Each summer I catch up with all nine Division I basketball coaches in Maryland to talk about their incoming recruiting classes. Then comes my take, based on those interviews, of how those new additions will do in college. Here's a look at how I fared in those predictions:
What I wrote – Headliner: "It’s probably a safe bet that [Nick] Faust -- a consensus four-star prospect -- sees serious minutes on the wing for the Terps early on in his freshman year."
What he did: Faust was Maryland's third-leading scorer at 8.9 points per game. The City grad, who also averaged four rebounds, appeared in all 32 games for the Terps, starting 21. He also filled in admirably at the point when Pe'Shon Howard went down.
Who it should have been: Faust
What I wrote – Sleeper: “With an unproven trio of post players in James Padgett, Ashton Pankey and Berend Weijs, [Alex] Len will have ample opportunities for playing time."
What he did: After serving a 10-game suspension to start the season because of NCAA questions about his amateurism, Len averaged 6 points and 5.4 rebounds in 22 games (11 starts).
Who it should have been: Len
What I wrote – Headliner: "... Marcus Damas, [is] a JUCO transfer from Westchester (N.Y.) Community College who will have three years of eligibility. The 6-foot-7, 200-pound forward averaged 14 points and nine rebounds last season, and could be a factor at the 3 or the 4 right away."
What he did: Damas was one of just a few bright spots on a historically bad Tigers team. The sophomore tied with Robert Nwankwo for the team lead in scoring at 12.5 points per game. Damas, who started 31 of Towson's 32 games, also averaged 5.3 rebounds.
Who it should have been: Damas
What I wrote – Sleeper: "Will Adams signed with Towson in 2009, but was diagnosed with leukemia just a few months later. Now the 6-foot-4, 190-pound shooting guard from Philadelphia is cancer-free and ready to compete."
What he did: Adams averaged 1.9 points in 27 games.
Who it should have been: Point guard Kris Walden was a Pat Kennedy recruit who decided to stick with Pat Skerry's Tigers. The freshman from Richmond, Va., ended up starting all 32 games and averaging 6.6 points and 3.2 assists.
What I wrote – Headliner: Greyhounds coach Jimmy "Patsos said that if [R.J.] Williams didn’t start, he would 'probably be the first guy off the bench.'"
What he did: Patsos stuck with his preseason plans for Williams. The St. Frances grad started 29 of Loyola's 33 games, providing a steady, play-making presence for the MAAC champions. Williams averaged four points and a team-high 2.6 assists.
Who it should have been: Williams
What I wrote – Sleeper: "Tyler Hubbard was the designated outside shooter for national powerhouse Montrose Christian last season. For the Greyhounds, Hubbard could be called on to fill that very same role."
What he did: Hubbard redshirted.
Who it should have been: The only other newcomer for Loyola during the 2011-12 season was Jordan Latham, who transferred from Xavier and got a waiver from the NCAA to play right away. The City grad appeared in 26 games, averaging 1.8 points and 1.9 rebounds. With Shane Walker's graduation, Latham should play a much bigger role at the 5 for the Greyhounds as a junior.
What I wrote – Headliner: "Joey Getz capped his career at Archbishop Wood by leading the Philadelphia Catholic League in scoring at 21 points per game. The 6-footer is more than just a prolific scorer – he also was one of his squad’s top distributors."
What he did: Getz averaged 5 points and 2.6 rebounds in 18 games (four starts). He missed 12 games with a leg injury.
Who it should have been: Ryan Cook was a Pallotti grad who transferred to UMBC from Division II Chestnut Hill. He tried out for the team, made it as a walk-on and eventually became a regular starter for the Retrievers and their second-leading scorer (12.5 points per game). UMBC coach Randy Monroe said it "wouldn't surprise me a bit" if Cook saw minutes, but it's probably safe to say that this non-scholarship player's headliner status was an unexpected bonus for the Retrievers.
What I wrote – Sleeper: "Monroe traveled to Indianapolis to sign Chandler Thomas, a 6-foot-6, 210-pound forward who was named to the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association 2011 All-State team. The final recruit in the Retrievers’ class is well-versed in the fundamentals of the game."
What he did: Thomas averaged 6 points and 3.4 rebounds in 17.4 minutes per game. He saw action in all 30 games, making 10 starts.
Who it should have been: Thomas
What I wrote – Headliner: Donya Jackson. "The versatile 6-foot-3, 212-pound wing stayed committed to the Mids throughout his prep year despite interest from several mid-major programs. 'He loves to play,' said first-year Navy coach Ed DeChellis. 'I think he’s going to be a very, very good player here and hopefully in the Patriot League.'"
What he did: The Calvert Hall grad averaged 3.3 points and 1.5 rebounds in 11.3 minutes per game.
Who it should have been: Worth Smith, a 6-foot-6 forward from Charlotte who averaged 6.8 points and five rebounds as a freshman. Smith was named to the Patriot League All-Rookie team. He was the conference's leading rookie rebounder and third-leading scorer.
What I wrote – Sleeper: "Jared Smoot’s senior statistics at Crown Point (Ind.) High were modest -- 9.6 points, 7 rebounds and 2.5 blocks per game – but he does bring one important factor to the table that none of his Navy teammates possess: the size of a true center."
What he did: Smoot appeared in 18 games, averaging 1.7 rebounds in 8.2 minutes per game.
Who it should have been: Jordan Brickman didn't play basketball during his first two years at the Academy, but the San Antonio native joined the Mids for his junior season and earned a spot in the rotation almost immediately. The guard averaged 4.1 points and suited up in 29 games, making 20 starts.
What I wrote – Headliner: "It wouldn’t be crazy to pencil [Anthony] Hubbard into the Bears’ starting lineup – at least at some point in the season."
What he did: Hubbard, a JUCO transfer who spent one month at Iowa before heading to Morgan State, was never cleared by the NCAA. He redshirted this season.
Who it should have been: Blake Bozeman, son of Bears coach Todd Bozeman, put up 4..6 points per game in 28 appearances (six starts). He'll enter the 2012-13 season as the favorite to start at the point.
What I wrote – Sleeper: "Thair Heath comes from San Bernardino (Calif.) Valley College with three years of eligibility remaining. The 6-foot-9 forward was a first-team all-conference selection last season. And that’s about the extent of what we know about Heath."
What he did: Heath averaged 1.1 points and 1.1 rebounds in 18 games (two starts).
Who it should have been: Shaquille Duncan, a 6-foot-9 freshman from Philadelphia, averaged 3.4 points and 2.2 rebounds, appearing in 28 games and making seven starts. The graduations of Kevin Thompson and Ameer Ali should open up more minutes for Duncan next season.
What I wrote – Headliner: "None. Thanks to an Academic Progress Rate score below the NCAA-mandated minimum, Coppin was prevented from adding any new players to its roster because of scholarship loss."
What he did: N/A
Who it should have been: Coppin ended up finding room for Taariq Cephas, a 5-foot-9 guard from Bear, Del. He contributed 5.7 points per game and started 12 out of 29 games as a freshman.
What I wrote – Sleeper: "We’ll go with the same player that occupied this spot last year: Logan Wiens. The 6-foot-8 forward redshirted last season after transferring from Merced (Calif.) College. Eagles coach Fang Mitchell expects Wiens to be part of his playing rotation."
What he did: Wiens averaged 10.1 points (11.8 in MEAC play) and shot better than 40 percent from 3-point range.
Who it should have been: Wiens
What I wrote – Headliner: "Pina Guillaume appeared in 25 games – starting nine – for Binghamton during the 2009-10 season. When things didn’t work out with the Bearcats, Guillaume headed to Blinn College in Texas. The 6-foot-9 power forward should be an instant-impact player for the Hawks this season."
What he did: Guillaume averaged 3.9 points and 3.3 rebounds in 24 games (seven starts).
Who it should have been: Percy Woods, a JUCO guard transfer, ended up starting 28 games for the Hawks. He tied Hillary Haley for the team lead in scoring with 10.9 points per game.
What I wrote – Sleeper: "Gregory Womack is a 6-foot-5 shooting guard that was recruited by the Hawks for one main purpose: 3-point shooting. "
What he did: Womack averaged 3.2 points and shot 29 percent from 3-point range.
Who it should have been: Ishaq Pitt, a 6-foot-3 freshman guard, averaged seven points and 3.7 rebounds.
Mount St. Mary’s
What I wrote – Headliner: "Xavier Owens could be just the type of do-it-all player Robert Burke needs in Emmitsburg. The 6-foot-5, 220-pound wing was a versatile scoring threat for Wharton High in Wesley Chapel, Fla."
What he did: Owens averaged 2.9 points and 2.2 rebounds in 24 games. Burke, meanwhile, didn't last through the end of his second season with the Mount.
Who it should have been: Kelvin Parker, a 6-foot-4 walk-on forward from York, Pa., quickly proved to be an indispensable member of the Mountaineers, averaging nine points and starting 26 of 29 games. Parker also averaged 4.6 rebounds and shot 42 percent from the field.
What I wrote – Sleeper: "Taylor Danaher, a 6-foot-10 center, was home-schooled before playing for Fredericksburg (Va.) Christian last season. He’s a developmental prospect that intrigued Burke enough to offer him a scholarship before last fall’s signing period."
What he did: Danaher redshirted.
Who it should have been: Parker was the ultimate sleeper. Besides him, Chad Holley, a 6-foot point guard from New York City, put up 3.3 points per game and saw action in 28 contests.