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Maryland’s Chol Marial making progress after surgery, but still at least a month away from playing

LAKE BUENA VISTA, FLA. — Maryland men’s basketball coach Mark Turgeon said Wednesday that freshman center Chol Marial, who had surgery in early September to help repair stress fractures in both shins, is pain-free and progressing, but is still about a month away from being cleared to play.

Speaking to reporters in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, after his team’s shootaround Wednesday at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports, Turgeon said that “Everything keeps looking the same. The X-rays show it’s healing. He’s in less pain. He’s progressing.”

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Turgeon said that the 7-2, 230-pound Maria, once considered among the nation’s most promising big men early in his high school career after coming to the U.S. from South Sudan, is able to run the court without any residual issues and has been playing one-on-one after practice senior walk-on Will Clark of Baltimore.

“He’s getting up and down the floor, no contact, like sprints, and some shooting drills,” Turgeon said. “He had a pretty workout yesterday and he felt good today. It probably going to be a month, as he’ll try to get better. Hopefully he’ll have no setbacks, that’s probably going to be the key."

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Asked how important it will be for the team’s performance this season for Marial, who played at several high schools and prep schools the past three years, to get cleared to play, Turgeon said, “We don’t know yet, because I don’t know what he’s going to be like.”

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