Terps Have To Compete For 2014 Hoops Prospect

Cushing Academy point guard Kaleb Joseph has plenty of options for his services.

Entering his junior season, Kaleb Joseph has already accumulated numerous scholarship offers, including one from Maryland. Now the young point guard is focusing on sharpening his skills and making the most out of his high school career.

The New Hampshire native has received offers from Boston College, West Virginia, Providence and Kansas State, to name a few, but Maryland may have a bit of an edge when it comes to the coach-player relationship.

“They're really cool,” said Joseph of the Maryland coaching staff. “[Scott] Spinelli is kind of a New England guy, so he knows where I'm coming from. I'm definitely interested [in Maryland].”

The 6-foot-3, 165-pound guard said his relationship with the Terps began through Maryland Assistant Basketball Coach Scott Spinelli, but Head Coach Mark Turgeon is the one who made the offer.

“[Turgeon] told me they were really focusing on the Harrison twins,” Joseph said. “But they expected [the twins] to be one and done, so by the time I came in the spot could be mine.”

As Maryland fans are painfully aware, the 2013 twin guard prospects Andrew and Aaron Harrison chose to take their talents to Kentucky, so the path is certainly cleared for Joseph to take the reins in 2014. The Cushing Academy product is in no rush to make a collegiate decision though, and is instead focusing on his team and improving his abilities.

“This year I think we'll be pretty good; I just want to win,” Joseph said. As for what he's working on, Joseph added, “I'm trying to get stronger, be consistent with everything.”

Though Joseph has never been to Comcast Center, he watched plenty of Terps games on television, and fondly remembers the Greivis Vasquez days.

“When Greivis was there, I really like the freedom he had,” Joseph said. “Obviously it's a different coaching staff and system now, but they like the way I work, especially off of pick and rolls.”

Joseph said there isn't one player he tries to fashion his game after, but he tries to take bits and pieces of many players' games, such as NBA stars Rajon Rondo, Chris Paul and Deron Williams, and incorporate it into what he does. As for himself, Joseph already has an idea of what makes him stand out among other point guards in his class.

“My leadership ability, getting my teammates involved, and my mid-range game is good,” Joseph said. “I think I'm a great teammate, loyalty is big for me. I'm hard on my team because I want everyone to be great.”

Fortunately for Maryland, Joseph said distance won't be a factor in his college decision.

“A big thing is the relationship with the coaches, where I feel the coach has the most trust in me and I have the most trust in him,” Joseph said. “Style of play is going to be important too.”

The recruiting heat will only pick up for Joseph as his high school career progresses and he plans on taking some visits over his Thanksgiving and winter breaks. Joseph said he doesn't have a top five yet, but the competition for Maryland will be fierce as Joseph acknowledged Kansas State and West Virginia are recruiting him the hardest right now.

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