Goins is progressing along nicely with his chronic knee injury - that doesn't really indicate when he'll back, but it does give hope that he'll make a return sometime soon. Having Goins to provide five to ten minutes a night would be huge - the dude's a big body who can, at the very least, provide a physical presence matched on the team only by Jordan Williams.

As for Dino, he will miss the all-important Villanova game and the Maui Invitational, which could prove especially problematic should Maryland face Vanderbilt. The good news is that he'll have a few warm-up games to shake off the rust - Eastern Kentucky, Florida Atlantic, UNC-G, etc. - before ACC play, when his services will really be required.

The silver lining to it is that when it comes time for James Padgett and Jordan Williams to play against some of the ACC-level bigs, they'll have experience. They'll be better for having gone up against Villanova and Cincy/Vandy/Gonzaga/Arizona/whoever, and they'll be a lot more use when it comes time to play in the ACC, which is what really matters comes Selection Sunday. Obviously, having a nice OOC win to point to can do wonders (MSU and Michigan last year) but it's trumped by finishing third in the ACC.

The possible disaster is subsiding.