Hardwood Notes: 2nd Live Eval Period

The second April evaluation period has been completed, with the Terps’ staff out in full force at both the Under Armour event in Lexington, Kent., and the Adidas Gauntlet showcase in Indianapolis, Ind., April 24-25. Here’s where Maryland hoops recruiting stands following the AAU tournaments:

The second April evaluation period has been completed, with the Terps’ staff out in full force at both the Under Armour event in Lexington, Kent., and the Adidas Gauntlet showcase in Indianapolis, Ind., April 24-25. Here’s where Maryland hoops recruiting stands following the AAU tournaments:

Class of 2016 Point Guards

Terps point guard commit Anthony Cowan (St. John’s/Washington, D.C.) had a rather so-so performance during the first live period, but he rebounded in a major way with Turgeon looking on in Indy.

Cowan reportedly put together a complete, all-around performance, scoring via the jumper and driving the lane; finding his teammates; playing solid defense; and even crashing the boards. The St. John’s product was apparently one of the most impressive point guards on the floor in both Indianapolis and Louisville.

Although Cowan’s firmly on board, it’s clear Turgeon and Co. are trying to add another floor general to pair with the local prospect. Once again UMD staffers watched Roman Catholic (Philadelphia, Pa.) point Tony Carr, this time in Kentucky. Carr continues to impress and remains in consistent contact with Terps’ assistant Dustin Clark, who scouted the Philly guard April 24, as well as Turgeon.

But Carr, who said he and teammate Lamar Stevens (another Terps target) are a package deal, may not be quite as high on Maryland as the Terps are on him. He’s well aware Cowan is in tow, bristling a bit at being a team’s “second” lead guard. For the moment, we get the sense Indiana may lead on the Carr-Stevens front, while Xavier, Temple, Pitt, FSU and others are also involved with the duo.

Another point guard the Terps reportedly kept tabs on last weekend was University of Detroit Jesuit’s (Detroit, Mich.) Cassius Winston, who Bino Ranson and Turgeon watched show out in major way.

But Winston is an elite-level recruit and considered a longshot to wind up in College Park, Md. He has Michigan State and Michigan out in front.

The final name to know is Lone Peak (American Fork, Utah) point Frank Jackson, who UMD just offered April 28. Apparently the Terps scouted him a few times, and quickly realized Jackson's a true talent. He's a 6-3, 180-pound nationally-rated, do-everyting point with an early offer from Arizona, while Duke, North Carolina and Stanford are keeping close tabs. The nearby Wildcats have his eye for the moment, while he's hoping UNC, Duke, Stanford and a couple others pull through.

In fact, he just released a top 10 of: Arizona (offer), Maryland (offer), UNC (no offer), Notre Dame (offer), Duke (no offer), Utah (offer), Stanford (no offer), UCLA (no offer) and Embry-Riddle (where his father attended college). Evidently the Terps are in play not only because he's been in touch with Turgeon, but his parents are from the College Park area, making UMD a homecoming of sorts.

We'll see where this recruitment leads in the months ahead. Jackson plans to announce his decision before next hoops season.

Class of 2016 Combo/Shooting Guards

For the second weekend in a row, Turgeon honed in on DeMatha’s (Hyattsville, Md.) Markelle Fultz, along with the likes of Arizona, Kentucky, Louisville, Washington and his other prime suitors. Fultz did not disappoint, averaging more than 20 points, five rebounds and three assists during his stay in Louisville.

Fultz isn’t tipping his hand in interviews right now, but the feeling is Maryland, Zona, Kansas and Washington are right in the thick of things, while Kentucky remains the favorite should the Wildcats ante up. Turgeon and Clark have done well with Fultz and have him thinking long and hard about staying home for college, but the DeMatha product is also enamored with the bluebloods.

It should be noted that Fultz recently visited UVA and Xavier as well, so we’ll have to see if the Wahoos and Musketeers start making some noise in the months ahead.

Two other combo guards the Terps took in while in Indianapolis were Kevin Huerter (Shenendehowa/Clifton Park, N.Y.) and the longstanding Maryland target Curtis Jones (Huntington Prep/Huntington, W.Va.). Jones bounced back from a subpar outing in Hampton, Va., with a strong showing on both ends of the floor, while Huerter once again raised his stock with a second-straight solid performance featuring his deadly 3-point stroke.

Both Jones and Huerter are considered the second and third options, respectively, to Fultz, but either would seem to be very good additions should the Stags’ star fall through.

Huerter’s ability to knock down shots, as well as his court vision, have coaxed out offers from all sorts of high-majors, including Notre Dame, Xavier, Miami, FSU, UMD, Marquette and others. Huerter lists no leaders at this time, but Turgeon did go in-home with him April 20, and it’s clear the New York product has the Terps on the brain. Look for him to visit College Park in the coming weeks. (ARTICLE).

As for Jones, you know the deal with the former Paul VI (Fairfax, Va.) star by now. He has high affinity for UMD and the staff, and may have the Terps out in front for his services, although Turgeon probably won’t push for a commitment until he gets a better feel for Fultz’ and Huerter’s situations.

If Maryland backs off Jones, he’ll likely look to Indiana, Cincinnati, WVU or NC State. Louisville is a personal favorite for the Huntington Prep combo, but the Cardinals haven’t offered.

Another combo to note is Montverde Academy’s (Buffalo, N.Y.) Howard Washington. Dustin Clark scouted him last weekend and it wouldn't be a complete shock if the Terps anted up. Washington likes Syracuse right now, but we'll see if the Orange will accept a pledge.

One other shooting guard on the radar is Yates’ (Houston, Texas) Jacob Young, who our Scout hoops analyst informed us about. Apparently Turgeon caught wind of this under-the-radar 3-point threat from his old stomping grounds, although we’re not sure the Terps’ headman will actually make a push (unless other options fall by the wayside). Young currently has offers from Baylor and Duquesne.

Note: Pay attention to former Pitt commit Mustapha Heron (Sacred Heart/Waterbury, Conn.), who is back on the market, according to TT’s Dan Painter. The Terps offered Heron when he was a sophomore, and it’s possible Turgeon could jump back on the five-star talent. Kentucky, St. John’s, Cincinnati and more might also become involved.

Class of 2016 Forwards

The Terps caught a glimpse of at least four potential small forward targets in Lexington and Indianapolis last weekend. Turgeon watched Arlington Country Day (Jacksonville, Fla.) offeree Mario Kegler and new offeree Wenyen Gabriel (Wilbraham And Monson Academy/Wilbraham, Mass.) in Indy, the former establishing himself as a clear top-level recruit and the latter putting on a none-too-shabby performance.

Kegler, who can score and defend at all three levels, already has offers from UConn, Ohio State, Arizona, UMD, Oklahoma, Texas, USC, UNLV, Nova, Mississippi State, Arizona State, Oklahoma State and others. Duke is apparently considering offering, and, if so, would become the team to beat.

For the moment, Kegler may be enamored with the Huskies and Buckeyes. We are not inclined to list him above “cool” on the hot board.

Gabriel, meanwhile, clearly has intriguing upside given his long frame and athleticism around the rim/facing up. Now that UMD has offered, they’re in a real good spot to land the New Hampshire native, as he already has an established relationship with Bino Ranson. He's highly interested in visiting College Park, likes the system Turgeon employs, is intrigued by the school's strong play of late and believes Maryland is on the rise.

Gabriel has UMD, UConn, Providence and BC offers for the time being, but will secure more on the summer circuit, so we'll see where this leads moving forward. (Uconn offered the same day as UMD, and the Huskies have his eye as well). (ARTICLE).

The third small forward the Terps honed in on was the aforementioned Lamar Stevens, who Clark saw in Lexington. Stevens has had a Maryland offer since showing out during the first live period, and he didn’t disappoint April 24-25 either.

When I touched base with Stevens, he had plenty of positive comments about UMD and seems to like the idea of playing in College Park a good deal. But, again, his destination could very well depend on Tony Carr’s.

We don’t believe Turgeon would take Stevens on his own right now (Gabriel and Kegler may he higher priorities), but the headman would surely scoop him up if he knew the Philly point guard would be joining him.

Barring that scenario, though, Stevens may be bound for Indiana, FSU, Villanova, Xavier, Temple, Pitt or one of the other programs pursuing both he and Carr.

Two other small forwards the Terps are monitoring include Tervell Beck (Central Catholic/Cleveland, Ohio) and Jonathan Isaac (IMG Academy/Bradenton, Fla.). Beck claims verbals from Dayton, WVU, UNLV, Xavier and a few others, and is on the radar of a number of other high-majors.

If he shines on the summer circuit for All-Ohio Red, Turgeon may make a move, depending on how things shake out with Kegler, Gabriel and Stevens. He currently has no favorites and is open to all incoming suitors.

Isaac, meanwhile, has Florida and FSU out in front early, as both in-state programs have offered. He is a four-star talent UMD has been keeping tabs on since the first live period, and Turgeon could be extending a scholarship to shortly. The 6-8, 190-pounder will be difficult to pry from the Sunshine State, however.

Class of 2016 Big Men

The Terps watched a new power forward target April 24-25, and this Florida native received a Maryland offer shortly thereafter. Dewan Huell (Miami Norland) shined in Indianapolis, hitting the boards, blocking shots and scoring underneath, proving why he’s considered a five-star talent.

We’re not sure how much traction UMD can gain here, though. Huell has Louisville, Florida, Kansas, Miami, FSU and others after him, and even more bluebloods are about to become involved.

Turgeon also has a scholarship out to another Florida recruit. Center Udoka Azubuike (Potter's House Christian Academy/Jacksonville, Fla.) picked up his Maryland verbal after the first live period, adding it to a list that includes Kansas, Kentucky, UCLA, FSU, UF and more.

Azubuike is wide open in his recruitment, but we’re hesitant to even put him on the hot board with the Wildcats and Jayhawks all over him. Turgeon did just land center Diamond Stone, however, so perhaps the Terps’ head coach can use that mojo to sway someone like Azubuike. Stay tuned.

A Couple 2017 Notes

Maryland is obviously monitoring numerous sophomores, but the five main targets look to be Quade Green (Neumann-Goretti/Philadelphia, Pa.), Trevon Duval (St. Benedict's/ Newark, N.J.), Myles Douglas (Friends/Baltimore, Md.), Jordan Tucker (White Plains, N.Y.) and Mohammed Bamba (Westtown, Pa.). All of the above currently hold Terps offers.

I spoke to the combo guard Green this week, and he does seem to be intrigued by UMD. He’s visited College Park before, likes the school and coaches, and is looking forward to returning in the weeks ahead.

Green also has hometown Villanova (perhaps his leader) on the brain, in addition to Michigan State. Meanwhile, he’s pining for a Duke look, although it’s questionable whether or not the Blue Devils will pursue.

There’s a ways to go in Green’s recruitment, but it does look like the Terps will be a player here. (ARTICLE).

The point guard Duval is a five-star talent the Terps will have to work for. Louisville is the leader in the clubhouse, while Syracuse, UConn, Nova, Cincinnati, UMD, Miami, Pitt and Nova are in pursuit.

There hasn’t been too much information or insight into his recruitment yet, however.

Another five-star, the big man Bamba, holds close to 15 offers as a sophomore. We haven’t heard much about where he stands, but the Terps do have a connection with him through former Westtown star Jared Nickens. Turgeon and Dustin Clark have a great relationship with the Westtown coaches, so maybe that will help them with Bamba down the road.

Others on the 6-9 power forward are Arizona, UConn, FSU, Syracuse, Nova, Temple and more.

On April 28, Turgeon offered the small forward Tucker, a 6-7, 200-pound four-star with the country's elites already after him. In-state Syracuse has a bead on him, and Tucker just recently visited the Orange, coming away highly impressed. Uconn has his eye too, while Arizona is involved and could work into the mix.

The Terps have been monitoring Tucker for awhile and have made inroads, but it's not going to be easy trucking going against nearby Cuse and UConn.

Finally, there’s the small forward Douglas, who resides in Maryland’s backyard. We’ve spoken to the Baltimore product numerous times, and Douglas has tipped his hand in UMD’s favor early. He’s visited College Park several times, loves Turgeon and Bino Ranson, and likes the idea of representing the hometown school.

We’ll see if he maintains that position as his profile expands moving forward (Miami is the only other high-major offer he holds).

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