Digest: Towson has a bumper crop of football recruits; Morgan gets 8

Ambrose: “Never have I been more pleased at the potential of these young men to represent our university.”

Rob Ambrose: "Never have I been more pleased at the potential of these young men to represent our university."

Towson football coach Rob Ambrose announced the largest signing class in the history of the Tigers program.

The class of 28 players includes six who are on campus and 22 who will join the program in the fall.

"I would like to thank the efforts of the TEAM that helped to sign the largest class ever signed at this institution," Ambrose said in a statement. "Numerous administrators, doctors and professors, support staff and students have worked tirelessly with our coaches and student-athletes for the past year to bring these new and exciting additions to our university family.

"Never have I been more pleased at the potential of these young men to represent our university."

Morgan State also announced its eight-player class Wednesday.

(Towson and Morgan signings below.)

Et cetera

Gradinger won't play this year for Terps lacrosse team

Redshirt junior Lucas Gradinger, who was competing for a spot on Maryland's starting midfield, will not play this spring. Gradinger has stepped away from the program, coach John Tillman said Wednesday morning. Tillman said he hopes Gradinger will return to the Terps, who are ranked No. 2 in the preseason Maverik media poll, in the fall and have two years of eligibility remaining. "We welcome him back," Tillman said. "We're excited about him coming back." Gradinger had six goals and three assists as a member of the second midfield a year ago, running alongside then-redshirt sophomore Tim Rotanz and Pat Young, who has since graduated. Gradinger was competing to join junior Connor Kelly on the first line, but the field was crowded as senior Ben Chisolm (South River), junior Christian Zawadzki and freshmen Jack Wilson and Jared Bernhardt were vying for playing time. Tillman said even attackmen such as sophomores Louis Dubick and Timothy Monahan and freshman Steven Shollenberger could play in the midfield.

Edward Lee

More men's college lacrosse: Stevenson was picked in the MAC Commonwealth coaches preseason poll to finish first. The Mustangs received eight first-place votes and 64 points. Hood was eighth with 13 points. ... Mount St. Mary's named Scott Meehan assistant coach and Joe Wilson volunteer assistant coach. Meehan, who attended Washington & Lee, coached last season at Richmond; Wilson, a Tennessee graduate, was head coach at St. Andrews.

Women's college lacrosse: Messiah was selected as the favorite in the MAC Commonwealth preseason coaches' poll. The Falcons received seven of nine first-place votes and 63 points. Stevenson collected 57 points and the other two first-place votes to be ranked second.

College administration: Morgan State promoted Erlease Wagner to deputy athletic director. Wagner, who is in her second year at Morgan State, served for several months last year as interim AD.

College baseball: Maryland junior shortstop Kevin Smith was named a Baseball America preseason first-team All-American. Smith, a freshman All-American in 2015, started all 57 games of his sophomore season and batted .259 with eight home runs and 34 RBIs. Smith was named the preseason Big Ten Player of the Year by Perfect Game and D1Baseball.com. Perfect Game also named Smith a preseason first-team All-American. Maryland opens its season at the Clearwater Tournament in Clearwater, Fla. The Terps will take on Ball State in its opener on Friday, Feb. 17 at 7 p.m. at Spectrum Field. ... Salisbury was picked in the Capital Athletic Conference preseason poll to finish first. The Sea Gulls received six of 10 first-place votes) and 77 points; Frostburg State was second with one first-place vote and 69 points. St. Mary's was ninth in the 10-team league.

Women's college basketball: Coppin State freshman center Chance Graham was named Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Rookie of the Week. … Stevenson senior forward Sara Tarbert was named the Middle Atlantic Conference Commonwealth Player of the Week for the second straight week and was selected to the D3hoops.com Team of the Week for the second time this season. ... Bowie State's Kyaja Williams (Western) was named Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association Rookie of the Week for the third time this season. ... Harford Community College (20-2) moved up one spot to No. 14 in the National Junior College Athletic Association Division I rankings. Harford sophomore guard Daisa Harris was named Division I Player of the Week.

College track and field: Johns Hopkins sophomore Felicia Koerner was named the Centennial Conference Women's Track Athlete of the Week, and senior Andrew Bartnett was picked as Centennial Men's Field Athlete of the Week for the second straight week. Salisbury senior Meghan McGowan (Arundel) was named Capital Athletic Conference Women's Field Athlete of the Week, and Salisbury junior Zach Schmelz was named CAC Track Athlete of the Week.

Baseball: Adam Walker cleared waivers and was outrighted off the Atlanta Braves' 40-man roster Tuesday, five days after they claimed him off waivers from the Orioles. The Braves were the third team to claim the power-hitting outfielder off waivers in less than three months, after the Milwaukee Brewers claimed him from the Minnesota Twins in November and the Orioles claimed him from the Brewers in January. The Braves assigned him to Triple-A Gwinnett.

NBA: Washington's Scott Brooks was named Eastern Conference Coach of the Month after guiding the Wizards to a 12-4 record, tied for best in the league.

NHL: Washington Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov was named the NHL's "First Star" for January. He tied for first in the NHL with 20 points (seven goals, 13 assists) in 15 games. ... The Capitals reassigned defenseman Christian Djoos to the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League.

Minor league basketball: The Shuckers announced the signing of four returning players for the 2017 Central Basketball Association season: Lance Harris (Valley Forge, Grace Bible Baptist), Stephen McCray (St. Catherine, Milford Mill), Troy Vasco (Allegany College, Catonsville), and Antonio Wright (CCBC-Essex, Meade).

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Towson, Morgan State recruits

TOWSON

Mid-year enrollees Player Pos. Ht. Wt. Hometown/Last school

Mitchell Boals

DB

5-11

185

Schofield, Wis. (College of DuPage)

Tibo Debaillie

DL

6-3

265

Gistel, Belgium

Abdoulaye Konate

LB

5-11

220

New York (Wyoming Seminary Upper School)

Metise Moore

TE

6-4

235

Denver (City College of San Francisco)

Adrian Platt

RB

5-7

187

Germantown (Seneca Valley HS)

Zane Ventimiglia

OL

6-3

300

Red Bluff, Calif. (Butte College)

Signings

Warren Buckner

CB

5-11

175

Avon Park, Fla. (Avon Park HS)

Cole Cheripko

OL

6-4

270

Germantown (Northwest HS)

Josh Diaz

OL

6-5

271

Woodberry Forest, Va. (Woodberry Forest HS)

Christian Dixon

LB

5-11

200

Matthews, N.C. (Butler HS)

Rodney Dorsey

WR

5-9

175

Frederick (Tuscarora HS)

Evan Finegan

P

5-11

210

Madison Heights, Mich. (Bishop Foley Catholic HS)

D'Mitri Francis

OL

6-4

315

Port Charlotte, Fla. (San Jose City College)

Christian Greaves

WR

5-11

165

Kensington (Albert Einstein HS)

Nygil Johnson

OLB

6-3

200

Midlothian, Va. (Manchester HS)

Ethan Knapp

OL

6-4

330

Warrington, Pa. (Central Bucks South HS)

Jacob Laub

OL

6-5

319

Burke, Va. (Lake Braddock HS)

Eric Magnifico

FB

6-2

240

Hanover, N.J. (Hanover Park HS)

Vashon McCants

CB

6-0

180

Sterling, Va. (Dominion HS)

John Mullins III

DL

6-4

270

Basking Ridge, N.J. (Ridge HS)

Bryce Perkins

OL

6-3

270

McSherrytown, Pa. (DeLone Catholic HS)

Brion Seagraves

DB

6-0

190

Greensboro, N.C. (Dudley HS)

Jaelen Thompson

RB

5-11

185

Middletown, Pa. (Middletown HS)

Coby Tippett

DB

5-9

165

Westwood, Mass. (Cheshire Academy)

Jackson Truitt

OL

6-3

275

West Middletown, Del. (Appoquinimink HS)

Nick Vermillion

FB

6-0

245

Davidsonville, Maryland (Archbishop Spalding HS)

Myles Wright

TE

6-2

234

Baltimore, Maryland (St. Frances Academy)

Kobe Young

DB

6-0

185

Winston-Salem, N.C. (Parkland HS)

MORGAN STATE

Name

Pos.

Ht.

Wt.

Hometown/last school

Daylen Baldwin

WR

6-3

200

Waterford, Mich./ Waterford Mott

Ahmari Benjamin

CB

6-2

175

District Heights/Wise

Cameron Chesley

LB

6-4

225

Fort Washington/Friendly

Demerius Goodwin

RB

5-7

170

Cleveland/Ginn Academy-Cleveland Glenville

Julian Jacobs

DE

6-4

230

Bowie/ Bowie HS

Chris Jenkins

LB

6-2

225

Atlanta/ Creekside HS

Malachi Jenkins

DB

6-1

185

Lithonia, Ga./ Lithonia HS

Willie Mabry

DE

6-3

240

Monroe, La./Wise

63°