If there is one common bond between a 52-year-old men’s basketball coach who’s going into his 20th year as a head coach and his seventh year in College Park and a 39-year-old football coach going into his second year as a head coach, it’s in the importance they place on recruiting.
That’s why the moves each made with his respective staff the past few days have the same purpose: keeping the momentum going into what will be an important recruiting process for both programs come 2018.
Turgeon’s decision Friday to bring former Georgetown assistant Kevin Broadus to Maryland by moving fourth-year assistant Cliff Warren into the newly created role as director of player development is tied directly to Broadus’ connections to the local Amateur Athletic Union scene.
Given the number of potential targets for next year’s recruiting class that live and play between Baltimore and Washington – from Jalen Smith (Mount Saint Joseph) and Immanuel Quickley (John Carroll) to Prentiss Hubb and Brandon Slater – bringing in Broadus will likely pay quick dividends.
Not that the Terps haven’t been successful under Turgeon getting local players to stay home. It started three years ago with Melo Trimble and Dion Wiley, then continued with Anthony Cowan last year and Darryl Morsell (Mount Saint Joseph) for the Class of 2017.
While Baltimorean Bino Ranson has certainly made an impact in his hometown with Morsell as well as potentially with Smith and Quickley, and fellow assistant Dustin Clark was the key guy in getting Cowan and putting the Terps into good position with both Hubb and Slater, Warren had struggled in that area.
A head coach for nine years at Jacksonville University, Warren brought experience and a keen basketball acumen to Turgeon’s staff. Unfortunately, he had not brought any players in the three years since coming to Maryland.
With Broadus apparently not retained as part of Patrick Ewing’s staff at Georgetown, getting the 53-year-old who had spent all but the two years he was head coach at Binghamton at nearly every Division I team in Washington made a lot of sense.
Just like Durkin’s decision Thursday to promote wide receivers coach Chris Beatty to associate head coach.
Beatty, along with defensive backs coach Aazaar Abdul-Rahim, played a major part in Maryland’s Top 20 recruiting class in 2017. While it didn’t appear as if Beatty was going anywhere, locking him up long-term with a big raise and substantial title will help ensure that he wasn’t plucked by another school.
When four-star quarterback Tyler DeSue of Norfolk, Va. announced last week that he had committed orally to Maryland, he specifically mentioned Beatty as one of the big reasons. A number of those in the 2017 – including four-star receiver Tahj Capehart and four-star defensive lineman Breyon Gaddy – had done the same.
With former associate head coach Mike London taking the head coaching job at Howard in January, there was a chance for Durkin to fill that title. Who better than the assistant London had brought with him after getting fired from Virginia? If London had used to own the football-rich Tidewater area when he was in Charlottesville, Beatty has taken ownership of it now.
The Maryland football team will play its annual spring game today, with several recruits in attendance. (Message to fans: the more there, the better it will look to those who have already been to spring games where tens of thousands show up). Beatty will be on the sidelines coaching the receivers, but will certainly spend time talking to potential future Terps.
Turgeon and his staff have spread out this weekend to the three cities -- New York, Dallas and Hampton, Va. -- that host high-level AAU tournaments. It’s not clear when Broadus will start representing Maryland, but you have to know that local AAU coaches are well aware of his hiring.
Durkin loves to say that every move he makes at Maryland has something to do with recruiting.
Turgeon is not so transparent about it, but Friday’s decision shows that he and Durkin live in very parallel universes.