By Jack Rothenberg
Following a down recruiting year in 2020, head coach Mark Turgeon and the Terps seem to have bounced back very nicely when it comes to their 2021 freshman class. Heading into November 11th, the official early signing period date, Maryland’s lone recruit was four-star shooting guard Ike Cornish out of Greenville, South Carolina. However, the team was able to add two more highly-rated players, one local and one out of state, to bolster next season’s recruiting class.
Power Forward, Julian Reese (St. Frances Academy) – Owings Mills, MD
Coming in at six feet, nine inches, the four-star from northern Maryland will provide the Terps with another solid forward next season. Reese was ranked as the 82nd player in the nation and third in the state, according to 247sports. While Reese only averaged 10.6 points and 6.7 rebounds a game last season, he is very active on the defensive side of the ball. He averaged over three blocks a game in the 2019-2020 season (MaxPreps). Reese will be joining his older sister, Angel, in playing basketball at Maryland as she will begin her college career with the women’s team this upcoming season. Julian received offers from four other schools including LSU, George Washington, Ohio, and Coastal Carolina.
Small Forward, James Graham (Nicolet) – Milwaukee, WI
Graham, another four-star, is the first Maryland recruit to come from Wisconsin since Diamond Stone in 2015. Last season for Nicolet, Graham averaged just over 20 points, 6.6 rebounds, and 1.4 assists per game. Graham said that being able to have freedom with the ball when he’s on the floor is important for him, which is part of the reason why he chose Maryland. “I feel like I shoot better off the dribble, but I’ve watched a lot of film that Turge has sent me. He clearly gives his players the green light. I don’t have to worry about looking over my shoulder when I take a shot, things like that. He gives his players the green light and he lets them rock out, and that’s honestly something that also helped make it easier for me to decide to go there,” Graham said on Glenn Clark Radio.
Having three exceptional recruits in the 2021 class, the Terps are shaping up to have a great core for the near future. With Anthony Cowan and Jalen Smith departing from the program and the 13th ranked recruiting class in the Big Ten for this upcoming season, fans have their sights set on next season, and it looks to be a good one.
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