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Stephenson Postpones Commitment Announcement

Shortly after 1 a.m. this morning, the PR folks with the McDonald's All-American game sent out the following message:

Following tonight’s POWERADE Jam Fest, the McDonald’s All American Games staff learned that Lance Stephenson will not make his college decision at media day, Tuesday, March 31 at 11:45 a.m. ET or during the Game on Wednesday, April 1 at the BankUnited Center in Miami.

Lance Stephenson, along with the 46 other student-athletes playing in the McDonald’s All American Games, is expected to participate in media day at the BankUnited Center’s Hurricane 100 Room and be available to answer your questions.

So it appears as though Stephenson is not as set on his decision as he made it appear in recent weeks. Initially, Stephenson was to declare his college decision following the New York City public school title game at Madison Square Garden on March 21. Then the Stephenson camp let it be known the prep phenom would reveal his choice on March 31, the day before he was to play in the McDonald's all-American game in Miami.

Two weeks ago, it was reported that Stephenson had made his decision, but that he would wait until today to make it public. Stephenson said his final three choices were Kansas, Maryland and St. John's, but it was widely thought that Kansas would be the pick.

Now, that presumption does not appear to be as solid.

Maryland Coach Gary Williams was in Glen Falls, N.Y. on Saturday to watch the final game of Stephenson's high school career. He saw a Lincoln High squad, led by Stephenson and Maryland-bound forward James Padgett, fall to Rice, 77-50, in the Class AA semifinals. Padgett tallied 12 points and 10 rebounds, while Stephenson recorded 14 points and six rebounds.

When asked about Williams showing up for the game, Stephenson told the New York Post, "I was surprised to see him."

Equally surprising was Stephenson's decision to once again postpone his announcement as to which school he'll commit. But for Maryland followers, it would seem to be an encouraging sign.

I'll be in Miami to talk with Stephenson at the McDonald's all-American game media day in a few hours and I'll post an update afterward.

In the meantime, what do you all make of this? Do you see it as a good sign for the Terrapins that Stephenson delayed his announcement, given that it was widely presumed prior to about five hours ago that he would choose Kansas?

By Steve Yanda  |  March 31, 2009; 6:09 AM ET
Categories:  Men's basketball  
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Next: Stephenson Elects to 'Wait It Out'

Comments

Can't be a bad sign. But I'm also wondering if he doesn't cross everyone up and stay home at St John's.

Posted by: Samson151 | March 31, 2009 7:28 AM | Report abuse

my guess is he doesn't have the grades to get into college and he'll play overseas

Posted by: fkterp | March 31, 2009 9:01 AM | Report abuse

part of me thinks this has him wondering about other schools...the whole potential for Callipari to Kentucky might shift the winds? If a coach is fired or quits, are the players still held to their commitments?

Posted by: doh1 | March 31, 2009 9:13 AM | Report abuse

If a coach is fired or quits, are the players still held to their commitments?

Posted by: doh1 | March 31, 2009 9:13 AM

No. Usually in the letter of intent signed, there is a part that says the player will have the option to rescind their commitment if the coach leaves under any circumstances. Not all letters have this, but most do.

Posted by: jra004 | March 31, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Enough of this already....hard it is for me to say this as a Terps fan...but I would rather not see him come here....The stuff surrounding him is a complete circus..we don't need that here.

Posted by: ejharrisjr40 | March 31, 2009 10:17 AM | Report abuse

Another Jai Lucas scenario where he drags it out all summer.

Posted by: lavar609 | March 31, 2009 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Wait, Eric and Steve, I thought Gary didn't recruit? That was the essence of your piece, that he did not work hard enough recruiting...

I am STILL waiting for the article on the demise of Georgetown's season and their losing their top recruit because of "a lack of relationship with the coach".

JT III -> loses 1st round of NIT
GW -> Wins 1st round of NCAAs

Posted by: S2DU | March 31, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Good sign for Terps fans, but I wish this guy would make up his mind already. Too many of these kids get the star treatment before they ever set foot on the court. Quit being a prima donna and let us know your decision!!

Posted by: jterrell | March 31, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

i think id rather have seth curry...since he would be around more than one year...

but id be happy with either...we just need to land one of these guys...and start getting more of the bigger recruits...

not the biggest necessarily but just bigger than we've been getting on average...

Posted by: deadskin | March 31, 2009 12:19 PM | Report abuse

I like that Gary Williams hasn't given up on Stephenson. Yet, I'd be pleasantly surprised if he committed to the Terps.

That said, he has a bit of a reputation for not playing team basketball and for being a renegade on the court. I'm not sure he's a good fit for Gary's system.

I'm not fond of the "one and done" guys, but if you can attract top recruits, then it opens the floodgates to acquire top recruits in the future.

The Terps need to have a Plan B in case he commits elsewhere.

Posted by: imterpsfan2 | March 31, 2009 12:27 PM | Report abuse

I think Stephenson is plan B. We don't even have an open scholarship for him at the moment. I have to agree with some of the other posters though, I'd prefer that he goes elsewhere. After reading an SI piece on him yesterday the guy seems way too full of himself and lacks any sort of maturity. He already has a kid although he still behaves very much like one. His volatile personality added with Gary's no-nonsense approach, combined with Greivis' "eccentricity" seems like a receipe for disaster. I'd rather get someone like Vinson who's going to stay a few years and keep building good will with the people in Baltimore as a recruiting ground.

Posted by: andreic | March 31, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse

I live in Brooklyn and there is no way this kid, or any other for that matter, no matter how much they love nyc will not play at st johns unless they have to.

st johns is a huge joke up here, they would lose to your companies pick up team if you could schedule a game.

Stephenson sounds like an indecisive somewhat primadonna who loves attention, this will drag out for a while and he probably won't sign with the terps.

Posted by: peteywheatstraw | March 31, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

I personally think its time for the scolarship to be pulled. Is it really worth the trouble for a possible one year deep run? Kids with parents like this that think they are above it all are normally nothing but trouble. All the offers are on the table and this waiting game smells, I hope that Gary Williams pulls the plug and lets this kid go. People like this are a cancer on a team and an institution.

Separate subject but I loved the intensity of the 2008/2009 Maryland Basketball team. A great bunch of young men that gave it their all each and everyday. Kudo's to Gary Williams and the fine job that he has done for the University of Maryland since day one. Coach Williams cut the strings to this kid, he and his parents are nothing but trouble and will take away more than they will ever bring.
When will this paper write about the demise of the great Georgetown? Let's not be one sided.

Posted by: pshinnamon | April 1, 2009 4:38 PM | Report abuse

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