Maryland Lands 7-Footer Cekovsky

Maryland has landed a commitment from 2014 Slovakian 7-footer Michal Cekovsky, a source with direct knowledge confirmed to SNY.tv.

Cekovsky plays for Canarias Basketball Academy in Spain and head coach Rob Orellana previously told SNY.tv he had offers from Florida, Arizona, Louisville, UConn, Oregon, Florida State and Maryland.

“Michal’s upside is off the charts,” Orellana said. “His skillset at 7-feet makes him a unique player. Add to that the fact he is a tireless worker. No question he will be a major impact player at a high-major program.” To read more of this story, click here

Trayvon Reed Commits To Maryland

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By JACK LeGWIN
Special to ZAGSBLOG

Maryland has added a big piece to their 2014 recruiting class.

Trayvon Reed, a 7-foot-1, 219 pound center out of Shiloh Snellville (Ga.) High School joined Romelo Trimble, Dion Wiley and Jared Nickens when he committed to the University of Maryland on Thursday afternoon. He cited the success of a former Maryland big man Alex Len as a reason that he chose the Terps.

“I felt like the situation that’s going on with me , Maryland is the best choice,” Reed told SNY.tv. “Alex Len sort of boosted my confidence with that choice. He came in at 218 (pounds), and left at 252. I’m 219 now and I feel like its the same situation.” To read more of this story, click here

Alex Len Says He Should Be No. 1 Pick Over Noel

NEW YORK — Alex Len isn’t sure if the NBA Draft will be broadcast in his native Ukraine, but he hopes his countrymen get to see him shake David Stern’s hand Thursday night.

And he believes he should be the first player to do so as the No. 1 overall pick — ahead of Kentucky’s Nerlens Noel.

“Definitely, I think I played against him my first game I think. I did well against him,” the 7-foot-1 Len said Wednesday at the Westin Hotel in midtown Manhattan, referring to a Nov. 9 game at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn in which Len went for 23 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks and Noel had four points, nine boards and three blocks in Kentucky’s 72-69 victory over Maryland. To read more of this story, click here

Jared Nickens to Maryland

Jared Nickens didn’t need to take all of his official visits after all.

The 6-foot-6 2014 wing from Westtown (Pa.) High verbally committed to Maryland Saturday night on his official visit.

“I loved everything about it,” Nickens told SNY.tv. “When I first stepped on campus I felt this positive vibe, I love the campus, I like the [Washington] D.C. and College Park area around the campus. The atmosphere was great, the fan base is great.

“I really like the Coach [Mark] Turgeon and his honesty with his players, he’s a players’ coach, and is great with individual development, he looks out for his players. He knows what he’s talking about.

To read more of this story, click here

Dion Wiley to Maryland

Dion Wiley, a 6-foot-3 shooting guard from Potomac (MD) Oxon Hill, committed to Maryland Friday.

“Comfortability and loyalty from the staff,” Wiley told SNY.tv were the reasons for his choice. “I will try to make as much of an impact as I can.”

Wiley is the No. 49 prospect in the Class of 2014, according to Rivals. He also considered Florida, Indiana and Miami.

“Great upside and has a chance to be a special player,” Team Takeover director Keith Stevens told SNY.tv. “He’s one of the best shooters I’ve ever coached in my 18 years.”

Wiley joins 2014 point guard Romelo Trimble of Arlington (VA) Bishop O’Connell in Mark Turgeon’s 2014 class, giving the Terps the foundation of a strong backcourt as they move into the Big Ten in 2014.

“I feel as though we can win a championship,” Wiley said.

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Alex Len to the NBA Draft

By JOSH NEWMAN
Special to ZAGSBLOG

Alex LenOn a day when projected No. 1 pick Nerlens Noel threw his name into the NBA Draft, another Lottery-bound big man followed suit on Monday afternoon.

University of Maryland sophomore center Alex Len will forego his final two years of eligibility in College Park and declare for an NBA Draft that is expected to be weak by many accounts, but should produce several big men as lottery picks.

Noel, Indiana sophomore center Cody Zeller and 20-year-old French big man Rudy Gobert are all projected to be chosen inside the top 10 come June. Len is currently projected as the No. 11 overall pick by DraftExpress.

Len and Terrapins head coach Mark Turgeon are scheduled to hold a press conference on Tuesday afternoon at 2:30 p.m. at Comcast Center.

To read more of this story, click here

Barclays Center Announces Multi-Year Deals with Kentucky, Maryland

The Barclays Center announced “multi-year agreements” to host Kentucky and Maryland going forward.

On Nov. 9, Kentucky and Maryland opened the college season at the new Barclays Center, with the Wildcats winning a close one, 72-69.

Next year, the Wildcats and their five McDonald’s All-Americans will face a young Providence team Dec. 1, while Maryland will also play a game TBD.

Kentucky’s 2013 recruiting class features McDonald’s and Jordan Brand All-Americans Andrew and Aaron Harrison, Dakari Johnson, Marcus Lee and  James Young. Those five will play in the Jordan Game April 13 at Barclays, too. To read more of this story, click here

Maryland to the Big Ten, Rutgers To Follow Tuesday (UPDATED)

By MATT SUGAM & ADAM ZAGORIA

Goodbye, ACC, and goodbye, Big East.

Maryland and Rutgers are headed to the Big Ten in 2014.

Maryland’s Board of Regents voted  unanimously to leave the ACC and go to the Big Ten.

“Today is a watershed moment for the University of Maryland,” said Maryland university president Wallace D. Loh.  “Membership in the Big Ten Conference is in the strategic interest of the University of Maryland.  It will not only ensure the financial vitality of Maryland Athletics for decades to come, but the extensive opportunities in the CIC for collaborations with our peer AAU and flagship universities in education, research, and innovation will boost the University of Maryland’s ascendancy in academic excellence.” To read more of this story, click here

Breaking Down the Bigs: Noel, Cauley-Stein & Len

By DAN KELLY

Special to ZAGSBLOG

NEW YORK — More than 30 NBA scouts were on hand Friday night to watch the college hoops baptism of Kentucky’s newest shot-blocking giants.

Nerlens Noel and Willie Cauley-Stein combined for 7 blocks and swung at about 20 others, but they gave up 28 offensive rebounds in the process. This night, at least as far as the scouts were concerned, belonged to Maryland’s sophomore big man, Alex Len.

Let’s break down the three players and see what we learned: To read more of this story, click here

Len’s Draft Stock on the Rise After Kentucky Game

NEW YORK — Alex Len’s draft stock is on the rise after his performance Friday night against Kentucky.

The 7-foot-1 sophomore center from the Ukraine finished with career- and game-bests of 23 points, 12 rebounds and 4 blocks in Maryland’s 72-69 loss to defending national champion Kentucky at the Barclays Center.

Len outplayed Kentucky’s highly acclaimed freshmen big man duo of Nerlens Noel and Willie Cauley-Stein, who combined for 12 points, 15 rebounds and 7 blocks.

“Len is terrific,” raved one NBA Director of Scouting.

“Len is a lottery pick,” a longtime NBA scout told SNY.tv after the game. “Noel and Cauley-Stein are great young prospects with a lot to learn.” To read more of this story, click here