But I’ve long thought that if you want to see real passion in a lively college atmosphere in the D.C. area, come to a Terps hoops game.
I love the Turgeonites (some call them Turgeonistas), the group that dresses to resemble Terps coach Mark Turgeon. I loved the Harlem Shake during last season’s Duke game. Old traditions are great, but I’d like to see a little more creativity from the students. Creating the Turgeonites, who put baby powder in their hair to more closely resemble the coach, was truly inspired.
Is running back Johnathan Thomas' decommitment and switch to Penn State a sign of things to come for Maryland's recruiting class?
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Jonas Shaffer: When Maryland lost to Wake Forest on Saturday and then lost Thomas to Penn State on Sunday, it was easy enough to draw a cause-and-effect line from Event A to Event B.
But like your old statistics teacher probably told you, it's important not to conflate causation and correlation. Yes, the Terps' pair of stinkers against Florida State and Wake Forest probably did not buy them any plaudits up in Thomas' Massachusetts home.
It's also possible, however, that maybe Thomas' change of heart was isolated, and that it will remain so. Maybe this was always going to happen once Penn State offered, whether Randy Edsall was back on the hot seat or finally headed to a warm-weather bowl.
Like Thomas, Nittany Lions coach Bill O'Brien attended St. John's Prep, in 1988. And the following quote about the recruiting process, via ESPN Boston, shows Thomas may have been uncertain about his pledge to the Terps since the very beginning:
"Sometimes, it can be overwhelming, because they really pressure you to commit right away, and if you're not ready to commit ... it's still early. I do want to commit before the season, but if I’m not positive about something, I don’t want to commit because once you commit at the Prep, it’s a done deal. There’s no de-committing."
That wasn't the case for Thomas and Penn State, a school he has called his "dream school." Are the Terps in for another recruiting nightmare? I wouldn't count on it. Much of Maryland's current recruiting class was put in place before this regular season, which, injuries and all, still has been something of a step forward for Edsall and Co.
It's not the Tyler Burkes and Jesse Aniebonams you have to worry about. For now, it's the Damian Princes and Jalen Tabors.