Thursday, May 03, 2007

The gift that keeps on giving

It wasn't enough to help scuttle the Maryland basketball program when it had reach the pinnacle of its success. According to the latest article in the Washington Post not one of the former players of the infamous 2002 recruiting class graduated last year. You can also add chuckle head Juco transfer Sterling Ledbetter to that list of non-graduating players as well. That pushed the APR (academic progress report) score for Maryland's basketball team to 908, which is below the NCAA mandated 925. This season the Terps will get a kind of dispensation from the NCAA but starting next year there could be serious consequences to another APR score below the acceptable level.

That is fantastic isn't it? This disastrous group had more guilty pleas than NCAA tournament appearances. Even after they left Maryland and exhausted their eligibility they could still be hurting the program next season. I think it is safe to say that given the rankings and reputation of the 2002 class that they were a catastrophe of historical proportions. They didn't have any concept of their responsibilities while at Maryland and clearly haven't learned any lessons since they left. It is no wonder that the adults that run the NBA didn't have any interest in this group. The supposed "good guy" of the group got arrested and then flunked off the team while a senior captain. That about says it all.

Of the 2003 class two players: Will Bowers and Ekene Ibekwe are on pace to graduate. Mike Jones and DJ Strawberry have left school to prepare for a possible NBA career. Don't think that these factors have not played into Maryland recruiting players like Dino Gregory, Adrian Bowie, Cliff Tucker and Shane Walker. They may not be elite recruits but they are probably not going to struggle in the college classroom.

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