In expected news, 2015 Junior College point guard Jaylen Brantley (Odessa Community College) has signed his National Letter of Intent to the University of Maryland, per Jeff Ermann of IMS. Brantley had given a verbal commitment to the Terrapins on October 20th, but those are non-binding "promises", while an LOI is a binding contract to attend a certain college.
We broke down what the 5-11 Brantley would bring as a player a few weeks ago, but the short version is that he's known as a great shooter, distributor and decision maker. He ran the offense for prestigious AAU program BABC (Boston Amateur Basketball Club), along with fellow Division I prospects Michael Carter-Williams (Syracuse/76ers), Nerlens Noel (Kentucky/76ers), Wayne Selden (Kansas), Georges Niang (Iowa State) and Jake Layman (Maryland).
He's been the subject of some very high praise for his shooting abilities.
BABC director Leo Papile says Maryland commit Jaylen Brantley & Dana Barros were the best shooters he's coached. Story coming.— Adam Zagoria (@AdamZagoria) October 20, 2014
The above quote might be hyperbole from a proud coach, but to be mentioned along with a great NBA-caliber shooter like Barros is nice to hear.
Brantley spent a year at Marshall after high school, but never played and transferred to Odessa to deal with some grade issues. He'll graduate in May and will have three years of eligibility remaining once he comes to College Park.
For the Terps, he'll likely play off the bench, serving as a back-up for current freshman Melo Trimble. He can play either guard position and he and Trimble have complimentary skill-sets, but because of his size projects mostly at the point.
Maryland still has a whopping five scholarships open for the 2015-2016 season. They're actively pursuing 5-star center Diamond Stone and are in the top three in consideration for his services, along with UCONN and Wisconsin. They'll likely keep the 2015 recruiting class small, at just three or four newcomers, including possible transfers, saving scholarships for the loaded local 2016 class.