On Wednesday, Terps fans got good news in the form of a tweet from Terrell Stoglin. He announced that he would be returning to the University of Maryland for his junior season.
Many, including myself, were left wondering after Maryland’s season ended why Terps Guard — and leading scorer, finishing 8th nationally — Terrell Stoglin was even testing the NBA Draft waters after his Sophomore season. Don’t be mistaken, despite the shooting woes the last 8 games of the season, Stoglin carried this team on his back for most of the season. However, at just 6’1 and lack of ability to be a true Point Guard he was questionable, at best, to be drafted this June.
In fact, most mock draft sites don’t even have Stoglin in their top 100 draft prospects. The knocks on Stoglin are pretty clear. He’s short for a Shooting Guard, he will literally shoot from anywhere, and he tends to hog the ball. Now that last part may just be from a lack of other scoring options on the current squad. So we’ll have to see how he plays when reinforcements come next year. Stoglin also had many disagreements with Coach Mark Turgeon throughout the year.
Benching’s and being pulled from games for poor shot selection weren’t exactly uncommon. Then there was the quote after the loss at Virginia “If Terrell [Stoglin] played the point all the time, we’d have 17 possessions where no one else would touch the ball” said Turgeon after the loss.
So what does it mean for Maryland that Stoglin is returning, and is it a good thing?
For starters, Stoglin returning ensures Maryland that their leading scorer will return. Maryland struggled for points this past year when Stoglin wasn’t on the court. Obviously, they struggled for points when he was shooting off-balance three-pointers early in shot clock too, but his ability to put the ball in the basket in a variety of ways is unmatched on the team.
What role will he play next year? That’s going to be a big question heading into the season as Maryland loaded up its recruiting class with big men. Maryland lacked a true dominant big man last year, but with Shaq Cleare coming in and possibly starting right away, Maryland will likely get away from the four-guard lineup it used for big stretches of the year.
As it stands, the likely starting lineup will probably be Pe’Shon Howard (if healthy), Stoglin, Nick Faust, James Padgett and either Alex Len or Shaq Cleare. If Howard isn’t healthy, Terps fans might be looking at Jake Layman or Mychal Parker starting.
The shots will need to be distributed a little better this year. I can’t imagine Stoglin taking 17 shots a game next year, possibly could still see 7 from beyond the arc. Stoglin will have to fit into the offense, rather than playing an AAU-style 1-on-5 show he was playing this year.
Stoglin returning is obviously great news for Terps fans. He’ll have to fit into the offense better than last year, and improve his shot selection, but his presence is huge. He’s automatically going to be the focus of the opposing defense, and will help get open looks for others on the court.