This could be the most important weekend of the Maryland basketball season.
The 2018-19 season.
While the Terps start practicing Friday for the upcoming season, three highly-sought recruits will be making their official visits to College Park, according to a source familiar with their recruitment.
Two of them, 6-foot-6 shooting guard Keldon Johnson of South Hill, Va., and 6-2 point guard Devon Dotson of Charlotte, N.C., are five-star prospects. Johnson is ranked No. 7 overall and the No. 2 shooting guard; Dotson is ranked No. 26 overall and the sixth-best point guard by ESPN.
The third player visiting is 6-3 point guard Eric Ayala of Wilmington, Del., a four-star prospect ranked No. 91 by ESPN.
Maryland coach Mark Turgeon is trying to convince them to join a 2018 recruiting class that already includes one five-star prospect, 6-10 forward Jalen Smith (Mount St. Joseph), and a four-star prospect, 6-6 wing Aaron Wiggins. It could also include 7-1 center Moses Brown.
The Terps were considered the favorites to land 7-1 center Moses Brown even before the mushrooming college basketball scandal broke earlier this week that named Louisville, which many thought to be Maryland’s biggest challenger, as one of the schools named in the investigation.
Longtime coach Rick Pitino was put on unpaid leave and his attorney said that Pitino has been fired.
A five-star prospect who is ranked No. 17 overall and is rated the No. 2 big man in the country, Brown visited the Maryland campus last weekend. Brown was scheduled to visit Arizona this weekend before one of their assistants, Book Richardson, was named by the FBI in its probe.
Both Johnson and Dotson have taken other visits to high-profile schools and have yet to commit, something that both Smith and Wiggins did after visiting Maryland this season. Smith is ranked 15th overall and Wiggins is No. 39 by ESPN.
According to InsideMDSports.com, which first reported the news of the weekend’s visits, Wiggins will also spend the weekend in College Park in hopes of convincing Dotson, his AAU teammate, to join him with the Terps next season.