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Tracking the Terps
News and notes on Maryland football, basketball and other sports
Terps hope to get Damonte Dodd back to his early-season self

Maryland center Damonte Dodd went from barely playing as a freshman last season to becoming a starter and regular contributor for the first two months of his sophomore year to barely playing the past two games.

That could change Tuesday when the 10th-ranked Terps visit Rutgers. A freak pregame injury to promising freshman center Michal Cekovsky prior to Saturday’s home win over Michigan has given Maryland coach Mark Turgeon one fewer option in the post.

While an MRI Monday showed no structural damage to the knee of the 7-footer from Slovakia, Cekovsky is expected to be held out until at least Sunday’s game at Nebraska.

It leaves Maryland with three options to play down low against the Scarlet Knights and possibly the Cornhuskers: the 6-11, 250-pound Dodd, forward Evan Smotrycz and forward Jon Graham.

Though he continued to struggle offensively, Smotrycz had nine rebounds and four assists in 27 minutes against the Wolverines, and Graham contributed six points and four rebounds in 12...

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Weekly Maryland recruiting roundup

In this week's recruiting roundup, Stefon Diggs' little brother shows real interest in a Southeastern Conference power.

Football recruiting

-- Class of 2016 defensive end target Terrell Hall committed to Ohio State on Monday.

-- Class of 2016 wide receiver target Trevon Diggs reportedly called Alabama his “favorite” after a weekend visit.

-- Class of 2016 wide receiver target Marcus Simms reportedly has Maryland as his top school.

-- Class of 2017 defensive end target Joshua Kaindoh (Mount Carmel) received an offer from Maryland last week. Ohio State and Florida State already have offered.

Basketball recruiting

-- Class of 2016 point guard commit Anthony Cowan Jr. had 14 points in a 57-35 loss to DeMatha on Feb. 23 in the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference semifinals. Cowan was named first-team All-WCAC.

-- Class of 2016 center target Yankuba Sima said Maryland, Arizona and Louisville “have shown the most love,” with the Terps and Wildcats likely his top two.

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Terps ranked 10th in Associated Press poll, highest since 2002-03 season

The target on the Maryland’s men’s basketball team got bigger Monday.

The Terps, who have been ranked in the Top 25 since early December and flirted with reaching the top 10 in mid-January, were ranked No. 10 in the latest Associated Press poll.

It marks the first time in the top 10 for Maryland (24-5 overall, 12-4 in the Big Ten) since the 2002-03 season, a year after the Terps won their only national championship in program history and reached the Final Four for the second straight year.

With the women's team ranked No. 4, Maryland is the only school in the country to have both its basketball teams in the top 10.

Maryland coach Mark Turgeon said before practice Monday that he wasn’t sure how he would handle the ranking with his team. Turgeon has said during the season that the Terps have struggled at times with being ranked.

“If I say we struggled with it, teams get fired up to play us is really what happened,” Turgeon said. “It’s just a number. The guys should be proud of it. It is...

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After tears and cheers for Dez Wells, Terps guard rises to challenge vs. Michigan

In a matter of minutes at Xfinity Center, Dez Wells went from not wanting to cry to having to play basketball.

In a postgame interview with ESPN’s Dan Dakich, Wells explained why that had proved so difficult for much of Saturday afternoon. Being honored on Senior Day, he said, necessitated “a little bit of an adjustment” to his game, and probably not one the guard could make on the game’s opening possession.

Just seconds into No. 14 Maryland’s game against Michigan, Wells received a pass in the post. He turned, saw pressure and aimed a pass -- not a particularly good one -- at Melo Trimble, waiting beyond the 3-point arc.

The ball bounced in front of the freshman guard and was intercepted easily by Michigan’s Aubrey Dawkins, who could have jogged to the opposite basket and still finished with a dunk.

If any tears had blurred Wells’ vision, maybe the Terps were fortunate to have avoided the real waterworks.

“I thought I was going to cry a lot more,” Wells said after he had 13 points,...

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Before Senior Day, Terps transfers reflect on unlikely path to College Park

Typically, Senior Days are about players who have spent their entire college career in the same place, growing from freshman to senior, some even from role player to star.

For five of the 11 seniors — seven players and four team managers — the Maryland men’s basketball team will honor before Saturday’s regular-season home finale against Michigan at Xfinity Center, College Park was a second home. Or, in one case, a third home.

For Evan Smotrycz, there’s more than a little irony in the opponent the No. 14 Terps will face. The 6-foot-9, 230-pound forward spent his first two seasons playing for the Wolverines.

“Obviously, I was interested when I saw we were playing Michigan,” Smotrycz told reporters before practice Friday. “Like I said, it’s not some sort of revenge game for me. [I] just think it’s ironic that it fell on the last game of the year.”

There is some irony, too, for 6-3 guard Richaud Pack, who came to Maryland this season as a graduate student after splitting his first three...

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Shane Cockerille and Perry Hills will take snaps as Maryland kicks off spring football

Maryland's spring football practices begin Wednesday, and one of the biggest concerns for the Terps will be replacing C.J. Brown at quarterback.

Caleb Rowe, the likeliest candidate to start, will be sidelined for the spring as he continues to rehabilitate from a torn anterior cruciate ligament suffered in October.

That means junior Perry Hills and sophomore Shane Cockerille (Gilman) will take the majority of the snaps with the first-team unit throughout the spring.

During a Friday teleconference, coach Randy Edsall said he has been especially impressed with Cockerille’s growth off the field, as he has started to embrace the leadership responsibilities that come with the position.

“You can just see the maturity level rising with him,” Edsall said. “He sees the importance of what we’re doing, and now he knows there’s opportunity for him, and he knew he needed to step up and give himself the best opportunity to be a quarterback here at Maryland.”

Because of the timing of his injury, Rowe...

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