Maryland coach Mark Turgeon made an interesting disclosure at today's session with the media in advance of Saturday's game against Samford.
The first-year coach nearly didn't start his team's leading scorer, Terrell Stoglin, against Albany Wednesday because of the sophomore guard's lack of commitment to playing defense.
At the team's shootaround earlier in the day, Turgeon told Stoglin that he would be coming off the bench for the first time since the season opener. After the workout, Stoglin asked his coach why.
"I said, 'I don't think you can guard anybody on their team,'" Turgeon recalled. "And he said, 'Coach, I'll guard tonight.' And he did. He at least guarded his man for most of the time he was in there. He was not a great team defender all the time, but he at least guarded his man, so he made a step in the right direction."
Stoglin, who came into the week as the nation's fifth-leading scorer, scored 22 points on seven of 16 shooting, six of 11 on threes. He also had three assists and only one turnover in 29 minutes.
"I thought he was fantastic offensively," Turgeon said of Stoglin. "He was much more efficient."
The indecision about not starting Stoglin is part of a larger issue that Turgeon has in trying to decide which five players will be on the floor for the beginning of the game.
The return of Pe'Shon Howard at point guard, who started against Albany after coming off the bench in his first game back from foot surgery, and the eligibility of center Alex Len, has given Turgeon options he didn't have for the for the 10 games the Terps played without the 7-1 freshman .
But Turgeon admits that deciding who starts is still "a guessing game". I'll have more about that in Saturday's story leading into the game.