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2015 Scholarship Series: Maryland Terrapins

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A high-profile transfer from the defending national champions joins Maryland, who many have placed as the preseason No. 1 school, as the Terrapins still have room to work with.

Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Scholarship

Player

Years of Eligibility Left

1

Jake Layman

1

2

Rasheed Sulaimon

1

3

Robert Carter

2

4

Damonte Dodd

2

5

Melo Trimble

3

6

Dion Wiley

3

7

Jared Nickens

3

8

Michal Cekovsky

3

9

Jaylen Brantley

3

10

Ivan Bender

4

11

Diamond Stone

4

12

(Open)

13

(Open)

Now that we have covered the scholarship situation of the two schools from my home state, I guess the next logical step would be to review the team that is not only predicted to be at the top of the Big Ten, but also vying to be the preseason No. 1 team, the Maryland Terrapins.

Maryland fared much better than fellow Big Ten newcomer Rutgers in the schools' inaugural year in the conference, (not just in basketball, but across the board in athletics). Maryland second in the standings, a full two games ahead of the rest of the pack.

Maryland is the first team in this series to have open scholarship slots available. The Terrapins lost eight players to graduation from a team that lost in the round of 32 in the NCAA tournament, Dez Wells being far and away the most significant departure.  Though Richaud Pack and Evan Smotrycz were the fifth and sixth best scorers on the team respectively.

Two transfers and one true freshman fill three of the five available scholarships that Maryland had available this off-season. Most notably Rasheed Sulaimon will spend his final season of eligibility in College Park after becoming the first ever player to be dismissed from Duke University in Mike Krzyzewski's tenure as head coach due to sexual assault allegations that were uncovered by Duke's student newspaper.

Sulaimon's production on the court dropped off following a terrific freshman campaign, finding himself as a role player off the bench during his final year and change as a Blue Devil.  Joining guard-wing combo players Jared Layman and Jared Nickens along with Melo Trimble gives Maryland potentially the best perimeter team in the country.

Odessa College transfer Jaylen Brantley gives the roster a true point guard. In his 29 JUCO contests Brantley averaged 14.3 points, 3.7 assists, and 1.75 turnovers per game. Though, Mark Turgeon could simpley have Trimble and/or Dion Wiley handle bringing the ball up the floor.

Maryland has two open scholarships and one offer on the table to the 7-foot-1-inch Greek Georgios Papagiannis, though it appears St. Johns is the front-runner in that recruiting battle. Clearly, Turgeon and staff are trying to address the thin, but strong depth down low. Demonte Dodd and Michal Cekovsky are the only two returning post players, but McDonald's All-American Diamond Stone provides an immediate boost down low. As a bonus, Georgia Tech transfer Robert Carter will be available to play after sitting out last season.

Maryland is certainly taking a "less is more" approach with its' scholarships, and looking at this roster, it could easily go 9 or 10 players deep throughout 2015-16 and should be poised for a deep tournament run.