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And The Lance Stephenson Sweepstakes Winner Is ...

... Cincinnati? That's right, the talented guard out of Brooklyn who Maryland at one point highly coveted signed a financial aid agreement on Tuesday with Cincinnati, according to a statement released by the Bearcats. Several news outlets reported Stephenson's signing Tuesday morning, and it was officially announced that afternoon.

At one point this spring, the Terrapins were said to be among Stephenson's final three choices, and even into the summer Maryland pursued the services of one of the top-rated guards in the Class of 2009.

But for many reasons, including a sexual assault charge brought against Stephenson (which was adjourned Monday until July 15) as well as concerns over potential eligibility issues stemming from a web-site reality series created to center on Stephenson, Maryland stopped recruiting Stephenson in the past month.

Stephenson's talents on the court were never in question. Rather, it was the excess baggage he carried off it that deterred some teams from continuing to recruit him. Several sources said in recent weeks that Stephenson intends to be a one-and-done player, meaning his stay at Cincinnati likely will be brief.

The Bearcats seemingly came out of nowhere to nab Stephenson, a result of a lingering recruitment that drew on longer than anyone would have predicted a year ago. Will the NCAA open an investigation into Stephenson's eligibility? Will he ever actually play for Mick Cronin's squad? Will he fulfill his vast potential at the college level? All those questions remain unanswered for the time being.

What is certain is that the Maryland coaching staff was satisfied with its current compilation of players -- a group that returns nearly all key components from last season's NCAA tournament team and adds a pair of incoming freshman forwards -- and was content to let Stephenson, a recruit in which it invested much time and energy, sign elsewhere.

By Steve Yanda  |  July 1, 2009; 5:56 PM ET
Categories:  Men's basketball  
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Next: Catching Up With Greivis Vasquez

Comments

One of the best decisions in a long time by the MD staff. Well done! I don't care how good he is, I'm happy we're not grabbing some one-and-done kid.

Posted by: imageaid | July 1, 2009 6:28 PM | Report abuse

With Vasquez, Hayes, Bowie, Mosley, Tucker and Milbourne all coming back, Stephenson would have had a pretty tough time logging major minutes next year at MD anyway. Once Vasquez made it official that he was coming back, it became clear that Lance was not needed. We're a top 20 team right now as is.

Posted by: Barno1 | July 1, 2009 7:31 PM | Report abuse

He was likely to cause more problems than he was worth for the Terps.

Vazquez is going to be awesome this year!

Posted by: msveasey | July 1, 2009 8:37 PM | Report abuse

Stephenson's an overhyped plague. Nevertheless, Gary didn't get the memo re recruiting once again - another sorry recruiting class.

Posted by: BulletsFan1 | July 1, 2009 9:04 PM | Report abuse

Stephenson's an overhyped plague. Nevertheless, Gary didn't get the memo re recruiting once again - another sorry recruiting class.

Posted by: BulletsFan1 | July 1, 2009 9:04 PM

Two top 100 forwards and a blue chip recruit signed for next year. This, after 4 top 25 classes in 7 years. Apparently YOU didn't get the memo.

Posted by: Barno1 | July 1, 2009 11:27 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone else find it odd that the Sports Bog usually has more informative, interesting articles regarding the Terps than Terps Insider?

Posted by: fushezzi | July 2, 2009 8:04 AM | Report abuse

I agree w/ the majority that this is good news for MD. There are reasons why almost every big-time school backed off recruiting this guy. Not only questions regarding his amateur status/eligibility but also tons of questions on whether this guy is a locker room cancer. No player worth risking probation.

Posted by: sportsjunkie29 | July 2, 2009 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Let's be honest, with all the challenges facing the Maryland basketball program(blue-chip recruiting being one of them), we didn't need this headache.

It would have been a deal with the devil and the one year rental would probably have bit us hard on the back end.

I don't mean to go all sour grapes. I am satisfied that we at least made a play for him and that we tried to make it work. It sends a signal to other top notch prospects. Walking away from his drama sends a pretty clear signal to their handlers.

Posted by: mabkhar | July 2, 2009 8:45 AM | Report abuse

Good, like others have said the Terps didn't need him anyways nor his possible problems. We don't need another Gilchrist on the team. I heard Garry say yesterday on sports talk 980 that they got 2 good recruits. One of them was a Milborne/Gist type guy who can play either forward spot and the other was a big bruiser inside 6'11, 250 lbs I believe he said. He likes to play with his back to the basket which is something the Terps haven't had since I can rememeber. The last guy they truly had that could do that was Baxter and Wilcox but they weren't that big. So I guess I'd go all the way to back to Joe Smith.... wow that's a long time ago.

Posted by: avbanig | July 2, 2009 9:29 AM | Report abuse

Except for Barno's typical Koolaid induced comments about the Terps outlook for next year and Vasquez and the other stalwarts on the team, most of the comments are right on. The guy is trouble and over-rated. Maryland did the right thing to stop the process.

But, pleaseeeeeeeee....2 Top 100's are typical BS hype to a very poor recruiting program.

Mediocrity reigns.

Posted by: petecard | July 2, 2009 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Anyone who thinks Stephenson wouldn't have made the Terps a top 10 squad is nuts. With that being said it made sense to back off on him he has too much baggage. But it still sucks and he would have had a major impact.

Posted by: lavar609 | July 2, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Good lord, the beast has awakened from his offseason hybernation to come on here and trash the Terps' chances yet again. He has been wrong with every single prediction he has ever made about the Terps, but that doesn't stop this moron from making more foolish statements regarding this team.

No, Petecard, it's not a "koolaid" (a reference you have botched for the umpteenth time) induced coma to think we're a top 20 team this year--it's a fact you idiot:

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/columns/story?columnist=katz_andy&id=4262039

ESPN has the Terps ranked 17th going into next year.

Posted by: Barno1 | July 2, 2009 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Let's face it. We are toast.

Another disappointing season with a team that just doesn't measure up.

We aren't even a factor in the ACC, much less nationally.

Missing the tournament for the 4th time in 5 years is simply unacceptable.

Our program is a real disappointment and I am disgusted.

Let's hear it Koolaid drinkers.

Posted by: petecard | March 9, 2009 6:30 PM


Gary should use the game against NC State to get ready for the NIT.

Maryland plays in the NIT so often it should consider becoming the title sponsor.

Turtle Soup, brought to you by Gary Williams. Simply warm and serve.

Posted by: petecard | March 9, 2009 8:56 AM

Posted by: Barno1 | March 19, 2009 10:06 PM

Barno,

We ARE toast. You think beating NC State means anything?

Why not just deal with the bottom line: We are going to miss the tournament this year for the 4th time in 5 years.

Unacceptable.

Gary's responsibility.

Posted by: petecard | February 19, 2009 10:32 AM

Right now we have a mediocre program.

The FOG's think Gary should be able to write his own ticket.

Posted by: petecard | March 1, 2009 10:22 AM

Gary's contract will be up in 2-3 years. That's where the focus should be.

Posted by: petecard | March 13, 2009 10:33 AM

Why not just deal with the bottom line: We are going to miss the tournament this year for the 4th time in 5 years.

Unacceptable.

Gary's responsibility.

Posted by: petecard | February 19, 2009 10:32 AM

making the NCAA is not a worthy goal in and of itself

Posted by: petecard | February 28, 2009 12:17 PM

Even if we make it, that is NOT the benchmark we should have for our program

Posted by: petecard | March 3, 2009 2:18 PM

Why don't we start a movement to get GW and Brenda Frese to switch jobs.

The men's program would take off and it would mean huge national PR.

The problem: The women's program would tank. Guess that is just not fair....

I'll bet Debbie Yow had thought about it!

Posted by: petecard | March 9, 2009 6:36 PM


No break for Gary or you. Why don't you take him with you to another place. How about Virginia or UMBC?

It is "fans" like you who drink the Koolaid and settle for what is at best mediocrity.

But we have a great field hockey team!

Posted by: petecard | March 8, 2009 3:09 PM

Posted by: Barno1 | July 2, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Petecard, you never learn.

If I were you I'd be ashamed to show my face around here after the stupid stuff you've said about Gary and the terps.

Nothing youve said has EVER turned out to be correct, not one thing.

But yet you keep on making stupid prediction after stupid prediction no matter how many times you've been wrong.

It's pretty funny to the rest of us how much of a moron you are.

Posted by: terpsfan09 | July 2, 2009 11:48 AM | Report abuse

We were an average ACC team last year and we have a mediocre program, not an elite program.

You all can give all the excuses you want, but it comes down to a lack of talent.

So what if ESPN has us ranked 17th. When are we going to be a consistent Top 10? And preseason polls are BS.

You think I don't want the team to win, you are wrong. But I want more than you. I do not accept where we are.

I hope we do very well next year. But I seriously doubt that we will. The question is....what is doing very well? My answer is at a higher level than the Koolaid drinkers.

Barno, the Koolaid reference is spot on. You just don't get it.

By the way, I take great pleasure in you using all your energy to repost my comments. It is hysterical!

Posted by: petecard | July 2, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

hope we do very well next year. But I seriously doubt that we will.

Posted by: petecard | July 2, 2009 12:15 PM

Since every single one of your previous predictions of Terps success has turned out to be totally wrong, then your above comments bode well for the Terps next year.

If the moron Petecard "seriously doubts" we'll be good next year, then we'll be in good shape.

(and barno1 is rigth, you really don't have any idea how to use the koolaid reference appropriately you moron).

Posted by: terpsfan09 | July 2, 2009 12:25 PM | Report abuse

So what if ESPN has us ranked 17th. When are we going to be a consistent Top 10?

Posted by: petecard | July 2, 2009 12:15 PM

When has Maryland EVER been a consistent Top 10 team? How many teams in the nation are a "consistent" top 10 team right now? Maybe 2?

Just face the facts, you're an imbecile who has been wrong repeatedly on here but has never had the balls to admit how foolish ALL of your claims turned out, and instead you try to change the subject by making more pessimistic statements about the Terps future.

Go back to whatever hole you've been hiding in since the season ended.

Posted by: Barno1 | July 2, 2009 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Just wanted to point out that Barno did that cut and paste in four minutes. Impressive.

My two cents - with Vasquez back, the Terps have more than enough bakcourt talent - Stephenson would not have helped much at all at best. Very few big men come in and dominate the ACC -to my knowledge the only Terps freshment to do so were Joe Smith, Brian Williams (Bison Dele) and Ben Coleman (who had a ton of talent around him and was a ferocious defensive presence his freshman year). Prior to Coleman, not a lot of freshmen got playing time - including McMillan and Elmore. Terence Morris had an excelent freshman year as a SF/PF. Lonny, Tahj, and Wilcox all were lacking as well - although I believe Ekezie was still there when Lonny was a freshman. And in terms of great pro players - Rasheed and Tim Duncan were clearly behind Joe Smith as freshmen.

Burney is the key. We keep forgetting about his huge body and recruiting hype because of the injuries. Even if the new recruits are the second coming of Joe Smith and Brian Williams, we still need depth to be a truly great team. We know Gregory is a worst a high energy effective reserve. More than likely, he could be an effective starter at 4, adequate at 5. Freeing up Milbourne to concentrate on 3 requires an additional big man to the new recruits. Its gotta be Burney.

Is Goins still with MD or did he transfer?

Posted by: HughGRection | July 2, 2009 12:48 PM | Report abuse

I meant "Gregory is at worst a high energy, effective reserve." I believe he will be a starter and hold onto the job through the season although won't mind being proven wrong on that opinion as it would mean that at least one of the freshmen is a player.

Posted by: HughGRection | July 2, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

I am happy we didn't get Lance, but hope there are more blue chippers in the future. Ready for a big year

Posted by: jpfterps | July 2, 2009 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone else find it odd that the Sports Bog usually has more informative, interesting articles regarding the Terps than Terps Insider?

Posted by: fushezzi | July 2, 2009 8:04 AM

i think, given how often the MI is updated, the Post must have assigned it to the mailroom crew to handle over lunch breaks. i'm relying on the Sun for my Terps coverage more and more.

Posted by: mdrockjock | July 2, 2009 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Two top 100 players? Wow!

Between that the implosion of GW, Maryland looks like it'll claw it's way back to being the 3rd best team in the Washington Metro area.

Congrats Gary!

Posted by: HughAkston | July 2, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Barno,

You make my point.

Top 17 (25), making the tournanment now and then, hoping to beat Duke and UNC once in a while, winning 20 games...that's what you want from Gary.

There are at least 10-15 consitently elite programs. I am not going to get in a pissing contest over which are and which aren't, but most are because of the coach.

Maryland is not one of them...because the coach does a lousy job recruiting.

He's a good game coach. He is an ineffective recruiter.

And Barno, I'm not going anywhere. This isn't your blog, but you do provide a lot of humorous material.

Posted by: petecard | July 2, 2009 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Gary should've paid the Post $25,000 to get more favorable coverage.

Posted by: CrownRoyal1 | July 3, 2009 8:09 AM | Report abuse

Top 17 (25), making the tournanment now and then, hoping to beat Duke and UNC once in a while

Posted by: petecard | July 2, 2009 3:16 PM

"making the tournament now and then"?

Now and then? Gary's gotten us in 13 out of the last 16 years.

"hoping to beat Duke and UNC once in a while"

Once in a while? We've owned UNC the last couple years and until last year had more wins against Duke in the last decade than any team in the country.

What planet are you living on where you think you should bash the coach of your favorite team if they are not "consistently top 10"? You're just nuts Pete. Plain and simple. It's not that you have higher expectations than other Terps fans, it's just that you're an idiot.

Posted by: Barno1 | July 5, 2009 6:53 PM | Report abuse

Barno,

I am happy to let others decide. The Koolaid drinkers are with you. The people who expect a better program are with me.

Being one of 64 teams is NOT a measure of success. Let's talk Sweet 16's and Elite 8's.

We have "owned" UNC and Duke? What planet are you living on?

Posted by: petecard | July 6, 2009 6:32 PM | Report abuse

"hoping to beat Duke and UNC once in a while" -Petecard

Once in a while? We've owned UNC the last couple years and until last year had more wins against Duke in the last decade than any team in the country.

Posted by: Barno1 | July 5, 2009 6:53 PM

We have "owned" UNC and Duke? What planet are you living on?

Posted by: petecard | July 6, 2009 6:32 PM

I did not say we have owned UNC and Duke. I said we have owned UNC the last couple years (taking them down in 06/07 in the same week we took down Duke, knocking them off when they were number 1 in 07/08 on their own court, and taking them down for a third straight year when they were number 2 in 08/09). And I said we have more wins vs Duke over the span of a decade than any other team in the country.

These are call "facts," you know those pesky little things that you hate because they show how much of a fool you are.

Posted by: Barno1 | July 7, 2009 12:40 PM | Report abuse

"hoping to beat Duke and UNC once in a while" -Petecard

Once in a while? We've owned UNC the last couple years and until last year had more wins against Duke in the last decade than any team in the country.

Posted by: Barno1 | July 5, 2009 6:53 PM

We have "owned" UNC and Duke? What planet are you living on?

Posted by: petecard | July 6, 2009 6:32 PM

I did not say we have owned UNC and Duke. I said we have owned UNC the last couple years (taking them down in 06/07 in the same week we took down Duke, knocking them off when they were number 1 in 07/08 on their own court, and taking them down for a third straight year when they were number 2 in 08/09). And I said we have more wins vs Duke over the span of a decade than any other team in the country.

These are call "facts," you know those pesky little things that you hate because they show how much of a fool you are.

Posted by: Barno1 | July 7, 2009 12:40 PM

It is pretty pathetic when you are hanging your hat on a regular season win over UNC or Duke. How is it possible, and I ask this in all seriousness, can Maryland win a NC in 2002 and follow it up with only making the Big Dance 3 of 6 times and not advancing past the sweet 16 once? Gary is a great coach, there is no doubt about that. You have incredible facilities. Maryland has a really good academic reputation and the DC/MD/NVA area is a hotbed for big-time talent! What is the problem here?

Posted by: NCMatt1 | July 7, 2009 5:23 PM | Report abuse

It is pretty pathetic when you are hanging your hat on a regular season win over UNC or Duke. How is it possible, and I ask this in all seriousness, can Maryland win a NC in 2002 and follow it up with only making the Big Dance 3 of 6 times and not advancing past the sweet 16 once? Gary is a great coach, there is no doubt about that. You have incredible facilities. Maryland has a really good academic reputation and the DC/MD/NVA area is a hotbed for big-time talent! What is the problem here?

Posted by: NCMatt1 | July 7, 2009 5:23 PM

Same problems that have faced numerous National Champs in the years immediately following their championship.

The Post's claim that no team has fallen further after winning a championship since the early 90s was INCREDIBLY misleading and some might say dishonest. Look at the numbers.

Florida's bball program is a joke right now only 2 years removed from winning the title, they are now in danger of missing the tourney for the 3rd straight year (has MD missed the tourney 3 straight years? no)

Connecticut missed not only the NCAA tourney but the NIT as well! (MD has never been in danger of missing the NIT).

Arkansas fell apart. They've had multiple LOSING seasons since winning the title (MD has never been in danger of having a losing season under Gary).

UNLV collapsed altogether.

North Carolina went 8-20 in 2002, and 15-17 a year later. 20 losses and 17 losses in back to back years? That's falling a hell of a lot further than MD ever "fell."

MD has had at least 19 wins in 14 consecutive years. They would have made the tournament in at least 5 of those 6 years since the championship had their best player (Strawberry) not gotten injured for the season very early in one of those years (04/05( and had their leading scorer (McCray) not gotten ruled academically ineligible very early in another one of those years (05/06).

Time to keep things in perspective here.

Posted by: Barno1 | July 7, 2009 11:09 PM | Report abuse

tell him barno, GW is ans always will be a legend here in MD. He has done more with less for so long that spoiled fans want more and lose sight of everything he has done for this program. How many other coaches do you know of who can take lesser players and beat the blue chippers at UNC and Duke as often as we do? Yeah we have alot of talent coming out of our region but we also have alot of big basketball programs to compete with for them. I'll stick with Gary and be grateful. It could be a whole lot worse.

Posted by: scottmando | July 8, 2009 4:36 PM | Report abuse

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