Maryland's Depth Proves to be Biggest Advantage

By Daniel Stecker
Mitch Stringer-US PRESSWIRE

It is hard to remember the last time Maryland fans were this excited about their beloved Terrapins basketball team.

This year, the Terps are giving the residents of College Park a lot to cheer about. Their core group of young players has proved that they are ready to contribute on a high level.

Highlighted by Seth Allen, Maryland’s freshmen have showed up this season and added a lot to the team on both sides of the ball. The strong play of the freshmen in addition to the upperclassmen contributing at a steady rate has given Maryland their deepest teams in years.

This depth was highlighted in Maryland’s 91-74 victory over LIU Brooklyn.

Sophomore star Nick Faust struggled throughout the game, shooting 2-8 from the field and only recording six points. Maryland was able to reconcile for Faust’s struggling with strong guard play from Allen and P’Shonn Howard, who finally proved why he deserves to be in the starting lineup.

Dez Wells also had a hype-matching performance, and justified Maryland’s excitement for the sophomore transfer.

In the front court, freshmen Charles Mitchell and Shaquille Cleare have been showing fans that they are ready to contribute at a high level.

Mitchell’s prowess on the boards make him one of the most valuable members on the team. He constantly keeps balls alive and never gives up on a play. He is a 6’7 250 pound personification of Mark Turgeon’s coaching philosophy.

Cleare has used his power to make plays on both offense and defense. He is slightly more raw than Mitchell, but his ceiling is through the roof. He has been gradually improving since the season started, and will only continue to improve and gain confidence as he plays stronger teams.

Freshmen Jake Layman has also added a lot to the team with his shooting stroke, which is almost as glorious as his hair.

As Maryland continues to take on these “cupcake” games, their younger players continue to gain experience and confidence. If Maryland can ride their big three of Faust, Wells, and Alex Len, with their young talented freshmen riding shotgun and helping out, Maryland is going to have an extremely successful season.

After watching the Terrel Stoglin show last year end in a lack of action in March, it is refreshing to see a young deep Maryland team that is not reliant on one player, but is reliant on each other to get the job done.

The Terps are looking like a well oiled machine right now. As long as all of the parts keep working, College Park is going to be a happy place.


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