My high school had a really bad basketball team with a pretty good player named Tom Carroll. He was top of our class, and we’d been on a youth league team together before that. He was the best then too.
There was no second-best. It was Tom, who would score in droves, and eight or nine kids like me, who couldn’t buy a bucket. There were bits and pieces on our roster, but it was pretty much Tom against the league. We didn’t win many games.
It wasn’t that Tom was a ball hog, or that he took bad shots, it was that we were not good, and the games we won were thanks to the one player we had. Which brings me to Terrell Stoglin.
Maryland’s guard averages an ACC-best 21 points. He gets a few rebounds and a couple of assists too, but mostly he just scores lots of points on lots of shots. He pumped in 28 on 21 against Va. Tech today, and only once this season has he scored under 14. The ACC’s second-leading scorer, UNC’s Harrison Barnes, averages 17. Maryland’s second-leading scorer, senior Sean Mosley, averages 10.
And it’s the way that Stoglin scores, with a relentless onslaught of quick-trigger jumpers, dribble-drive penetration, tear-drop floaters and heat-check threes, with a wrong hand and resolve that sets him apart. The Terps aren’t very good either, you see.
If not for Stoglin, they might be awful. He is the Turtle, but he doesn’t get that sort of recognition, and certainly not Greivis Vasquez-type attention. Maybe because his name isn’t Greivis, even if Greivis never scored quite like this, not even as a senior.
Of course, Greivis passed the ball and ran the point, which is something Stoglin may want to work on. But he is just a sophomore, the underclass MVP of a 13-7 (3-3) team.
They have a shot at the Tournament, but it’s not really about this season. It’s about the next two years, along with sophomore guard Pe’Shon Howard, the freshman frontcourt of Nick Faust, Ashton Pankey and Alex Len and whichever recruits come down the line. They should grow together. They could be a contender, or not. Tom Carroll always deserved better.