The only thing certain in life is Death, Taxes, and each week a player will either be joining the Maryland Basketball team or leaving it. OK, maybe there are more certainties than that, but it doesn’t take away from the fact that this basketball team is changing before our very eyes.
Now some of these changes are planned, and some not so much. Today Terrell Stoglin announced he will not be returning to Maryland for his Junior Season. First glance, you want to say “Is he crazy? He isn’t ready for the NBA.” But as more info comes to light, it appears this wasn’t anyone’s, what you’d call a “Decision”. Stoglin per other sources has failed a drug test and would be suspended for a year. And this of course changes everything.
It isn’t about what is good for Terrell, and for Maryland basketball, it is an unfortunate incident that happens when you center sports programs around 18-23 year old kids. Stoglin made some bad choices and now we are all paying for it. Us fans are paying because our chances of making the NCAA Tournament next year just took a hit. Terrell’s paying for it in that he isn’t ready for the NBA, and could have used another year (or more) at Maryland. And Turgeon is paying for it in that he now has to scramble to replace the bulk of our points from the 2011-2012 season.
But if you need to grab on to some good news, this just makes the mystery of next year’s Maryland Basketball season all the more intriguing. We are going to be a completely different team. Now in College Basketball when you see this kind of change it means “rebuilding” and that word can accurately be used to describe our situation, but whereas “rebuilding” is usually code for “Be patient, we are going to suck for a little while”, in this case, I think the team will emerge stronger.
Now is this good news, no not at all. This team is definitely better with Stoglin on the floor, yet at the same time, how much were he and Turgeon butting heads? Was Terrell really a great team player? I don’t have the answers to those questions, but these won’t be questions to be answered come this fall. We are now one step closer to having this team be guys entirely brought on by Mark Turgeon, and that is precisely why we brought Coach Turgeon in. He is adapt at turning programs around, and this just speeds up the process.
If it doesn’t pay immediate dividends in 2012-2013, maybe it gives some of the other guys that much more experience for the following season, when our goal goes from making the Tournament, to getting the highest possible seed. Regardless, Stoglin isn’t coming back. In fact he CAN’T come back. But those who can are pretty good, and are buying into the new system. So despite this set back, our expectations can remain high….if only Stoglin wasn’t!