What a crazy week for Maryland basketball. They went from over-signed with the commitment of Michal Cekovsky to under-signed with the transfers of Nick Faust, Roddy Peters and Shaq Cleare...in like 24 hours. They now sit at either 11 or 12 scholarship players for the 2014-2015 season, depending if you include Jonathan Graham (which FlaTerp thinks we should). Either way, there's space for at least one more addition. The coaching staff may not choose to add anyone else, but for a program desperate to return to the NCAA tournament it makes sense to add as many potential difference makers as they can.
The first order of business is finding which unit(s) could use a boost. Currently, this is what the depth looks like at each position.
Note: I don't want to get into arguments over who should start. This is just a list of players that could/should play minutes at each position.
PG: Melo Trimble (Fr)
SG: Dez Wells (Sr), Dion Wiley (Fr), Jared Nickens (Fr)
SF: Dez Wells, Jake Layman (Jr), Jared Nickens
PF: Charles Mitchell (Jr) , Evan Smotrycz (Sr), Michal Cekovsky (Fr)
C: Trayvon Reed (Fr), Michal Cekovsky, Charles Mitchell, Damonte Dodd (So)
The lack of depth at the point guard position sticks out initially, but there also seems to be a large reliance on youth in the front court, where the transition to college ball tends to be the harder than it is for guards.
In my opinion, they should - and will - look to add someone they can plug-in and back-up/work with Trimble for a year, likely a post-graduate transfer. If a proven forward or center wants to come to College Park there are certainly minutes to be had as well.
We'll focus mostly on guards. Here are some names, all post-graduate transfers eligible immediately and for one year:
All from Jeff Goodman's ever-expanding transfer list
K.C. Ross-Miller - New Mexico State, 6-1/180
Ross-Miller averaged 8.3 points, 3.5 assists and 2.2 rebounds per game while shooting 43.7% from the field, 39.3% from three and 82% from the line. He originally committed to Kentucky in 2007 but de-committed when Billy Gillispe was fired. He then tried to go to LSU but was academically ineligible and ended up at New Mexico State. He's known as a strong, stable point guard.
"New Mexico State?", you might say, "that school rings a bell." Well, you might be remembering an incident that gained national attention this past season when a brawl broke out on the court after a player threw a ball at an opposing player, at the same time as the fans were storming the court, resulting in this:
Yup, that's our Ross-Miller, the infamous ball-thrower. The incident resulted in his suspension for the remainder of the season, at which point he decided to transfer. So...there's that.
And then there was this tweet from Ross-Miller to Maryland assistant coach Dustin Clark (h/t biggerboy). It should be noted that both Clark and Ross-Miller are from the Dallas-area.
@CoachClarkHoops Coach Dustin, wassup man. DM me.— KC Ross-Miller (@KCRossMiller12) April 10, 2014
Hmmmm, looks like we have a connection. Maybe.
Matt Carlino - BYU, 6-2/175
Carlino averaged 13.7 points, 4.3 assists, 3.4 rebounds per game while shooting 38.5% from the field, 33.9% from three and 68.9% from the line. The Arizona native committed to Indiana and UCLA before ending up at BYU. He's a strong combo guard that's evolved into a good defender and a bit of a chucker from deep. When he does get hot, he's someone that can put up points in a hurry. He was also second on his team in assists.
I'm not sure how realistic Carlino would be as an addition, as he's been on the market for a few weeks now and has some big time schools after him.
BYU transfer Matt Carlino told ESPN he has heard from Oklahoma State, Purdue, UCLA, Pittsburgh and Memphis thus far. Eligible next year.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) April 3, 2014
He'd be a big-time get, but Maryland might not even be interested in yet another player that would want starter-level minutes.
Ian Chiles - IUPUI, 6-1/200
Chiles averaged 15.8 points, 1.8 assists, 3.2 rebounds per game while shooting 41.9% from the field, 31.4% from three and 67.7% from the line. He's originally from Louisville, KY and spent his first year of eligibility at Wabash Valley Junior College before averaging double digit points all three years at IUPUI. Chiles only played four games as a sophomore, redshirting due to injury.
As for potential suitors:
IUPUI 5th-year transfer Ian Chiles says looking at Va Tech, FSU, Iowa St, Tenn., Neb, Texas A&M, Mizzou, La-Lafayette, Auburn, WKU, Albany.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) April 6, 2014
Pretty big range there. He'd add another scoring punch to the backcourt and would be one of the better players Maryland could add. The lack of assist numbers is a little concerning, but at IUPUI I would imagine there wasn't much talent around him.
Here's a highlight video:
D.J. Brown - San Jose State, 6-2/185
In his final season at San Jose State, Brown averaged 5.7 points, 2.8 assists and 2.3 rebounds per game, shooting 36.1% from the floor, 32% from three and 69.6% from the line. Oddly, this is down from his freshman and sophomore seasons, when he put up lines of 7.7/2.4/2.6/.350/.328/.768 and 9.2/3.7/3.3/.303/.321/.728, respectively. His playing time also dropped by 11 minutes between his sophomore and junior seasons. That's basically the extent of our information. Brown's from Los Angeles and I haven't seen any connection to Maryland, or any other school, yet.
Chris Evans - Sacred Heart, 6-3/210
Evans averaged 11.3 points, 1.8 assists, 3.4 rebounds on 36.3% shooting from the field, 30.4% from three and 74.8% from the line. He's from Stamford, CT and was considered one the leaders for the Pioneers, until he was suspended for 30 days at the end of the season, due to a "violation of departmental and team policy".
Jon Horford - Michigan, 6-10/250
I don't really expect Maryland to pursue many big men, but one current Terrapin certainly thinks they should.
get my man Jon Horford to college park!!!— Evan Smotrycz (@_es1) April 10, 2014
Horford was apparently Smotrycz's roommate when they were both in Ann Arbor.
Even though guard is probably the main target for an open scholarship, Horford would bring some much needed experience and toughness to the Maryland front court. He averaged 3.8 points, 4.2 rebounds, shooting a very good 56.4% from the floor and an impressive-for-a-big-guy 65.4% from the line.
Should Maryland decide Jonathan Graham will indeed become a walk-on, Horford would probably be an upgrade for that open scholarship. I don't know the rules for graduate-transfers within the same conference, so this could be a completely moot point, but I haven't seen any restrictions mentioned anywhere.
More names will pop-up as the offseason continues, so keep your eyes peeled and ear to the ground.
According to Alex Prewitt, Jon Horford would be free to sign with Maryland, as long as it happened before the Terps officially move to the B1G.
If he or any other current Big Ten player signs before July 1, yes. RT @billthay: does that go the other way if the Terps try for Horford?— Alex Prewitt (@alex_prewitt) April 11, 2014