Men’s basketball at the University of Maryland had not had such an amazing start in the history of the program, but lately, they seem to be trying to snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory. With an incredible group of starters, there is really no reason the Terps should not be winning, yet in the last few games, Maryland fans have been left feeling horribly disappointed.
One of the keys to moving forward and embracing the destiny of the 2015-2016 Terps? Dance with the guy who brought you. Though freshman Diamond Stone has grown by leaps and bounds, he should be returned to the bench to age a bit, like a fine wine. Lest you anticipate that this is an anti-Terp opinion, quite the contrary. This Maryland fan has lived through the dark days that followed the passing of Len Bias, and being banned from television and tournaments, but when a team has a chance to shine, it should be able to do so.
According to the Inquisitr, though the Maryland Terrapins are an ensemble, it’s hard not to notice the incredible guard, Maryland native Melo Trimble. If ever a player could move around with attitude, it’s Trimble, yet he is humble, charming, and always has a smile for fans, and even refs. With his raw talent and work ethic, it is no wonder he is on the short list for the Bob Cousy Award, which recognizes the nation’s top point guard.
The Washington Post reported that Maryland coach Mark Turgeon took the assertive and proper move of suspending freshman Diamond Stone for his childish behavior by committing a flagrant foul during the game against Wisconsin. Rules did not dictate that Turgeon force Stone to sit out, but it was the right decision to demonstrate to the freshman that though he is a talented player, he is not above the rules, and the overall interest in fair play. Sportswriter Roman Stubbs accurately described the incident, which embarrassed the Terps in their play against Wisconsin.
“The incident occurred in the final seconds of the first half, in which Stone and Brown were tangled with each other while angling for a loose ball. After both went to the floor near the baseline, Stone attempted to climb to his feet and pushed Brown’s head into the court.”
The whole athletic department of the University of Maryland was apologetic, and Diamond Stone issued an apology.
“I want to apologize to Vitto Brown and the Wisconsin basketball team for my unacceptable behavior during Saturday’s game,” Stone said in a statement. “I regret that I let the emotions of the game get the best of me. I let my team down and I accept full responsibility for my actions.”
The whole incident was cringeworthy, and Terps fans around the globe agree with Turgeon’s decision to take the extra step.
The Testudo Times, the sporting news of the University of Maryland (for those of you who don’t know, the school mascot, a Terrapin, featured in statue form around campus, is named Testudo) proposed that sitting freshman star Diamond Stone back on the bench is the right thing to do this season, if winning, and winning as a team, is the plan. Despite having some serious rock stars through the years, Maryland basketball has a long tradition of winning as a team, and not as a single player, ball-hog type of show.
Now, please, don’t think there isn’t love for Diamond Stone. He’s an amazing player, and shows a great deal of promise. One day, he will be Mr. Right, but he’s not Mr. Right Now. The Testudo Times is suggesting that Stone should play, but he is not ready to start.
“The ball tends to move a lot less with Stone on the court, as he only has nine assists on the season. Damonte Dodd, who’s played 182 less minutes, has eight, and he touches the ball much less frequently. This isn’t a knock on Stone’s game; it’s just the type of player he is. He may bring more value to the team coming off the bench, staggering his minutes with Carter.”
So returning Stone, for now, to his sixth man position, might just be the key to resetting the Terps to their top five position going into tournament season. Damonte Dodd, the selfless junior, at least deserves a chance to shake things back up, and return Maryland to their promising season.
The college basketball season is, without a doubt, the most wonderful time of the year, and the Maryland Terrapins still have a chance to have the winning season, with the team effort that fans were promised.
What do you think is the key to getting the Terps back on track?
[Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images]