The excitement that is building locally for
basketball is not exactly resonating among the national experts.
’s Andy Katz has the 2012-13 Terps among
of the Top 25, CBSSports.com’s Jeff Goodman
. Worse yet, ESPN bracketologist Joe Lunardi predicts that Maryland
– and that’s with
getting a 12th seed.
Going from being a 17-15 team that finished 6-10 in the ACC to being an
tournament team is certainly not an automatic for
’s team regardless of a recruiting class
, but considering how competitive the Terps were until Pe’Shon Howard went down with a season-ending knee injury in early February, you have to believe the five recruits are going to help make for a quick transformation.
Given that Maryland will open the season against defending national champion
at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. – the Wildcats will likely be preseason No. 1 in many polls despite the likelihood of losing nearly their entire starting lineup – the opportunity will be there for the Terps to create some early noise.
I recall a similar scenario after
followed a strong recruiting class in 1992-93 that included Duane Simpkins, Johnny Rhodes and Exree Hipp with one the following year led by Keith Booth of Dunbar and Joe Smith. Led by Smith, who would be national freshman of the year, Maryland upset highly ranked Georgetown in the season opener at USAir Arena and went on to make the Sweet 16.